To the huge delight of many (including myself), a sequel to The Evil Within was announced by Bethesda at E3 last week. Being based in the UK, it was more than worth staying up late to see the unveiling of both The Evil Within 2 and a new Wolfenstein game, despite it being around 7AM before I was able to finally go to bed after the conference. But I digress.
What has come as quite a surprise is that Shinji Mikami, the prolific Resident Evil director that directed the first Evil Within game, may not be directing the sequel. Mikami is actually only serving the game as the producer according to reports, with the reason for him not directing remaining unclear, though we are sure to learn more between now and the sequel’s launch. There’s speculation that Mikami is working on other projects based at Bethesda, or perhaps he’s just taking a break from that particular role. There were rumblings that the first Evil Within game would be his last, though there are also conflicting reports that state he is still indeed directing the sequel after all.
Despite my initial surprise, its not unusual for first game directors to pass on the torch to others for future releases in that particular franchise. What’s important to remember is that the sequel, according to GameRant, is in perfectly capable hands with John Johanas, who directed The Assignment and The Consequence, which served as the two DLC additions to the original game, as well as working as the visual effects designer.
Though we have only seen two trailers for The Evil Within 2 so far, it does appear to have the same tone and visuals as the first game. What we do know is the next entry will be a more expansive and explorable environment than the more linear approach we’ve seen previously, highlighting the desire to take the franchise a step further than before.
Its unclear what influence Mikami will have over The Evil Within 2 even as a producer, but with a new director at the helm who is more than familiar with the previous game, it has potential to be more successful than The Evil Within. Despite Mikami’s prowess, the first game wasn’t the biggest of hits with fans and critics. That isn’t a dig at his talents or influence by any means, after all I’m still a huge fan of the first game. Yet with a new director taking the reins, we could see The Evil Within series taken to a new level.
Are you looking forward to The Evil Within 2? Are you concerned that Mikami won’t be directing this sequel? Let us know in the comments section below.