Darksiders 2 is a free roam, RPG, hack and slash developed by vigil games and published by THQ.
As I ride my horse through icy veils I feel the chill on my neck and silence the haunts.
War has been chained at the peril of the charred council after being accused of triggering the apocalypse before its allotted time.Death believes war to be the most incorruptible and honourable horseman, victim to a deep rooted conspiracy. Death defies the council’s orders and goes on a personal journey to prove wars innocence and it will not be easy.
Throughout your journey the story will unravel via conversations with NPC’s and short artistic cut-scenes.The progression is set at a great pace giving you lots of time to explore the lands whilst keeping the objective in mind.
In total there are 4 main areas that you will have to explore in order to progress the main quest.Offering unique, detailed visuals and breathtaking views Forge lands, the lost light, kingdom of the dead and shadows edge are a pleasure to visit.
On your travels you will encounter some very memorable characters.Some are strange and others witty but all fit each area they are first seen in very well.Voice acting is impeccable and some even give off great body language which is not all that familiar in video games.
Most of the NPC characters offer side-quests but will also buy and sell weapons, armour, talisman etc.
Each of the characters have had some form of impact due to what “War” has done and because of this I would advise that you do every side quest you are offered. Completing these side-quests will open that little more of the story that you would have missed had you not bothered to dive in deeper.You will be greatly rewarded after the completion of side quests and by rewarded I mean receive a great piece of weaponry or armour etc as well as XP.
The RPG elements of Darksiders 2 work brilliantly.You can loot all the time trying to find that brilliant piece of armour or them "killer scythes with all the added extras" and at times you may feel like you’re hitting a brick wall and then “BAM” you have a brilliant piece of forgery that has been worth all the searching.
It is worth mentioning that this time round you will occasionally find Possessed weapons. These unique weapons allow you to level them up by feeding them unwanted items. Bare in mind that the better the item you feed the possessed weapon the better abilities it will have and stronger it will be.
Then you have the quests. When you complete quests, you’re rewarded with XP and when you level up you are rewarded with skill points.
Skill points are what really keep the progression of your character going. The skill tree is a big tease because in your head you know exactly what you want to do but you have so far to go before you can unlock all of the tiers in that particular ability. The skill tree and the rest of the menu are very smooth easy to navigate.
Some of the unlockable abilities are Teleport Slash which allows you to teleport and whilst doing so causes damage to each character that gets in your way and Exhume which allows “Death” to summon ghouls to fight alongside him.
As in all games like Darksiders using such abilities costs you something and in Darksiders 2 its “Wrath” make sure you have enough wrath to use your ability or at the very least some wrath potions for them vital moments when you need a little help.
At times levelling up Death seems to drag but the good news is that by the time you have noticed “It’s been a long time since I levelled up” you are very close to levelling up or just about to.
Some parts of the lands allow you to ride your horse “Despair”.Despair can be summoned but to me is a little pointless. Despair doesn’t feel much faster than Death himself and combat is harder due to the sticky and clunkyness of trying to control a horse as well as fight.One swipe from an enemy and you’re thrown from despair anyway so you may as well just get off and kill the enemies with less restriction.
“Dust” your fellow crow is back to guide you when you are troubled and confused. A click of the left analogue and Dust will show you the way to go (apparently). I had lots of trouble with Dust.Dust is slow and most of the time confused, making him about as useful as a sat-nav with no maps during some parts of the game.
Darksiders 2 combat is amazingly well developed.My favourite hack and slash game of all time is God of War and mainly because of how smooth the combat is. Well, Darksiders 2 is easily on par with God of War making the fighting an absolute pleasure.
You will wield scythes as your main weapon and anything from a hammer to a mace as your secondary. The scythes are very fast and each have their own unique abilities such as extra health, more damage and wrath per kill etc and the same goes for the secondary weapons too.
You can purchase new combat moves from NPC’s as well as new weapons and even though you are always doing the same moves over and over it never gets boring or feels repetitive and that’s how you know Darksiders 2 has great combat!
Moves are easy to pull of and look very cool.You can feel the damage you are doing to your enemy and at times when things are getting really tough the flashing lights and spinning moves from combos are mesmerizing.
Like the last Darksiders, Darksiders 2 is full of puzzles, and to be honest, maybe a too many.There were times when frustrating wasn’t a harsh enough word to use and other times where you thought the developers were joking with how easy a puzzle was. Overall they will break you and could even ruin the experience for you as they did mine. Puzzles are probably what make up Darksiders 2 and give it its longevity because without them you would just stroll right to the finish line and say “Was that it” but at times a gentle stroll would have been welcomed.
For those of you that do not like back tracking (trust me there is a lot) you can always fast travel.Open your map and select and area with the cursor, press the X button and off you go without any encounters and at an extremely faster rate.I’m not a fan of fast travel because you may miss out on a collectible and definitely miss out on the views but it’s there if you need it.
There is a time when we all need to turn off our consoles and at times we may be so distracted during our real lives that when we turn on our beloved Xbox we may have forgotten where we were….. Don’t worry because Darksiders 2 has you covered.When you load your save it will say “The journey so far” and show you a small arty clip and brief details on what has just happened.I love this because it reminds me of great TV shows such as the walking dead and is generally a great idea.
Located through your travels are serpent stones. These stones act as an email inbox allowing you to send and receive items to other Darksiders II players. This is a great addition that will be used a lot by the most hardcore Darkisders fans.
The crucible is a new addition to Darksiders 2 and is free as a download with every new copy of the game.The crucible is an arena where you fight waves of enemies that increase in difficulty as the waves go higher.Every 5 waves the crucible king will allow you to take loot or continue to fight another 5 waves.The higher the wave you complete the better the loot. If you die you receive nothing!
Darksiders 2 has very detailed, colourful, deep visuals.Every inch of every area treats your eyes to real craftsmanship created by the most talented developers.There is not an area that can be cussed graphically and at times you will stop and stare into the open world and (funnily) walk as close to an edge as possible so that you can see what lies beneath you.
Things that annoyed me
There were many things that annoyed me in Darksiders 2 and I’m not talking puzzles.
Glitches and bugs were around most corners of my game and caused huge frustration and a nasty kick to my Darksiders 2 experience.
The follow camera sometimes feels like it has a mind of its own especially on a slow part where you are faced with yet another puzzle but, once your engrossed into the gameplay you can and will forget about it.
A few times I fell from high ledges but one one occasion I had landed but Death thought he was still falling and therefore continued to look like he was falling stopping me from being able to progress… I had to reload my save!
One of the puzzle balls fell off the ledge as it was meant to but got stuck in between a gap. Because a ball is hugely physics based I will forgive it a little…. I had to reload my save!
A moveable platform was not moveable… I had to reload my save!
Whilst playing the crucible I decided that after the completion of level 20 I would take the loot but the chest was empty.This did make me laugh but if it happened again it would definitely not be funny.
The game froze FIVE times!!! 3 times in the same place and once after I beat the final boss.I had to reset my console and complete the section again and this really annoyed me and ruined my experience.
The code problems I faced were not experienced by everyone I know that was reviewing Darksiders 2 so don’t let me put you off buying the game but instead look at it as a warning that you may be playing what feels to be a bug fest at times!
Overall Darksider2 is a great game and what I wanted it to be (minus the problems).The RPG elements and combat make this game great as well as the well written story but there were too many glitches and bugs present in my game for my liking.
It took me 24 hours to complete the game but I love exploring. If you liked the first Darksiders you will love Darksiders 2.I just hope you don’t get your experience ruined like I did at times.