The Surge 2 (XBox One)
The Surge 2 is the latest title in line to try and take the Soulslike crown from FromSoftware. Much like the original, The Surge 2 is Sci-Fi Souls and aims to make up for the originals shortcomings.
The Surge 2 puts you in the cyber boots of your own character this time, rather than the original following Warren. Your plane crash lands in the new setting of Jericho City and you wake up in what was the Police Department.
The Surge 2 focuses a little more on NPCs and direct storytelling rather than the vague scenery story telling of the original. While this is far from being an issue the game does feel like it has much different story beats than that of the first. The plus to this is the side cast are well fleshed out if not a little cliche. It’s nothing that it truly game changing and there is quite the mystery in Jericho City and its inhabitants.
The setting is where I feel The Surge 2 has made the biggest leap, rather than being a lot of confusing corridors instead you have all of Jericho City to leap and bound across, the shortcuts are all natural feeling and you’ll be finding your way around the city not long after the tutorial section. There are several areas in the city for you to explore, a nature reserve, a run down mall, sewer system and more, they all feel different and naturally bring their own dangers for you to have at!.
Graphically it doesn’t seem to quite stack up to the original, be it the bigger playing field or the fact the scenery has taken a bigger change but the visuals really seem to have taken a hit here.
The Surge 2 seems to fit firmly in the AA department of visuals and that isn’t a slight on the game, just a warning for those who are fans of the finer things in life, your character won’t be the most handsome in town, you won’t stand on the floor in places properly and something’s will just animate strange, but honestly none of that detracts from The Surge 2.
The Surge 2 is a SoulsLike title, this is basically a sub-genre of action RPG, if you have played any Demon/Dark Souls then you’ll be more than familiar with the difficulty level and gameplay loop. The Surge 2 not only changes it up with the Sci-Fi setting but the way you fight. You build up energy while you fight, this is used for dismemberment and healing, the game rewards you for getting stuck in rather than hiding in the back.
You can find numerous implants to help you build your ideal character build and then there is how you get weapons and armour. If you see some new armour on an enemy and think yours is getting a little shabby, why shouldn’t you have it?. Using the limb system targeting system as you fight you’ll weaken that area, where prompted hold the button and you’ll remove that body part in spectacular fashion.
This is one of my favourite parts of the game, I got so hooked on trying to get every weapon and armour off of the enemies which in turn gave me the combat experience I needed to carry me through the game. You can level up plenty but you’ll need to master the game to get through.
One of the major new additions is the directional blocking, rather than holding a button to block and another press for partying, you can aim your block, if it’s in the right area and timed right you can stun your foe and really have at them.
The boss count has been much improved over the original with a nice mix of “big” bosses and humanoid fights too. The game also features several new weapon types and many of them to collect.
There is no online co-op which is a shame, there are light online elements such as leaving graffiti around or the addictive banner hide and seek which nets you more currency the better hidden your banner remains.
The main campaign is around 30 hours long and has a plethora of side quests for you to tackle at your choosing. New Game+ also off the bat this time with tougher enemies and better weapons.
The Surge 2 is exactly what people think of when they say Sequel, it’s bigger, it’s better and it couldn’t be more welcome. I loved the original but the lack of variation killed it for me, The Surge 2 offers an almost buffet sized offering this time and one of the best maps I’ve needed to explore in a long long time. This is the title that shows you don’t need the flashiest rig to have the best ride!.
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