User Score
8.1

Generally favorable reviews- based on 136 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 7 out of 136

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  1. Jun 14, 2011
    10
    I have finished this game and I am confused because I thought it was absolutely wonderful. It felt like a flash back to older platforms with better graphics, great story, and controls that don't get in the way and feel very natural. I see the invisible walls which often bother me in most games but here the world is so very interesting I don't really care that I can't go somewhere that it appears I might be able to. Also they have a great system that shows you important things so if there isn't a hint nearby you clearly can't go there.

    I wonder it the same people that complain about how formulaic games are getting yet give all the COD games 9-10 scores and give wonderful games like this crappy ones. I only came hear after playing the game because I wanted to see if other people thought the game was as absolutely amazing as I did. I was expecting to see 80s, 90s from all the reviewers and was completely caught off guard by the low marks.
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  2. Jun 14, 2011
    9
    I would not be writing this review if i didn't feel that the critic scores grossly misrepresent the quality of this title. I feel as though low scores will be given simply because a game does not innovate--rather than it just being a bad game. Alice: Madness Returns is an excellent game and does not claim to, or want to push any new boundaries in gaming. Madness Returns offers a very nostalgic "oldschool" 3d platformer feel with slick combat to back it up. The puzzles in this game were quite lackluster and are a part of the reason why I will not give this game a 10. The points of Madness Returns that need to be highlighted are the art direction, sound, and story. The atmosphere that the art evokes in this game is simply stunning. I had similar feelings gazing into the distance in "Cardbridge" as I did perched atop a building overlooking a beautiful Italian vista in Assassin's Creed 2. Aiding the stunning landscapes in creating that feeling of Wonderland; is an amazing score, in addition to great character voice acting. (I have never said 'what' so delightfully, SO many times to the things the characters said)
    All of these great aspects of Madness Returns are nothing without a spine, without a story. The tale following the events of American McGee's Alice is an incredibly fun, creepy, and intriguing adventure that will keep you playing.

    To top everything off the game is bundled with a code for American McGee's Alice... how can you go wrong with this game?
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  3. Jun 17, 2011
    10
    Reviewers are somehow blind to what makes a game actually good I guess. Every game is repetitive, and yet only certain games does it seem to make the reviewer call it out. Black OPs is shooting bad guys for the entire campaign absolutely no change and yet it does not get hit with a lower score. Alice is an absolute joy to play each level you play has a very distinct art direction and makes you feel like your truly in Alice's twisted world. The combat is smooth and fluid and actually makes you think about how to beat each enemy, you have to utilize each thing they give you even the block button which I admit I never use in other hack and slashes. There are a few graphical glitches but it doesn't detract from the gameplay, and if you've played the first Alice the games story is intriguing and makes you feel like an absolute continuation of the original story building on it The art is beautiful, the fighting engaging, the mini games give a nice change of pace but don't feel out of place. Don't listen to what paid reviewers have said about this game, instead look at what users are saying everyone is enjoying it and there's a reason!! This is a buy, especially since you get the first alice with it!! Expand
  4. Jun 18, 2011
    8
    Original review update: I've got 15 hours of play time in since picking up the game at release and I haven't seen anything here that warrants such negativity of these reviewers. Does Alice: Madness Returns suffer the same minor foibles of just about every 3D platformer since Mario 64? Yeah, it sure does, but why is that making this game, in particular, get such a negative response? I have played FAR, FAR worse platformers this generation than this. Anyone remember Kameo when it came out - fun, odd, but wonky and full of bugs that never got patched? Sure, I've had some frustrating moments due to camera issues but, again, that's been an issue in every platformer since 1996 - even games like Uncharted and Uncharted 2 suffered issues like this, and those are almost universally lauded for their gameplay. Some reviewers go so far as to say that the platformer style of the game is too cookie cutter and mundane. Do these folks not realize there's only SO MUCH that can be done with a third person action/platformer in terms of coding? If Alice: Madness Returns gets slammed for "cookie cutter" gameplay, then I respectfully submit all these reviewers go back and modify their scores for the ENTIRE God of War franchise, as that franchise is as cookie cutter as it gets (yet gets rated 9-9.5 for every iteration). Thus far the game has been a visual treat, the story has been solid, and the gameplay fluid. All in all, it's a great sequel to the original and, unless the macabre style isn't your thing (which I can completely understand), people who are avoiding this game because of the professional reviews are just robbing themselves of a fun game. And they can't even hide behind the excuse that they never played the first one, since that comes along with it! Expand
  5. Jun 15, 2011
    9
    I wasn't expecting much of this game, but was greatly suprise. The creative side and the story (the way to tell it) are the strong point of this game, as much as the self-explain action/control. The only downside , like all the 3d plat-former, is the camera that sometime gets buggy (especially when focusing an enemy)

