Review Rogue Legacy 2: Rogue Legacy 2 would be the ideal video game sequel if you were to draw up a schematic. The latest Cellar Door Games rogue-lite dungeon crawler retains all of the enthralling aspects of 2015 original while adding some wonderful new features. Rogue Legacy 2’s brutal fighting and enjoyable gameplay loop are immediately recognizable to those who played the original, but new twists quickly arise that substantially modify each run through the game’s ever-shifting landscape.
Rogue Legacy 2’s core premise is the same as the first game’s. A brave adventurer has been assigned to investigate the ruins of a mysterious castle, and you take on the role of him or her. Finding and defeating six unique bosses is your ultimate aim, which will bring you to an imposing entrance that will lead you to the last region. Opening chests and defeating opponents will earn you gold coins as you travel across Rogue Legacy 2’s six diverse and dangerous biomes. You can spend the money you earn to buy permanent enhancements like better health, strength, and intelligence. This money, unfortunately, will never be used by your adventurous explorer. Your previous character’s kids, along with the gold and improvements they amassed before they died, respawn at the castle’s beginning each time you die in Rogue Legacy 2.
A trio of heirs is shown at the beginning of each run, all eager to embark on a journey that is usually doomed. It’s not uncommon for these offspring to be born with unique characteristics selected at random. One of my sons, Sir Timothy II, had hollow bones that made him fall slowly, while Lady Jane had a functional neurological disease that rendered her unable to strike after being injured for a few seconds.
Lady Michelle’s irritable bowel syndrome caused her to fart frequently, which had no effect on gameplay. Sometimes, you get someone like Sir Shawn, a particularly unfortunate descendant who had osteogenesis imperfecta, a fancy way of stating that a single strike killed him. These attributes can only be used once, but gold modifiers are added to encourage you to pick an heir with less-than-ideal traits so that there is an element of risk and reward in each option.
Rogue Legacy 2’s chromosomal lottery introduces multiple character classes in addition to the genetic variation that makes each pass across the vast castle feel novel. In the original game, each scion would charge into battle with the same greatsword and using the same fundamental sword-swinging mechanics, but with a varied set of skills. Combat has been beefed up this time around, with each class bringing a unique weapon to the table.
Slow overhead swing and aerial spin attacks are common weapons for barbarians. The Valkyrie is one of the only classes in the game who can use a spear to attack in all four directions at once. A boxer’s combo meter increases in damage as each blow are thrown. The last eight rounds in a magazine strike a major blow to gunslingers, who may fire swiftly in any direction. In addition, there are a wide variety of classes to choose from, each with its own unique set of weaponry, spells, health bars, and mana pools. In addition to the random qualities and spells, each new run is a completely fresh experience.
Some classes have a steeper learning curve than others. With a lute, they can blast forth musical notes that don’t cause much damage on their own but can be spin-kicked to unleash a massive explosion. In addition, each class has a unique ability that serves as a type of defense. They can deflect projectiles by spinning their spear around in a quick circle, while the chef prepares some food.
Rogue Legacy 2’s brutal combat and enjoyable gameplay loop are immediately recognizable, but new quirks quickly arise that substantially modify each run through the game’s ever-changing universe.
The first few hours of Rogue Legacy 2 are all about getting to grips with the various playstyles and discovering which ones work best for you. Regardless of which one of the game’s 15 classes you’re using, combat is exciting. As you dash between blazing bullets and slice through your foes with forceful momentum, adversaries explode into a rain of riches.
Rogue Legacy 2’s combat is a lot of fun because of the variety of enemy kinds that populate each biome. There are a wide variety of threats in this game, from floating hands carrying knives and mallets to poison-emitting mushroom creatures and zombies that appear out of nowhere. It creates a dynamic and stressful atmosphere in every interaction.
A procedurally generated landscape with a wealth of visual variety awaits you while you’re not battling for your life. The original castle’s chilly stone walls soon give way to snow-capped mountains, a luxurious study where paintings come to life, and a huge subterranean tunnel system that feels like it’s falling straight to the Earth’s core. The artwork in this game’s new cartoonish design, instead of the 16-bit approach, does a superb job of bringing these scenes to life, with sharp lines and brilliant colors. The characters and objects are rendered in 3D, while the backgrounds and foregrounds are all rendered in hand-drawn detail.
The map’s only drawback is that it can appear a bit overwhelming at times. Even if you find the boss after several attempts, you’ll have to go back and re-clear several of the rooms you’ve already cleared. If you’re able to amass enough money to buy a few upgrades, these don’t feel like wasted runs, but they do add an unpleasant element to Rogue Legacy 2’s monetary grind. It’s not just a direct shot to the boss room as you progress through each biome. Prior to facing the final challenge in the area, you may need to gather a few keys or kill a few minibosses.
The light Metroidvania trappings can be found here in Rogue Legacy 2. Through gameplay, you’ll gain a range of permanent powers known as heirlooms, which will enable previously inaccessible regions. A few examples are the double leap and the in-air dash. For more than just opening up new biomes, these powers affect every facet of gameplay in Rogue Legacy 2. “Resonant platforms” are a type of platform that can be bounced off by using a spin-kick, allowing you to extend your platforming range by flying into the air, and then resetting your dash. As a bonus, you can also use your kicks to deflect and destroy the resonant projectiles that some foes throw at you in a fight.
There is a brutal difficulty curve in Rogue Legacy 2, but there are more alternatives for dealing with it here than in its predecessor. Despite its difficulty, Cellar Door has made certain concessions to make the game more accessible this time around. As a result of House Rules, you can tailor the difficulty level of the game to your own personal preferences, from making the game a little simpler to make it even more challenging. It is possible to adjust the overall damage and health of the character down to a minimum of 50%, and you can also turn contact damage on or off and give yourself the ability to fly in order to overcome a difficult platforming segment. Rogue Legacy 2’s House Rules are a pleasant addition, but they don’t transform the game into an easy one. You’re given a little more freedom to make mistakes because your blunders aren’t penalized quite as severely.
When it comes to grinding for upgrades and becoming more powerful, Rogue Legacy 2 always respects your time. Using a key to open a door leaves it unlocked indefinitely. It’s not necessary to discover the entry to each biome every time you defeat a miniboss; instead, you can spend an additional charge to permanently unlock teleporters at the beginning of each one. In exchange for a percentage of your gold, an architect will secure the planet, preventing it from changing at the start of each new game. You’ll be able to quickly return to a boss encounter without having to fight your way back to it in this manner.
With so much going on, it’s hard to put down Rogue Legacy 2. As you select yet another new heir to embark on yet another deadly voyage, the “one more run” effect is in full force. Masterstroke: The addition of various classes with their own distinctive weaponry boosts this sequel, which already had a wonderful premise and engaging Roguelite loop. A game’s house rules allow players more control over the obstacle they face, even if it means making it harder for everyone else to complete. Even though its biomes are so diverse, they can occasionally cause you to retrace your steps as you try to find your way ahead. It’s been a long time since destroying your family tree felt so fantastic.