Wot I Think: The Surge

Oh, I see. Just as I’ve written an article complaining that no game has learned from Dark Souls’ level design, The Surge [official site] comes out, a Soulsy sci-fi action game which is, on the face of it, about a cataclysmic accident in a robot factory, but which is actually about opening that door over there and finding out you’re back in your favourite corridor. It’s from the same developers as Lords of the Fallen but while Rich found that earlier foray into the land of Dark Clones to be uninspired and shonky, The Surge turns out to be a decent homage to its predecessor, even if it is lacking in several vital areas. Some of that shonkiness, for example, is still hanging in there.

Story time! You’re Warren, a bloke who wants to get himself one of these new exo-skeletons he’s been hearing so much about. Off you go to the Creo headquarters, a corporate factory with a sinister Silicon Valley vibe and peppered with videos of its PR man and CEO becoming steadily more villainous with each new company-wide address.

After a somewhat invasive procedure and a mysterious accident you emerge into the game proper, equipped with either chunky legs and heavy-hitting mechanical arm-helpers, or some lighter but stamina-thrifty mecha-bits. From this point much is familiar. Humanish enemies and irritating floating drones take sizeable chunks of your health off if they land a hit, while you circle around them taking swipes and watching your own stamina bar.

Later, an energy bar also comes into play, filling up with each blow you land on a baddie. You can use this energy with implants or a drone of your own to do things like recharge your health, stun enemies, release a frosty fog, summon a shield, buff your attacks, and so on. If you die to the angry leap of a mechazombie, or the stompy legs of the first boss, then you drop all your “scrap” and it’s back to the last Operations room. This is essentially a bonfire for the discerning roboman. It’s where you level up, upgrade bits, swap out implants, and craft new arms or legs for your exo-suit. But to get the blueprints and components for these you have to indulge in a bit of Dead Spaceian limb slashing.

You can target each individual body part of an enemy, you see, then lop it off with a finishing move. Often the parts you want will be covered in armour, which will take more hits than if you go for the fleshy exposed parts. But the reward is usually an extra bit of useable loot, so it’s normally worth the extra jabs, especially early in the game when you’re collecting bits of armour from your new angry friends.

In many ways it’s tougher than its Souls cousins. No phantoms will come to your aid, there are no ranged weapons for cheesing your way through, and even the simplest of enemies can often kill you in two blows if you’re not careful. Dropping your scrap also sees you racing against a timer to recover it before it vanishes (killing enemies along the way will grant you some extra time, however, and it was rare that I couldn’t slink past and make it back to to my old pile of trash with a minute to spare).

But all that isn’t the reason it feels tougher than its Japanese progenitors. It’s tougher because it’s often a bit, well, wonky. The enemy animations and attacks are not particularly well telegraphed, for example. The large clunky swings and steps of humanoids covered in blocky armour feel harder to make out than your average Hollow, especially in close quarters. In Dark Souls you build up a sense of foresight based on visual cues – the curling back of a spine or the extension of a sword-bearing arm – these come to feel like openly visible signs of intent. You learn and you dodge. That same conditioning of reflexes does happen here, I should say, it just takes longer for you to get to a point of competence (or it did for me, anyway) because of how indistinct those signs-of-attack can be, and because the hitbox of both you and your enemy can sometimes feel inconsistent and “floaty”.

The combat itself is OK, but takes serious getting-used-to. Swings with your various weapons (one-handed saws, giant slow blades, nippy knife gloves, twirling electro staves) don’t necessarily act the way you might expect. Lunging forward and tapping the attack key just twice will often lock you into a long combo you never really wanted to do. And you can’t “interrupt” this ongoing attack by dashing away at any moment. Warren is in there for the long haul, twisting and swinging even as the enemy goes to hit back, even as you spam the dodge button in desperation. “Get away from him, Wozza!” you scream, as you witness his impending demise in a kind of focused slow-motion. But Wozza is only on strike two of his four-hit combo. He will finish this move, god dammit, or he will die trying. (He will die trying).

