reviews\ Aug 22, 2010 at 8:00 pm

Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days review


The best way to describe Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days would be to simply state the following: Kane was like “Bam!” and Lynch was all like “Pow!” and I was like “WTF!” It’s essentially a title that attempts to be more than a game and, in the end, turns out to be a crazy episode of Cops, but from the point-of-view of the criminals. The end result is dysphasia; a game that is almost incomprehensible.

Going so far as giving control to the players of two nude anti-heroes, Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days isn’t the typical action-shooter that is currently on retail shelves. As a cooperatively led title, players are thrown into the insane lives of Kane and Lynch as they botch a job in Shanghai and have everyone – and we mean everyone, from police officers to the national army – hunting them down. With every passing level, the insanity level is raised and just when you think IO Interactive couldn’t get any loony, they hit the players smack dab in the face with the bare asses of Kane and Lynch as they escape torture.

Even if IO Interactive’s only objective was to continue to up the ante on the weird and “WTF” moments, Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days still has one important aspect missing from its formula: longevity. Completing the title in as little as four hours, the single-player/cooperative campaign offers little to no reason to play through the strange lives of the anti-heroes. While it’s safe to say that Kane & Lynch 2 is much more cinematic than its predecessor, the gameplay still has a long way to go to catch up with the rest of the third-person shooter genre.

As a simplistic cover-based shooter, Kane & Lynch 2 offers the bare minimum and, instead, concentrates more on the narrative exploits of its two degenerates. Sure, hiding behind objects and taking cover has been improved upon in comparison to the original, but the core aspects of the title are lagging behind expectations. Too often would enemies clip the environment, disappear and reappear through walls, get stuck on objects and, all in all, employ terrible AI. Without worthy adversaries to encounter, Kane & Lynch 2 rushes to the end-game and never looks back at the train wreck it left behind.

At least Kane & Lynch 2 has one aspect going for it; no forced cooperative moments within the action. Instead of asking players to assist each other in combat – think back-to-back elements of the lousy Army of Two series – Kane & Lynch 2 is much more about the speed of the action and less about the teamwork. There are times when both players are required to open a door – or should I say kick a door down – or boost the other over a wall, but for the most part, Kane & Lynch 2 doesn’t ask players to hold hands to accomplish the impossible.

Another element that Kane & Lynch 2 has in its favor is a rather smooth online connectivity. The joy of taking enemies hostage and disposing of them with a shot to the temple was to a satisfactory level that we recommend only playing Kane & Lynch 2 with a friend. Just be prepared for a lot of shaky cam – tsk tsk IO Interactive, it’s not appreciated in films and it’s for sure not appreciated in video games – and so much nonsensical action taking place that you may find yourself asking your friend, “What the hell is going on?”

If you can overcome the bareness of the enemy AI, not to mention unnecessary buttocks covered with blood, and brevity of the storyline, there’s fun to be had. It has to be noted though, the entertainment only lasts if you have a friend to play and share the madness with. Even with that said, the shortcomings of Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days hold back the overall package from being the new hotness and, instead, turns it into a lot of wasted potential.

Above Average

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