Good news, everyone! Freddy Fazbear’s Pizza is open for business again! The animatronics are all back and ready to play. Your second run at being a security guard’s going to go much better, right? Of course it will. No need to worry. Everything’s under control. Five Nights at Freddy’s 2 is going to be a comfortable and pleasant game about hugging a friendly animatronic bear.
If you’re familiar with the first game, you know that’s not true at all. This probably isn’t a game for kids. As a security guard working at Not Chuck E’ Cheese’s, your job is to make sure the building stays safe overnight during the course of a week. Turns out the animatronics don’t really need guarding – it’s more appropriate to say that you need guarding from them. They tend to wander around, see, and if they find their way into your office to discover you there, it’s not going to end well. The whole gang from Freddy’s 1 are here in slightly less friendly-looking form as well as a whole new set of friends to keep your eye on. In particular, you’ll want to watch out for The Mangle. Don’t worry, you can’t miss him – he’s the one without any skin.
The biggest change to the gameplay is that the building now has unlimited power! Hooray! You don’t have to worry about messing with the lights, closing doors or limiting your camera usage, so clearly you’re going to be safe from the animatronic menace, right? Well, no. Because now there aren’t any doors either, so your office is now open at all times and you’re completely vulnerable. There’s a giant open door right in front of you and two air vents on either side; nasties can come in from any direction at any time, so you need to stay on top of your cameras.
While the building might have unlimited power, the flashlight you carry does not. This is a problem, because it’s one of your only ways to defend against attacking animatronics – flashing some of them will cause them to briefly forget that they were about to horrifically maim you. The other is an empty Freddy Fazbear head that you can slip on as a disguise, causing Freddy and pals to think you’re one of them and leaving you alone. Mostly. You’ll see.
Finally, there’s a new mechanic in the form of a music box in one of the restaurant’s rooms that needs to be wound up remotely from time to time. If the music box stops playing…just don’t let the music box stop playing, trust me. You’ll need to balance your time between checking your office for baddies, watching the cameras for incoming trouble and making sure the music box stays wound.
If it wasn’t clear from the description, Five Nights at Freddy’s 2 manages to be even more intense than the first game. It leads to a pretty exhausting experience; I didn’t like playing more than an hour or so at a time because the game just doesn’t let up with the oppressive atmosphere and tension. It’s a fairly short game once you get the hang of it, so this might actually help to extend your playthrough. Naturally, there’s already hundreds of Let’s Play videos on Youtube if you’re interested in seeing others screaming in terror through the magic of facecams, so feel free to indulge.
It almost goes without saying that Five Nights at Freddy’s 2 is a must-buy for horror fans. I know, I know – it’s popular, so clearly it can’t be as good as it sounds, right? Honestly, for eight bucks it’s pretty hard to beat the experience you’ll get playing this game fullscreen in the dark with headphones on. Give it a shot sometime. Just…please, don’t make a facecam video about it. There’s more than enough of those already.