posted ago by acp_k2win ago by acp_k2win +53 / -4

tl;dr if you liked the first one you will probably like this one. Or, if you are like me that only liked the atmosphere of the first one and didn't like the game loop then you might like 2 better.

~2 hours of poor gamplay but you get to see how it works: https://odysee.com/@acp:a/first-play-darkest-dungeon-2:8

They took the bones of DD1, removed the "xcom" style team roster and the IMO tedious town management, and wrapped it in a tighter rogue-lite package with a Slay the Spire style branching map. As per the usual roguelite formula you earn unlocks that take effect at the end of each run (in some cases in the middle of the run).

Death is still permanent for each run and you can swap in replacements if you manage to beat the level with men down. You start with 4 characters and extras are unlocked through the progression system.

In general everything appears to have been streamlined including the UI. Instead of stress from 0-100 you have from 0-10 and if the char gets 10 he has a "meltdown" where his hp is set to 1 and he develops a bad relationship with another character.

The relationship system is a new mechanic. Each character has a meter that is either positive or negative with every other character showing their relationship with each other. Various actions, both in and out of combat, affect that relationship. If the characters are stressed the relationships tend to go down. Once the meter is maxes in either direction the pair gain a positive or negative trait. If it is positive they heal, buff, and lower each others stress. If negative they cockblock actions, debuff, and increase stress.

The stress meter is more meaningful in this one in that if it maxes out the character goes to 1 hp and automatically nukes his relationships and the results tend to be pretty bad.

The torch mechanic is back and more interesting in that you can't just buy consumables to keep it up. You have to make gameplay decisions that increase or decrease the torch and each has tradeoffs. If the torch goes to zero you automatically get into a tough fight that if you can win gives you more light but not much.

So far I played maybe 4 hours and I'm still enjoying it, have barely made any progress.

The game is technically early access but I've only found one minor bug.

It is only on sale in the Epic store for $30. I had a coupon and there is discount so I got it for $17.

The nice thing about Epic store games is they are immediately available on pirate sites so you can test it that way.

For the culture war stuff there is a relationship pair buff called "Amorous" and it does appear to allow for homo pairings (but not positive it allowed for guy guy, it does for girl girl). Chracters with that trait will occasionally jump up and pop up a dialogue bubble that says "get them my love" or "I'll do anything for you" (you can see it in action if you watch the linked vid)

So far not a total dealbreaker and I bet it will be modded out as soon as the game hits steam so I'm not giving up on the game just yet.

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fauxgnaws 7 points ago +7 / -0

Penalizing new players is the same for any game with discovery and its what makes games fun.

If the first time you sat down with FTL it was explained that you need to get 2 shields first, then defense drone or cloaking, then 5+ weapon shots and you were given the best answer to all the multiple choice events then it would be a very unfun game.

The way to solve this is with difficulty. You can make every error in the book and still maybe win FTL on low difficulty. You could get every quirk and still finish a campaign of Darkest Dungeon. Once you know everything, it's still kind of fun to play FTL hard and see if you can pull off a run with perfect decisions.

The problem with Darkest was that the beginner difficulty was not tuned well. If you make mistakes you'll run out of money and have to grind money like squeezing blood out of rocks. DD1 should have given beginners craploads of money just like FTL gives you ridiculous amounts of scrap.