    A great change of pace, i recommend it strongly
  6. Jun 14, 2011
    8
    laotus
    8
    I was a little nervous after the first critic rang in with a 50....... BUT after playing it for the last 3 hours I can say that its easily a 7.5/10 that I will round up to 8 for this review. The music and audio is amazing, the gameplay is good (notice I did not say GREAT) as the fighting mechanics are sound I just wish there were more moves and weapons and the Puzzles seem a tad
    too easy which makes me not want to have to do them to begin with. Overall a solid game. Expand
  7. Jun 14, 2011
    8
    I knew the critic reviews for this were not going to be great for this game. I have played for quite a few hours now and it is a wonderful game, the colour and art is beautifully twisted as is expected and the combat is very fun. I think the reason the critic reviews are so low is because they are reviewing it as new IP since its been so long since the original was released but I believe it shouldn't be reviewed this way. If you read the interviews with American McGee about this game he states he has no intentions of reinventing the wheel with this game. This is game is meant to be compared to the original, and is meant for the people who loved the original. If you play even just the first chapter of the original and then start playing this you'll see it's worth at least an 8. Now I know there will be people saying that a game shouldn't be reviewed this way but any true fans of the original will understand what I mean, and will probably buy it no matter what the reviews say. Expand
  8. Jun 19, 2011
    7
    The twisted aesthetic may be played out, but it is done with such a level of detail and refinement that one has to excuse the dated gameplay and two (out of five) lackluster chapters. Yeah, I'm looking at you, Chapters 2 and 3. The industry is hard up on 3d platformers as of late but unfortunately t his doesn't excuse Alice from not doing anything new; collectibles and weapon-heavy combat are abound and can become repetitive while light challenges, puzzles, and sidescrolling sequences break things up a bit. Nonetheless a wholeheartedly original and lurid narrative awaits you in Alice: Madness Returns, playing out with as much variety and spirit as the gameplay attempts to provide. Expand
  9. Jun 17, 2011
    10
    Graphics are not the greatest but backgrounds is pure eye candy. I catch myself getting lost into the game specially at night. The controls are so much better than the first PC version of Alice. The story is awesome, puzzles are fun. I don't want to release any spoilers about the game so I won't talk about the story. If you an American McGee Alice fan I would highly recommend getting this title.
  10. Jun 15, 2011
    10
    While I have yet to beat Alice: Madness Returns I can say that my time with it has been very enjoyable. The art direction is fantastic and the level designs are exactly what you would expect from American McGee, they range from disturbing to tranquil.

