It’s really difficult to put the controller down when playing Rogue Legacy 2. Not only does it have that addictive ‘one more go’ mentality, it’s gameplay is so varied and fluid that travelling through the rich world never gets old. Whether it’s playing through as a newly unlocked class, spending coin on new gear or upgrades, or just replaying because you like beating the various creatures to death, there’s tons to love. It’s a huge improvement on the original, bringing enough new content to keep players engrossed.
Rogue Legacy 2: So many variables
With many Metroidvanias, a lot of the enjoyment comes from unlocking certain abilities and revisiting areas previously unexplored. Rogue Legacy 2 offers Heirlooms which are permanent skills that help you traverse new areas. Each Heirloom can be unlocked after finishing a challenging area that teleports you from where you stand. Each challenge has you make use of the new skill, such as being able to dash in the air, and if you reach the end, you’ll be able to use it for the rest of your playthrough.
There’re tons of variables in Rogue Legacy 2 that give you plenty of options for how you play. Relics can be found throughout that give you buffs that will stop when you die. This could be an increase in a particular stat, or a visible ability such as causing a shockwave upon landing and an electric aura that forms when you’ve struck an enemy. Curio’s Shoppe can be found on your travels, letting you switch out your current weapon for something more powerful, or a new talent that provides a unique spell.
Throughout each run, you’ll find gold from fallen enemies, chests, or by breaking furniture and objects. When you die, this gold can be used to unlock new classes, improve your health and mana, and open up new buildings at your castle that have some amazing benefits. If you’re happy with your recent run, the Architect will lock the world, allowing you to return to it exactly how you left it. Blueprints can be found in chests for better armour and weapons, and by visiting the blacksmith, you’ll be able to buy and upgrade providing you have enough ingots as well.
Well worth the risk
You can buy Runes that provide permanent buffs, take part in challenges to rescue souls for special benefits like improving the quality of gear dropped, and permanently unlock portals thanks to the lovely Maria, the Pizza Girl. Cellar Door Games wants you to succeed, and there’s so much help on offer that exploring and persevering is greatly rewarded. In the beginning, you’re going to die a lot. Enemies are relentless, and it’ll take time until you start to feel the benefit, but the vast array of classes make Rogue Legacy 2 truly wonderful.
Barbarians are powerful dudes with a lot of health; Assassins are swift and have a three-part blade attack that does a lot of damage in quick succession; Rangers are gifted with a bow; and Mages have some fancy spells that can be fired through walls. On top of these, there’re Chefs, Dragon Lancers, Bards, Pirates, and more. Experimenting with your favourites and finding the right fit makes up for most of the enjoyment. Each class can be improved and levelled up, and when they are further improved by better gear and stats, you’ll start to feel better equipped to deal with the more difficult sections of the game.
Rogue Legacy 2: Tough as old boots
Speaking of the difficulty, Rogue Legacy 2 can be pretty tough. Not just the range of enemies and their attack patterns, but environmental challenges and boss fights mean you’ll probably let a few naughty words slip out. I will say that there’s quite a steep grind to get a lot of the good stuff, and it might put off some players. Every time you die, you need to spend the gold or else Charon will ferry you to the castle and keep whatever you don’t use. A safe can be unlocked to keep a portion of your proceeds, but spending wisely and consistently will be more beneficial than giving it to the greedy ferryman.
One way to counter this is how certain Traits characters have can be more rewarding when it comes to the gold you receive, however, the challenge becomes greater. One that gave 200% more gold was great, but if I received a single hit, it was game over. While some traits affect the difficulty, this risk and reward mechanic offers yet another layer of challenge to Rogue Legacy 2. Whatever you decide, there’re so many different spells and talents to choose from when you pick your next heir that I never got bored.
So, so pretty
Rogue Legacy 2 is a gorgeous game, and it can’t be disputed that the developers have done a fantastic job in how good it looks. Even the castle consistently changes on every run, offering new enemy types and areas that pop thanks to the bold colours and 2.5D environments. Every playthrough feels different, whether down to finding a new biome such as the murky swamps or getting through a room you’ve not seen before. There’s always something new that you won’t have seen before, and I was always left surprised and impressed.
There is so much packed into Rogue Legacy 2. Whether it’s the various environments and challenges, or the detailed and vast classes, gear, and abilities, I was always in awe of what Cellar Door has built. Yes, it is difficult, but you’re never left without a glimmer of hope, even when some of the new areas up the challenge. Despite there being a substantial grind, it’s not going to be a problem if you enjoy playing. The lore and story that it offers is surprisingly dense, and you’ll want to read everything you find, or talk to the colourful characters you meet. There’s so much more I haven’t mentioned, and I implore you to discover every secret for yourself.
A great variety in abilities and classes
Beautifully crafted levels and challenges
A substantial early grind
Can be pretty difficult