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Hive Jump 2: Survivors Preview: Jump, Man!

As a huge fan of the original Hive Jump game, I was thrilled at the chance to review its sequel. Although it maintains the core concept of delving into an alien-infested hive, the gameplay undergoes a significant transformation. Shifting from the side-scrolling action of its predecessor to an isometric perspective, with gameplay reminiscent of Vampire Survivors, this change brings a fresh dynamic to the experience. The transition feels seamless, with the art, music, and gameplay working together beautifully. While it’s still in Early Access, it’s safe to say this bold move by Graphite Lab ultimately proves to be a successful gamble.

The game, currently in Early Access, lacks a substantial narrative. While a deep storyline isn't crucial for a game like Vampire Survivors, given that this is a sequel, I'm curious about the developments since the last game. However, I find myself thrust into the heart of a hive armed with nothing but my initial weapon and a jetpack, leaving much about the game's world and its evolution since the last installment to the imagination.

The game is challenging; its objective requires navigating through the hive to locate and eradicate nests. However, accomplishing this task is easier said than done. I've encountered elite nests on several occasions that swiftly led to my demise. Fortunately, an arsenal of weapons and various items are at my disposal to aid in my mission.

Similar to Vampire Survivors, I need to gather specific items to level up my jumper. Instead of gathering gems, my quest involves collecting goo, which cleverly ties back to the original game's theme. This goo not only serves as a crucial element for leveling up but also doubles as a currency. With the goo I accumulate, I have the option to acquire new weaponry either upon leveling up or at the conclusion of a wave. The arsenal available for purchase is diverse, including an array of ammunition types, grenades, shields, and health generators, among other items. My jumper is limited to carrying only three items at any given moment, necessitating strategic decisions about which items to acquire. Fortunately, I have the flexibility to sell items to make room for better options, and often, I encounter rarer versions of weapons I already possess.

In addition to weapons and items, I also acquire relics that enhance specific abilities of my jumper. Unlike weapons, there doesn't seem to be a limit on the number of relics I can carry. I am also able to combine relics to create rare versions with even more powerful enhancements.

Another form of currency is amber. Unlike goo, amber is a resource I retain post-run. I utilize amber to enhance various attributes - increasing damage, boosting health, and much more. Additionally, upgrading my jumper not only improves its capabilities but also unlocks new jumpers, each with their unique strengths and specializations.

The gameplay is solid, offering the choice between auto attack and manual attack. Personally, I prefer using auto-attack as it feels more natural. I had the opportunity to play the demo before Early Access and I must say, the developers have made significant quality-of-life improvements since then. The movement and shooting mechanics are much smoother now, and one of the most noticeable changes is the way my character falls apart upon death. In the demo, the game would simply end when my health reached zero, and it felt so jarring. So I appreciate this new feature.

Final Grade: B

While the game currently only has two levels available, there is a strong foundation in place that shows promise for its full release. I am eager to see what additional content will be included. Fans of Vampire Survivors will appreciate the challenging experience.

Preview code provided by Stride PR



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