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Luke Bailey
Luke Bailey

Party Hard 2

Just like the original, you get to play as a serial killer hell bent on crashing parties and murdering party-goers. He gets waken up by his neighbours at 3am who are having a massive party so he decides to go on a killing spree to quieten things down.

Party hard 2

Remember parties? Before 2020, these loud, obnoxious gatherings used to happen quite a lot. Back in the day, we loved a good party, but as the years go by, the prospect of sitting under the lampshade with a stiff drink and a good book is much more enticing. Party Hard 2 stars a poor chap who just wants to get a good night's sleep, but nearby parties keep him wide awake and increasingly agitated. In a rather questionable decision, the game tasks you with stopping the parties in perhaps the most extreme way possible: kill some, if not all, of the attendees.

PARTY HARD 2 picks up 10years after the brutal spree of murders committed by the infamous "Party Hard Killer." After the killer's eventual capture, things seemed to return to normal, especially in the neon-fueled party scene. Once again, nightclubs are filled with thumping beats, flashing lights, and, more importantly, partygoers itching for an opportunity to lose their inhibitions. It's what drew the wrath of the Party Hard Killer a decade ago ... and now it seems to have drawn his wrath once more. As the latest incarnation of the Party Hard Killer, you'll stalk the club scene and bring the party to a homicidal end with a variety of weapons, traps, and special abilities. You'll use a little extra creativity to craft deadly new tools, sabotage equipment, and discover new ways to hide any trace of your gruesome handiwork.

Let's get something straight right from the start: Despite the fun sounding title, this is NOT a party game. In fact, Party Hard 2 could best be described as the "anti-party game." From the subject matter to the gameplay to the presentation, this is about as far as you can get from being a party. For starters, the whole purpose of the game is to infiltrate various nightclubs and parties, and then either kill a number of specific types of people or simply kill everyone in sight. It's a bit of a hard sell, especially considering the amount of real-world violence in venues just like this. That's not to say there isn't a niche market for those with a darker sense of humor, but the retro style and campy atmosphere almost feel like it's trying to hide its true nature and appeal to a younger crowd.

From a gameplay perspective, Party Hard 2 is a bit of a buzzkill in all the wrong ways. The keyboard controls aren't very responsive or precise. Many times, killing or stunning someone will cause them to drop an item. You might try to pick up the body to hide it before it's seen, but you'll pick up the item instead. Also, trying to aim and throw certain items is a finger-twisting chore. It just makes everything more difficult than it needs to be. Speaking of the difficulty, outside of the occasional tip, there's no tutorial in the game, leaving players to figure things out more through trial and error. All of this is before the technical glitches come into play. While these aren't usually too bad, it was impossible to exit out of the settings menus (and that happened more than once), forcing a hard reset of the game. None of these issues make Party Hard 2 unplayable, but they all come together to make it a very dull party to attend.

The levels themselves are mostly static but have some random elements. The placement of objects can change, as well as any items you find in crates. The behavior of most party goers is also random. Guards tend to have preset movement paths, but the guests are unpredictable.

You always have your trusty knife, and stabbing people is an option. Just remember to hide the body. The party-goers are mostly oblivious to your actions, they are too busy dancing and drinking. But they will call the cops if they find a body. Worse, if they do notice you doing something nefarious, they can identify you to the police.

Three years ago I took a look at the original Party Hard. While not for everyone, Party Hard was a game that really surprised me. Basically the premise of the game was that you played as a serial killer who was fed up with parties keeping him up at night. In the game you played as the serial killer and had to find a way to kill all of the party goers without being killed yourself or getting caught by the police. The game played like a stealth game mixed with a strategy game. What made the original Party Hard work was that all of these mechanics worked really well together to create an enjoyable and unique experience. Having enjoyed the original game I was excited to try out Party Hard 2. Party Hard 2 may share a lot in common with the original game, but it does what a sequel should by adding polish and expanding on what worked to create a game superior to the original.

I think the biggest addition the items make to the game is the variety of options they give to the players. In the original game you mostly had to rely on getting party goers alone to pick them off one at a time, or find ways to get them in a group when you set off one of the traps. The addition of items gives you a lot more flexibility in how you choose to get rid of the party goers. This flexibility keeps the game fresh and adds quite a few opportunities for creativity to the game. To further explain I want to share a few examples of what you can do in the game.

Outside of the addition of items, I would say the next biggest addition to the game is the inclusion of actual objectives. In the original game the goal in every level was to kill all of the guests. While that is still the primary goal in Party Hard 2, there are other objectives to complete in each level. Each level presents you with two main options. You can either selectively kill the marked party guests (10 or so in each level) or you can decide to kill everyone. Choosing to just kill the selected targets actually adds quite a bit of stealth to the game as you have to find ways to get the targets alone. Killing all of the guests requires some creativity as you have to get rid of everyone without getting caught.

Party Hard 2 is basically what you want out of a sequel. The game takes what worked in the original game, polishes up some things and adds some additional mechanics that bring some more variety to the game. The main gameplay is the same as the original game which kind of plays like a strategy game mixed with a stealth game. Party Hard 2 improves on the original game in a couple ways though. The addition of items really improves the game as it allows you to craft unique weapons, and gives you more variety in how you can kill the party guests. In addition the levels are considerably larger and give you secondary objectives which add quite a bit of variety to the game. The game also got a graphical update mixing the pixel art characters from the original game with 3D environments, which creates a really interesting style for the game. Party Hard 2 is better than the original game in almost every way. It does have a few issues though. The game could have done a better job explaining all of the mechanics and the difficulty can vary quite a bit from being too easy to being too hard. At times the game also gets a little repetitive so it is probably better playing the game in shorter doses.

Party Hard 2 is a pixel art-style murder spree. You make your way to a cr-aaz-y party, and begin the butchering. The levels are large without being too big. The developers have done a great job at creating a believable, yet obnoxiously boisterous, party, with dozens of tiny pixel characters dancing, smoking and other party malark. The art style is detailed and cute and the animation of these little characters as they boogie their little hearts away is so well done. The levels also are well laid out and designed, each looking like its own little diorama.

Party Hard 2 initially feels like it could be a bit of a puzzler, and while I do believe this is the intention to a degree, I find the random nature of the NPCs to be too unpredictable. Entering a level is like entering it for the first time for the most part. While guards, items and traps all remain in the same place, which does give you some advantage over the partygoers, the unpredictable nature of those NPCs made the game feel particularly frustrating. Team that up with one hit kill enemies later in the game and Party Hard 2 becomes a bit of a chore.

On September 16, 2016, the game received a free DLC campaign, Dark Castle, a single level which takes place across multiple maps in which you play a vampire hunter attacking a party being held by vampires and other ghoulish ghoulies. Because the party-goers are creatures of the night, they'll actively attack you if they see you causing trouble instead of running off to call the cops. 041b061a72


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