The original Kane & Lynch: Dead Men was praised for its intense story and  gritty characters, but the gameplay left something to be desired.  Well, IO Interactive and Square Enix took the franchise back to the drawing board, and with that, raised the intensity and gameplay to insane new heights for Kane and Lynch 2: Dog Days.

Ripten got hands on with these two violent criminal madmen behind closed doors at E3 2010, and you are not going to want to miss this one.

Dog Days picks up after the events of Dead Men.  If your not familiar with what happened in Dead Men, then I’m certainly not going to spoil it for you.  Feel free to read about it here.  Lets just say there was love, loss and lots of blood.

Dog Days switches main characters from Kane to Lynch as we find him knee deep in the Shanghai criminal underworld, and up to his neck in trouble.  It will be up to him and his old friend Kane to make all the wrong things right.  The story promises to be just as brutally engaging, but the 3rd person gameplay has been totally revamped . . . and it rocks.  No longer does the game play like Hitman with sub mags, it now plays much more like Mass Effect.  With a great over the shoulder perspective, flawless cover and targeting system, and ruthlessly intelligent enemy AI.  Even IO admitted that something was wrong with the first game.

“Let’s face it, we had some problems with the mechanics, right? I mean, that’s the honest truth. We spent a lot of time trying to fix it this time around.”

Check out the E3 2010 trailer we saw before getting our hands on the game backstage.  Note: This entire trailer is made up of actual in-game footage.

The storytelling and direction has also been totally redone.  What they set out to do with this sequel was make the entire game have this sense of hectic realism.  As if the whole thing is being shot by a guy running behind you with a hand-held camcorder, or watching you through a video surveillance monitor, or actually in the action with you.   Think Cloverfield, but less nausea inducing.  They definitely succeeded at this aspect of the game and it gives the game an entirely new look and feel.

The beloved multiplayer is also back, and one all new mode stands above the rest.  Undercover cop.  Check out this trailer and get ready to betray your friends.

So, just when you thought the single player was intense, Kane and Lynch 2 throws some insane multiplayer action in your face.

However, trailers and impressions can only tell you so much, so here is the actual level we got to play behind closed doors at E3 2010.  All of the improvements are evident in this footage, the new graphics, gameplay, and artistic direction are all on display.  Enjoy.

So there you have it.  Kane & Lynch 2: Dog Days, looks to be a sequel done right.  You take everything the fans loved about the original, fix everything they didn’t like, and you have the perfect recipe for a great game.  A game so good, that nobody over at Gamespot will even have a remote chance of being fired this time.