A biotech company called Horzine created horrible monsters, and now soldiers, mercenaries, and survivors are trying to clean up the mess. Killing Floor 2 follows a very simple loop, but it does it so well that you don’t mind. You and up to five friends have to fight ten waves of Zeds (genetically engineered monsters), earning money with each kill so you can buy weapons.
At the end of the ten waves, you fight one of two bosses. Other modes will assuredly be added, as Tripwire Interactive supports its games for much longer than most developers.
It’s essentially a horde mode turned into a full game. While that may sound repetitive, the insane tactility and attention to detail put into the weapons and combat has kept attention for longer than thought possible.
What can you expect from the sequel?
There are ten perks (classes) to choose from: Berserker, Commando, Demolitionist, Field Medic, Firebug, Gunslinger, Sharpshooter, Support, Survivalist, and S.W.A.T. Leveling them up and gradually becoming better-versed in survival on the hardest difficulties just hasn’t stopped being satisfying.
There are eleven different monsters ranging from basic zombie-like creatures called Clots that shamble toward you to Scrakes, well-muscled menaces with a chainsaw for an arm. Some perks are better-geared towards killing certain enemies, so teamwork is more important here than most co-op games you would have played.
When you feel comfortable enough and move onto higher difficulties, the Zeds gain new abilities in addition to more health and damage. Due to the new tactics employed by your mutated opponents, playing on the hardest mode, Hell on Earth, is frantic and fast-paced, feeling like a completely different game than Normal difficulty.
After cleaving through the ten waves, it’s boss time. You’ll fight either Dr. Hans Volter, an emaciated sadist in an exoskeleton suit, or the Patriarch, the former CEO of Horzine who’s now an abomination equipped with a rocket launcher and a gatling gun. Both bosses can kill careless players in seconds, so it’s best to stay close to your friends and keep each other healed.
Volter and the Patriarch can both heal themselves three times, which can make the boss battles feel formulaic at times, but there are now ways to prevent them from doing so. When Hans’ health is low, he has a forcefield and he’ll try to grab you and drain your life. If you can do enough damage, you can knock the shield off. The Patriarch will try to cloak and run away to stick himself with a healing syringe. If you block his exit or leave C4 on him and detonate it at the last moment — boom, you win.
Killing Floor 2, like its predecessor, is something you will be returning to for a long time. It’s not often that you stick with a multiplayer game for any length of time, but this one has its arresting features. At the end, yes, you’re fighting the same enemies with the same weapons over and over again, but the level of challenging chaos keeps you coming back.
Just know that as high as your score is, this is a repetitive game by nature. However, as previously mentioned, Tripwire updated the first game for years with new weapons, maps, modes, and enemies, too, so this is like an investment that you have already broken even on and will continue to reap benefits from.
If you need something simple where you can jump in and shoot some of the best guns ever, Killing Floor 2 is your game.