This is Trevor Young’s of Gaming Cypher review of the Xbox One version of The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing II by developer NeocoreGames .
Having never played the original, I was unsure what to expect coming into Van Helsing II. Immediately I was surprised with the overall appearance of the game. It had a very old school Gothic theme, which was portrayed in great detail.
When beginning the game you are faced with multiple character options, each coming with their own set of specialties and abilities. Once a character is chosen you are then able to select from several difficulties. This was nice because the game offered a larger range of difficulties than what most games do.
Getting into the various aspects of the game, it offers immense depth in terms of the customization of your particular character. Through battles and quests, you earn the ability to increase your base stats as well as learn abilities and spells. With these abilities and spells, there are further upgrades than can be made to each one as well as five different power ups that can be added on top of the upgrades. These affect things such as mana regeneration or damage done. In addition to these alterations, you can choose to change your playing style switching back and forth between melee and ranged attacks.
Where the ranged attacks come from spells or pistols and rifles (depending on your character selection) the melee attacks are the result of hand held weapons. The damage done and perks of these weapons are also subject to upgrades, similar to that of the abilities and spells. Much like other RPG games, you acquire various weapons through battles and quests. You may store them in your inventory or sell them in order to buy other weapons. Additionally, you have the ability to pass some of your items to your companion.
Your companion in this game is a ghost woman who follows you around and assists you in battle. Her behaviors can be set for primarily melee attacks or ranged attacks similar to your own. She also has the ability to learn new tricks and spells with the same upgrade capabilities. Overall, the inventory and upgrade section of the game menu is very well done, and makes it very easy to switch back and forth between items and improve your character’s abilities. It even goes so far as allowing you to combine multiple items in your inventory into one super item.
As for the actual gameplay, I found it to be very smooth and complex. There are tons of objects in the game that allow for user interaction from breaking boxes to find gold or gambling one of your weapons to gain another unknown item. The battles display crisp clear images even when using multiple spells and weapons, which may sometimes be overwhelming. The enemies encountered throughout the game represent a wide variety of beasts, all with different skills and strengths and add lots of variety to the game. On top of that, the map in game is discovered through exploration, starting out all black and expanding to show you places that you’ve been in the section of Van Helsing’s world.
In conclusion, I think this game is very well done. It allows you to entirely customize your character to your specific preferences as well as customizing and upgrading your companion as well. The menus are well organized and make switching through inventories and upgrades simple. The gameplay itself changes and varies with each new quest and definitely offers some challenges to keep you on your toes. For these reasons, I rate The Incredible Adventures of Van Helsing II 8.5 / 10.