This makes the combat feel, to a Souls vet, much more “sticky” and unresponsive. You expect each tap of the attack button to be responsible for a separate swing or blow, but that’s not the case here. I was able to get used to this and begin to hold back on the attack button, diving in and out for single hits and then dashing back to safety. Only indulging the combo on the exposed heads or bodies of unarmoured and easily staggered robonerds. But deprogramming the instinctive sword-slashing and circle-strafing that Miyazaki taught me over three dark misadventures was like unlearning how to click my fingers with the middle finger so that I could do it with the forefinger. Everything about it felt topsy-turvy.

On top of this, blocking is useless. When you block, you freeze on the spot. You can dodge high or low horizontal strikes by pressing up or down on the analog stick as the attack comes in. In theory, this is a good manoeuvre, since it leaves the enemy open for a counter-attack, similar to a good kite shield parry. But the timing is picky and most enemies are more easily felled just by fighting straight-up, so why risk taking a hit due to a badly-timed reaction? Plus, when you already have a ultra-speedy Bloodborne-style dodging dash, standing still in the middle of a fight or trying to time a perfect block feels like an obsolete tactic.

The drone, likewise, is nigh useless. I spent the first half of my game only using it to aggro single enemies away from a group with its peashooter “1 damage” lasers. In fact, I also avoided many of the upgrades that involve injecting yourself mid-fight because combat is too hectic, and your health/energy/stamina bars are too small and difficult to track during a brawl for me to risk fiddling with the D-pad during a boss battle or some multi-foe fisticuffs. That said, all these are things I can imagine other players creating whole builds around. Which is more than I can say for the practice of blocking. I have no idea what that’s doing here.

The camera tracking and the locking system are also a bit crap. One particularly irritating boss fight sees control of the camera being wrested from you and cemented in place, as if you are playing God of War or Nier: Automata. But wander too far from a designated zone and it will try to pan away again prematurely. It’s extremely unhelpful and results in far more deaths and badly-timed strikes than you would otherwise suffer. At the same time, the targeting system also screws you in that fight, hopping from target to target (the boss is a sort of multi-limbed robot whose arms you must first hack off) at the slightest provocation.

That’s the opposite of a problem that continues outside of this boss battle. Switching between target baddies can be lethally unreliable. Even if you can clearly see an enemy, from around a corner or through a glass box or panel, the reticule will often not snap onto it, or it’ll refuse to swap to that target from another. Frequently you will click down the analog stick to free yourself from the targeting camera’s firm grasp, in some attempt to scramble away and reorient yourself in one of its many narrow corridors or boxy rooms, but uh-oh, the targeting system won’t register, keeping you locked-on and feverishly clicking as you run backwards blindly into some obstacle.

Those are basic problems, and even Souls has its moments like this. The Surge just has them more often. It also seems to take pleasure in doing things Dark Souls has learned not to. For example, filling the world with narrow vent systems with soldiers and robots inside. Unlike facing against a rat or two, this makes for an interesting challenge, except that the challenge isn’t the vicious android ahead of you, but the model of your own body getting in the way of your view as the camera swings inside the cramped vent with you. “Hi mate,” says the camera, “what’s happening in here? I can’t see anything lol” And now: you are dead.

Despite all these problems – the camera, the locking-on, the sticky combat and the general shonkiness – I found myself enjoying this plod through a prideful corporation gone wrong. That’s down to one thing: its loyalty to labyrinthine level design. There are shortcuts galore in this facility. You rarely go 15 minutes without discovering some new way back to the local Opsfire, and that excellent moment of thinking “aha!” as you emerge from a dark tunnel into a room you recognise occurs over and over and over again. Later, as the gaps between shortcuts become more sparse, and your health injections get used up, you find yourself actively looking out for them, hoping that there will be a door beyond the next flamethrowing jerk that will lead you back home. In these tense moments, The Surge is at its best, recreating the mental dilemma that always made Souls so good: do I continue on and risk losing all my pocket money? Or do I double back and bank this stuff, and be forced to face the whole gauntlet over again?