    Alice: Madness Returns is a fantastic platformer swimming in a sea of tired and old FPS' and dull action games and should definitely NOT
    be missed. Expand
  11. Jun 27, 2011
    6
    The original American McGee's Alice arrived during what I call The Golden Age of PC Gaming. We had great original stuff like Giants: Citizen Kabuto, No One Lives Forever (both of which received pitiful console ports), and Clive Barker's Undying. Alice was, to me, a dark, fantastic retelling of the old story for a grownup audience. Even though it was tied to the now ancient Quake 3 engine and hardware limitations of the time, it managed to be creative, artistic, very difficult at times, and a very nice looking game, primarily due to the textures. Here we are eleven years later, with hardware that can pull off pretty much any sort of amazing visuals imaginable, as well as doing a better job of telling a story without using pre-rendered cinematics, and all I can think of is how much better the first game was. I really thought we were through having to endure low-res, 8-bit color textures now that the PS2 is put to rest. Visually, what we have are higher polygon counts for models and level geometry, often painted in a most sloppily manner...nice particle effects, a bit of bloom, and the ever-present shiny-reflective surfaces. This just seems lazy, as if the entire art department consisted of two guys from Singapore with unpronounceable names. Ever since "American" McGee decided to outsource everything to his newly discovered cheap labor force, apparently for pennies on the dollar, things have gone predictably down hill. It's still a pretty fun game, but it's really a step backward, all things considered. The creative spark that was so prominent back then has all but disappeared. Expand
  12. Jun 16, 2011
    9
    An absolutely gorgeous game that needs a second look by the critics. Sure, it has a lot of jumping, gliding, and a bit of repetition, but what game doesn't? These days I feel reviewers are getting a bit too critical about very minor issues, and in the process they are dragging down some really amazing studios who have put in a ton of hard work to make some unique experiences. I have a feeling if Alice was replaced with Mario, this one would have at least received a 9. The weapons, environments, animation & platforming are outstanding. In fact, the only gripe I'd have is the slight lack of variety of enemies, and the length of some of the stages. Otherwise, this is a must buy. Expand
  13. Jun 19, 2011
    10
    A beautiful platformer with brilliant ideas which was exactly what I needed. It's such a breath of fresh air to see such art and passion put into a project compared to the sea of shooters and terrible movie cash-ins. Alice is a great game with some niggling flaws (repetition, pacing, Unreal engine quirks), but it does so much right that it far outweighs the flaws. A personal 10 for me, and the fact new copies include the rare and brilliant original game only makes it that much sweeter. Expand
  14. Jun 20, 2011
    10
    Ok so I took a jump on this game, with the art style and story being the appealing factor and wow did I find a hidden Gem. I seriously cant believe these "reviewers" scores! The minor negatives surely don't negate a drop in score so vast as to score it as a mediocre title? I mean negatives of similar volume appear in their precious CoD titles and yet they still score that pathetic franchise highly!!?

    Alice is a breath of fresh air and shows what an adventure platformer should and was like. New copies come with the original copy of the game which is just sheer brilliance. If you love the story of Alice and are into Adventure platformers then do yourself a favour and pick this game up. For me so far this year it has been my favourite release!
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  15. Jun 20, 2011
    10
    I loved it. I could not put the controller down. The controls were easy to learn and the camera didn't get in the way like some other games. Just as good as the first one. Defiantly check it out.
  16. Sep 9, 2011
    6
    There's some great animation, fantastic voice acting, and the levels have jaw-dropping visual design. It's also painfully repetitive. If you're willing to put up with the tedium then it's certainly worth a look for the prettiness alone... but if you want a game with equally good visual design, a sharper wit, a truckload more originality, better level design, better pacing, and a smarter take on the levels-inside-the-mind theme, then you might want to consider Psychonauts instead. Expand
  17. Jun 17, 2011
    8
    I feel that I need to chime in with a brief review of this wonderful platformer, as well, so that those currently on the fence in regards to buying this game - based on the ridiculously mediocre current critics average for "Madness Returns" - feel more at ease and give it a chance. I'm roughly 6 hours into the game and have been enjoying it immensely. As others here have mentioned, this game's art style in stunning. When Alice first enters Wonderland - which occurs very early in the game - I probably spent the first hour panning the camera around more than actually advancing forward; I was simply so in awe of the beauty of the environment. It frequently feels as if you're inside a Dali painting because the levels are so surreal and simultaneously gorgeous and terrifying. I'd also be remiss if I didn't at least briefly mention the pleasures of my encounters with the Cheshire Cat, who functions as a riddle-speaking source of "help" for Alice at various points in the game. Alice controls a bit like Spyro did back in the day; you'll need to master jumping & gliding in order to successfully conquer these levels. The game also features a mode that allows Alice to "shrink", which simultaneously functions as a way to reveal clues painted on walls to guide your way. This feature is handled much like Detective Mode was in Arkham Asylum, only better. Combat is your fairly typical hack, slash, and dodge, but it is satisfying. As for the glitches and annoyances that many critics have mentioned as a major reason for their deducting of review points, I can't quite understand what they are harping about. Will you run into the occasional invisible wall? Affirmative. Will that giant teapot with a crack in it the size of a doorway allow you inside to search for hidden goodies? Very doubtful. But you'll learn these quirks - and how to avoid them - within the first hour or so of the game. And as for the charge that I'm certain some people reading through these user reviews will level, that only American McGhee fanboys and original Alice devotees are rushing to defend this game... Well, I've never played the original (although I certainly have that on my agenda now following my experience with Madness so far), and no other American McGhee games, either. Whether it is right or wrong, most gamers nowadays look only at a game's Metascore when determining whether a game is worth a purchase or not. Fun and unique games like this will cease to be made (hell, this game feels almost fresh rather than dated, due to this generations complete avoidance of 3D platforming) if those of us who appreciate good games do not speak out in support of them - and get our fellow gamers to go buy them! Even if this game fails to sustain its admirable momentum for its second half (remember, I still have about half of the game remaining to play), I've already experienced enough fun to highly recommend it to others. Collapse
  18. Jul 10, 2011
    10
    Game of the year! This is one of the best and most mature games I've played this whole year. It consistently adds new things like environments, enemies, gameplay mechanics, and characters. It creates a creepy vibe that no other can match in all honesty. The platform design in this game is nothing short of magical at times, the combat is super fluid, and the story is top of the line. Plus the visuals are mind blowing. You really appreciate what Spicy Horse fit into every nook and cranny of this game because of how magnificent and original the whole world feels despite being a sequel.

