The campaign is engaging and well-paced and there are plenty of side quests to complete and random dungeons to explore. Still, I couldn't help but feel that the game should have been shortened and the story tightened-up a bit as a couple sections tended to drag on. But considering gamers rarely get their money's worth these days, I suppose I shouldn't complain about getting too much of a good thing.
Beyond the campaign, "Darksiders II" features Crucible Mode, which pits players against waves of enemies in an arena-style setting with valuable loot at stake. After every five waves, players must choose between taking their reward and quitting, or continuing on and risk leaving with nothing if they perish. It's a nice distraction from the main quest and fans of the game's combat system should find plenty to love here.
"Darksiders II" isn't groundbreaking, but it surpasses its predecessor in every way imaginable and delivers an incredibly fun - though occasionally frustrating - experience. It's no secret that long-time publisher THQ has seen its share of problems lately, but Death could very well be what brings the company back to life.
Developer: Vigil Games
Available for: Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 ($59.99)
Rating: M for mature