Posted by : Wendy B Tuesday, 30 October 2012

I probably didn’t make it much past issue #3 of The Darkness comics when it first came out. I didn’t care for the potty humour and the violence and gore and I didn’t care for womanizing Jackie. In the game, Darklings still fart and pee on corpses that the Darkness' demon arms have ripped apart in creative ways, but the major difference between comic Jackie Estacado and video game Jackie Estacado is that he’s not a shallow womanizing asshole.

In fact, after learning about this scene in The Darkness, considered to be one of the most romantic video game scenes ever portrayed, I decided to check it out. Actually, I decided to check out Darkness II because I wanted to play on the PC, even though my first attempt made me sick and I had to plan carefully when I played in short burst thereafter. I youtubed the important parts of The Darkness, got a recap from Jonny in Darkness II, and then I was on my way.

I generally avoid overly violent games, but I have to admit to gleefully headshotting and meeting my Demon Arm Kill requirements and performing various other executions (and Assecutions -- don't ask. Unless you're Digitaltempest. And then you can also demand pictures.) Especially at the end when the music amped up and Jackie went on a little rampage.

But that wasn’t the reason why I played this game. I played it because of Jenny. Because of Jackie and Jenny. Because of what Jenny means to Jackie and how they made that the most important part of this game in so many perfect ways. Jackie might be a bit obsessed with his lost love, but that’s because Jenny is a just that special. I liked the way the game made that clear through flashbacks, Jackie’s monologues and the quiet and fun moments you get to spend with her.

Don’t worry. This isn’t one gigantic date movie. Jackie still has to deal with the usual people-wanting-to-kill-him troubles. (This is a fairly common problem so Jackie needs to explain to me why he occasionally walks out of his mansion without his guns) as well as the frustrating problem of having people think he's crazy. In this case, it’s the Brotherhood who wants to steal the Darkness from him. As much as Jackie hates the Darkness, he needs it to rescue Jenny. And what's that about the Angelus? DRAMA!

I also have to comment on the architecture of Jackie's mansion. It was quite lovely and the attention to detail had me taking notes and sharing the love, by Digitaltempest's request again, on Tumblr.

Overall, a pretty good game. Nothing overly special about the the action, unless you really do enjoy the violence. Lots of options there for depravity, including the Vendettas co-op games that allow you to play as various hitmen. For me, as usual, it's about the story and characters and I can't help but love Jackie and Jenny.
...I don't want to...
Discussion.

One Response so far.

  1. I should probably move this up higher on my TBP list.

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This is my mindspill. Mostly about comics, books, video games, movies of the science fiction and fantasy leanings. Sometimes recipes and parenting stuff will sneak in, along with a real world rant or two.

I also write about geek culture at Women Write About Comics, and I review genre fiction at The BiblioSanctum.

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