Zed’s dead, baby.
I have played the very first Killing Floor on PC, but if you asked me to tell you about it, I couldn’t name a single thing. I don’t know if that’s a negative on the game or my rusty memory, but I have played Killing Floor 2 and I can safely say I remember this one a lot, for good reason too. Let’s take a look.
Killing Floor 2 is a co-op wave-based first person shooter that has players taking on hoards of “Zeds” or undead zombies, while they use money collected to up their arsenal. It’s actually a really simple concept, and the gameplay is very reminiscent of the old school hectic shooters like Painkiller and Serious Sam. Modeled around the gameplay is a class and progression system that is never fully locked in. I never created a character that was a Commando and it could only be that class. I can easily switch up what I wanted to be on the fly. Granted, when doing this, if I hadn’t played as a Support class before, I was going to start from level 1 and have to work my way up. Every five levels, each class receives a perk choice that can greatly improve the character like better bullet penetration, more health, and bigger gun magazine sizes. Once I had leveled up a class, it would stay that way on my profile. So if I made a SWAT class up to level 10 and unlocked two perks for it, it would stay level 10 even if I switched to my Firebug class that was only level 2.
Platforms: PC, XB1, PS4
Price I’d pay: $39.99
Along with different types of weapons, each class has special abilities that can help out a group majorly in many situations. For instance, the Commando class can make the invisible enemies visible as well as show injured enemies, the Support class can wield doors faster and can hold down a choke point with their shotguns, and the Field Medic can group heal their team in an area and single heal teammates using their alternate fire. There’s something here for everyone and having a diverse group consisting of the 10 classes can really make or break a team.
After each wave, players are instructed to move to a different area of the map where they can locate a vendor that sells more powerful weapons, armor, grenades, and ammunition. Knowing how much to spend on what is essential. Should I pick up that sweet new shotgun for my Support, or stay with the one that I have and double up on body armor and ammo? Chances are, in the first couple of waves, I’m not going to have enough money to cover everything.
The last encounter of the match is always a boss character of some kind. These guys are moving wrecking balls of destruction and if I didn’t have a full team coordinating with each other, we were going to be killed. That is actually the big barrier to entry. If players are going to go into this game thinking they can play it solo successfully, they are going to have a rough time. Even with four people in online co-op the medium difficulty is not joke. That’s not to say it’s impossible, but they will most certainly need to work together to pull it off.
The style is really what makes it shine. The blood and guts that fly around after an explosion or shotgun blast is gruesome and great. The heavy metal soundtrack adds to the feel of the teeth clenching action, and the best part – getting a headshot sometimes triggers a slow motion effect for the entire party that lasts around four seconds showing off all the visceral carnage in wonderful slow motion.
There is also a versus mode that has some players playing survivors while some play as the Zeds. It’s an ok distraction, but ultimately, I feel like it is a throwaway mode compared to the standard play. On top of that, I felt like each match I played, the Zeds had an overwhelmingly large advantage against the survivors.
Players will unlock crates that can be opened using keys. Taking a page out of both DOTA2 and Payday 2’s book, crates require keys that are slightly rare. Of course, players can purchase keys with real money if they’d like. These crates contain weapon and character skins and outfits. All of it is cosmetic that never affects the gameplay itself so it really is up to the player if they want to purchase this stuff. Granted, the more the person plays, the more they will unlock, so it is possible to gain things just from playing, but be prepared to spend a lot of time in the game.
Killing Floor 2 is a lot of mindless fun. I say mindless, but it really does take some strategy to be successful. That’s what makes it the most fun. The only thing I must warn people about is the fact that if you’re thinking of going into this game solo, it’s going to be an uphill battle that will quickly get old. This game is best experienced in co-op with some friends. Even if you don’t have friends to play with, the game’s matchmaking system is strong and works well and people are generally decent to play with. People looking for some co-op fun will find a great time here and I believe it is well worth the price.
Review copy of game provided by publisher.