    All I gotta say is that I hope for another and those who associate low quality with Alice: Madness Returns does not know the meaning of the word quality.
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  19. Dec 21, 2011
    8
    This game is truly unique, I love the way Wonderland is interpreted, it's basically Alice's mind, so as her sanity begins to slip and her mind becomes corrupted so does Wonderland, and you really notice the changes, and while that's cool the presentation does suffer from bland graphics, bad voice acting, and a story with plot holes, the graphics aren't a real problem when your in Wonderland as long as you don't look to closely as the levels all have very unique themes that keep you interesting and dying to see what the world will look like as you progress, but the environmental graphics aren't 100%, the part of the game of the graphics that are 100% is Alice (when she's in Wonderland), her dresses, face, hair, and animations look fantastic and are incredibly well done, but during the sections when your in London the graphics go straight down hill, the environments and character animations, including Alice herself are all ugly, and the voice acting goes is also weak ranging from bad to passable, and the story behind it all ends up coming together in the end, and I admit I like the fact that it touched on things like insanity, rape, murder, and prostitution with such a high level of maturity, I understand why other developers don't touch on these things, but they fit the tone of this game perfectly, and like I said they were incredibly mature in dealing with these extremely touchy subjects, however a design choice later in the game in the form of triple sixes being in certain parts of the game I feel is incredibly inappropriate, and I'm not just saying this because of my religious views, but because it's tasteless and an immature move on the creators behalf, but even with its minor presentation issues it's backed by strong gameplay which reminded me of old school N64 platformers, it also has strong combat which is like a hack and slash but with more depth, yes you can just button mash to kill certain enemies, but most require tactics to defeat which makes beating a large group of enemies extremely satisfying, and it also mixes up the gameplay with the occasional fun minigame, sections where your a giant, or just switching it up from a 3D platformer to a 2 one, all these sections are incredibly fun and keep the game from getting stale, there are also tons of collectibles like bottles or memories, the latter playing out like the recordings from the Bioshock games (although most aren't nearly as interesting), and also has a new game+ option which is a very nice touch, I know it sounds like I don't like this game, but actually I really like it, it has me dying to play the original, and I do recommend it to older audiences (because of the mature subject matter), one of the best games of 2011 for sure. Expand
  20. Jun 16, 2011
    7
    Alice:Madness Returns could almost be a HD remake with it's outdated gameplay.The most basic kind of 3D platforming is in evidence here.Run,jump and one button melee your way through Alice's poorly designed levels finding none too subtle 'hidden areas and paths along the way.The excellent art style is almost ruined by some of the worst textures I've ever seen.Even on Hard,the enemies present little challenge and 'Death By Falling' is about the only worry you'll have.
    Despite all I've said,I did enjoy the game for a playthrough but will never touch it again.
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  21. Jun 19, 2011
    8
    I too feel the critics missed the overall evaluation and quality of this game. Alice: Madness Returns is not only visually well done, but the game grabs the attention of the player and keeps them entertained. It does not innovate in any category, but instead is a well polished, delightful experience that turns out to be a wonderful surprise. In particular the audio and music is noteworthy, gameplay is well done and the fighting mechanics are really nice. One downfall is the lack of overall combat options. More upgrading/ability to do special moves would have been welcome. Really the game is well done for a platformer. Expand
  22. Jun 20, 2011
    9
    This game is gorgeous and engaging. Platforming and combat aren't the best they could be, but the staggering design and artistic depth of Wonderland is worth the price of admission alone. I honestly can't remember the last time I saw settings and design so beautiful and creative. The game has a strong narrative artfully delivered with powerful visuals, and even though the combat and platforming aren't the best I've ever seen, they still play fast and strong. The mediocre critic's score made me a tad worried about committing to this game, but it is destined to be one of the most memorable releases of 2011, and I can whole-heatedly recommend it. Expand
  23. Jun 22, 2011
    9
    I have to agree that critic reviews seem to have missed the point. The poor control system for PC should be noted, but it is a port from a console and does not have terribly large or surprising problems in that respect. The visuals are amazing, the story and the way the story is fed to the player both fit with Carroll's genius and with the themes of the madness and confusion. Yes, you spend a lot of time making jumps and fighting enemies, but it is a platformer. They tend to be repetitive, in that you jump from platform to platform. If you don't like that, this is not the game for you. I feel like many of the reviews criticize either the repetitiveness, the memory collection, or the visuals too harshly, and do not judge what the game actually is.

