Wondering what the hell is happening in The Evil Within 2? This FAQ will help

Bethesda released an Evil Within 2 story trailer last month that delves into the sad, sorry history of lead character Sebastian Castellanos. But for people who aren't familiar with the first game, it left one burning question unanswered: "What?" Fortunately for me and everyone else in that boat, Bethesda has come to the rescue with an Evil Within 2 Story FAQ

It begins with a rundown of who Sebastian Castellanos is and what led him to the state he's in at the beginning of Evil Within 2. It also covers the basics of Julie Kidman, his putative partner in The Evil Within, and Mobius, a shadowy organization possessing nigh-infinite resources including STEM, "device that allows for a shared consciousness experience." 

That's not as benign as it might sound. "[STEM] connects human minds in an alternate world, with one mind being used as a central 'Core,' building the world and controlling everything in it. Or, as writer Trent Haaga puts it, 'STEM is like if Freddy Krueger made the Matrix'," the FAQ says. "When Sebastian is pulled into STEM in the first game, he faces countless horrors in a twisted version of his own hometown, Krimson City. Being tortured and nearly killed in a place that looks even a little like 'home' probably didn’t do much to help his mental state after he makes it out of STEM." 

From there, it sets up The Evil Within 2 with some potentially spoiler-ish information about the new game world, his daughter, Kidman, and the people he might encounter in the new STEM world of Union. It's probably safe for all but the most feverish of the "no spoilers!" crowd, and definitely a useful resource for newcomers to the series who don't want to play through the original first. There's still lots of time to get caught up, though: The Evil Within 2 is set for release on October 13. 

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.