Hades 2 Is Already An Exciting Sequel With Confident Changes


Supergiant Games has never made a sequel. Instead, it’s a studio that has consistently iterated and innovated with each subsequent game, arguably culminating in the team’s greatest work to date: Hades. The engrossing roguelite dazzled with tight and engaging combat, an iconic visual presentation, and novel take on a persistent narrative that interweaves the progression of its story with its repeating gameplay loop. If Supergiant Games were ever going to commit to a sequel, Hades definitely provided the most fertile ground for further development, ensuring that its follow-up has a strong foundation established in a proven hit. Hades II’s technical test is a small slice of the game and a very quick look at how Supergiant plans to build on the success of the first game, but it’s already clear that it is anything but a safe improvement on what has come before.

Hades II stars Melinoe, sister of Hades protagonist Zagreus and the daughter of the titular god. Unlike the first game, in which Zagreus attempted to escape the underworld in search of his human mother, Melinoe is entangled in a war with the titan, Chronos, who is wreaking havoc on both Mount Olympus and the Underworld. With her family missing and her father’s throne usurped, Melinoe has taken refuge at the Crossroads, which has become a safe haven for simple shades displaced by Chronos’ rampage, as well as the few fighters left trying to mount a resistance.

Melinoe controls just like her agile brother, moving around each area with speed and grace, accentuated by a snappy dash that now has a new sprint ability associated with it if you hold the input down, giving you a subtle but important addition to your movement repertoire. You’ll notice a change when glancing over to your health bar, with Melinoe utilizing a new magic resource that becomes a key consideration in the throes combat. Magic is used for new Omega abilities, offensive variations of attacks that are all channeled by holding down one of the three attack buttons you have on offer. Each weapon features standard and special attacks, with the weapon type determining where they are either short or long-range.Melinoe introduces a third spell attack that she has regardless of which weapon you choose. It lets you ensnare enemies in place, while also being open to modification by boons awarded by gods from Olympus. This additional attack alone adds an interesting layer to the frenetic action, offering a persistent attack type that is primarily focused on crowd control that allows even early skirmishes to get delightfully chaotic without becoming overwhelming. Coupled with the variety and complexity that Omega attacks introduce, this gives Hades II a tangible sense of differentiation that both returning and new players will relish to pick apart one run at a time.

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