    This game is not trying to do anything new, in fact it is trying to recapture something old. It is an old-school platformer and it hits all the right notes. If you loved the first one, you will love this one.
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  24. Jun 24, 2011
    10
    A great game that incorporates surreal graphics with better story telling then most games on the market today. Many critics seem to have given this game low points due to repetitive gameplay, and while this is somewhat true Alice: Madness Returns' gameplay is nowhere near as repetitive as the leading video game titles. If you wish to play a beautiful surreal game with a decent combat system where you actually find yourself using things like block and dodge; this is for you. If however you wish for storyless highly repetitive games that involve nothing more that press button to make things blow-up followed by more of the same ad nauseum then don't play this game and instead pick up whatever Halo or Call of Duty game the critics are drooling over. Expand
  25. Jun 25, 2011
    10
    I don't know what critics are smoking these days, and maybe the console version was lesser (as I haven't played it on console), but the PC version is drop-dead gorgeous, incredible continuation of the story, fluid, twisted, wicked, and just downright fun to play. It has all the elements prior, and alot of new ones.

    American Mcgee definetely has not lost his touch here, and it's a well
    orchestrated sequel that plays, sounds, and feels flawless. Simply compare the amazing user score to the mediocre critic score, and its obvious they either did not play it, or just didn't care. Easily a 10/10. Expand
  26. Jun 13, 2012
    8
    I always felt like this game was underrated. I mean playing it today, for the third time, I can't believe how some of these professional reviewers have bashed the game and slapped it with such mediocre scores, which sadly, many people will take one look at and never give this game a chance.

    This game does so much right: compelling story, VERY beautiful and immersive enviroments/art
    design/graphics, simple yet exciting combat, fluid controls, good voice acting, replay value, etc. This is honestly one of the only few games that made me stop and marvel at the scenery, plus every enviroment is diverse enough so even if platforming can sometime get tedious, it's still fun to keep going.

    The only cons about this game are the textures can sometimes look muddy/distorted, pacing is off in that levels are stretched too long, some mini games are boring and repeated too often. But all of this does not equal a mediocre game in my opinion. Most of these flaws are so minor and doesn't even affect the game all that much.

