Reviews for Shank 2 (NA) DNS

70

More Shank

Lunk | Jan. 21, 2013 | See all Lunk's reviews »

If you haven't played Shank: The Shank games are side-scrolling beat-'em-ups (with lots of projectile weapons) that are basically the video game equivalent of a Robert Rodriguez movie, where the primary goal is visually impressive violence and everything else is shaped around that goal. Story takes a back seat, designed only to deliver you to the next big shootout. As such, there's very little danger in skipping straight into the sequel. Things might seem like they don't make much sense, but I assure you, that's true even if you've played the first game. It's not spectacular, but it does what it sets out to do, so if it sounds like your kind of game you'll probably enjoy it. At about 2.5-3 hours long, it feels like it lasts just the right amount of time before it would start to get too repetitive.

If you have played Shank: This is basically more of the same, with a slightly less coherent story that lasts just about as long as the first one. There are, however, a few meaningful changes worth noting:

Boss fights rely less on quick time events. They're still there, but they're less vital and the timing is a little bit relaxed. It's now entirely reasonable to beat a boss without using any QTEs, rather than just a challenge to try to see if you can do it.

The weapon system has been revamped, forcing you to choose a load-out with one heavy weapon, one projectile, and one explosive for each mission rather than having access to everything at all times. There are opportunities to swap them out for weapons you find in the middle of missions, but you no longer have the best answer for every enemy at your fingertips, which adds significant difficulty at some points.

A score system has been added to reward creative kills and maintaining your combo multiplier. However, since it's mostly reset every time you die, it mostly just tracks how long before the end of the mission you last died.

There's also a new survival mode that puts you in a small map where you take on waves of bad guys. It's fun for a bit in coop, but you'll probably have to bring your own partner as there doesn't appear to be a big public presence. You can play single-player, but it was definitely designed for two players and you'll find yourself more limited in what you're able to do. I don't consider it a huge selling point, but it's worth checking out.

Whether or not you'll like this mostly comes down to how you felt about the first game. If you hated it, unless it was purely because of the QTEs, there's nothing here to change your mind. However, if you were a fan and it left you wanting more, Shank 2 should satisfy that craving.

88

Fun side-scroller Beam-Em-Up

Hotspud | Jan. 12, 2013 | See all Hotspud's reviews »

Shank 2 is a beautifully designed game. The main character is immediately impressive and you feel like an absolute powerhouse. At your disposal you have 3 types of weapons (melee, guns, bombs) and you run through a level beating up bad guys and each level finishes off with a challenging boss. There are 2 playable characters with several skins. The animations and gameplay are superb and each load-out feels very different.

The story is very simple, but the cut scenes are very cool. As you progress there are opportunities to unlock new weapons and skins, so that keeps thing fresh. There are online leaderboards and a fairly extensive ranking system. As well, there is a co-op survival mode for added longevity.

Some downsides are that things occasionally get stale or repetitive - but these moments are rare. Also, this is not a very long game, but there are several difficulty modes and replayabilility is good.