Outward 2 Preview – promising survival RPG followup

Outward 2

At times, there are moments when you look at a game and think oh man, that looks like a lot of fun, it reminds me of X game. Then when you start playing the game, you start to realize that yes, while there are similarities, it is drastically different.

Now this can be due to one of many reasons. Was the developer marketing it in a way so that it seemed like the other game? Was there a certain mechanic that resembled something from that game? These are just factors to consider when picking up a new game.

This was the challenge that I had when playing Nine Dots Studio’s Outward 2 at PAX East 2024.

Outward 2 Demo Impressions

The demo started out a bit rough with the media demo station crashing; we were warned that the computer was having issues throughout the show, but that it had worked in the last preview.

At first, I thought it was the demo that was causing the computer to freeze, however, when the computer froze while rebooting the demo, I knew it had to be something wrong with the computer.

After talking with Nine Dots staff about the problem, they moved us over to a different computer. With the little bit we got to see before each crash, I wanted to try the demo more.

After the slight delay, I just wanted to get into the actual gameplay of the demo. Because of this urge, I just rushed through the starting area and grabbed only the gear I immediately saw; rushing through that area caused me to miss a ton of gear.

After dying quickly the first time and going back through the starting town, I realized that I was missing a ton of the possible starting gear that I missed out on. Going slowly through the area, I quickly realized that I had missed out on a ton of gear. This gear altered the way we could play.

Before I went into the demo, I thought Outward 2 was similar to Dark Souls or another soulslike game. After playing the demo, I realized that Outward 2 was a bit more complicated than Dark Souls.

Rather than dodging, rolling, or sprinting to avoid attacks and then waiting for your opportunity to strike, you have to strategize on how to take down the nearby foes. Sometimes, this means running away and luring the enemy into a trap.

Unlike in Dark Souls, in Outward 2 you have the ability to drop your backpack to lose the carrying weight. During the demo, I dropped the backpack and it fell through the world; this was extremely problematic when I realized the health potions were in the bag and not my inventory.

Combat in Outward 2 can be a bit frustrating. Enemies’ movements can be unpredictable and getting used to the counter/block mechanic takes more time than the 30-minute demo allotted.

It would have been interesting to see someone who was more skilled at the game play through it. Even the small victories that I accomplished felt satisfying, but realizing that I didn’t even scratch the surface was a bit disheartening.

Outward 2 is in development for Windows PC (via Steam) and unspecified consoles, though a release date isn’t confirmed.

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Hardcore gaming enthusiast, cosplayer, streamer, Tall Anime lover (6ft 9), and a die-hard competitor. I have been a Pop-Culture Journalist since 2011 specializing in shooters, Pokemon, and RPGs.

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