Having freed yourself from the service of the Beast Lord, you enjoy a moment of triumph. Your monstrous Beast Messenger form is gone and your human body has been returned to you. Sadly, your victory is shattered all too soon. From your homeland, word reaches you that your baby sister has been taken away by Zelek, Maletoth’s mage, and that she is to be used to replace you as the Beast Lord’s messenger. Angered and remembering what you had to endure, you return home to begin the quest of finding your sister and bringing Zelek’s life to an end. When it comes to gameplay, Shadow of the Beast 2 offers up more of what the original did. Like the first game, various items will be needed to get by certain areas and you have to get and use the keys, weapons, objects and such in the proper order to get to the end of the game. If you don’t have what’s needed at a given time, you’ll be stuck and have to start over.
This sequel, like the first game, is hard. In fact, it’s harder in some ways. You can die in a matter of seconds, on top of the “do it in the right order” gameplay. Where the first game had yo u get hit and then gave you a moment or two of invulnerability, enemies now run into (and through) you, draining you of life steadily as they touch you. There’ll be more than one enemy on the screen at a time in spots as well and they’ll come at you from all sides. Where the first game allowed you to only punch most of the time, the sequel gives you a spiked ball on the end of a chain to use through most of the game, allowing your attacks to have a greater reach and hit multiple times. But it can only be used straight in front of you, so you’ll be in for a fight when enemies are closing in on all sides. More puzzles are in place this time around to impede your progress as well. Some are rather devious, while others rely on what various characters you meet have to say. In particular, the music for Shadow of the Beast 2’s game over sequence was of such notable quality that some fans were known to die in-game for the sole purpose of hearing the backing track again.