The Surge is a brutal, violent, and clunking action game that bleeds slightly into the horror genre. It’s an experience which takes the formula of other popular melee combat titles on the market, but adds a high-tech sci-fi twist that makes it familiar yet different enough to stand proudly on its own.
The game also has an air of mystery to it. You play Warren, a wheelchair-bound hero who undergoes an exo-suit fitting in order to walk again. As you can imagine, things go wrong, and once you awake from you operation, all mechanical hell has broken loose on the world around you.
To escape the tech-induced chaos, you have to make your way through huge facilities and factories, encountering some bad robots and a bunch of zombified humans wearing exo-suits. Thankfully, The Surge‘s main gameplay hook is the ability to target specific enemy body parts and sever them to farm for specific loot, which makes combat hugely satisfying, albeit difficult.
Targetting the various body parts is relatively easy and intuitive, but locking onto multiple enemies during a heated battle can prove a little difficult. It’s all about patience and timing with The Surge, taking your time to catch your enemies off guard and vulnerable, rather that going in hacking and slashing.
You can then equip gear (or limbs) to every part of your body and choose from one of five weapon types — one-handers, two-handers, staves, and then two types connected to your arms, each resulting in a different fighting-style. There’s a maniacal satisfaction to finding the ultimate killing weapon, and constantly improving Warren to be the baddest mechanised death-dealer in the game world. It’s almost like Robo-Wars, but with inside the steel and bladed exterior.
In addition to sourcing new weapons, you can equip various types of implants that affect things like health, energy, stamina, and function as healing flasks while out in the world. They’re great customisation mechanics that help you change up your playstyle (whether you like fast and slashy or slow with brute force), and gives you a bit of personalisation with the way you want to go about taking on The Surge.
Grinding through The Surge‘s long campaign can be quite an ask, but its unique setting to the genre, fun combat mechanics, and challenging enemies make it something fans of Dark Souls and other tough dungeon crawlers should check out.
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