If you were to draw up a blueprint of the ideal video game sequel, it would be a schematic of Rogue Legacy 2. The latest roguelite dungeon crawler from developer Cellar Door Games retains everything that was captivating about the 2015 original while improving upon it with some fantastic new additions. If you played the first game, you’ll notice there’s an immediate familiarity to Rogue Legacy 2’s crunchy combat and satisfying gameplay loop, yet it doesn’t take long for new wrinkles to appear that significantly alter each run through its ever-shifting world.
The basic premise of Rogue Legacy 2 is identical to that of the first game. You play as a valiant adventurer who’s sent to explore the ruins of a mysterious castle. Your ultimate goal is to find and defeat six unique bosses in order to unlock an imposing door that leads to the final area. As you gallivant across Rogue Legacy 2’s six varied and increasingly treacherous biomes, you’ll accrue golden coins by opening chests and vanquishing enemies. This wealth can then be used to purchase permanent upgrades like increased health, strength, intellect, and so on. Unfortunately for your intrepid explorer, however, they’ll never get to spend this money themselves. Each time you die in Rogue Legacy 2, you return to the beginning of the castle as your previous character’s offspring, inheriting all of the gold and upgrades they acquired before perishing.
At the start of each run, you’re asked to select from a trio of potential heirs, all eager to venture off into what is usually certain doom. Sometimes these progenies arrive with randomly generated traits that can benefit or hinder them. Sir Timothy II, for instance, was an heir of mine who had hollow bones that made him fall slowly, whereas Lady Jane suffered from a functional neurological disorder that rendered her unable to attack for a few seconds after sustaining damage.
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