It’s a pity then, given the maze-like design philosophy, that much of the facility is made up of uninteresting metal rooms, space station-like tunnels and samey white-walled labs. It retains that wonderful practice of looping around on yourself, yet lacks the imagination when it comes to the artistry of the environment, or the diversity when transitioning between larger areas. You can’t help but think that if From Software ever made a sci-fi Souls, then all of Creo’s labs and junkyards would probably comprise only the first area of the game. There would be no loading screens between areas, either, as there are here.

For all its connectivity, this robofactory still needs to be broken up by very deliberate train stations that feel counter to the shortcut-heavy mental mapping that is otherwise so enjoyable. But, to its credit, the wretched crutch of fast travel is nowhere to be seen. If you want to go back to an earlier area (something that is encouraged by special gates dotted around, which only open once you have levelled up your exo-suit) then you have to hoof it back, the way it should be.

Still, I have to praise it for getting that one element – the shortcuts – absolutely note perfect, because finding the next way back home is still enough of a hook to keep me exploring (it’s also got a very strong opening two minutes, for reasons you’d probably need to go in as blind as I did to appreciate). All the other things it borrows – the combat, the difficulty, etc – still feel “off” to me as a Lordran loyalist, however. Even newer concepts, such as the time limit to collect your lost scrapsouls, or the scrapsouls multiplier you receive if you don’t check into an Operations room for a while, only feel like minor tweaks, like tasting a vaguely interesting new flavour of Coca-Cola. It’s not worse this way, but it’s not better either. It’s just different.

For the sake of fairness, I have to admit that I only made it as far as the fourth boss, 18 hours deep. At which point I was murdered enough times to gently accept my fate as a Surge drop-out. The most telling sentiment of how “just OK” I found the game is that I don’t feel the urge to tenaciously keep fighting on, but I also don’t regret the time I spent with it. As an action game, it’s serviceable, and thanks to its strengths, surprisingly engaging, if a little expensive for what it’s offering. In other words, I likely won’t be enthusing others into a purchasing frenzy. But if, sometime in the future, you’re suffering from Soul withdrawal and you spot this half-price in a sale, I will be the first to nod and say: “You know what? Yeah. Yeah!” in a surprised-with-my-own opinion tone of voice. The Surge is shonky, inferior and more than a little derivative. But if you fancy a shortcut-filled robotic challenge, it’s not all bad. Just be ready to get deprogrammed.

The Surge is available now for Windows, via Steam for £39.99.


  1. plsgodontvisitheforums says:

    Wonky, floaty, sticky aaand topsy-turvey? So 7/10 then?

  2. Premium User Badge

    Drib says:

    Have to say, that one shot of the barely-armored guy in a blue jumpsuit walking through a desert full of trash looks pretty fallout-y.

    But too bad that the combat is sticky. Unresponsive controls are the quickest thing to kill a game. I thought this looked pretty good.

    Maybe I’ll wait a while and see if they sort things out in patches.

  3. Ent says:

    When I saw “release a frosty fog” I somehow read “release a frosty frog”

    Now I really really want a game that allows me to summon a frosty frog…

  4. vahnn says:

    I really wanted to like this game, but it bored me to tears and I played too long to get a refund. 8 hours total now and I’m just going to uninstall, because I’ll never finish it.

    I think nobody wanted a sci-fi soulslike more than I, but this doesn’t scratch the itch.

