Darksiders 2 Review with StarKlaw
Darksiders 2 Deathinitive Edition$29.99
Game Play and Mechanics8/10
Visual Style and Quality9/10
- Beautiful Environments
- Fast Melee Combat
- Well Told Story
- Many Secrets
- Lack of Replay Value After Completion
- Rare Visual Bugs (clipping)
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So I know this isn’t a particularly new game, but it’s worth a mention, especially for fans of the original. In Darksiders 2, you play as Death, of the Four Horsemen. It picks up right where the first finishes, but saying much more would bring about spoilers for those that may have not played the first and might be interested in checking it out.
Game Play and Mechanics: 8/10
I personally would classify this game as an ARPG, as it has many character development aspects, including a classic leveling system, skill trees, and loot abound. There are plenty of platforming sections (thankfully no bottomless pits to completely ruin your day), and a decent sum of puzzles that are fun but aren’t too difficult, so they don’t detract too much from the action.
The combat pays a wonderful nod to games such as the Devil May Cry franchise, or Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, with fast and frantic combos, phenomenally designed attacks, and quick decision dodges. Primarily equipped with dual scythes, Death has a decent selection of secondary weapon types to choose from throughout the game, ranging from arm blades and claws to great hammers and two-handed axes.
Visual Style and Quality: 9/10
The visuals are quite well done. The environments are vast, with tons of nooks and crannies to explore to find loot, collectibles, secrets, or side quests. Thankfully, in larger open areas, you’re able to summon Death’s horse, Despair, who by the way, looks awesome. At times, Death feels slow when running around certain areas, but that issue was quickly stomped out for me by the sights to be seen in the many dungeons and locales. Of course, you can expect stone corridors and the like, but they’re rarely ever bland in design, with subtle details to catch your eye. Sometimes those details lead to progression, with potential clues or pathways studded throughout. I rarely found much to gripe about regarding visuals, though certain armor styles have mild clipping issues with Death’s feet. We’re talking simple things like a cloth hanging down from his belt that clips with his boot as he runs. Not game-breaking by my standards, but something I tend to notice.
Sound Quality: 7/10
While nothing about the score is particularly ground-breaking, the music suits the gameplay well.
Story Elements: 8/10
The story can be enjoyed completely without ever having played the original game, but certain characters that play important roles in the original do make a return. I don’t believe anything will particularly be lost in the story by not playing the first, but it absolutely does make the story richer.
The dialogue is by no means bad, but it’s not Oscar-worthy. The voice actors do a fantastic job with their characters, such as the snarky attitude from Death, the usual slimy salesman act of Vulgrim, the condescending nature of the Lord of Bones… Overall, the characters are well designed, well acted, and interesting, leading to a decently engaging story that I found myself paying close attention to and learning where all of the characters play in.
Multiplayer Elements: N/A
Single Player only, folks. Nothing to see here.
Fun Factor: 8/10
The action is fast-paced, the weapons have their play-style variety, and the exploration is fantastic. I enjoy finding secrets, and there are many, MANY secrets to be found. It’s always interesting to find a secret, and then realize you can’t quite get to it, only to make a discovery a little later in the game that will allow you to collect said secret, a la “Metroidvania”. Of course, then you have to remember where it was.
Replay Value: 5.5/10
Everyone replays games for different reasons. Perhaps you loved the story so much you want to hear it again, or perhaps you’re an achievement hunter hell-bent on hitting 100%, or perhaps you just enjoy the gameplay enough to want to play through it again and again. Personally, while I’ve always enjoyed this series, I generally don’t go right back to them upon completion. Personally, I’ll give this one some time before I go back, as there isn’t too much to be done right after finishing it.
Of the Four Horsemen, he is Death. You get to play as him, massacring your foes with dual scythes and your choice of a secondary weapon. In my opinion, well worth the price tag ($29.99 standard), but catching it on sale is most likely your best bet, purely based off the Replay Value factor. Overall, cool story, interesting characters, and frantic melee combat makes this an enjoyable romp through a well designed world full of loot and mystery.