Whatever Happened To... Condemned?
Hey everyone! Has there ever been a point when you’re looking through your gaming library and wondered, “Huh, whatever happened to this series?” Well, I’ll be taking a look at videogame franchises and the lead up to their eventual absence. With that being said, today I’ll be asking the question: “Whatever Happened to...Condemned?”
Now, as I’m sure everyone out there can relate, the announcement of Middle-earth: Shadow of War has got me more excited then if they announced Haze 2 at any point in the future ever. However, the announcement from Monolith Studios leaves a bit of weird question left to be answered. One that, sure, may not be on everyone’s minds, but left me pondering nonetheless. With the recent success of the new Lord of the Rings based franchise, where does that leave Monolith’s previous success Condemned?
For those who aren’t sure, Condemned was a two-game series that was based around detective work, suspenseful storytelling and real atmospheric horror. You, the player, took control of the investigator Ethan Thomas as you searched for the truth in an ever darkening world filled with the good, the bad and the downright insane. When ranging the two titles on levels of quality. It can be said that Condemned: Criminal Origins was, more or less, the better of the two. Not to take anything away from Condemned 2: Bloodshot though, which is still a strong entry as far as videogames go.
In regards to actual story, Condemned: Criminal Origins does an excellent job as it starts off by placing the main character at the point of a murder scene. There, they must use deductive reasoning skills and intuition (in the form of gameplay mechanics), so that the player character can then advance to a swift and timely end. I jest, of course, this beginning segment is simply a tutorial dream section that allows the player to get a feel for the world before doing anything that has in-game, real-world ramifications. When moving past the tutorial though, Condemned: Criminal Origins is a well-told tale that really draws on the aspect of horror and tension. Serving up suspense as if it were made by Stanley Kubrick himself. This combination of spooky and puzzle solving that the game presents you with is the reason it was so well-received by critics and gamers alike. Scoring big in several areas while finding little issue in others.
When discussing Condemned 2: Bloodshot, however, the results were tweaked a bit. More supernatural elements began entering the fray and some not for the better. Fans of the series still enjoyed the gameplay and praised the advanced detective system that were prominent features throughout, but the horror and overall sense of mystery that really brought the first title to live were, more or less, deflated after those events were outright explained to them. Still, the game itself did very well and was another success for Monolith Studios. So much so that the studio even thought of making a film adaptation to capitalize on things.
So whatever happened to it? Or rather, what happened to the series in general? Well, as mentioned above, due to the success of the new Lord of the Rings games and the creation behind Shadows of War, it would seem that Monolith’s schedule is full for the next little while. There have been numerous speculations on a Condemned 3, but that’s all held up in the air, at least for me, until an actual announcement is made. Still, though, it’s hard not to get excited by all the theories that are going around. Guess we’ll just have to wait and see. Until next time!