I really enjoyed the first “Darksiders” game. It was pretty cool getting to play as one of the Four Horsemen, but as cool as War is, Death is by far the rider you would want to be. In this go around you play as Death, trying to prove War’s innocence and restore the human race.
“Darksiders 2″ gameplay, at it’s core, is a hack-and-slash adventure game with a sprinkle of role playing elements for added fun. With each level you unlock skill points to put into either skill tree Harbinger or Necromancer. In the Necromancer skill tree, you unlock powers to summon the dead to fight by your side and bring a murder of crows out of the ether to attack your enemies, whereas Harbinger will unlock new attacks that will cause electrical damage, burning damage, etc.
The maps are huge, and unless you fast travel to checkpoints near your destination, you’re going to need to use your trusted mount, Despair. He comes in handy when you want to ram through a bunch of enemies while getting some easy mounted kills. My only problem with Despair is that you can only do bursts of speed that last a couple of seconds rather than having a run button with a stamina bar, like in “Red Dead Redemption.”
Another companion to help you on your journey is Dusk, a raven that guides you to your objectives when you press down on the left thumbstick. Because I like to just jump into games when I get them, I tend to not read the booklets, and I also tend to skip tutorials. I figure I’ll just learn as I go. It was because of this that I spent the first 15 minutes of gameplay trying to figure out how to kill Dusk. All I saw was a purple dot on my mini map and I wanted it dead. Since then, Dusk and I have become friends and I rely on him a lot to get me where I need to go, because the mini map isn’t exactly helpful.
You can explore the world at your leisure. Of course, certain areas will be locked until you progress to the point in the story that unlocks that area. The fun part is going back through the dungeons to find the hidden treasure chests. Run along walls, jump from wall to wall, use Death’s Grip (grappling hook) to traverse areas and grab objects, and use your pistols to blow stuff up. The deeper you get into the game the more fun it becomes.
Like stated above, “Darksiders 2″ is a hack-and-slash game, so you hack and slash your way through your enemies using some pretty cool weapons. Your main weapon is the scythe for each hand, while your secondary weapons are the typical assortment of melee weapons. For fast movements you have gauntlet style weapons, like arm blades and claws, but with that you do less damage. Hammers, axes and maces are your slower weapons, but do a lot more damage. On rare occasions (I say this because none have dropped for me but friends have sent me ones they don’t use anymore) Possessed weapons will drop. Typically, these weapons are more powerful than the others, but more importantly these are the weapons that you can upgrade, This leads up into inventory management. You have two choices: sell your unused items for some gold and others things, or you can sacrifice them to your possessed weapons to upgrade them. With each upgraded level you can add a customized stat to the weapon, like 20 extra Wrath or 15% Critical Attack.
The only problem I had with the game was the camera. Whenever I would lock onto and enemy mainly bosses the camera would get all uncooperative, but other than that the game was great.
Usually, hack-and-slash games bore me after a couple of hours(i.e. “Onechanbara”), but I think the open-world factor and side quests and story really give the game staying power.
Final Verdict for Darksiders 2: