When The Evil Within 2 releases in October, it won’t include the cinematic letterboxing seen in The Evil Within (which was eventually made optional in a post-launch update following community feedback).
Speaking with IGN, Game Director John Johanas was asked if the 2.5:1 aspect ratio would be returning, and he replied:
We understand that it wasn’t something well received, even if internally we liked the direction. This time the game is played in standard format.
Elsewhere in the interview, Tango Gameworks Founder Shinji Mikami, who isn’t directing the sequel, said development on The Evil Within 2 began in March 2015. Discussing his reason for appointing Johanas as director, Mikami said, “I want Tango Gameworks to be a studio where young and talented creators are given a chance to succeed. John has a lot of talent. An opportunity like this would have come his way sooner or later.”
Although Mikami isn’t directing it, you will see his influence “here and there. It was a team effort, with John at the helm and me there supervising.”
As for some differences between the sequel and the original, Johanas said The Evil Within 2’s shifting of realities “won’t be as jarring as it was in the first game,” and there “wasn’t a singular aesthetic that we centered on this time.”
Johanas also talked about the world of The Evil Within 2:
The Evil Within 2 isn’t an open world game, but has sections where the maps get very large and open up a bunch of options for you. From an actual landmass perspective it’s the biggest map we’ve ever put together, but what it does is allow you to explore or prepare as much as you’d like before you want to proceed with the story. There are still linear sections and points of no-return, but for a good portion of the game you can backtrack and search for side objections.
The Evil Within 2 releases on Friday, October 13 for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.