Killing Floor 2 Preview - Wave after Wave

The Forest

My first experience with Killing Floor was when the standalone game released in 2009. Developed by Tripwire Interactive, it was a fun and gory cooperative shooter that sent wave after wave of infected mutants known as Zeds after you before finally throwing a boss into the mix. It was good fun and it had some cool mechanics like welding doors shut for example to create a safehouse.

Of course, you couldn't move on to the next wave until everything was dead, so there was a sense of inevitability to it that was always fun, especially when you're facing into the dead and rotten eyes of that final enemy before the next wave. In between bouts, we would run to the shop to restock and reload before the next wave hit.

Killing Floor 2 is now on Steam Early Access for the PC and recently Tripwire Interactive also announced that it's coming to PS4! Time to find out what the sequel brings for us console gamers!

A Familiar Face and Some Fresh New Features

On the whole, fans of Killing Floor one will recognize the sequel. It takes everything that made the first one good and keeps that foundation while building upon the success to create something even greater. In total, Killing Floor 2 is a six-player cooperative shooter where you face waves of Zeds. In between waves, you'll receive a small break to go buy new equipment, weapons, grenades, or armor.

When setting up your game, you can choose from 4,7, or 10 waves of enemies before the boss appears. Rewards are greater and more lucrative when you pump up the difficulty as well. Beyond this simple premise, Killing Floor 2 brings a unique weapons set up in the form of "perks." The weapons are split among the classes, so Commandos for example have assault rifles and Berserkers have melee.

Having a role from the outset makes it easier to formulate strategies on-the-fly. Ten total perks are planned for the final release of the game, along with a myriad of maps and weapons. The melee combat has been improved for this second release, with an added parry move, and more impact to the visceral gameplay.

Speaking of visceral, Killing Floor 2 is one bloody game. One of the new features ensures that bloodstains remain on the map after you've shot, exploded, or otherwise ripped apart your enemies. You'll be reminded of your brutal massacres each time you pass by certain areas during a game.

One of the best features from the first game makes a return in the form of Zed mode. This is essentially a unique use of slow-motion that randomly takes out four to five seconds of gameplay and slows it down to a crawl. This gives you the chance to pick off a few more enemies, or just enjoy the pure carnage around you. It tends to happen when you've racked up a few head shots, but there's no single way to trigger it. It's just a nice surprise.

The maps are designed to have plenty of strategic points and simple enough to remember when you need to make a break for it. A welcome change in Killing Floor 2 is that the doors themselves are now broken when they've been welded shut and subsequently broken down by enemies. This means that you'll need to treat doors as a resource with limited capacity.

It may be tempting to weld a few entry points shut early on, but if you lose them, then you could be feeling the heat several waves later when the enemies are coming from all sides. While some would argue that the change from waves of enemies, to a single boss is a little jarring, I would argue that it mixes up the pacing.

Regardless, the game is a simple, gory, straightforward cooperative shooter that has everything polished to a mirror sheen.

Bringing the Killing to PS4

For the time being, the game is only coming out on PC and PS4. The developers are shooting for 60 fps and 1080p resolution, but the final numbers haven't been released. After the recent PC ports that have been horrific compared to their console counterparts, you can imagine that PC gamers were worried when they heard Killing Floor 2 was coming to the PS4.

The developers explained the decision on Gamespot saying that "We love the PC as a platform and have been championing it for years, even in the dark days of 2005 when all the press could talk about was how the 'PC was dead. We've been very successful on PC selling million of games, and we've no intention of leaving the PC or relegating the PC to a 'second class citizen.'"

The decision comes down to, like so many other things, money. The company has grown to 50 people since they began with 4. The cost of development has made them turn towards other platforms that can help them reach new customers. They cited the PS4 as a perfect platform because Sony is welcoming to independent developers like Tripwire Interactive.

I for one say bring it on! As long as every platform gets a quality game, it doesn't matter how many platforms have it. What do you think about Killing Floor 2? Do you think the PS4 version will be as good as the PC counterpart (graphical details aside)? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!

Article by - Bradley Ramsey
Insert Date - 9/14/15

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