  5. pasports31 says:

    Man, going w/out Dark Souls will be tough. Might be my favorite game series of all time. It’s probably only a matter of time until somebody comes up with a game that apes its appeal successfully, though. I really hope somebody creates a world like DS1…how everything connected to everything else was just incredible. Unfortunately it seems like what I’ve seen of dark souls clones is that they focus on the stamina based combat system and the difficulty and don’t learn any of the other lessons about what makes dark souls good. That said it is encouraging that you’ve mentioned how good the level design seems here. Another understated part of dark souls though seems to be how interesting the world is – the lore is fun to dig into, and the art design and environments make it a world I want to explore. My fear w/sci-fi souls has always been that between the potential generic looking sci-fi environments (surge doesn’t look to interesting) and the corridor type levels it might not be the most interesting to wander in.

    • Unclepauly says:

      The cure to this illness is “Dark Souls in … POST APOCALYPTIC” or “Dark Souls in MIDDLE EARTH” or “Dark Souls in FEUDAL JAPAN” or “Dark Souls in ARABIAN NIGHTS” or “Dark Souls in LAVA/JUNGLE/ICE/CLOUD WORLD” etc I could go on.

      • Static says:

        But dark souls already has Lava, Ice, and Jungle “world” covered. Crystal world, Underworld also….

        That’s why it’s so great.

  6. Chris Evans says:

    Played it for a bit, enjoyed what I played, but was a drop-out at the second boss. You hit the nail on the head Brendy, poor camera and targeting work there turns it into a chore.

  7. haldolium says:

    “Just as I’ve written an article complaining that no game has learned from Dark Souls’ level design, The Surge [official site] comes out”

    That article constantly crossed my mind as I was playing The Surge. In no other recent (15+ years) game I’ve been lost so often. The low FOV combined with endless asset recycling and maze-level-design made The Surge one of the games which I mostly remember for running in circles.

    The current patch looks promising, maybe raising it from a 5/10 to a 6/10, but the level design especially in the last level… just no.

  8. Malleus says:

    Sorry but the combat is absolutely not “wonky” “shonky” or unresponsive at all. It just requires very good timing and spacing. You can’t R1 spam your way to victory. And I’m totally baffled by the comments on hitboxes and enemy moves. Hitboxes are more precise than they’re ever been in Souls, and all enemy moves are telegraphed. Also, blocking is NOT useless. It’s not just a setup for high/low dodge/counter, but just by blocking some enemy attacks, makes them rebound from you, opening them up for a special counter attack. IMO the combat is amazing, and definitely the strongest point of the game. It flows so well, everything has weight and momentum, and the character animations are top notch.

    I also don’t really get the complaint about the environments. It’s not a world tour for sure, but why is that a problem? It’s built around a theme, and within that theme it does offer variety. It takes place in an industrial complex and you have junkyards, factory complex, laboratories, offices, etc.

    • Rivalus says:

      This is more in line with others site review. I think we need to understand that there’s a different approach in combat.

  9. Lobotomist says:

    I also thought its wonky. Asked bit in forums. And players told me not to use heavy armor.

    Game changer. The game feels much more responsive, and fun to play.

  10. The K says:

    The Surge is probably my favourite game this year. Yes, it has its fair share of problems, gotta admit that. But it is also really, really, really fun.

    Personally, i didnt have any camera problems at all? Also the controls never felt unresponsive in the slightest, and i use only Goliath Armor (the biggest). It is important to note that some weapons have combos that you cant dodge out of, but its not every weapon. Blocking is also very useful in the right circumstances, and several of the Drone Modules you get later are outright gamechangers.

    I also totally dont get the stuff about wonky Hitboxes…i could name at least half a dozen offenders in the Soulsborne Series which grated way worse in that regard, i loved how well i could “read” the enemies in The Surge after a while.

    And i loved the aesthetics, both of the armors and the surroundings. I also loved the difficulty, this is the first time since the Bloodborne DLC (Orphan of Kos!!!) that i actually felt really challenged. Many people complain about unfair One Hit KOs, but i found as long as you actually equip a few Health Implants its not so bad.

