Wang's stupid wisecracks kept me smiling from start to finish, and the variety of melee and ranged combat and the loot that dropped from it was satisfying enough that I came back with friends for more. It's great fun in solo or in co-op, and its small degree of randomization is enough to keep the action fresh for at least a few runs.
Shadow Warrior 2 is a fantastic game that meshes what I love about loot games with the ridiculously fast-paced combat of 90s shooters. It is unapologetic, it is ridiculous, but most importantly, it is 12 tons of dumb fun. I couldn’t stop smiling while playing, and that is a sign of a really good game. Get some Wang, you won’t regret it.
Shadow Warrior 2 is a game about slicing and shooting through hordes of monsters and soldiers. It’s about as classic a setup as the shooter genre has in that regard. A player itching to hack up some demons could do a lot worse. But everything else about Shadow Warrior 2 feels hollow. The characters are lifeless, the jokes aren’t funny, the story is worthless, and the levels are repetitive.
Shadow Warrior is one of the best shooters that released in 2016, simply put.
For starters, the game is one of the most well optimized titles from that year, I tested this with my 4690K and both my GTX 770 and 1070, and I could achieve more than 60 FPS with both setups and a decent image quality overall; the game scales well down to the minimum spec hardware, that's for sure, and then runs amazingly well on more powerful PCs.
Graphically it has all the options and settings that a proper PC game should have and are within the engine's specs, it even has HDR support (still not too common in 2016) and a new NVIDIA peripheral resolution rendering technique called Multi-res Shading, which makes the peripheral section of the screen to render at a lower resolution, thus giving us extra performance at no noticeable difference because it's on the peripheral region and our brains won't notice it as much as the things we're looking at directly. Clever, and it works really well, indeed.
When it comes to sound assets, I can't find any issues either, the game sounds great, most weapons have a different sound from each other, they sound like they're the real deal and they're meant to destroy our enemies into a million pieces, that's what we want, and the music is amazing too with some nice tracks now and then, especially for important moments like the boss fights.
Gameplay is where the game is at its best though, it's amazing, this is a very, very fast paced shooter where you'll be using the DASH key a lot, both in and out of combat, but it really shines in combat, it's like a dance of death and carnage if you manage to master the use of the dash key and its different movement combinations and aerial tricks you can perform. Also, just like it happens with DOOM, you need to keep switching weapons in a fight, to be able to deal with different types of enemies and their different elemental resistances. I've read some people complain about bullet-sponge enemies but I've finished the game on HARD and there's always a way to quickly deal with these so called "sponges" and that's by carrying a proper weapon with the correct element imbued to it, it's simple.
Furthermore, some people seem to not even use their CHI for anything but healing, that's wrong too, Chi powers can help you bring down some enemies, and even deal with groups in a more efficient way; the game is all about mastering all the ninja arts Lo Wang is capable of, and not just running around with a shotgun: it can be done but it's not what the whole game has to offer, so keep that in mind, it gets deeper than that, believe me.
Now, the controversial part of this game is clearly the LOOT system and its departure from the previous games, especially from the 2013 reboot of the series. This game has loot, like a Borderlands game but not to that extreme extent though, as in you won't be looting a gazillion weapons every level, like it happens in Borderlands, but you surely get a lot of upgrade items to insert in your weapons, armor, etc. Many of these are worthless at first and you should sell most of them, until you reach a point in the game where the forge is open to you and then you can fuse these items into higher quality ones.
But some people don't like this departure from the traditional, linear, design, that's alright but we have to keep in mind the previous title is also a very decent game on its own, a proper remake of a crazy first person shooter from the 90's. What Shadow Warrior 2 offers is more of that craziness but under a new less linear format, with free roam options and of course cooperative multiplayer, which are great additions to the original formula.
The gore and violence are increased a lot in this sequel too, and the special effects look amazing, this game has so much going on the screen at any given time, in combat, that it's amazing how well it runs. Also...some of the smoke and fog effects are one of the best I've ever seen for this type of game, especially for 2016, and even today.
My final verdict for this game is: if you like fast paced, old school style shooters with cheesy humor, over the top violence and cool looking enemies and absurdly over powered **** this game, the price on release was just right for what this game offers (took me 30 hours to finish the game on Hard difficulty in single player, and then it has coop and New Game Plus too), and today is quite often on sale (it was even free in GOG at some point, if I remember correctly). It's worth the money for the amount of fun I've had and I'll keep having with it in the future, but it's not exactly the same as the previous title from 2013 as I mentioned.
Still, as a First Person Shooter fan, this game was one of my favorites for 2016, along with DOOM. A very solid 10 because it does a lot of things that other FPS don't, and then what the others do, Shadow Warrior 2 just...does quite well xD. As a fan of these types of games, for me it's a 10.
An entertaining and high-speed shooter marred by some rather egregious and unnecessary looter elements. These elements drag the game down to a crawl at times, limit the utility of an expansive weapon list, and turn most of the late game into a a slog. The story and side content does nothing to help this offering either, as nearly every quest is an uninteresting cycle of going somewhere and shooting something. Genuinely the only thing elevating the game is its enjoyable combat, which does all of the heavy lifting and makes this remotely playable. The repetition of going somewhere uninteresting to shoot at something uninteresting is passable since the act of shooting that thing is overall satisfying.
I enjoyed the 2013 reboot, this one is trying to be something it isn't. I wanted shadow warrior, not Borderlands and I hate Borderlands. Every enemy seems to be a bullet sponge, you have to dedicate far too much time to upgrading your skills and figuring out the weaknesses of enemies when personally I just wanted a fast-paced shooter with fun mechanics.
The graphics are pretty good if you can overlook the human character models, the level design is boring and poorly paced with constant enemy spam which would be less of an issue if they weren't bullet sponges.
At the end of the day, I'm only sorry that I shelved this game for a long time before playing it and now it's too late to return it.
SummaryShadow Warrior 2 is the evolution of Flying Wild Hog’s offbeat first-person shooter following the further misadventures of former corporate shogun Lo Wang. Now surviving as a reclusive mercenary on the edge of a corrupted world, the formidable warrior must again wield a devastating combination of guns, blades, magic and wit to strike dow...