The Legend of Grimrock series is a modern take on old school party based dungeon crawlers. The game is tile based so you can only move and be attacked from four directions. Legend of Grimrock 2 is set on a mysterious island and unlike its predecessor the world is much more open.
Your party consists of 4 characters which can be difference races and classes. Your characters level up and gain new abilities as you play. Each character has an inventory and their own armour and weapon loadouts. The objective of the game is to create 4 elemental essences by finding at least 16 power gems scattered around the world. After the starting area you can pretty much take any route you want to collect the gems which in practice meant I spent longer than I enjoyed wandering around trying to locate a dungeon my party could handle. On more than one occasion I found myself struggling to take on enemies and having to backtrack until I was more prepared at a higher level.
Enemies can attack from different angles and they are smart enough to move around to your side if you are already engaged with an enemy from the front. The characters on the side being attacked will take damage so if you are engaging an enemy in front of you, the front two characters will take the damage. Usually you’d have two armoured characters as your front two and try to position yourself in a corridor so only one enemy can attack at a time but this is not always possible. Enemies with projectile attacks will take a shot at you and then run away until they can take another shot.
Combat can sometimes be frustrating when your attacks miss or do very little damage. I felt that my mage was overpowered and my other classes underpowered. Ammo for my ranged character was way too scarce, especially as he did not seem to be doing enough damage to warrant such scarcity. Magic is cast by drawing patterns on a grid whereas normal attacks are made by right clicking on the weapons. Spells and weapons all have different cool-downs so timing your spell-casting to maximise damage is important.
Alchemy is one of the skills available and used to craft potions. It’s important to have at least one character with this ability as health and mana potions are life savers and antidote potions are required to cure your team after dealing with a poisonous enemy. Within about 2 hours of playing I’d managed to craft 10 health potions which I’d wouldn’t have made it far without.
The graphics are really great, the developers have made excellent use of lighting and shadows in dungeons and I was surprised at how good the outdoors areas looked. Audio is put to good use and the game features some nice atmospheric music. The entire game felt very polished in both departments.
I did not experience any bugs, glitches or crashes.
The game also comes with a dungeon editor and proper support for loading custom made dungeons so you can create your own dungeons or download other peoples.
I’ve enjoyed playing Legend of Grimrock 2 and consider it an improvement on the first. I recommend it. Once you’re in a dungeon the game is at its best, the open world and lack of direction spoiled the bits in-between.