Thursday, April 18, 2024

The Surge Is A Quality Action Game.

( Back in 2017, Focus Home Interactive released The Surge, developed by Deck13 Interactive. It was a game that flew under my radar when it was released. Looking at reviews some time after game dropped and it was received mildly. Most enjoyed the game enough but there was a feeling that Deck13 could’ve done more with the setting and story.

I finally got around to playing The Surge on a particularly slow weekend and I suppose I’m a little more lenient on it.

What Rocked About The Surge?

The main thing that rocked about The Surge to me was the gameplay. It’s not the most innovative but in the context and setting that everything is performed it works. Gameplay doesn’t necessarily need to be groundbreaking if it works within the setting and can hold up the story.

Combat was standard. Far from back but as I said, it’s not getting any awards for innovation. That said, I enjoyed fighting the mechanical enemies in this game. Hunting and collecting parts for your body keeps you in there engaging in combat.

If combat was lackluster, I would probably avoid most battles then turn around to do some just because I need to improve my exoskeleton’s gear. Which would be impossible because the enemies in this game really hunt you, hit harder than you’d think, and you have to level up and upgrade to advance. So at least Deck13 got this part down pat. Again, there’s no razzle dazzle here but what’s here is functional enough.

I love a skill tree in a game. A mediocre title can hold me if it has a somewhat involved skilled tree. It’s basically showing you what rewards, skills, or perks you’ll get if you show progress. It’s a reason to keep playing.

The Surge didn’t really have a skill tree but the upgrade system it had in place was still worth staying in the game. You could mix and match parts and upgrade them once you collect enough resources. Again, no skill tree and nothing too flashy but it works for this game. It gave Deck13 something to build on in the next installment.

And Everything Else?

Graphically, it was fine. Or rather, it was standard for this generation. The setting was mostly a large junkyard where robotic enemies roamed. Yes, it was pretty confining but it put me in the mind of Castlevania games where you could go anywhere and a path elsewhere could be opened by your progress in your current area.

Despite the setting, there was a lot of running around and revisiting locations. There was little “Well, I’m done here. Now to the next area.” Enemies respawned like clockwork. They would always be right back in the location you just whipped through so there was a degree of predictability but it Deck13 used Dead Souls as an inspiration.

Our main character was nothing special in the first The Surge. Warren is wheelchair-bound and shows up at one of the planet’s biggest companies for work. He goes from “This is new, where are they going with this?” Lots of questions. Then he gets his exoskeleton and becomes your stock action game hero. Still, he was the hero the game deserved.

The story wasn’t going to win awards in storytelling but the story available was executed perfectly. It wasn’t complex or super deep or anything so there was little to mess up.

Ultimately, I can see why reviewers were mixed on this game in 2017. There’s a lot more that could’ve been done but at the core, it’s a quality action game and gave Deck13 a lot to work with in the future.

Staff Writer; M. Swift

This talented writer is also a podcast host, and comic book fan who loves all things old school. One may also find him on Twitter at; metalswift.

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!