Freebie Feelers is a series where we download the free monthly console-specific or newly released free-to-play games to test their worth.This series will contain some useful information as well as plenty of personal opinion. While these articles may not be reviews, we hope that you will be able to use them to help decide whether that free download is worth it.
What is it?
Kane and Lynch 2: Dog Days is a third person shooter from IO Interactive that is free on Xbox 360 until the 15th July. You take control of either Kane or Lynch, two mercenaries for hire who find themselves at the centre of a gang war - one they started themselves by accidentally shooting a crime lord’s daughter. The game uses the style of a war documentary or home-made video, with the camera being unsteady and reflective and the audio having mobile interference.
What did you think?
I won’t lie to you - Kane and Lynch 2: Dog Days may be the worst game I have ever played. For its part, it runs reasonably well - though it shows its age with some slightly muddy textures and a few framerate dips on the more visually demanding scenes, especially with the explosions and lighting effects in full swing. The gameplay has also aged well beyond its time: the guns fire in random patterns with no recoil, meaning the most accurate weapons at any range are the shotguns. The game also wants you to switch between weapons often, but you can only carry two weapons at a time and enemies of the same faction tend to use the same guns so you’ll just refill your ammo.
None of this mentions the terrible voice acting, with Kane and Lynch sounding like their lines were recorded in a truck stop bathroom by two guys who don’t know what a videogame is. There’s also a lot of very stereotypical accents, and the writing in general is terrible. It seems so strange that Hitman, a game of nuance and subtlety, came from the same developers of this wet-fish-to-the-face of a game.
The story can be completed solo or with a partner, both online and in local co-op. There is also a competitive online mode, but with the gunplay as it is in the single player I really didn’t want to try this mode out, though this mode is available in an offline Arcade Mode. There are your standard fare of achievements, ranging from completing missions to killing 1000 enemies or getting scores in the arcade mode.
Is it worth downloading?
Yes, just so you can understand how bad it is. It’s normally £11.99, and it is definitely not worth that unless you specifically want to play - though it is usually cheaper on PC at only £7.99. While it is a sequel, the two stories are mostly unrelated and you’ll be able to jump into this one with no prior knowledge of the series just fine. I love the visual style, the over-the-shoulder camcorder look in a busy city gives me huge Cloverfield vibes, but everything else makes me not want to see if the final boss is a Kaiju.