The Surge 2 continues the sci-fi Soulslike in 2019

the-surge-2

A sequel is on the way for The Surge, Deck13’s so-so sci-fi Souslike from 2017. The Surge 2 is its name, and broadly trying to expand and improve the open-world action-RPG is its game. The first laid solid, if unremarkable, foundations of cutting robots and mechs to pieces so hopefully a sequel can build upon those nicely. Our Adam is at the event where publishers Focus Home today announced the game, and I imagine he’ll have more to tell us soon, but for now here’s word that yup, it’s coming.

Brendy played the first game, telling us in his The Surge review that Deck13’s sci-fi take on Dark/Demon Souls is “shonky, inferior and more than a little derivative” but ultimately, like, okay. “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,” he said. A game to pick up on sale.

What’s changed with the sequel? Publishers Focus Home say in today’s announcement:

“The Surge 2 takes place in a brand new environment: a sprawling, devastated city with larger and more ambitious level design, made possible by Deck13’s upgraded and improved engine. Combat is more brutal and tactical than ever, with even more options thanks to an expanded limb targeting system. In addition, more abilities, weapons, implants, and drones give players a vast arsenal to build their character with, in their fight against the array of diverse new enemies and bosses.”

There’s something pleasingly video games about the phrase “expanded limb targeting system.”

The Surge 2 is due in 2019. If you’re curious, the first game has a demo on Steam.

26 Comments

  1. DarkFenix says:

    Their limb targeting system remained interesting for all of 30 minutes in the first game, then it (and the rest of the combat) got pretty monotonous. Though I’m sure that’s in part because the enemy diversity is next to zero, as is the gear diversity.

    The level design and setting is what kept me going through the mediocre combat, but in the game’s latter stages that falls flat too.

    • haldolium says:

      I found the level design the worst. Everything looked the same, there were no indicators where to go or memorable landmarks in most of the games samy-corridors, the interconnections were a mess, leaving you with maze without any kind of clarity.

      Really the only good thing about this game I can say is the initial idea of the setting and the visual world design. Gameplay ranges from mediocre to horrible and I also don’t see that they understand (bear in mind, The Surge is already the 2nd attempt here after Lords of the Fallen) why Dark Souls is great. I’m pretty certain on a pure informational level they do, since DS has been dissected by players, press and developers like barely any other franchise (except for Nintendo games probably) but Deck 13 fails to put that knowledge into a working game.

      I would love to see them succeed with something truly innovative/great due to them being one of the very few remaining German developers still trying to create singleplayer “core” games with somewhat up-to-date visuals. But for reasons (probably money) they just remain mediocre even though their ideas aren’t bad.

      • DarkFenix says:

        You’re right, visually the levels were a dreadful blur of samey corridors and architecture. Oddly enough I don’t think this actually had me get lost or confused at all until the science lab area, so I noticed it less than most.

        What I appreciated was that at least in the early levels they seemed to ‘get’ the whole looping interconnecting design that I loved in DS1. There were multitudes of shortcuts back to previous areas and I’d frequently get that “huh, cool” feeling when I opened a door and found that I’d looped around to a familiar area.

      • durrbluh says:

        The level design was definitely the failing point of The Surge… there were other glaring flaws to be sure, but if I had to focus on a primary issue the level design stands at the peak of Mount Failure.

        The first area was sort of uninspired and bland, but the second area was downright baffling in its lack of landmarks and coherency. I found shortcuts to unlock as I progressed but I was never quite sure as to where they went or where they were once I’d left them, effectively negating their value as shortcuts. If I’d cared about the game more I might’ve had better retention, but the generic enemies and lack of feeling like I was accomplishing much of anything prevented that. I got to the third “zone” and uninstalled the game.

        I was pretty disappointed because I liked the idea of a Souls-type game in a scifi environment, but this was not to be the game that realized that vision.

      • vahnn says:

        This. The 2 hours I played were a dreadful slog. The list of things I like about that game starts and ends with “sci-fi,” and had no other redeeming qualities in my eyes.

        I’d sure like for them to nail it with the sequel, though.

    • Chaoslord AJ says:

      I demoed thirty minutes as well – combat got really monotonous.

  2. Blackcompany says:

    Wake me up when this studio decides to do anything even remotely innovative with their rather nice tech. Or anything at all, in fact, besides (bad) Dark Souls imitations.

    It’s plain that they have NO IDEA what really made the original game so wonderful. Of course, neither did it’s own studio, so, no surprise there. The ONLY thing these guys understand about Souls is minimal storytelling (is good, which it is) and Uber difficult combat.

