Game Review: Saw II: Flesh & Blood

Saw II: Flesh & Blood is a third person survival horror video game that is sequel to 2009’s Saw: The Video Game, both of which are based on the popular Saw films. Saw II picks up just after Saw and is set between the second and third movie. If you’re a big fan of the Saw series, chances are you’ll enjoy this sequel.  Make sure you grab a copy just after you read my review!

Plot

Flesh & Blood is set between the second and third movie in the series. The new lead character, Michael, is the son of Detective David Tapp, who begins to investigate the cause of his father’s death which eventually makes him a target of the Jigsaw Killer and his apprentice Pighead. The game will supposedly take the player to a number of locations including factories, hotels, sewers, and other places to capture Jigsaw and find clues behind the detective’s death.

Gameplay

Saw II retains the same style of gameplay as the first game, being basically a third-person survival horror game with very intense action elements. Puzzles from the original game return, such as the “circuit puzzles”; but instead of matching them with the same colour, the player needs to match wires of opposite colour (yellow to red and vice-versa). Lockpicking also returns, but uses a new mini game that gets the player to manipulate the tumblers to unlock. Also, environmental puzzles are presented in a new way, like having to turn the flashlight on-and-off in certain areas to reveal certain clues. Quick-time traps are back; in addition to shotguns being hidden behind doors new lethal traps have been introduced such as closing walls, swinging scythes, and loose floorboards. They are placed throughout certain areas for the player to avoid by pressing a button in a timely fashion.

For this sequel, the entire combat system was revamped from the original game. There are two types of combat: puzzle-based and melee. Puzzle-based combat encourages the player to make use of traps or the environment to kill enemies, like opening an elevator shaft as the enemy charges into it to eliminate them. Melee combat, on the other hand, consists of the player using their hands and feet or weapons to neutralize an enemy. Quick maneuvers and defensive repercussion to defend the player from aggressive enemies is the basis of the combat. Timing is also very essential in fighting and neutralizing enemies.

The “Case Files” from the first game also return. The files’ subjects are varied but a few focus on Detective Tapp’s testimonies on his raid of Jigsaw’s hideout and his entrapment in Whitehurst Asylum. Also, Billy the Puppet dolls are a new collectible which can be found scattered in different locations in the game.  There are several areas in the game where you have to solve more difficult puzzles to obtain the dolls. Multiple endings are back, only this time around players should complete the game again completely to unlock a different ending due to the decisions made throughout the game that affect the final outcome of the game.

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