Editor's note: This article does not contain any spoilers for the “Little Nightmares” franchise.
The “Little Nightmares” series made an explosive return with its sequel, “Little Nightmares II,” on Feb. 11.
The story follows the new playable characters Mono and Six, the protagonists from “Little Nightmares,” as they avoid the monstrous residents of the Pale City and try to solve the mystery of the foreboding Signal Tower.
The elements of the previous game have been cranked up to 11 in “Little Nightmares II.” The stealth sections are more suspenseful, the puzzles more challenging and the scares more abundant and terrifying.
Not only does the game improve the components of its predecessor, but it also introduces new concepts as well. Portions of the game allow you to engage in combat with certain enemies, something that was absent from the first game, while still incorporating the stealth and strategy that the games are known for.
A fresh cast of horrifying enemies like the Thin Man and The Teacher keeps players on their toes as they relentlessly pursue Mono and Six through the Pale City. The game also introduces new puzzles based around teleporting between locations that adds to the challenging and fun experience. The sequel continues the series tradition of showing rather than telling.
With no dialogue, it’s up to the player to piece together the story by discovering secrets hidden throughout the city. The levels are filled with little details that contribute to the rich and eerie atmosphere. From an abandoned toy to ominous graffiti on the wall, these details bring the player deeper into the dark world of “Little Nightmares.”
The art style and sound design serve the atmosphere greatly as well. The enemies look like disturbing characters from a Grimms' Fairy Tales book, and the setting is a twisted reflection of our reality, reminiscent of those found in Lemony Snicket novels. The droning ambience can give players a shiver up their spine, or an unexpected crash can send the audience jumping out of their chairs.
“Little Nightmares II” is a non-stop thrill ride up until its heartbreaking and mind-boggling conclusion.
Henry Selick, the director of “Coraline” and “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” is set to direct a TV stop-motion animation adaptation of “Little Nightmares” sometime in the near future.