    I concur that the Lab Area with the flamethrowers was frustrating, though..it gets quite a bit easier afterwards, though.

  11. Guy Montag says:

    I ended up finishing it just to see how badly the narrative ended.

    It was bad. Oof. Do not go to this game looking for a story you can follow, even when seeking out the audio collectibles. It really feels like they cut out a lot from something bigger and didn’t have the time to edit the rest together cohesively, from the second cutscene and onward. Even as set dressing, most narrative points will just leave you going “…what?”

    Beyond that, I found my side of the combat fun, learning all the different stuff you could pull with different weapons, so that’s a pro.

    Oh yeah, and the final area is a mess. Pretty sure they were in give-up mode at that point, because the level itself is visually appealing and has a more interesting layout than most of the earlier factory stuff, but suffers from bland and wanton mob placement (and the worst and final boss fight) and the worst path unlocking ‘puzzles’ in the whole game. Unlocking terminals down dead end paths that you know just did something in the level, but who the hell knows what.

    Now that I’m thinking about it, the area just before that was the exact same. Interesting level layout and pretty designs, but bland and few mob placements.

    Just a bummer to play a game so full of holes.

    • goodpoints says:

      What’s weird though is while most of the writing was like the audio logs where random people you never meet or find additional logs say the equivalent of, “I hear zombie noises. I don’t know what’s going on. I’m scared”; I thought Don Hackett (sp?) was a fantastic character. The impression of a tech company spokesman was just spot on and hilarious, (particularily reminiscent of some of the most cringe-worthy E3 and CES presentations) while the conclusion of his sub plot caught me totally off guard and noticeably affected me. Interesting that a background character will probably be the one positive thing about the game’s writing I remember.

      • Guy Montag says:

        He was another weird part, for me, because of how he fit in with the cut/irksome content. All the company videos are animated up until one in Biolabs, which is conveniently also the first time Jonas (? or whatever CEO man’s name is) is being interviewed, so I was all ‘cool, maybe they don’t want to reveal what he looks like yet’. But I don’t think a single video was animated after that (I know no videos with other characters were, at least), it was just static screens that you could still watch using an action key, for some reason. Which makes it another instance of ‘convenient budget cuts?’.

        And speaking of Jonas, wasn’t he just a microcosm for CREO as a whole. Is he comically evil, or comically short-sighted? I guess it depends on what audio log you’re listening to. Meh, I’ll spoil stuff if I keep complaining (not that most people will care about the story, but I could probably write half a book on it).

        • goodpoints says:

          Hm, yeah, I’m surprised I didn’t make that connection with the latter broadcasts being static. I was a bit curious and found out from the actor Ricky Watson’s site that it was MoCapped. So I imagine they probably ran out of time rendering the rest. Unfortunately the actor looks really different from the character so live action wouldn’t have worked. Looking more through the game files just now, I’m pretty sure they even left confirmation in the /videos folder that exactly five scenes were cut. All the Don Hackett webm videos (sound is stored separately in the .fsb banks) are labelled “npc_anchorman_video_nn_final”: take a look at what numbers are missing.

          Yeah, the whole plot proper is garbage really. I finished it today and I still don’t know exactly what Project Resolve is, yet the main characters seemingly does the way he chats with the doctor lady. Is it a drug? A revolutionary fertilizer? (what with all the greenhouses) Are CREO spreading it with rocket contrails? Can anybody tell me why the exosuit gives Gruff von Wheelchair (I seriously can’t remember his name) the Curse of the Undead? How does my body end up back in Ops with all my implants? It’s not like I’m an android with a fresh new body popping out the fridge a la Nier. Anybody?

