Tripwire’s latest update to Killing Floor 2 is the The Descent Content Pack and is now available on Steam PC and Playstation 4. Killing Floor 2 is a six player Sci-Fi Horror styled shooter where survivors must hold off against waves of genetically modified zombie-like clones, known as Zeds. These Zeds want nothing more than to simply take over the world and eat or smash apart all the humans.
Killing Floor 2 left early access last year and was finally released in November 2016. Although there were some rocky moments during the Early Access period (fan backlash against adding in micro-transactions, lengthy periods between updates, missed release date in 2015) the game has come a long way since those days.
The Descent Content Pack is the second update since the game’s release that adds more maps, weapons and enemies. But what does this update contain? Well here’s the list from Tripwire highlighting what players can expect from the latest patch:
- New maps – The Descent is a horde style ‘sub-mode’ of Survival where players descend to a new random location fighting off waves of Zed enemies before continuing downwards again. Also added to the official line up is a community made map – Nuked that is set in the apocalyptic ruins of a Texas fallout shelter.
- New Weapons – returning fan favourite from the first game are the Firebug’s dual wielding flare gun revolvers and a Stoner Machine Gun for the Commando class.
- New Trophy Update for the Playstation allowing players to earn trophies for the recently released maps
- As well as the usual list of performance, balance and bugs fixes.
The game is currently on sale to celebrate the content update with a 50% discount bringing the price down to $14.99 for Steam users. You can also pick up a six pack of the game which reduces the cost per copy if you want to bring some friends along. The sale ends on the 28th of March.
I’m personally a big fan of coop games and especially the shooty ones. As much as I do enjoy playing this game with friends I do have some issues. Killing Floor 2 is an evolution of the first game that came out in 2009. The reason I bring this is up because some aspects of the game design are starting to show their age especially compared with how modern shooters implement levelling systems and player skills or abilities. The levelling system is a way too grindy especially considering that there are 10 class perks to choose from. While the 10 class perks do provide much needed variety, each one has 25 levels with a new ability unlocking every 5 levels. That’s a lot of time most players won’t have to get the most out of each class. The game scales up in difficulty quite steeply requiring players have unlocked perk abilities that are much needed if they want to survive.
The gameplay can also start to feel a bit repetitive after a while especially fighting up to 10 waves per map. I recommend sticking to waves of 4 or 7 so you can rotate between maps for a greater variety. An Objective mode was rumoured to be in the works and would go a long way to helping spice up the otherwise wave based game play.
However, despite this nitpicking, what Killing Floor 2 does well it does very well. The game is truly a gorgeous but gross, visceral and sensory orgy of blood and destruction. Known as the Massive Evisceration And Trauma System (or MEAT), this is probably one of the most detailed and comprehensive gore systems of blood and guts ever put into a video game. Explosions cause body parts to soar across the screen, Zed heads explode in a burst of blood and brains while darkened hallways light up with gunfire. By the end of a round the map is still covered in the blood from all the eliminated Zeds.
This gore system is partly what helps to make the weapon handling and gun play so satisfying. The shotguns in particular are an absolute blast to use and unloading entire clips from assault rifles into the oncoming hordes of Zeds is smugly satisfying. The animations are highly detailed and top notch and the character’s reloading animations for weapons are also quite cool. The soundtrack also varies between Industrial Metal and… Heavy Metal.
For new players I highly recommend sticking to normal difficulty for a couple of rounds and learning how each of the enemies behave while unlocking some perk skills before attempting the harder difficulties. Always try to have a medic and berserker class if you want to survive the boss battles (and get the significant experience reward)! If you can wrangle up some friends to join you, Killing Floor 2 is a fun coop experience and an absolute blast to play.