Killing Floor 2 Review
In an abandoned outpost in an unnamed location, we hear noises coming from a distance. We don’t have any mini maps or any advanced tech to prepare for what we’re about to face, only our weapons and each other. Zeds start to flood in through the facility, near the satellite dishes and outside over the mesh fences. There’re hundreds of them, but we manage to hold them off; it’s overwhelming and terrifying, but we make it. A quick restock of ammo and it’s time for the next wave, except this time, something’s changed. They’re bigger, fiercer, and have mutated far beyond their original, manageable forms. There’re more of them, some of our men are dying out there and our ammo is running out fast. This is chaos. This is exhilarating. This is Killing Floor 2.
The main aim of Killing Floor 2 is to survive waves of zeds, which are essentially zombies. Each new wave brings new enemies and even more of them, and you must survive to advance to the next stage. If all six members of your team die, it’s game over. After the final wave of zeds have been defeated, it’s time to fight the level’s boss, and holy shit, can that be tough. It’s a game with few modes other than the basic two, but the flawless gameplay and intense shooting makes it plenty of fun. There are three ways to play the game: there’s an option to play alone, a training section giving you the basic instructions to be able to cope with the waves of zeds, and then there’s the online mode. When playing online, you can either work together against hordes of zeds, or mix it up and play in a PvP fight where you can play as both humans and zeds.
There’s plenty of variety and you’re spoilt for choice when choosing a map or purchasing a weapon. Even the character selection can take time because each one has a cool look and interesting back story. I went with Mr Foster because he’s got a gas mask and trendy clothes akin to the mod fashion of the 60s. There are loads of different classes such as gunslinger, berserker and sharpshooter, all with their own perks and loadouts like you’d expert. The sweet thing is, you can buy weapons between waves and customise your arsenal as each game goes on. There are so many cool weapons to choose from, like the crossbow, desert eagles and even a katana, along with grenade launchers, rocket launchers and tons more.
As mentioned, the types of zeds increase as new waves start. There are the standard zombie-like cysts and clots which can flood your surroundings using numbers to overpower you, Sirens which can shriek at you like the witches in Left 4 Dead, Husks and Scrakes which have flameflowers and chainsaws for arms, big acid-spitting Bloats, alien-like Crawlers, and the Fleshpound, an angry brute that charges at you with big metal mallets for arms. Some zeds have better protection against weapons than others, some are faster and tougher, but each one provides a different approach and a hell of a challenge.
The maps are wonderful, and pretty fleshed out. There’s a farmhouse which has some small rooms that feel claustrophobic, the Inner Realm which is essentially Hell, and others like the prison and the manor. Yes, you’re a soldier who must gun down hundreds of zeds, but you’re also a part-time decorator. As you move from wave to wave, the maps start to turn red from all the blood that’s been shed, and in the end every map is covered in brains and guts. The white snowy outpost map gets drenched in blood and the carnage of your survival is evident in every square foot.
Battles in Killing Floor 2 are so good, especially when playing online with five other players. Working together and picking the classes strategically makes for some great tactical battles. The SWAT class worked well for me, and I was able to attack concisely and effectively with my rifle. As I took out zeds, the sharpshooter stood on a ledge taking out any of the zeds I missed and if I got attacked, the medic was there to replenish my health. Of course, when the sheer amount of zeds gets overwhelming, it can go to shit. Luckily, ‘zed time’ slows down the action for just a second and gives you a bit of respite. My main issue with battle is getting cornered. If there are a few zeds surrounding you, it can be almost impossible to break out of a tight spot and you’re inevitably going to die. It’s as if they form a brick wall, and it grows increasingly frustrating – more so if you’ve managed to survive over six of the seven waves.
Killing Floor 2 is a fun team-based shooter, featuring loads of weapons and plenty of challenging enemies. It’s well-balanced and rewards you for surviving; getting headshots and performing well leads to upgrades and new weapons. At times, Killing Floor 2 can be frustrating when you get cornered, or wiped out by an attack you don’t see coming, but overall it provides some great gameplay and wonderful moments of anarchy and rage.
Maps are well designed
Tons of weapons
Zeds are different and challenging in their own way
Getting trapped is frustrating
Can be too punishing at times