          I didn’t really expect better, though strangely it’s reviewing quite well elsewhere. But it has a few really great and novel underlying concepts and themes that were criminally under-developed. Foremost for me is the heavy industry themes. I love the idea that all the games weapons and equipment are repurposed from non-combat industrial equipment, but you can see this principle didn’t entirely sink in with all the different dev departments.
          The writers did a good job with keeping this principle with item descriptions, but you can pretty clearly see the modelers weren’t quite on the same page. Like, I’m sure the FENRIS mecha-hatchet totally gets used a lot building rockets and pruning plants And why was it necessary that the giant Titan wrench/rivet gun have a laser cannon function when attached to the turret mounts scattered about the facility? The mounts that apparently our friend Gruff can’t figure out how to work with his Titan, though the zombies can.
          I really want to know who thought it would be cool and totally plausible to have “FOLLOW ORDERS” stenciled on the legs of a security robot, which you use as the Bloodhound weapon though you never meet the robots it comes from. Or stencil “COMPLY” on the arm of the, wait for it, PACIFICATION AUTOMATON X. (PAX, hehe latin jokes) Yeah, how about CREO comply with the ADA and install some damn wheelchair ramps?

          I just want this game with fixed combat (see my other post) and no plot but in a proper exhaust-choked industrial site where the equipment’s paint jobs are sensible and the exosuit workers all are pumped up with future amphetamines (Brazilian Dex!) and modafinil modaxinol. Though I pretty much just described post-war Japan so hopefully a Japanese dev (From?) gets right on that. Oh and get a proper soundtrack this time! No wishy-washy light hearted new agey ambient tracks, Alien-knockoff spooky violins, generic psuedo-orchestral EpicMuzak for the bosses, and definitely no more neo-Confederate Americana hooey. Get a proper soundtrack for a collapsing Silicon Valley AmeriChaebol, something in the vein of Emptyset, Regis, or Lorn (he co-did the Killzone: SF OST!). Like, THIS should have been the theme for the Firebug.

  12. goodpoints says:

    The review kind of indirectly hints at it when talking about really long combos and unresponsive combat, but there’s one rather simple thing that ruins the combat: a lot of weapons have movesets where one button press triggers more than one attack. For more detail, I’ll paste something I wrote in a reddit post earlier:

    “Multiple attacks with a single button press. I just can’t see how anyone thought this was a good design decision. ‘One Press = One Attack’ is not just a core element of Souls combat but is a fundamental principle of almost all fighting games, be they traditional 2D fighters or similar 3D action games like Bayonetta. Without this principle, the whole concept of combos and cancels starts to fall apart. (‘combo’ as in stringing together different moves, not special moves like a hadouken) Granted, there are special attacks in fighting games that do have multiple strikes, e.g. spin attacks and human projectiles (Cammy’s Spiral Arrow), but are almost always either cancelable or punishable. However most importantly, these rare instances are special moves, not basic attacks. Whereas, in The Surge almost all of the larger weapons I’ve found so far have a long, non-cancellable chain attack as part of the basic R1 combo. (Spectres, PAX…even the Reinforced Pipe) Using PAX as an example: the second press in the R1 combo triggers a shoulder thrust-into-slash, and the third press triggers a spin slash-into-lunge. Why was this not just done as an R1x5 combo? The shoulder jab in particular, with what appears to be a stun effect, could have been an interesting mixup tool where you could also segue into something like an uppercut slash with R2, or backstep, or try and dodge to the enemy’s rear. What purpose does grouping multiple attacks in one button press serve other than to restrict the player’s flexibility and needlessly obfuscate the animation flow?

    I’m sure part of their thinking was the difficulty it introduces, but it’s also pretty unfair and removes a lot of sense of control. What’s pissed me off the most is being ganked from behind during one of those double-attacks, since enemy patrols can be pretty loose and unpredictable. Unlike a Souls game, I feel cheated on a large amount of my deaths. Sure, there’s long, punishable animations in Souls, but they’re almost always the final move in a combo or a charge attack; you get punished because you got greedy or button mashed. But with The Surge, I hardly consider going for a R1x2 combo greedy, yet it neither does enough damage or has wide enough AoE to be worth the risk of the vulnerable frames. It’s especially frustrating when the game strongly suggests that R1 attacks are your means of crowd control. (pretty sure there’s a loading hint that says use horizontals vs. multiple enemies)
    Actually, I just realized they probably got the idea from Batman games, it certainly has some of that Arkham feeling of QTE combat. (“I just pressed O, I didn’t want to do an entire olympic gymnastics routine”) Sigh.”

