Last week marked the release of the first DLC for Sanctum 2, a hybrid FPSxTower Defense game by Coffee Stain Studio. This DLC introduces the ballista-touting-rogue-insurgent-shorty-of-a-rebel named Tsygan and controlling her is a blast! Her main weapon (Ballista) can deal the most amount of damage among all weapons when fully charged or deal damage over time (DOT) with pulsing bolts which release shock waves damaging all creep around the target it impales. That ain’t even the kicker, the final round in Tsygan’s weapon deals MASSIVE amounts of damage. We’re looking at a hit modifier of at least 200%. I don’t have a definite number because I don’t really bother to do math while killing things. This last shot modifier apparently also affects the DOT of her Ballista’s secondary fire (DOT pulse bolts) and the SMG’s poison darts so Tsygan is pretty much THE badass DPS machine right now. Hitting weak spots takes some adjustment because the Ballista fires at an arc so you need to adjust your aim depending on the distance of the target to some extent; nothing a little muscle memory can’t solve. The new secondary weapon, Gatling Laser, is also pretty bad-ass. It has high rate-of-fire, long range, and even deals damage over time on everything it hits. The secondary fire (right mouse button) of the Gatling Laser charges up the weapon and deals are-of-effect (AOE) damage around your character. It can be used as crowd control or concentrated fire on a single target making it my new favorite secondary weapon as well, with the SMG in a close second.
The new creep introduced in this DLC can be a real pain, especially when you are trying to complete the five (5) feats of strength or when you neglect their presence in the battlefield. Mutators are the worst. They basically shoot gunk at other creep to increase their health and if left alone will eventually evolve normal creep to epic boss levels. Healers aren’t that bad because they expose themselves in the air unlike the mutators who stay in the rear which makes them difficult to kill but likewise can be a big threat if you don’t kill them off immediately.
The four (4) new maps bring all sorts of new challenges with its layout but mostly because of the Mutators and Healers thrown into the mix. They are also a massive pain when you attempt to finish them with the five (5) feats of strength (each feat basically makes the game harder). I haven’t gotten around finishing the feats of strength with the original content but I have made some attempts on finishing the new maps with the feats only to repeatedly fail so hard at them even with Tsygan’s bad-ass DPS abilities.
Surprisingly, I haven’t unlocked any of the new perks but I was able to finish all four (4) new maps. It looks like I’ll have to start grinding or playing old maps with feats of strength on to take my level to 20 and beyond (I’m currently level 19) in order to try out the companion bot (pet). I also haven’t gotten around using the new towers namely the Range Spire (increase surrounding tower’s attack range) and Slow Field Dispenser (allows your character to take portable mines to slow down creep on the fly). I’m not really a fan of support towers since I just simply go all DPS with some Kairos (tower which slows creep) to create choke points. It seems like I’ll have to explore more tower placement tactics if I want to accomplish all maps with the feats of strength on though. However, if you just want to finish the game without challenging yourself too much, you need not bother with the new perks of towers.
- The new weapons bring in more fun factor with higher damage output.
- Maps are still well designed and very challenging when attempting to finish with the five (5) feats of strength on.
- The new creep bring in a new set of challenges.
- You can’t acquire all the new feats and towers without grinding which is rather pointless.
Things that can swing either way:
- I suppose if you hate getting your ass kicked, you will not like Sanctum 2 or any of its DLC.
Sanctum 2 is available on Steam and Xbox 360 for $14.99 and the first DLC: Road to Elysion can be purchased for $3.99. You can also get a season pass for all four (4) planned DLC for $11.99.