The Evil Within: Review

The Evil Within

I might be late to the game here, but with heavy discounts on digital systems (Steam, HumbleBundle, etc) and used disc copies (GameXChange, Vintage Stock, GameStop, etc), I feel this title deserves a revisit. That being said, let's jump into this review and see if this 2014 title is still worth a playthrough and more importantly, your money.


Game Style

  • Horror
  • Survival Horror
  • Psychological Horror
  • Dark
  • Story Rich
  • Third-Person
  • Singleplayer


XBOX One & 360
PlayStation 3 & 4

Bethesda Softworks

Release Date:
October 14, 2014

$19.99 USD



Story Line

Like many other games, you start this one as a police detective named Sebastian Castellanos. As most are portrayed, you are a little rough around the edges, but by all standards a "good" cop and family man. You respond to a mass murder at the Beacon Mental Hospital with your partner (Joseph) and a junior detective (Juli). As you could have guessed, things go very wrong very quickly and Sebastian finds himself in a gruesome and bizarre situation. You quickly realize you are not prepared and have now become the hunted!


Weapon Upgrades



The Beginning

You are greeted with a few cutscenes right from the beginning to establish characters and the storyline. You get a sense of relationship with your partner Joseph and junior detective Juli. After some minor exploration, you jump into another cutscene that further explains the gruesome massacre and throws Sebastian into the middle of everything.


The entire game is played in Third-Person perspective (think over the shoulder) and feels relatively good. I think this perspective fits the game well for spacial awareness during gameplay and overall environmental interaction. This is NOT your "Run & Gun" zombie survival horror variant and shouldn't be played as such. At the beginning you should expect little to no ammo and stealth gameplay will be required (especially at harder difficulty levels).

There are crafting elements to this game, but it's not entirely centered around survival and success. Crafting merely compliments this game and doesn't seem to distract from the story or progression through each chapter of the game.

There are also mechanics for upgrading your weapons and abilities through "Gel" canisters throughout each level. Once enough is collected (acts like currency), you can visit the "Safe Haven" and perform upgrades.

Weapon Upgrades



This game is story driven and is mostly linear in design. This means you can spend less time wondering around and focus more on what the hell is happening and survival. The chapters are frequent enough that you feel progress is being made, but long enough to provide depth and environment progression.

Stress Management

How do I put this..... This is a HORROR game! The beginning can have you running in fear without weapons to defend yourself. Once you have established yourself further into the game, you have opportunities to fight back and enough firepower to make them regret their life choices. For me, it was a great blend of both and wasn't simply "Run & Gun" experience that some Resident Evil titles fell into.

Simply put, if you get scared and have anxiety with horror genres, you will have some of that with this game. If you can push through the initial chapters, it gets easier and allows you to spend less time running from evil and more time destroying it!



I found the default difficulty level (Survival) to be a perfect balance of challenge and success. I certainly died multiple times, but not to a degree of frustration and distraction from the game and story. If you like being challenged, The Evil Within certainly has harder difficulties to keep you entertained.

Save Feature

The game provides for some autosaving, but access to manual saving is restricted to the "Safe Haven" area located in the mental hospital.

Safe Haven

Time Expectations

At a minimum, I would recommend setting aside 30+ minutes to feel like progress is being made. It doesn't take long to reach artificial "checkpoints" and make forward progress in each chapter, but 30 minutes really did feel like the minimum for this.

Game Length & Replay

It took roughly 18 hours for my first playthrough of this game. I didn't rush things and took my time to enjoy each location, chapter, and story components. Once completed, new weapons and unlockables are obtained and provide a different experience with further replay value.


Yep, it's got'em!


Hardware Requirements

If playing this game on the PC, the engine used (id Tech 5) has some issues with VSync and framerates. There are various workarounds on the internet, but I found this issue to be random in nature. Console and PC users alike shouldn't have too many issues with a smooth experience and high quality graphics.


Minimum Recommended

Operating System: 64-bit Windows 7 SP1 / Windows 8.1
Processor: Intel i5 (4 cores) / AMD FX-8320 (or better)
Memory: 4 GB Ram
Graphics: GTX 460 1GB VRAM or HD 4570 1 GB VRAM
Storage: 50 GB Available

Operating System: 64-bit Windows 7 SP1 / Windows 8.1
Processor: Intel i7 (4 cores+) / AMD Ryzen 5 1400 (or better)
Memory: 4 GB Ram
Graphics: GTX 670 4GB VRAM or HD 7870
Storage: 50 GB Avaiable



The Good and Bad


Pros Cons
  • New Intellectual Property (IP)
  • Fluid Combat
  • Unique Storyline
  • Low Time Requirements
  • Elements of Horror and Survival
  • Entertaining Bosses
  • Game Engine Has Performance Flaws
  • Initial Chapters Are Mostly Stealth & Run




Do you like moments that can best be described as, "OH SHIT!"? Do you want to feel a little crazy and reality is slipping through your grasp? Do you like gore and horror combined with amazing unique looking monsters? If you can answer "YES" to any of those questions, this game is for you. I really enjoyed this game and wish I had committed the time to complete it when initially released.



Where to buy?



Action Shots