    The game really is a kitchen sink design with a lot of plain nonsensical/undeveloped elements. (like errrr…how exactly does the exosuit give me immortality?) But it also does a few things right, like the shortcuts: finding the *SPOILER* pipe/ramp in CenProd B back to Ops that was hidden in plain sight from the start of the level brought back that long forgotten feeling of joyous discovery from first playing Dark Souls 1. And while the world is quite large, I don’t think The Surge deserves credit for not using fast travel. Each level only has one Ops station (bonfire) and each level is an entirely separate space only accessible via a tram (loading screen). So while the shortcuts are cool, it eventually falls flat when there is only one non-interactive route between each level.

    My favorite horrible design decision though is how they took the concept of the Firelink song signifying the sole safe space in the world and turned it into:

    • DarkFenix says:

      The game commits a second cardinal sin along the same lines as multiple attacks from one button press. You can execute multiple different moves from an identical button input.

      Taking a one-handed weapon as an example, a neutral R1 gives you a very ordinary right-to-left slash attack. Simple as simple can be, except not. Often, instead of that quick slash you’ll instead get a different move whereby your character executes a spinning backslash, a considerably longer animation both in startup and recovery.

      Which move executes when? I’m still not rightly sure having done it hundreds of times, which means I can’t reliably exploit any openings, nor can I reliably execute particular combos.

      • goodpoints says:

        That sounds like a charge attack (holding R1 or R2), I think all weapons have them. Maybe you’re lingering on the button for a bit? Certainly a better habit to have than nervous-mashing like me. I like that everything has a charge though, gives more variety in that aspect than Souls, though I wish the type of swings were differentiated more. i.e. non-charges be slashes and charges be thrusts for sword type weapons. But then the weapons weren’t differentiated enough in their damage types, most of them seemed to have a pretty generously balanced output of 3 out of 4 damage types. (like, doesn’t the chainsword also do blunt damage? Why?) But at least there’s not a redundant Regular damage type in addition to Slash.

  13. fish99 says:

    If I ever get round to playing Lord of the Fallen and like it, I’ll pick this up too, but once it’s closer to £15. The small number of bosses and samey environments, plus the amount of stuff that one shots you in the final area, puts me off paying more for it.

  14. DinoSteak says:

    If you’ve ever played Lords of the Fallen it’s just more of the same really but sci-fi. Imprecise, under-developed, under-executed, and falls apart halfway through. I’m easy to please when it comes to DS clones as well. Deck 13 always misses the mark, reminds me a little of Spiders and their ‘titles’.

  15. Maxheadroom says:

    I rarely finish a game these days but the Souls/Bourne games really pulled me in and ive finished them all. None of the Souls-like games to date have yet managed to scratch that itch though* and this unfortunately looks like it’ll be the same.

    Bought Nioh but ended up drowning in the constant deluge of loot. Every enemy exploding in a shower of weapons and armor – together with all the crafting and upgrading options became unmanageable very quickly

    *Except Salt & Sanctuary. That was pretty good I guess

  16. phlipy says:

    Well I really like The Surge and in fact prefer its combat to DS. Wonky conrols / hit boxes? I was not able to notice any of it especially compared to DS. The Surge is for sure more difficult than DS what may be some player angers. Anyway if you like DS you should give the Surge a try – at least in a sale.

    Have a fine weekend!

  17. Ham Solo says:

    Already the PC controls are 100 times better than in any souls game.