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The Surge Review Impressions From Critics: Not A Darksouls Knockoff

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The Surge
Source: The Surge | Stronger, Faster, Tougher | PS4 video

Deck 13 Interactive’s The Surge has been noted to have heavily similar to FromSoftware’s Dark Souls. However, The Surge successfully manages to be unique from its inspiration and only has a few issues attached to it. Video game critics also seem to like the game in general due to its unique gaming systems.

Reviewers Think Its Good

As heard from the Jimquisition and TotalBiscuit’s videos, The Surge is actually a good Souls-like game. The game is successful in deriving its gameplay systems from FromSoftware’s Souls series while implementing its own unique gimmicks. Overall, the game did not get grilled and actually received praises from these two reviewers.

Sci-Fi Souls

The Surge builds itself up as a Souls-like game in the Science Fiction genre. The Surge’s setting is a dystopian future where humans are planning to launch Project Utopia after draining the Earth of its resources. The project’s workers have gone hostile and it’s the player’s quest to get to the bottom of this issue. The Surge’s setting isn’t so depressing as it is set in a technologically advanced facility than in crumbling castles. TotalBiscuit notes that players who want to play Dark Souls but are turned off by its setting can opt for The Surge instead.

New Limb-Focused Combat System

The Surge’s combat system is heavily similar to Dark Souls.  Players will have to manage risk-and-reward in each of their attacks to win their fights and walk away with their loot. However, The Surge’s mechanics doesn’t just encourage players to cheaply whack enemies to death as it rewards greatly executed offense with loot.

Players will generate enough Energy if they keep hitting enemies with different attacks and use it to sever a body part off an enemy. Most of the equipment and material looting is done through executions. Loot-savvy players will like this system as they can focus which particular equipment they want off the enemies. The Surge has successfully innovated to alleviate the grinding issue with this system.

Additionally, getting the best loot is still difficult gameplay-wise. Players can choose to target certain body parts to hit an enemy’s weakness. However, it’s the armored body parts that generally give better loot. Due to this, players should make a decision in each battle if they simply wish to dispose of an enemy quickly or grab good items.

Inherits Souls’ Problems

However, The Surge also gets Souls-like problems. The Surge’s camera gets problematic when keeping track of multiple foes. Players that are already used to this setup will find it comfortable, but new players will definitely struggle to get over this system.

Lastly, The Surge doesn’t have a map screen. Remembering areas and routes are a must if a player wants to explore new areas without getting lost. The game balances out the progression through the overload stations. These overload stations have level requirements which effectively blocks progression up until the players reach a certain part of the game.

The lack of a map screen is compensated by having appropriate signages leading to certain areas. However, some of these signages are weirdly placed which can lead players to dead ends. As opposed to the claustrophobic warehouse setting of The Surge, getting lost in Dark Souls seems fairly manageable as it usually has high points and wide areas to help players reorient themselves easily.

Hard Difficulty Like It Should Be

Even at earlier areas, the enemies can kill players easily, which are definitely in line for a Souls-like experience. Attack pattern reading and effective use of defensive tools also play a large part in winning fights. Lastly, The Surge also rewards greedy offensive play with more chances of loot. Overall, Deck 13 Interactive was successful in pulling off their own Souls-like rendition with The Surge.

Also read: The Surge Trophy List Reveals Alternate Endings

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