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Little Nightmares 2: Release date, gameplay, story and more

Little Nightmares 2
(Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

Little Nightmares 2 is the dark, thrilling and macabre sequel you’ve been waiting for since you stepped into the shoes of Six, a precocious little girl in a bright yellow raincoat who dodged slobbering, children-eating beasts to escape imprisonment from a horrifying ship. 

Tarsier Studios, the developers behind this masterpiece of a game, had us scratching our heads with pure befuddlement — the original Little Nightmares’ conclusion left us with more questions than answers. Why was Six held captive in the underbelly of a massive vessel? What is the meaning of the unsettling eye symbol that Six often encountered? And for the love of all things holy, who was that creepy masked female villain, draped in a brown Geisha kimono, that Six faced in a final boss fight?

Little Nightmares 2 the Lady

Little Nightmares: The Lady and Six (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

These are the questions that plague the Little Nightmares fanbase, inciting an onslaught of harebrained theories.

Will this sequel finally unveil Six’s mysterious backstory and put our mind at ease? I doubt it — Tarsier Studios secretly enjoys warping its fans’ minds. However, you can rest assured that Little Nightmares 2 will send you on another heart-stopping, hair-raising journey filled with jump scares, WTF moments and bone-chilling enemies. 

Here’s everything we know so far about Little Nightmares 2.

Little Nightmares 2 release date

Little Nightmares 2 is slated to be released on February 21, 2021.

Interestingly, when the Little Nightmares 2 trailer was revealed at Gamescom Opening Night Live last August, the critically acclaimed platform was poised to be released in 2020. However, the creepy game was pushed back to a later date. 

Little Nightmares 2 Mono

Little Nightmares II main protagonist: Mono (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

Though you may assume the pandemic played a part in this delay, Little Nightmares 2’s Lead Producer Lucas Roussel admitted that COVID-19 had nothing to do with it. The team changed the date because “the game needed more love” before allowing fans to get their hands on it. Let’s hope there aren’t any more setbacks so we can finally dive into the sequel we’ve been waiting for since Little Nightmares launched in 2017.

Little Nightmares 2 will be playable on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PC via Steam. It will also arrive on Xbox Series X and Playstation 5 at a post-launch date in 2021. Gamers who purchase Little Nightmares 2 on PS4 or Xbox One will receive a free next-gen upgrade.

Little Nightmares 2 gameplay 

 The eye-catching 15-minute gameplay for Little Nightmares 2 was unveiled in late August.

Mono wakes up in a dark, ominous forest in front of an old-school TV. He quickly gathers himself up and jogs through the wilderness. As Mono leaps over a gap, we spot a decomposing, fly-attracting corpse. The paper-bag wearing kid then crawls into a spooky tunnel. When Mono comes out on the other side, he encounters another disturbing scene — the gruesome aftermath of forest wanderers who stepped into a deadly booby trap. Mono doesn’t seem fazed by this, though. He traverses a log and continues to explore the spooky forest. 

Little Nightmares 2 the forest

Little Nightmares II: the deathly booby trap (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

Similar to Six in the first Little Nightmares game, Mono pushes and pulls objects to reach higher platforms and swings on ropes to get to the other side. There are booby traps populated throughout the forest, including bear-trap jaws that can clamp you to death and net traps that can leave you stranded in the wilderness. You must avoid them by being cautious and thinking one step ahead.

Mono sneaks into a run-down, rinky-dink house that looks like a haunted shanty you’d find in a horror film. In this unnerving dwelling, Mono frees Six from the basement and he now has a useful companion who can guide him through this spine-tingling world. Six, however, will not be playable — she will be an AI-driven sidekick. Although Six will follow Mono, Roussel wants fans to know that she’s far from a follower.

Little Nightmares 2 creepy house

Little Nightmares II: the creepy house (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

“Six remains faithful from what we have seen from the first game. We know that she’s an active character,” Roussel said in an interview. “Sometimes she will take the lead, depending on the situation. Sometimes, you will have to ask her to do something for you, like help you reach a platform or activate a mechanism.”

Like the original game, there are unsightly monsters who will chase you down, but in Little Nightmares 2, the first enemy you encounter sports a shotgun, which we haven’t seen before. The monsters of the first game were equipped with speedy feet or freakishly long arms, but never weapons.

The trailer reveals some form of combat in Little Nightmares 2, which we didn’t see in the original IP — Six mostly had to rely on stealth mechanics to outsmart her enemies. She was vulnerable and had nothing to defend herself with. Mono, on the other hand, is seen whacking enemies in the head with a ladle, so I can’t wait to see how the new element of combat works in this highly anticipated game.

