The Surge 2 is an action role playing game developed by Deck13 Interactive and published by Focus Home Interactive.
The Surge 2 was officially announced in February of 2018, when it was confirmed that the game would be launching in 2019 for the PS4, Xbox One, and PC. It was later confirmed in June 2019 that it would be releasing on September 24 of that year.
With The Surge 2, the developers wanted to expand the game’s scope, by introducing larger areas, more environment variety, expanding the combat mechanics, improving the AI, and more. The developers have also confirmed that there are no microtransactions in the game. The game is also confirmed to feature visual and technical enhancements on the PS4 Pro and the Xbox One X.
The Surge 2 takes place two months after the events of the first game, and is set in Jericho City. At the beginning of the game, the protagonist’s plane is caught in a mysterious storm, and crash-lands in the city. The protagonist wakes up weeks later, finding themselves in a detention centre, and learning the state of the city. Jericho city is being plagued by a nanite-based techno-disease, because of which it is currently under quarantine, with martial law in effect. Players are tasked with figuring out what happened, and how to undo it.
The Surge 2 plays similarly to the Soulslike action melee combat of its predecessor, but introduces several new elements and mechanics to expand upon the first game’s core concepts. For starters, the game no longer features a defined character as a protagonist. Instead, players can create and customize their own character, and select their preferred gender and change their appearance, including hair, colour, clothing, and more.
Changes have also been made to the combat. In addition to weapons from the first game, The Surge 2 also introduces several new weapon types. With five new weapon types, the total number in the game is taken up to ten. One of these is a heavy duty class weapon similar to an axe, which can also be split into two one handed weapons to deal faster attacks and combos. The different weapon types encourage various combat styles.
The number of enemy types and bosses and boss encounters in the game has also been upped, with the developers wanted to address feedback regarding the same from the first game. There are now more boss fights in the game than there were in the first game, while there are also several “smaller, tricky” bosses. The developers hope this greater number of encounters will add variety to both, combat, and enemy designs.
Another change being made to combat is to the artificial intelligence, which was another area that drew some criticism from players and critics in the first game. Enemies in the game have smarter AI, and can now communicate an co-operate with one another during combat to present a more formidable challenge for the player, such as being able to use exo lifts to chase the player.
During combat, players can also deploy a combat drone, or use consumables such as bio-sensors. The combat drone attacks enemies from afar while players deal up close melee damage. The drone can also be used as a scouting device to spot hidden enemies, or to stun enemies, attack several at once, or target individual body parts of enemies. Players can also knock projectile weapons off of enemies – such as lasers or sniper rifles – and attach them to the combat drone to then use in combat themselves. There is also a new blocking mechanic, which requires players to determine the angle of incoming blows and of their own blocks to parry attacks from several directions.
The limb targeting system also returns, which allows the player to target different body parts of enemies and dismember them in a bullet-time style effect. When enemies die or when their limbs or body parts are dismembered, they drops gear, weapons, and equipment that players can then pick up for their own use. If players want specific loot that an enemy is carrying, those specific body parts need to be cut off.
Beyond the combat, The Surge 2 also introduces several changes and improvements through its new setting, which attempts to address criticisms for linearity and a lack of environmental diversity that the first game drew. The game is set in Jericho City, an urban landscape, which has allowed the developers to display much more variety in the environments players will be visiting, especially in comparison to the first game, the entirety was set within a single factory.
Jericho City is also a larger and interconnected environment. Though the developers do not classify it as open world, it is a much larger setting with a lot of open areas and branching paths that allow players much more freedom in how they want to progress and the order in which they want to tackle objectives and side objectives. The areas in the game’s world are also much more vertical, which plays into combat and exploration as well. The developers also say that thanks to the game’s larger size, it will be a longer experience than The Surge.
Jericho City’s city centre serves as he main hub for the player, who can explore outward in the city in any direction, with the entirety of Jericho being open from the beginning of the game. As such, players can tackle missions and side quests in a non-linear order.
Players can also leave graffiti messages on the walls for other players to see and gain clues and hints about the environment or fights against enemies or bosses. The developers have also said that The Surge 2 has a lot more storylines and characters and, as such, a lot more storytelling in general than the first game did.