    They don’t seem to grasp that it was Dark Souls unique, interconnected world, is Byzantine setup and it’s sense of wonderful/awful mystery that made it a classic.

    I wish more studios actually understood why Souls was so great. But all they see is Uber hard, and a chance to shoehorn multiplayer invasions…

    Such a shame…

    • gabrielonuris says:

      And stamina bars. You forgot about stamina bars.

      I sincerely think most of these “me too” developers never actually played Dark Souls. They just get inspired by what the masses are usually saying about it.

      • digital_sneeze says:

        Yeah, the only Souls-inspired game that worked for me was Salt And Sanctuary, everything else I’ve played has fallen flat. Even Nioh which I put so many hopes on ended up being an ugly, dull romp that felt too mechanical to be fun. Still though, I reckon Death’s Gambit will end up being good, and Ashen certainly looks promising.

      • Apologised says:

        Most baffling was Bandai-Namco’s decision to make a DS clone.

        Bamco ALREADY OWN DARK SOULS.

        WHY WOULD YOU PUT OUT A COMPETITOR TO YOUR OWN BRAND!? It’s not like From Software aren’t working on something right now with whatever that Death Comes Twice trailer was about.

      • Blackcompany says:

        I think you nailed this exactly. It’s like people pump out clones based on the player hype ABOUT Souls games…not the games themselves…

        Well, if it tanks, they can always add a Battle Royale mode…

    • The K says:

      Have you actually, you know, PLAYED The Surge? While it has its weaknesses, it was the one game that got interconnected levels right. Especially the second area is a pure marvel in that regard and took me way back.

      And the Surge didnt have MP Invasions…and its combat was great. So yeah, i am looking very much forward to this sequel.

      • Blackcompany says:

        I tried the demo…bounced off the generic sci fi look and Uber difficult combat quick. More because the Souls like formula has to me worn quite thin by now.

    • mistery says:

      Strange, I found The Surge levels to be quite well interconnected in smart ways, similar to Dark Souls. Sadly combat was too difficult just for the sake of being difficult with inconsistent results that did not seem to get more consistent results once I got “gud”, either. This ultimately killed the game for me. My character was a tank while turning and moving when he started, was still a tank 10 hours later.

  3. Apologised says:

    I… what!? How did this game get a sequel?

    Where in Dante’s nine hells did they find the money to make a second game!? Because it sure wasn’t from sales of the first game.

    • rgbarton says:

      So wait are you some expert on video game sales?

      • DefinitelyNotHans says:

        Expert on sales figures? Any idiot can find them online in about 1 minute. The game sold around a measly 200k copies across all its platforms by the way.

        • rgbarton says:

          This may come as a surprise to you but not every game needs to sell 5 million copies to succeed so long as the return is greater than the money invested someone can make a profit and here they clearly managed to do so.

    • The K says:

      Speak for yourself. I absolutely adored the Surge, and i am pretty sure i am not alone.

      Also i cant for my life not understand how the level design is touted as “failure”. This is the one Soulslikegame that actually got the leveldesign similiar to the first and best Dark Souls.

      • DarkFenix says:

        The layouts were fine, but the aesthetic design was beyond awful. A bunch of borderline identical corridors that it’s easy to get lost in.

  4. rgbarton says:

    Wow so much cynicism and negativity I for one am excited since I thought that the surge was flawed yet interesting and fun hidden gem and I can’t wait to see how they refine the formula in the next entry.

  5. Xelos says:

    In my book The Surge wasn’t so bad. The skill system which allowed you to change builds on the fly was really cool, the combat was fast and fluid and there were some cool (albeit undercooked) ideas in it. The only thing I REALLY disliked was enemy damage output. With no blocking and bosses/enemies that could one-shot you the game was needlessly unforgiving.

    • JosephKorso says:

      Turn’s out that the crappy blocking was actually a bug. They fixed it in the first major patch they released. They also added in the ability to dodge out of long combo strings, which makes combat a lot less frustrating.

  6. rushakoff says:

    I’m actually super happy and excited about this. I loved the surge and am looking forward to seeing how they expand on it. <3

  7. Premium User Badge

    Earl-Grey says:

    I dream of the day humans are able to communicate about video games, music and films without having to either proclaiming their undying love or eternal hate for it.
    It’s fine, it’s okay, some like it more some like it less.
    It’s fine.

  8. JonnyDaVinci says:

    This game is missing character customization,that is my only complaint. I dont wanna play a premade character honestly. Would like better level designs and new features if possible

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