So...this game is really rough. I know the first game was far from a technical masterpiece, but while it was certainly low budget and janky, it wasn't this sort of mess. 3 times the game has effectively frozen on me (the game sometimes stops responding to controller input, requiring me to close out of the game), so I'm manual saving as often as I can now. And just visually and performance-wise...it's bad. We're talking about a game that looks more or less the same as a 10-year-old game (which looked ugly and dated at the time), and it's as choppy a frame rate I've experienced in a very long time. I'm probably one of the more tolerant people when it comes to frame rate, too. Most games with performance described as "LITERALLY UNPLAYABLE" on certain internet forums haven't been much of a problem for me. But this is real bad.
And yet in spite of all that....it's got that same Swery magic and charm, and I find myself having a tough time stepping away from it. Part of me wants to go through this game slowly, a little bit at a time, and save plenty of game for after it gets patched. But I'm drawn to the writing, and the characters, and all of the weirdness. It's very similar to my experience with the first game in that regard, although not quite to this degree.
Been playing this off-and-on over the past month, and am coming up on the homestretch (should finish today).
Even after two patches, it's still a tough game to recommend. The performance is still poor, even if it is improved a good bit. It's closer to "acceptable" than "unplayable" at this point (my litmus test is that I'm not getting headaches from playing it), but there are still times where it gets really hitch-y, implying that the suspected memory leak problem isn't quite fixed.
Since the latest patch, I haven't encountered any of the problems which forced me to close out the game, which is good. But there are still a number of annoyances like where you can't complete side missions because NPCs won't respond with the proper dialogue, and the only option is to keep retrying over and over until the game functions properly. It's clear this game was really rushed out the door.
(Still, there are the occasional hilarious glitches that pop up!)
Despite the numerous problems, I have enjoyed my time playing DP2 because it is the same type of game as the original, and has a lot of the same qualities. But it's a lesser game in nearly every respect. The town isn't as interesting (neither its design nor aesthetics), the characters aren't as interesting or as memorable, the story isn't as interesting or as deep or nearly as unpredictable. It's hard to describe, but this just doesn't have the same magic to it. The first game was a surprise to me going into it, and by basically trying to make that same type of experience again, the sequel doesn't have that element of surprise. It needed something else, something more, to be the sort of special game that Deadly Premonition 1 is.