The allure of dusty trails, battered hats and saloons with creaky doors is timeless - the cyborg zombies in exo-frames? That's just anachronistic, but I dig the style of The Surge's new expansion, The Good, The Bad And The Augmented, released today. Described as a series of modifiable 'test chambers', this bit of DLC looks like it breaks away from the Souls-like progression of Deck13's hack n' slash action RPG, putting emphasis on self-contained brawls against western-themed robot and cyborg varmints. Below, a launch trailer.
While less precise than other Souls-likes, I found The Surge's rough and tumble combat was entertaining enough at launch, but perhaps not deep enough to fully sustain two expansions. Perhaps developers Deck13 are of the same mind, as they're spicing this one up with a panel of 16 modifiers for these new challenges, any four of which you can have enabled at once for greater rewards. Among them is the option to play the game in authentically old-timey silent movie style, with flickering film reel and no audio besides cheerful piano noodlings.
This will probably be the last we'll see of The Surge before its sequel lands next year. While I wasn't as keen on The Surge as some, I can still appreciate that it was a massive improvement over Deck13's previous Lords Of The Fallen, and I'm eager to see how they plan on refining and expanding its world of gory mechanised combat. My hope: More bosses and more non-humanoid enemy types. At the end of the day though, seeing that hulking great cyborg cowboy lugging around a coffin just makes me oddly nostalgic for the oddball Gungrave on PS2.
The Surge: The Good, The Bad And The Augmented is out now on Steam for £9/€10/$10. You'll need the original game to play, which is currently 60% off on Steam, bringing it down to £10/12/$12. Both are published by Focus Home Interactive.