Wasteland 2 is a turn-based role-playing game developed by InXile Entertainment and published by Deep Silver. The game was crowdfunded on Kickstarter for nearly 3 million, surpassing its $900,000 goal. The original game released on September 19, 2014, while a director's cut released on October 13, 2015.
The year is 2102, fifteen years after the original Wasteland's conclusion. The game begins with the funeral of Ace (a character from the original Wasteland). The leader of the Ranger's, General Vargas, orders a team of new recruits called Echo-One to investigate the radio tower where Ace was killed. They find out he was killed by a synth, part of the Cochise A.I. Vargas sends the team to finish Ace's original mission: to set up repeater towers to find the location of strange radio signals. Unfortunately, during the journey, two locations are under attack and Echo-One must chose one or the other to save, while the other is destroyed.
After setting up two of the towers, Vargas tells the team they must set up the last tower at Damonta, a town found behind a heavy line of radiation. When found, Echo-One finds that Damonta has been ravaged by robots, with a few survivors in the remains of the houses. Before they set up the last repeater tower, they find a synth installing a mechanical heart in a young girl. They kill the synth and discover it was working on another synth and was planning to "upgrade" humanity to robot beings. Shortly after, they install the last repeater tower.
With the three towers installed, they find the signals coming from Los Angeles, and they send a chopper to investigate. They hear the radio transmissions of the chopper, and learn the team was shot down. Vargas then sends Echo-One to Los Angeles to find out what happened.
Why It Rocks
- The game overall stays faithful to the original Wasteland, from the dark and not-to-serious tone, to the designs of the characters and world.
- While it is different from the combat in the original Wasteland, the turn based combat is well designed and fits the game perfectly. There are the basic options such as moving, reloading, and attacking, but there are also some advanced options such as targeting specific body areas and an "overwatch" ability.
- An excellent score by Mark Morgan, with an ambient tone that makes the game feel more atmospheric.
- You have a lot of customization when creating your characters. You have seven stats and 29 skills that allow you to make whatever characters you want, from a tough and fast melee fighter, to a dead-eyed sniper with toaster repair skills.
- There is a lot of variety in the game's locations and each feels a little different, such as the returning Agricultural Center and Camp Highpool, to new locations such as the ruins of Damonta and the new Ranger HQ.
- The game is very long, averaging to about 70 to 85 hours, not only with a long story, but there are also many side quests to tackle, like saving miners from killer honey badgers.
- There are many different ways to see the story through, such as the early game decision of choosing whether to save Highpool or the Agricultural Center, which gives the game a lot of replay value.
- Excellent dialogue and descriptions that are always interesting to read, with very detailed accounts of the world and humorous dialogue.
- Interesting enemy variety. The game consists of normal post-apocalyptic characters like mutants and gas mask wearing psychos, but there are also large animals and disco-ball robots that make your character dance.
- The director's cut is the definitive way to play the game, with fixed controls, voice acting being added in for PCs and companions, and adding in a perks and quirks system that makes your characters stronger.
- There will occasionally be some bugs and glitches occur, such as some models clipping and some characters getting stuck.
- The UI can be hard to navigate sometimes, especially in the console versions. Some controls are a little weird too, such as the camera turning in the opposite direction you press the keys. Thankfully, you can change the controls in the options.
- There isn't a stealth skill, which would have been helpful to avoid some encounters you don't want to get involved in.
Wasteland 2 received mostly positive reception from critics. The game currently holds an aggregated score of 81/100 on Metacritic. PC World later awarded Wasteland 2 their "Game of the Year" award. The game currently has user scores of 9/10 and 3.8/5 on Steam and GOG.com respectively. The Deluxe Edition of the game holds a score of 3.9/5 on GOG.com.
- One of the factions from Wasteland 3, the Gippers (a cult of Ronald Regan worshippers) were originally supposed to appear in Wasteland 2 and were supposed to have a more cowboy-ish style, but were cut out of the game.