Destroy All Humans 2 Reprobed
The mid-2000s was an interesting era of gaming as it established itself as a mainstay in entertainment as opposed to simply being a "toy." Many titles relied on references to pop culture and historical events to convey a message while others used them to form caricatures of American history. The Destroy All Humans games were a part of such series and in recent years, an entirely new generation of gamers can experience the might of the Furon race with Destroy All Humans 2 Reprobed being the latest in the series.
The original game centered around a race of aliens known as the Furons whose spaceship is shot down by military personnel in the 1950s. Players control Crypto, one of the many "Cryptos" whose task is to rescue their friend and fight back against the human menace who wants them eradicated. The gameplay began in the farms and ended in Capitol City, with each threat being higher than the next.
The original Destroy All Humans was remade from the ground up by Black Forest Games in 2020 with improved gameplay and quality of life changes. Considered a proper way to breathe new life into a fan-favorite title otherwise lost in time, its success was enough to give the sequel the same treatment as the original. Often considered by fans of the series to be one of the best games of its type, does Destroy All HUmans 2 Reprobed capture the essence of the original sequel?
For context, while every game in the series is named Crypto, there are at least two different Cryptos the player controls in the series. The original game featured Crypto 136 and Crypto 137. Destroy All Humans 2 centers around Crypto 138 who has his own mission separate from his other two allies. In the sequel, the KGB destroys the Furon mothership, prompting Crypto to exact revenge on the Soviet Union alongside unlikely allies. I've not played any of the Destroy All Humans games before this one, so this was a fresh experience all around.
That said, I will say that you do not need to play any of the original games or the remake of the original to enjoy the sequel. The plot for Reprobed in my opinion is paper-thin and self-contained that it's easy to fill in the blanks as they come around. There's an alien threat (you) and your enemies are tasked to eliminate it. Everything else that happens is left to the will of the plot as it develops, including teaming with a KGB agent that Crypto doesn't hide in expressing his interest towards.
Destroy All Humans 2's dialogue is unique in the sense that Crypto 138's time on Earth has allowed him to develop a human personality in the 1960s. The same levels of hedonism that the "free-spirited" humans exhibit is mirrored by Crypto, allowing him to properly infiltrate as a human. When you're not blowing things up to smithereens, oftentimes you are under espionage through the usage of "body snatching" your victims. There are missions that call for using a human disguise as walking around in your Furon form will alert civilians, causing them to call the police and attract unwanted attention.
To hijack a human successfully, you must first distract them so as not to arouse suspicion and blow your cover. This can be done in several ways but one of the first methods the game introduces is the "Free Love" ability. As the name suggests, Crypto establishes various psychedelic waves that force those surrounding to dance. This allows Crypto to hijack someone without them noticing and take the guise of a human.
While in human form, Crypto cannot attack and his capabilities are limited. Doing too many "non-human" things will lower the effectiveness of the disguise causing it to break. These disguises are used to talk to various NPCs to progress quests as certain characters won't interact unless you're a hippie for example. One mission requires the collection of spaceship materials in which being a soldier will not arouse suspicions as much as being a civilian.
There are many ways to clear a mission but doing so effectively gives the player bonuses that can be used to unlock other items. The player can even unlock and wear various skins based on existing characters in the Destroy All Humans series and other pop culture references. The controls were fluid and running the graphics on the highest possible settings gave Reprobed a beautiful presentation that simply wasn't possible on the PS2 or Xbox. As the game was made with next-gen in mind, it was one of the smoothest experiences I've played this year so far.
Overall, Destroy All Humans 2 Reprobed is a fun action game that not only doesn't take itself seriously but it provides hours of fun for the carnage the player can engage in. I'd compare my time with the game to that of Saints Row, both giving fresh life to a series that has been around since the same time period. If it's your first experience with Destroy All Humans or if you're someone who has played since the original, this is a must-play for 2022.
Destroy All Humans 2 Reprobed is available for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X/S