Editor: Diane Hutchinson Editor@girlgamersuk.com

SteamWorld Dig 2

Posted by GG Goblin On September - 28 - 2017

Can you dig it, again?

 
After the great success of Image & Form Games’ SteamWorld Dig, there can only be excitement from all of the fans with the launch of a sequel. SteamWorld Dig 2 cuts through the rock to find itself on the Nintendo Switch, offering another crazy exploration/platforming adventure featuring a great cast of Steampunk robot cowboys. Time to start digging.

 
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The original SteamWrold Dig was a great game, but it was short and felt unfocused. For the sequel, Image & Form have at least doubled the game size, and the new handcrafted levels offer much more focused experience for the player, packed with all manner of secrets and treasures to find.

 
Following on from the first game, SteamWorld Dig 2 follows robot cowgirl Dorothy as she tried to find the hero from the first game, Rusty. In this strange post-apocalyptic Steampunk version of the Wild West, that will obviously mean taking up Rusty’s favorite pastime and swinging that pick axe in the dirt.

 
It is very easy to fall in love with the characters in SteamWorld Dig 2. Dorothy, or Dot as she likes to be known, is a great hero on a worthy quest. Early on in the game, after an encounter with some crazy doomsday cultists, she will meet up with a particularly aggro sprite called Fen. Fen will join Dot on her search, offering help where it is needed and even a kind word, eventually. Other characters that the player will meet in the game, from the town to some of the locations that Dot visits, are all a little bit barmy, and thoroughly entertaining. For a game that revolves around digging in the dirt, there is a lot of personality in SteamWorld Dig 2.

 
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Much of the time will be spent digging, creating tunnels between locations that are marked on the map. Dot’s amazing wall jumping ability ensures that players will not find themselves getting stuck in a hole straight from the offset of the game. As the player digs down, they will gather all manner of minerals from the dirt that can be sold back in town, with the proceeds going towards various upgrades or purchases. Dot can only carry a small amount of goodies to begin with, so trips back to the surface will be numerous until the backpack gets upgraded.

 
As the player explores and goes deeper into the ground, they will come across chutes that are able to zip the player back to town and act as fast travel points, taking the monotony out of keep having to return to the surface. This is handy not only for emptying the backpack and making some money, but also for topping up things like health and lantern light.

 
The player will also come across caves during their mining expedition. These are self-contained puzzle areas that can be quite tricky to work out, but offer some great rewards, including cogs that are used back in town to upgrade Dot’s equipment. Dot will unlock some handy new equipment and abilities during the course of the game, such as being able to run, use a grapple hook, and even rocket boots and a jackhammer for cutting through the tougher rock. Some of this equipment requires water to use, which is another resource that the player will have to manage and keep an eye on.

 
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And Dot is not alone in the underground caverns. Players will come across different types of underground-dwelling creatures that present a threat to Dot, and they will either have to battle them, use their surroundings against them, or avoid them all together. Aside from the boss battles, which are pretty cool, it is quite possible to avoid conflict for much of the game as long as the player plans their route accordingly.

 
Taking the direct route from one objective to the next is fairly straight forward, and will lead to plenty of discoveries along the way. However, there is something to be said for just random exploring. As the levels are now handcrafted, rather than procedurally generated, the developers have packed every inch with little secrets just waiting to be discovered.

 
The adventure is much longer than the previous game, coming in at over ten hours. However, once the story is complete, there really is little reason to go back and play more. Digging for the sake of digging with no real purpose just doesn’t appeal. *Edit* – It turns out that there is still a reason to dig once the story is complete. The player can go back into the mines and find any remaining Relics that they are yet to pick up (there are 42 in total). These Relics are not just there for the completionists, as actually finding them all will unlock the Hell Caves, offering more post-game content.

 
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SteamWorld Dig 2 is a lovely game that is packed with charm and thoroughly enjoyable gameplay. Playing on the Switch in both portable mode and on the big screen is great, and there is always plenty to discover through the course of the story. The game has improved on the predecessor in every way. SteamWorld Dig 2 is an essential purchase for any Switch owner. Pick it up now!

 

 ★★★★★★★★★☆ 



 

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