Elex 2 | PREVIEW | Viele gute Ideen und ein großes Problem

Spring 2022 is packed with blockbuster games
that will make anyone with an already huge Pile of Shame burst into tears… And for role-playing game fans, there's yet
another heavyweight on top. ELEX 2 is the latest project from the venerable
role-playing game company Piranha Bytes. After the respectable success of the first
part, DAS now wants to continue the success. We were able to spend countless hours in the
new Magalan before its release and can say: Yes, Elex 2 wants to be a deeper role-playing
game than its predecessor – but it also stumbles over the pitfalls of the past. The hero of Elex has a problem that a lot
of serious researchers in the real world also have.

You do and do and discover the big problem
that endangers humanity… and then nobody listens to you. Because after Jax realises at the end of ELEX
1 that there's a gigantic threat coming to the world of Magalan, he approaches the faction
leaders of the guilds to tell them about it…. Only for them to shoo him away again, annoyed. There are more important things to do… bashing
each other's heads in, for example. Resigned, Jax leaves and hides in the mountains,
grumbling. A few years later, when the threat REALLY
arrives on the planet, he sets off again: He has solid arguments now, after all. In Elex 2, this is also mostly cleverly staged. The game uses more scripted cutscenes in the
first few hours alone than its predecessor did in the entire game. In addition, there are also fancy animated
render films. Piranha Bytes goes to great lengths to stage
its story. But we'll soon find out what's missing.

So that Jax doesn't have to rely only on the
other factions, he simply founds his own guild. One of the surprisingly cool features of the
first part is expanded and is present right from the start: building your own camp. Already in the first conversation you have
in the game, your own raction is set in motion. We set it up in an old castle ruin and hire
new people all the time. A master builder to repair the houses or a
commander to work out strategies. In contrast to the predecessor, we don't end
up in an already existing camp, but grow from an empty ruin into a stable base. However, we are not allowed to put up buildings
ourselves. Nevertheless, this is a motivating element. It only remains to be seen how important the
fortress will become later on.

But we all know since the Three Musketeers:
One for all and all for one, and so the other factions are of course also important. Because even though we're doing our own thing,
we're also supposed to join one of the existing guilds for support and work our way up. In business jargon, this is called a hostile
takeover. There are now five of them, instead of the
usual three, and we find them all in familiar or unfamiliar positions on the world map. By the way, the map consists of familiar areas
from Elex 1 and new areas. The Berserkers, for example, have taken over
the fort in the desert of Tavar and without further ado conjured a flourishing forest
area out of the arid wasteland – in the truest sense of the word, because as in the first
part, the faction relies on ancient weapons and magic.

Although the rock-hard law of "NO TECHNOLOGY"
has probably been softened somewhat. The old masters of the fort – the Outlaws
– have been defeated, but are regrouping in a cratered city to the north and are just
as they always were: They're a rowdy bunch, living largely in the dirt and shooting stims
into their veins and concocting weapons to pump themselves up. The clerics are also making a comeback. The fanatical god-warriors with a penchant
for technology have been driven out of their sophisticated lair and are also re-forming
in an old ruined castle. And the old enemy from the first part is also
back: the Albs. Only this time you can join them as a faction.

For although they still consume the emotionally
chilling Elex, they are far less deadly than before. They have their fortress in the snowy north. Completely new is the fifth faction: the Morkons. They entrenched themselves in an underground
cave complex before the meteorite impact that threw the world of Elex into chaos in the
first place. Only now have they opened it and are bringing
the message of their god to the world. They preach about standstill and want nothing
to develop further. According to the motto "Stop! Here everything remains as it is!" In doing so, they mainly use blood rituals
and pain for their purposes.

After all, DEATH is the purest form of standstill. No matter what we decide. Our decisions have consequences. These range from very classic things like:
If we join a faction, this closes our path to other factions. But also our attributes, such as strength,
skill and more, FINALLY have consequences again! Whereas in the predecessor the attributes
only leveled up numerical values, which then unlocked new weapons, the values again have
a direct effect. If we add five points to our strength value,
we get an additional damage point on top of our melee attacks.

This way we also deal out more damage, although
we still only use our rusty pipe as a weapon. Speaking of hitting: The combat system has
also been revised. Whereas in the predecessor it was more about
combos, now timing is important. There is a heavy and a light attack available
– depending on how long you hold down the attack button. Light attacks use less stamina and heavy ones
more. If your stamina is gone, you are helpless. The enemies also have a kind of stamina bar
that decreases with every hit they take. If the bar is knocked down, they go down for
a time. THIS buys time for heavy finisher attacks…. Unfortunately, the combat system in our demo
version was mostly very monotonous. Click the opponent to death with light attacks
until he goes down – then set the heavy attack and start again.

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