Captured by a Skaven lord you and your hero friends must fight your way out of the Skaven rat infested lair, destroying hoards of these enemies on your way. You escape narrowly with your lives and must work together to defeat these dark forces and destroy the skittergate (a portal that would give unimaginable power to your enemies).
Playing through linear levels, the story is told through dialogue between the chracters as you traverse each level. The story is interesting, fun and simple enough that you can really get behind it no matter which character you play as or your knowledge of warhammer.
For a online co-op I think the story is particularly good, it is broad enough that you can draw your own conclusions and lets the outstanding gameplay take the forefront. As a newcomer to the Warhammer collection I didn’t feel overwhelmed by the backstory or lore and recommend it to anyone looking for a glimpse into the Warhammer fantasy universe.
I could rant about the gameplay for Vermintide 2 for hours, the combat system and controls are extremely easy to use, they are endlessly fun and make for very smooth combat regardless of character or weapon choice.
Inspired by Left 4 Dead it follows a similar format, 4 players battling through increasingly growing hordes of enemies. However, the characters each differ in class and the seemingly endless weapon choices make the combat incredibly varied. Plus, there is no struggle to find other players online 3 years on – a testemony of just how much fun this game can be. This is honestly the best online fantasy multiplayer I have had the joy of playing.
The loot and upgrade systems come often enough that you feel rewarded and accomplished after each level. Depending on how long each level takes to complete, the loot you collect and a few other criteria the random loot boxes awarded for completing each level can be upgraded dramatically; making sure you explore the maps thoroughly and are actively collecting and balancing your loot in each level for maximum rewards. However, I understand randomised loot is not everyone’s cup of tea. The crafting system also helps you upgrade your weapons by breaking down previous equipment to get the best out of your current gear.
The maps for each level vary in terrain and yet all are beautiful to look at. The forest settings being some of my favourites, you have to actively search for enemies and find your way across the beautifully designed terrain; shooting through trees and using the landscape to your advantage. Combined with the varied enemies it makes each level, even if played before, uniquely different and challenging.
Overall, the gameplay is outstanding. There is so much scope for customisation and upgrades and the character abilities directly change the way you play. The levels run a risk of being repetative but I found each play was different and the levels themselves are incredibly interactive. The enemies are challenging enough without making you pull hair and the combat is unbelievably fun, each hit feeling weighty and sending limbs flying in the most satisfying way.
Despite being online I have yet to have a single graphic issue with this game. The terrains are incredibly varied although the linear level design runs the risk of these feeling repetative. With snow-layered camps, green woodland, gruesome swamps and crumbling ruins to name a few landscapes, each terrain is visually stunning and has it’s own puzzle to complete.
A highlight for me being getting to fire a cannonball through a wall to access the rest of the level – simply awsome! The design of the enemies is on par with the terrain design, with may varients in armour, size and ability with the Rotbloods being particularly terrifying to encounter.
As said before, the majority of the storytelling comes from the character dialogue in Vermintide 2. The voice acting is great, with some of the dialogue genuinely making me snort or chuckle whilst I play. Each characters voice is distinct and the dialogue feels natural and real. My only complaint is that the enemies sounds are very similar, there’s no real difference between some of the smaller enemies but I feel this is a minor issue.
The soundtrack is great, if sometimes a little similar, the heavy drums in each terrain help the combat feel intense and add to the atmosphere of each battle. I have played for a while now and I haven’t found the soundtrack repetative as the music does differ in each level however, the basic makeup of the score remains the same (instruments, pace, etc.) which runs the risk of becoming boring in the future.
In conclusion, this game is awsome. 3 years since it’s release it still stands as one of the best multiplayer fantasy games in the genre and has no lack of players online. Its slash-and-hack combat is satisfying and the weapons are diverse and upgradeable. The story is engaging but not too lore heavy for entry level warhammer players and the terrains are dark, beautiful and user friendly.
This first person multiplayer is just so much fun to play and doesn’t require any knowledge of other Warhammer titles to keep you interested. The replayability of Vermintide 2 is endless. It can be used as a welcome break inbetween something else – playing just a quick level or two or spending a few hours with your friends lost in it. I think this game is incredible value for money and cannot recommend this game enough.
Available on Steam.
Vermintide 2. Vermintide 2. Vermintide 2.
Pros and Cons
Abundance of Players
Beautiful Dark Terrains
Linear levels risk being repetative
Similar Enemy Sounds
Randomised Loot Boxes