Torchlight II Review
Traditional loot-driven action role-playing games don't get much more addictive and enjoyable than Torchlight II.
- Four distinct classes with great abilities
- An addictive stream of enticing loot
- Vibrant visuals
- Cooperative multiplayer supports up to six
- A terrific value at $20.
- Action occasionally gets choppy
- Multiplayer lacks a few conveniences.
With Torchlight II, history is repeating itself. Like the original Diablo, Torchlight took place in a single town and in the dungeons below it. Like Diablo II, Torchlight II improves on its predecessor in every way. The scope of the adventure is larger. Its settings are much more varied and memorable. The four character classes have a more exciting array of skills. And whereas Torchlight was a single-player affair, Torchlight II adds multiplayer support for up to an impressive six players. Yes, clicking and looting your way through hordes of enemies in Torchlight II is a familiar experience, but it's a great one nonetheless.
Much like the playable warrior of the first Diablo becoming corrupted by the Lord of Terror in Diablo II, Torchlight II begins with the influence of the evil Ordrak's heart twisting the once-heroic alchemist. Setting out on a misguided quest, the alchemist has left the town of Torchlight in ruins and cut a swath of destruction across the land. As one of a new set of adventurers seeking fortune and glory, you set off to stop him. The story is a perfectly adequate excuse to send you slicing, blasting, and casting your way across the land, but it doesn't have much impact on the overall experience.
What does have an impact are the classes and their varied abilities. As an outlander, you can use a wide assortment of ranged weapons--bows, pistols, shotguns, and more--to damage enemies from a distance, and you can hurl a spinning glaive that ricochets off of foes. Engineers excel at dealing slow, devastating attacks with massive weaponry, and can whip up healing robots, turrets, and other support machinery. Embermages wield the power of the elements, conjuring weapons of pure flame and making shards of ice rain down from the sky. Berserkers are the speediest and craziest of the bunch. Inhabited by a spirit wolf and capable of entering a frenzied state, berserkers can leap right into the fray, wildly punching their way through crowds of monsters.
Each class has a charge meter that fills up as you deal damage and makes you more powerful, giving you an incentive to get into the thick of the action and keep dishing out the pain. And of course, as you level up, you earn skill points that let you select and improve an assortment of active and passive skills that complement your character's core fighting style. Acquiring new skills and finding effective combinations of skills that you enjoy using are big parts of what makes progressing through Torchlight II addictive, and great new skills continue to become available to you quite late in the game. You may have long combined the outlander's repulsion hex, which keeps enemies at bay, with his (or her--classes aren't gender-specific in Torchlight II) rapid-fire ability, only to hit level 42 and find that your newly available ability to summon a massive brute opens up effective new skill combination possibilities.
Whereas the first Torchlight was a bit of a cakewalk on the normal difficulty setting, Torchlight II offers a manageable but satisfying challenge that requires you to make better use of your skills. The result is that you always feel enormously capable and powerful, but not so powerful that victory is effortless. (If you crave a greater challenge, you can jump right into the veteran or elite difficulties, and you can activate Hardcore mode, in which death is permanent, on any difficulty setting.) You can have up to 13 skills at your fingertips, and combat situations may motivate you to draw on many of them, as you face ethereal wolves and warriors, heavily armored dwarven automatons, and gargoyles that swoop into the air and come crashing back down.
Torchlight II's steady onslaught of enemies is usually enjoyable to manage. However, on occasion, things get out of hand, and the action can start to chug when the screen fills with enemies. Additionally, architecture can occasionally block the camera. You see outlines of yourself and enemies through walls, but it's not a good substitute for an unobstructed view. Still, Torchlight II's terrific enemy variety keeps you on your toes, and its frequent boss fights make for exciting climaxes to each leg of your journey. Not to mention rewarding ones.
I've put maybe 150 plus hours so far into Torchlight 2, first time trying hardcore in a game and this game is incredible. I have not bought D3 yet due to many bad comments about the game, and the fact that you have a real money auction house to buy gear. In Torchlight 2 gear is fun to find even on elite or hardcore, and each time I make a new character I find new stuff. Personally I like the graphics as I'm a WoW fan of old. I will eventually get around to trying D3 when the price goes down and the patches are all running. I like Torchlight 2 better than D2 to be honest. I can't wait til they make Torchlight 3, or even finshing the game and hitting 100 and trying it all over again.
Not since old Morrowind came out have I enjoyed a game so much.
I had hight hopes for Skyrim and put maybe 33 hours in but after going and finding the dungeons got nerfed, mainly the forts which are no longer large dungeons, and some caves that have maybe a creature or two and a chest, I will eventually try and finish Skyrim but I just like the way Torchlight 2 plays.
