|System: PS3, Xbox 360*, PC|
|Dev: Vigil Games|
|Release: September 25, 2012|
|Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p||Blood and Gore, Suggestive Themes, Violence|
It's unfortunate, then, that the platforming and puzzle-solving have both been scaled back. There was almost nothing in the way of traversal this time out, whereas the main game was overflowing with it. I think I counted maybe two sequences that kinda-sorta involved the traversal mechanics. For a game in which the platforming is so fun, that's a real head-scratcher.
As for the puzzle-solving, well, it's there, to a degree. I don't remember anything that really stuck out for being especially creative; almost every puzzle in this expansion uses the same few tricks in only a small number of ways. It retreads a bit of what was seen in the campaign, combining it in some slightly interesting ways, but for the most part, it's just a small roadblock between rooms of enemies to slay and chests of loot to pick up.
That the final boss only really possesses a single pattern (and isn't even the eponymous Argul), is a pretty big letdown. I mean, the pattern certainly grows in complexity throughout the fight, but the boss never feels dangerous and its pattern is kind of boring, especially when compared to the kind of set-piece battle I'd expect a seven-dollar chunk of extended content to be based around.
And really, that's the issue. For seven bucks, this isn't an especially worthwhile experience. Yes, it's more Darksiders, but it's mostly just the combat with only a token sprinkling of the excellent platforming and puzzle-solving, and the combat already got to shine in the tremendously long Crucible content (and was actually, y'know, challenging). I get that this is freebie DLC for most people, but the fact that they're aiming to charge as much as they plan to for those who haven't grabbed a Darksiders II LE has me a bit nonplussed. Further, if this is an indication of what will happen with the paid content that's yet to come, I'm a little shaky regarding whether I'd want to plunk down money for the season pass without at least seeing some more details on what those future content expansions would do differently.
That said, initial DLC is historically a crapshoot; it can take a few tries for content to really hit its stride (just look at Fallout 3 and even THQ's own Saints Row: The Third). It's certainly disappointing that there's almost no story (I think there are three conversations in the entire DLC), it doesn't really seem to tie into the main quest in any significant manner, and the gameplay has been pared down to Darksiders' button-mashy combat, but Vigil has shown a willingness to learn from their mistakes; hopefully, we'll see that again in future DLC.
Date: September 25, 2012