A sequel to 2004's Evil Genius has been in development for some time, with the initial work scrapped after developer Elixir Studios disbanded in 2005. Developer Rebellion acquired the Evil Genius IP shortly afterward and soon made an inspired spin-off called Evil Genius Online that used lair-building mechanics and timed mission ideas from the original game. A true sequel was finally in production in 2017, and that game was revealed at E3 2019 to be Evil Genius 2: World Domination. The game is inspired by 1960's spy movies and attempts to hook players with a campy, cartoon style.
Evil Genius 2 is a real-time strategy game that tasks players with choosing a particular evil mastermind in order to conquer the world. Players spend a large amount of time building their evil lairs by creating rooms, decorating those rooms, and training up minions to do all the dirty work. Global domination means making sure minions are succeeding in schemes all around the world while also keeping the Forces of Justice from ruining all the fun. Each evil genius has their own campaign, so players are encouraged to conquer the world with all of them.
Evil Genius 2 releases today, and several reviewers have already weighed in with opinions on the strategy game. In a Game Rant interview late last year, developer Rebellion explained how players can conquer the world in Evil Genius 2 and the goals for the game's creation. Lead game designer Rich Edwards said he hopes players will see Evil Genius 2 as a "continuous playspace" where they can conquer the world at their own pace and freely experiment with the game's building mechanics.
"Overall, Evil Genius 2 is a worthy successor to Elixir Studio's cult classic. Despite some minor pacing and quality-of-life issues, the game delivers a compelling and detailed management sim with an engaging theme. Its excellent use of tongue-in-cheek humor and bold style do a great job of capturing the feel of an over-the-top 1960s spy spoof, allowing players to fully immerse themselves in the world of super spies and doomsday devices."
"While the art, voice acting, and overall theme harmonize so beautifully that I want to steeple my fingers and practice my evil laugh, almost every moment of playing Evil Genius 2 is plagued by a clunky, needy world map layer and confusing, poorly communicated objectives. It’s the kind of problem that playtesting usually brings out during development, and this game could’ve used more of that."
"Being a master villain is one big headache for your big bald braincase, and it's this villainous bureaucracy that Evil Genius 2 replicates. Mostly for the better, but sometimes for the worse. When all's said and done, it's a fine management title that balances brilliantly presented base-building with some genuinely challenging plate-spinning. But thank goodness it features a mechanic that lets you randomly shoot your minions, because otherwise at times I might have ripped my own skull out and thrown it at the screen."
"Evil Genius 2 is at its best when you're building freely, designing perilous Rube Goldberg machines. Speaking as a very large child, the cartoonish art style, theme, and even flavour text, speaks to me. I'm not so fond of the timers and the economic drain pipes that slurp up your minions like bath water. Too much of the game resides in the world map and not enough on the floor of the lair. Sandbox mode feels like a soothing ointment after going through the bee gauntlet of normal mode, and although it lacks challenge, questy threads and basic storytelling, it is far more playful, cheeky and enjoyable."
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