Little Nightmares 2 combat

Combat in Little Nightmares II (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

Little Nightmares 2 mimics the original IP’s side-scrolling gameplay à la Inside and Limbo. Similar to the first Little Nightmares game, the sequel often switches between 3D and 2D perspectives. Another parallel you’ll find between the sequel and the original is stealth mechanics — you’ll need to tiptoe behind enemies to progress in Little Nightmares 2.

Little Nightmares 2 story

Little Nightmares 2 is about the fascinating dynamic between two kids on a journey to discover the dark secrets of a place called the Signal Tower after dodging the bloodthirsty Hunter, escaping the sadistic Teacher and other terrifying, monstrous characters. Signal Tower is an evil place that controls the Little Nightmares 2 world by sending malevolent signals to residents via TV screens. 

Little Nightmares 2

(Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

“Something about Signal Tower sends out this pulse or transmission and it affects everyone around it,” Roussel said in an interview with Eurogamer. Throughout the game, you’ll find staticy TVs that give off creepy “The Ring” vibes. According to the trailer, Mono and Six can teleport from one location to another using these TVs. Once the precocious duo reaches Signal Tower, they will have to face the main antagonist of the game: Thin Man (who is reminiscent of Slender Man).

Spoiler alert: on Bandai Namco’s (Little Nightmare 2’s publisher) website, it says, “Six is fading from this world and her only hope is to guide Mono to the Signal Tower.” Fading is the operative word here. Is it possible that Six will not make it to the end of Little Nightmares 2?

Little Nightmares 2 Signal Tower

Little Nightmares II: Signal Tower (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

Lastly, Tarsier Studios describes Mono as an “anti-hero.” This description insinuates that Mono may display qualities that do not align with good ethical judgement.

This reminds me of Six’s controversial scene in the first game. Six, who had a grumbling stomach throughout the original IP, encountered a friendly gnome who offered her a piece of sausage to tame her hunger, but instead of taking the sausage, Six pinned the poor gnome to the ground and ate him alive. This scene spearheaded a slew of hilarious reaction videos on YouTube. I presume Mono will have similar moments of questionable judgement in Little Nightmares 2. After all, it would inspire another wave of viral videos that will heighten the sequel’s visibility among gamers. 

Little Nightmares 2 setting 

As previously mentioned, the original IP took place inside a massive ship called The Maw that had unspeakable horrors, and as such, Little Nightmares 2 answers the following question: “What kind of a terrible world could The Maw exist in?” Looking at the trailer and 15-minute gameplay, you don’t want to know.

Little Nightmares 2

Little Nightmares II: creepy Pale City residents (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

Little Nightmares 2 gives us insight into the bloodcurdling world beyond the vessel we were confined to in the original IP. Welcome to Pale City — the name of the unwelcoming metropolis that Mono and Six find themselves in. Although Pale City is plagued with dreadful secrets, malevolent monsters and evil atmospheric vibes, there’s something darkly whimsical about it in a “Tim Burton’s Nightmare Before Christmas” kind of way. There are hands that crawl like spiders and eyeballs melting out of monsters’ eye sockets, but despite the grotesque imagery, Little Nightmares 2 is still visually intriguing.

Little Nightmares 2

Little Nightmares II: the hospital (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

From the rotting corpses of the forest to the twisted tree roots of an underground tunnel, there’s a lot of ugliness in Pale City, but the art is beautiful. Besides the forest and Signal Tower, other locations Mono and Six explore include a hospital filled with prosthetic limbs hanging from ceilings and a dreary, bare-bones classroom devoid of color and sprightliness.

According to Game-Debate, the predicted minimum requirements for the Little Nightmares sequel are the Windows 7 operating system, an Intel Core i3-2115C CPU or AMD Athlon II X3 460 CPU, an Nvidia GeForce GTX 480 GPU or AMD Radeon R7 265 GPU, 6GB of RAM and 10GB of storage space.

The recommended requirements for Little Nightmares 2 are the Windows 7 operating system, an Intel Core i7-860S CPU or AMD FX-6200 CPU, an AMD Radeon HD 6970 GPU or Nvidia GeForce GTX 660 GPU, 8GB of RAM and 10GB of storage space.

Little Nightmares 2

The vast Little Nightmares II world (Image credit: Tarsier Studios/Bandai Namco)

Tarsier Studios promised Little Nightmares 2 will be longer than the first game, which will be a relief to the many gamers who complained the original was too short. The world will also be bigger and more vast than the previous IP. So compared to the previous IP, this sequel will require a little more out of your system. Little Nightmares 2 already won a 2020 Gamescom award for Best Nintendo Switch Game, and it hasn’t even been released yet. I can’t wait to experience this award-winning game for myself — 2021 can’t come soon enough.