    Sometimes I feel like the people reviewing the game are just so used to blockbuster games (uncharted, assassin's creed, call of duty, etc.) therefore if a unique game like alice comes out, it doesn't match their "standards" of what a good game should be. Does alice madness returns feel like an old school game? Yes. Is alice madness returns innovative? No. And you know what, that's ok. Unfortunately these so called "professional" don't seem to comprehend this concept rather anything with crosshairs and headshots are considered great games.
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  27. Aug 3, 2012
    6
    Alice does a lot of things right. It has an interesting art design, good voice acting and a satisfying combat. The atmosphere is splendid and the story would be good if the majority of the game didnt feel like filler. And that is the problem with this game. Even if the platforming and combat is alright in it self is it not in any way good or challenging enough to carry the game on its own. The majority of the game is spent going to character A or doing a fetch quest for character B with the occasional puzzle. The game has some nice and quirky gameplay ideas here and there but they cant compensate for the fact that the largest part of the game is simply repetitive and boring. The game is quite long but personally i would have enjoyed the game a lot more if it was shorter and more compact. Quality>Quantity. Expand
  28. Aug 24, 2012
    7
    This game has 90% of the things needed to make an excellent game but it let down by just a couple of (fairly large) features. Visually, the game is stunning and the artwork both in Wonderland and in London is fantastic, and well worth pausing to admire. Combat is simple, but fits well within the theme and restraints of the game. Dodging is done in a flurry of butterflies and the weapons (although arguably not enough in number) are inventive and varied enough to provide entertainment.

    Sadly, the game is flawed in its
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  29. Jun 20, 2011
    7
    I love Alice. I loved this game for the first 2 chapters. on the 3rd - it all seemed repetitive and started to bore.
    Overall the game is decent with decent graphics - but some obvious bugs as well.
  30. Jun 17, 2011
    0
    I feel that I need to chime in with a brief review of this wonderful platformer, as well, so that those currently on the fence in regards to buying this game - based on the ridiculously mediocre current critics average for "Madness Returns" - feel more at ease and give it a chance. I'm roughly 6 hours into the game and have been enjoying it immensely. As others here have mentioned, this game's art style in stunning. When Alice first enters Wonderland - which occurs very early in the game - I probably spent the first hour panning the camera around more than actually advancing forward; I was simply so in awe of the beauty of the environment. It frequently feels as if you're inside a Dali painting because the levels are so surreal and simultaneously gorgeous and terrifying. I'd also be remiss if I didn't at least briefly mention the pleasures of my encounters with the Cheshire Cat, who functions as a riddle-speaking source of "help" for Alice at various points in the game. Alice controls a bit like Spyro did back in the day; you'll need to master jumping & gliding in order to successfully conquer these levels. The game also features a mode that allows Alice to "shrink", which simultaneously functions as a way to reveal clues painted on walls to guide your way. This feature is handled much like Detective Mode was in Arkham Asylum, only better. Combat is your fairly typical hack, slash, and dodge, but it is satisfying. As for the glitches and annoyances that many critics have mentioned as a major reason for their deducting of review points, I can't quite understand what they are harping about. Will you run into the occasional invisible wall? Affirmative. Will that giant teapot with a crack in it the size of a doorway allow you inside to search for hidden goodies? Very doubtful. But you'll learn these quirks - and how to avoid them - within the first hour or so of the game. And as for the charge that I'm certain some people reading through these user reviews will level, that only American McGhee fanboys and original Alice devotees are rushing to defend this game... Well, I've never played the original (although I certainly have that on my agenda now following my experience with Madness so far), and no other American McGhee games, either. Whether it is right or wrong, most gamers nowadays look only at a game's Metascore when determining whether a game is worth a purchase or not. Fun and unique games like this will cease to be made (hell, this game feels almost fresh rather than dated, due to this generations complete avoidance of 3D platforming) if those of us who appreciate good games do not speak out in support of them - and get our fellow gamers to go buy them! Even if this game fails to sustain its admirable momentum for its second half (remember, I still have about half of the game remaining to play), I've already experienced enough fun to highly recommend it to others. Collapse
Metascore
70

Mixed or average reviews - based on 67 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 67
  2. Negative: 1 out of 67
  1. Dec 12, 2011
    79
    The levels are creative and artistic direction is solid, but the actual gameplay suffers from a lack of diversity and being clumped into big chunks.
  2. Sep 14, 2011
    82
    All in all it's a decent game with only a few nagging issues to prevent it from being great. Comparatively, I think that the original did it better, but Spicy Horse has done a respectable job with the sequel.
  3. Aug 2, 2011
    70
    Had Madness Returns cut its length by half and tossed in a few more gameplay mechanics, it could have easily been one of the best titles released this year.