1 person found this review helpful
0.0 hrs last two weeks / 315.7 hrs on record
Posted: Oct 28 @ 1:41pm
Updated: Oct 28 @ 1:44pm

This is a shortened review. You can see the full review on my website[www.sapphic.dog].

Why Killing Floor 2?
I was once an active member of the Tripwire forums, the hub for all things Killing Floor. I recall the developers stating that a sequel to Killing Floor was off the table, as they felt they could incorporate any new features into the existing game. However, it seems they had a change of heart, as the announcement for Killing Floor 2 came as a complete surprise. Whenever you'd boot up a game of Killing Floor, pre-alpha footage of Killing Floor 2 would play, and you can still see that footage in the original game today. To say I was excited would be an understatement. My friends and I were still deeply involved in Killing Floor at the time of the announcement, and we were all eager to dive into the new sequel. We had pushed the boundaries of what was possible in the original game, and it was clearly time for a fresh experience. For a more in-depth take, check out my review of Killing Floor.

Gameplay Mechanics
In any sequel, you're looking for new content, and Killing Floor 2 delivers on that front. When it comes to the zeds, all your old "friends" are back, along with some fresh faces and variations. The Clot, a staple enemy, now has three new forms. First, there's the Cyst, a weaker version of the original. Then comes the Alpha Clot, which will sometimes make a beeline for you. The Slasher is another new variant, always on the move and attacking quickly. And let's not forget the Rioter, an armored Alpha Clot that can boost other zeds' abilities. The Gorefast is back too, but now has a tougher sibling called the Gorefiend. The Gorefiend sports dual blades and a bigger health pool. The Crawler also makes a return, this time with an Elite version that goes out with a bang—literally, it explodes and leaves a poisonous cloud. Old favorites like the Bloat, Siren, Stalker, Husk, and Scrake are unchanged. The Fleshpound is still its old self, but now there's a mini-me called the Quarterpound. Instead of one big Fleshpound, you might face four Quarterpounds. They each have a quarter of the health and damage, but they'll try to overwhelm you with numbers. The game also introduces a brand-new enemy: the E.D.A.R. (Elite Defense & Assault Robot). Spawned by a new boss, the Matriarch, these robots come armed with lasers, missiles, and a lasso to keep you in place.
Bosses deserve special attention in this review, especially since the game has expanded from one to five. The original boss, Hans, is often considered the toughest, although that's up for debate. Let's break down what you're up against with Hans. At long range, he'll use his dual guns to take potshots at you. If you're at medium range, watch out for his explosive and poison grenades that'll force you to relocate. Get too close, and he'll pounce, slashing at you with his metallic claws. Once you've whittled down his health a bit, he'll activate a shield and make a beeline for you. If he grabs you, he'll lock you in place and siphon off your health to replenish his own. However, if you manage to break his shield during this phase, you'll skip the health-draining part and stun him for a good while. Repeat this cycle three times, and Hans is history. The King Fleshpound and Abomination are essentially supersized versions of the Fleshpound and Bloat, respectively. Both of these bosses can summon mini-me's of themselves and have a ton of health and damage output. The Patriarch is back, and despite his claims, his bag of tricks hasn't changed. He's still got his minigun, missiles, cloaking tech, and that unsettling chest tentacle. Last but not least, we have the intriguingly named Matriarch. While the previous three bosses might feel a bit stale, the Matriarch is as engaging as Hans, in my view. Her abilities are all about electricity. She starts off with shields on three parts of her body. Break those, and she goes berserk, ramping up her speed and damage. She has a trio of attacks: a plasma stream, a bolt of lightning, and a close-range sonic pulse. When her health drops to a certain point, she calls in E.D.A.R. units for backup. At around half health, she borrows the Patriarch's cloaking ability and starts closing in for melee attacks and her sonic blast.
Killing Floor 2 revamps the simpler combat of its predecessor. It brings back all original classes and introduces new ones like Gunslinger, SWAT, and Survivalist. The Berserker class now features a parry system, adding more skill and balance to fights. Field Medic's darts now home in on players, and each class gets a unique grenade. While Gunslinger focuses on headshots, SWAT and Survivalist lack a clear role and are rarely picked in online play. Perks offer skill choices every five levels, adding variety and impacting gameplay.

Audio & Video
Music was a standout feature in the original Killing Floor, setting the tone and atmosphere. Killing Floor 2 also aims for epic music, but it falls a bit short in my opinion. The CEO of Tripwire Interactive opted for a religious metal band instead of retaining zYnthetic, the audio designer from the first game. This decision wasn't well-received, at least among the people I spoke to. And let's be honest, the CEO hasn't exactly been a beacon of great decision-making. On the plus side, a lot of effort went into making the weapon sounds realistic. I'm not a gun aficionado, but from what I can tell, they did a good job. Even the fictional weapons sound like you'd expect them to.

When it comes to visuals, Killing Floor 2 is a clear upgrade in every way. You can see the painstaking effort that went into the gore mechanics.

Killing Floor 2 presents an interesting contrast to its predecessor. While the original game could be a bit dull when played solo, Killing Floor 2 actually shines in single-player mode. The addition of more RPG-like perks and abilities means that playing with others doesn't necessarily enhance the experience. Perks don't interact much with each other, and each class is versatile enough to handle all types of enemies. This lack of specialization means there's less incentive for team diversity, making the game feel different and, as a side effect, easier.

Additionally, the game has introduced a prestige system for perks. Prestiging doesn't offer any tangible benefits, just an emblem next to your class logo. You can prestige up to three times, and it's a more streamlined process compared to messing with game config files in the original Killing Floor, as was previously required.

Final Thoughts
Killing Floor 2 is undeniably the better game in many aspects, which is what you'd expect from a sequel. It's clear that a lot of time, effort, and thoughtfulness went into its development. That said, I still have a soft spot for the original, perhaps because there's a bit of a hipster in me. Once you've maxed out everything in Killing Floor 1, it's just as enjoyable in its own right.

Should you complete Killing Floor 2?
Killing Floor 2 is definitely more friendly to completionists compared to its predecessor. The variety in gameplay achievements complements an already diverse game quite well. I wholeheartedly recommend completing Killing Floor 2, whether you're going it alone, playing with friends, or mixing it up.
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