Destroy All Humans! 2 Reprobed Review: An Updated Classic

Destroy All Humans! 2 Reprobed Review: An Updated Classic

An alien with big red eyes raises two fingers and smiles.

Image: THQ Nordic/Black Forest Games

The PS2 era of video games was defined by wacky and quirky titles, especially compared to what we see in the gaming industry today. It was a wonderful time, and it was during this time that the Destroy All Humans franchise emerged. Now, after remaking the first game in the series in 2020, Black Forest is back with a whimsical new remake of the bigger, wilder sequel. And while it has a few technical flaws, it’s still a wonderful alien-themed blast from the past.

The original Destroy All Humans! 2 was released in 2006 on PS2 and Xbox. It was developed by Pandemic, the same studio that developed the first game in the franchise, with the original Star Wars Battlefront Games. Like the first game, DAH2 lets you step into the tiny silver boots of an alien invader on Earth who has access to a growing arsenal of strange alien weaponry and even has his own personal UFO, complete with a powerful death ray . While the first game was set in the 1950s and was heavily inspired by alien films of that era, DAH2 is set in the 1960s and expands its parodies to other film genres and general hippie jokes, the beginning of the cold war and the sects. Also, now the main alien in the game has genitals, and hey, does he like to make jokes about it.

Destroy all humans! 2 – Reprobed – Exit Trailer | PS5 Games

Like the first Destroy All Humans remake, this new and improved version of DAH2 was developed by Black Forest and is a true remake, with an all-new engine and entirely new textures and models. And it’s a damn beautiful game. Sometimes when I was jetpacking around the various levels, destroying humans, of course, I would stop and soak up the gorgeous vistas that exist in this game. The lighting in particular is often gorgeous, reminding me more of a animated film than an open-world PS2 game. And there are a lot of little details in the game, like how the characters get covered in dirt as they walk through the mud and then leave muddy footprints.

Although these improved visuals come at a cost. The game occasionally has framerate issues in busy scenes, as well as screen tearing and hitching in large parts of cities. It’s not unplayable, but it pops up once in a while.

The story behind this alien adventure is that a decade after the events of the first game, the Russian KGB somehow figured out what happened and attacked the Furon invaders’ mothership, destroying their plans to conquer the world and steal human DNA to help rebuild their species. Naturally, Crypto (the alien you play as) and his boss fight against the KGB and begin to learn about Russian history with aliens as they fly around the world, visiting and destroying various cities. famous, like San Francisco and London.

An alien stands on a cliff and looks out over a cartoon-ish take on the San Francisco Bay.

Screenshot: THQ Nordic / Black Forest Games / Kotaku

Just as with the first remake, DAH2: Reprobated reuses the audio files from the original, and as a result, it ends up being a fairly faithful recreation. Maybe too loyal? There are definitely some missions and activities that feel weird, like something you’d play in a PS2-era open-world game, which I guess makes sense, because it’s basically… an open-world game from the PS2 era. Additionally, some jokes and dialogue seem a bit out of place and dated 2022, which the game even warns you about before you start. Luckily, you can skip all dialogue and cutscenes in DAH2 if you just want to blow up buildings with your UFO or human anal probe.

While its story and general mission structure remain unchanged, Black Forest has done a lot to improve the combat to make it more modern and responsive. You fire with the right trigger and aim with the left trigger, while the sticks react to your movement as you’d expect from any good third-person shooter released in 2022. As a Crypto, you have access to a large wheel of weapons of destruction, including flash guns, plasma guns, anal probe weapons and even a “Free Love” ray that can force all humans around you to start dancing and is useful to escape difficult situations.

And all of that, along with your shield, jetpack, and hover boots, can be upgraded over time as you visit new towns and complete missions. Of course, nothing revolutionary, but the progression is fun and after a few hours I felt more powerful and badass than when I started.

A large UFO uses a blue tractor beam to transport a small retro pickup truck over a park.

Screenshot: THQ Nordic / Black Forest Games / Kotaku

Most missions involve a mixture of heavy firefights, a bit of physical fun and a bit of stealth – you’re an alien after all and people will call the cops if they spot you. Luckily, no mission in the game takes more than a few minutes to complete and with all the weapons and abilities at your disposal, missions can be completed in a variety of ways without becoming boring or stale. Each mission also has at least one optional objective that gives you additional upgrade resources to do something like “Kill 10 cops” or “Blow up five hippie vans”.

Destroy all humans! 2: Reprobed doesn’t reinvent the wheel or shake up the original sequel’s formula too much and that’s fine with me. In many ways, it was nice to have a wacky open-world game that doesn’t feel too big and overloaded, with a map with a million icons. It’s the kind of game that will only take most people around 20 hours, not 200 hours. And most of that time will be spent having fun and doing silly things, like fighting mutants or putting hippie trucks on rooftops to start a cult.

It’s not a game for everyone, but if you miss that era of goofy and weird PS2 originals, it’s a faithful, modern remake of one of the best from that era. Let’s just hope they fix some of the performance issues in a future patch.

Destroy all humans! 2: Reproved is available now on Xbox Series X/S, PS5 and PC.


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