So, it’s Christmas, everyone is out partying like their life depended on it. Your out too and you’ve worked your hardest all year but your boss decides that you don’t deverve your bonus.

Apparently, logic denotes that to remedy this you must head off to start a killing spree at a corporate party. Party Hard 2 is the sequel to 2015’s stealth strategy hit which will be out later this year but currently it’s in Alpha but clearly stands out from a crowd of similar indie title already, developed by Pinokl Games and published TinyBuild.

Party Hard 2 has been built on a completely new engine, toting 3D environments and physics, Real-time shading and 2D characters blending into the world with 3D meshes for unique depth effects.

Opening up a swath of traps and ways to harass ¬†your targets, such as explosions or electricutions is it’s unique visual style. Following on with the pixel art fashion of its predecessor which I can only assume is the reason these games have yet to kick up a controversy.

The object of the game, go to a party (one of many), kill a few people, get away with it and escape. Quite dark wouldn’t you say… no conflict for you morl compass here, you know what your doing is wrong yet it’s oddly satisfying when you create an explosion which gets blamed on another party goer and the police show up and haul him away, all while you pretend to dance and watch from behind your mask.

If your spotted planting an explosive or tampering with some electricity outlet the witnesses will immediately leg it and call the Fuzz. If you aren’t able to silence the witnesses too, then this point the party becomes much hard to navaigate. The police arrive and begin their search but if you can elude them after a short while they will hang about at the entrance to the club.

The real way is to get a witness blame someone else for you misdeeds, to call the police and to have them arrest the wrong person. Party Hard 2 provides you with a list of targets, usually drug dealers and gang members (still not enough to warrant all the death but it does make it easier, for your conscience) yet you can still kill anything in sight…. so that’s down to you really.

Each of the currently playable parties (Club, Gang bar and Hospital) have trapdoors and runway tunnels to help you cross ground rapidly from one end to the other of the festivities and windows and vents ducts around the intierior. These are vital to vacate an area about to go Pete Tong or to avoids the police.

You are gifted with Sight or vision mode which allows you to see interactables and your targets clearly making it much easier to plan your next “accident”. A new feature to the sequel is your breaking point, your ultimate ability… it charges over time and when used you move at light speed, killing everyone within range. Handy for clearing a bathroom and avoiding witnesses, just remember to hide the bodies before any one needs to go tinkle.

The looks beautiful, I’m not a big fan of the art style but I can’t seem to imagine the game in any other. It suits perfectly, helping maintain a lighter vibe over the serious nature of the content and as I said previously, it probably why this and its predecessor have not kicked up more fuss about it just plainly being a game about murdering people.

The game is still a long way off yet but I can see and feel massive improvements over the original already. The introduction of the ultimate skills lead me to believe that there may be a selection of protagonists to choose from at launch, possibly some sofa coop to boot.

I came across two bugs, one of which I did exploit for about 20 minutes. When the police arrive and find you, they knock you out, cuff you and carry to the police car… however if your carrying a body at the time the action cancels the other out. Creating a visual giggle where the policeman tries to pick you up ten times and then carrys nothing out or the wrong body.

The other bug (the one I used on purpose….it’s a bloody hard game OK!) was on the Gang Bar, in the ally between the two venues I accidentally walked into a dumpster and it moved. So I walked into it a bit more, usually I use these to hide bodies but now it’s abandoned the laws of physics and begins flying off the map at rapid pace. When the police showed up because I’m sloppy at my job (not like I go out serial killing regularly) I got cornered where the dumpster should have been but instead of getting clubbed and dragged to the paddy wagon… the Po Po couldn’t get to me and started running around the whole building in attempt to cuff me. Odd.

Party Hard 2 is not yet finished but the vision is already here. The gameplay, the art style and the music is superb. It’s not everyday we get the chance to preview such a stable indie title and Party Hard 2 has happily surprised us, we genuinely can’t wait to get our paws on the finished product and watch random bystanders get arrested for our crimes….while we dance in a corner. Now that does sound like an average night out.

Previewed by Michael Jones.

(Disclaimer: CONQUEST received a preview copy of Party Hard 2 on Steam, however this does not in any way affect the scoring of a game or our thoughts on the game itself. We believe in total honesty and being transparent with you.)

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