It’s here! Finally, after so much waiting, it’s here! Little Nightmares II has arrived. This time though, we aren’t delving into The Maw. Oh no, dear friends. We get to wander through The Pale City. A new area with so much to discover. Let’s just jump right in. Also, spoiler warning ahead.
What is Little Nightmares II?
Little Nightmares II is a suspense adventure game in which you play as Mono, a young boy trapped in a world that has been distorted by an evil transmission. Welcome to The Pale City. However, this time you’re not alone. During the opening section, you pick up a little friend. A little friend who you can hold hands with. That friend? Well, that friend is Six. Yes, the same Six who faced the horrors of The Maw in the first game. Together, you will make your way through the frightening, dark The Pale City.
It is very important to note that this game is in fact, a prequel. Now, this has yet to be officially confirmed by Bandai Namco or Tarsier Studios, but it’s obvious. A lot of people use the secret ending as reference for this, but it’s evident near enough from the beginning. When you find Six, she does not have her powers, nor does she have her signature yellow raincoat. The coat is actually found in the streets of The Pale City. The secret ending does feature a poster of The Maw, with a glitched Six pointing at it. Pay attention through the game and you’ll find the little hints that make it obvious. Plus, the actual ending shows it too. We’ll get into that though.
There is something truly terrifying about the creature design this time around. It really takes a massive step up.
In the opening, Mono and Six must run from The Hunter, who is carrying a shotgun. There are some really conveniently placed boxes and things to hide behind to avoid death. However, The Hunter is by far the tamest of the monsters in this game. Although it is a very cool addition for one massive reason. The final part of this section shows off a very new mechanic. You can fight back. It starts off way more subtle. Mono and Six find a discarded gun when all hope seems lost, and they shoot The Hunter before he can get them.
Where you really experience fighting back is in The School, the second area of the game. The end of this section is also where Six finds her yellow raincoat. However, throughout this section, there are weird little doll children trying to attack you. Of course, the biggest baddie in this section is The Teacher. This one, you just run away from her. She stretches her neck out impossibly far to chase you. But you can pick up hammers to smash open the heads of the dolls.
The Hospital offers up little hands, that can run and jump around the place, plus they can hide. It is definitely a strange one. Our big bad here is The Doctor. The Doctor hangs upside down from the ceiling and moves around across it. Thankfully, you can use the environment to hide. Dear lord, he is terrifying. But he is not the worst of what you will face. You will spend a lot of this section on your own. Six holds back while you move about the place.
The Thin Man
Once you escape The Hospital, you’ll find yourself on the streets of The Pale City. The city is full of viewers. People all glued to their tv screens, although it shows nothing but static. A lot of these, you just move on by. As you move through the streets and apartments, you’ll even get a view of the Signal Tower. Again, you will do a bit without Six. However, after meeting back up, the building you are running through starts to crumble. Once you save Six and move into the next room, you’ll find a TV to interact with. This is not a normal TV, and it brings with it true fear.
The Thin Man.
This is very much time to run. The Thin Man comes straight out through the TV set. Thankfully, in the next room over, there’s a bed you can hide under. However, Six doesn’t make it that far. She opts to hide under a table, and The Thin Man takes her. When you manage to make it back to the TV, you’ll be sucked in. This section is really where we get to experience Mono’s powers to move through the screens, and it ends up being really fun. Well, all things considered. What was once a mission to escape The Pale City becomes a mission to rescue Six.
For the next while, it’s all about running and using the TVs around you. A lot of these come with Viewers, and they will not be happy when you turn their sets off. You will finally find Six, trapped in a screen further through the apartments. This is Little Nightmares II though, so we know it won’t be that easy. When you try to pull her out, The Thin Man will pull her back in before once again climbing out to chase you. This chase section also includes an awesome run through a train, which works so very well. It shows how relentless The Thin Man is.
The section ends with a boss fight against The Thin Man, where you really get to see what Mono can do with his powers. Unlike the first game, however, this is not where it ends. There’s one more section left.
It’s time to head right into The Signal Tower. This is your heartbreak warning. I’m also going to give a hint for the puzzles here because I can’t be the only person who regularly got lost. Follow the music. Once you reach the end of it, you meet the final boss. Six. But it’s not Six as we know her. She is tall, lanky, like one of the other monsters. This Six is also curled around a music box. Now, if you had been watching the earlier areas carefully, you will see music boxes around the place. The most obvious is with Six at the very beginning. There’s one on the floor behind her.
The objective is relatively simple but also a pain to achieve at the same time. Break the music box to save Six. You go through this a couple of times before it finally breaks.
The Signal Tower starts to crumble, which means once again, it’s time to run. This culminates in the ultimate run and jump, the kind Six always catches Mono from. And as always, she catches him. This time though, she lets go. Mono is left to fall into the depths of the tower, and Six exits. Once Mono is back on his feet, he can start moving again until he finds a chair. Once you climb the chair, the final cutscene starts.
Time begins to pass. Mono begins to grow. More time passes and eventually stops on Mono’s final form. Mono is The Thin Man.
Not so Little theories
Little Nightmares II adds so much to the lore side of things, and of course, the fanbase has run rampant with theories. One theory suggests that Six drops Mono so that she wouldn’t hurt or eat him. Remember her hunger pangs from the first game? Although a very plausible theory, it’s not the one I want to focus on. I want to focus on something a bit more mind screwy. It gets a bit confusing thanks to time loops. Which seem to be caused by the Signal Tower.
The theory starts like this. Six drops Mono because she knows what he will become. In the boss fight with The Thin Man, Mono removes the bag from his head. The whole last section of the game, his face is on display. Perhaps Six can see the resemblance after she was taken? And even though Mono saves her in the end, it was still technically Mono who took her. Time loop time. The Thin Man grows from Mono’s despair at being dropped by Six and comes back through the TVs to try and stop it from happening.
The theory expands from there and brings Mono into The Maw. Unfortunately, not in a good way. He does actually make an appearance as The Thin Man in the Secrets of The Maw DLC, but that’s not what I’m talking about. Apparently, we meet Mono very early on in the first Little Nightmares. The theory goes that Mono, in the form of The Thin Man, is actually the hanging body we meet near the beginning. This of course brings back the time loop, but also the possibility that Mono’s last trip brought him to The Maw.
This would also tie in an older theory about Six being The Lady. Maybe The Lady and The Maw are what formed after Six discovered the ultimate fate of her friend?
Final thoughts on Little Nightmares II
If you can’t tell by now, I am so very in love with this game. There is something to be said for a game that can convey such a powerful story without any dialogue. It was already impressive in the first game. Little Nightmares II shoots it right out of the ballpark. We are truly treated to the story of a blossoming friendship, that leads to the ultimate betrayal and heartbreak. It is an intense roller coaster ride, from start to finish. I don’t know what I was expecting, but this game truly exceeded my wildest dreams.
I cannot recommend this to everyone enough. Both games, in fact. Little Nightmares II has very solidly earned a place on the list of my favourite games and is one I will definitely be playing again. It is on the shorter side, clocking in at about 4 hours, but it is worth it. It definitely has a lot of replayability, so I have zero complaints. Bravo Tarsier Studios and Bandai Namco for another phenomenal game.
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