Not the Diablo killer so many make it out to be. The graphics are love/hate, but overall it's a very solid game that delivers everything you could want in the genre. Read my full review at: http://gameanight.wordpress.com/2013/01/05/torchlight-ii-pc/
I found this game addictive it is the only game ive played alnight and only $20 great value. I have not played Diablo 3 yet so i cant comment on which is better.
Ive played both Diablo III and torchlight II and by a longshot Torchlight is a better game and, its alot cheaper too. Great value. D3 was fun at first, but once I got to inferno and realized that the auction house was only implemented to force people to pay to win I stopped.
I got bored after 3 hours of play. There isn't anything new or exciting for me here, just another title of the genre.
Torchlight II builds on everything that made the first game so awesome. I own the first Torchlight via GOG, and Torchlight II via Steam. Both are every bit worth owning. Though, I'd prefer both via GOG; DRM-free.
@d33pak001 are you dumb?!!! who plays such games on pc with 360 controller? NOOB!!!
@d33pak001 HAHA, you are talking about xbox controller, they not even let you to customize your PC control :P
this is what d3 should of been and could of been if not for blizzard just wanting to make tons of money and screwing the players with their real money auction house.
Borderlands 2 is far more entertaining than Diablo III. It is a perfect compliment to fantasy action RPG like Torchlight II. So once, i get a little tired with Borderlands 2 (never know when that will be), i will jump on the TL II bandwagon. Especially reading how much people enjoy it
So far this game is everything I expected it to be, and more. I love the graphical style, it won't date easily and - more importantly - the gameplay is smoooooooth.
Runic intuitively know how to make a game that works. I read that they want to take a break from RPGs and move into other genres, this is good news, because these guys know how to release a game that is gamer friendly. This may sound like an odd thing to say, but anyone playing a UBIsoft game might understand.
So disappointed in this next torchlight series, i just finished torchlight (1) and now there is a paste-over torchlight 2,
Not good. Not impressed.
a bloody Diablo gone, 3d, crap.
I thought it was kind of odd how I could go through the whole game (on normal) using only one skill....
Torchlight 2 brings back all the gameplay mechanics I hated about Diablo 2.
Specifically the horrendous leveling/skill system.
I don't get the D3 hate and the constant bickering over which is better. You all do realize the Torchlight developers are huge Diablo 3 fans too, right? And they said Diablo 3 would be a day one purchase for them.
They are both fantastic games.
@pathosfire they are not HUGE d3 fans and d3 is not fantastic, you are a bit dramatic, aren't you ? they've only been courteous with their comments regarding d3 and actually have pointed out many of its mistakes.
@forthefunofit @PinchySkree @Lucasdxx @philMcCrevis @Drahk1 @kukumav @pathosfire And to add insult to injury, they're bringing D3 to the PS4 in the form the PC users originally wanted. No always online, LAN/4 player local co-op, no RMAH and tweaked drop rates to be similar to what a proper Diablo game should have. Still not happy with the skill system, and I already said no more Blizzard games after what a huge disappointment D3 was, so I shan't be buying it (why would I, already have Torchlight 2...the REAL D3, as made by the original developers of Diablo and Diablo 2 (look it up, Runic are formed from former developers from Blizzard North))
@Lucasdxx @philMcCrevis @Drahk1 @kukumav @pathosfire 500 hours of farming boring items isn't the same as 500 hours of fun gameplay. Poor production value in terms of dialogue, quests , character progression and item stats. Polishing a turd, yes. The balancing has been fail so far and all the updates are TINY.
Pathos has a point, the rest of you D3 haters chill and accept other peeps opinions.
I have put more than a whopping 500 hours of gameplay in D3, a great game by anyone's standards with great production value, blizz is still polishing the game,balancing classes and improving it with every update(huge tweaks with v1.4).
On the other hand Torchlight 2 is a great game for its value so give it a rest and let people enjoy what they like best.
@Drahk1 @kukumav @pathosfire man i couldn't agree more Drahk1....the skill unlock system in D3 is so fricking bad. It's rare that an unlock is an improvement. There was no compounding of skills just another variation that had little positive use or that required a complete rework of your characters tactics to utilize. D3 is the single greatest disappointment game wise in the last 10 years for me. Each his own but I cant stand the design and Blizzard is a shadow of their former self
@philMcCrevis @kukumav @pathosfire Agree with kukumav and phil, and IMHO, the skill system in Diablo 3 is horrible. I can't stand the idea that unlock skills as you progress, but they may be no more useful or even worse than ones that you've already unlocked - you're supposed to get more powerful as you level up, and it goes against this idea.
"...you may need to do a bit of searching on the server list to find games friends have created." No, not really. There is a "Friends Only" filter for the server list. Check the box and refresh the list and only friends' games are listed.