There's an incredibly iconic and quotable moment in The Matrix where Neo is hooked up to a computer and has the entirety of martial arts downloaded into his brain. Upon this process being complete he looks to the camera and says the now famous line "I know kung fu." This is how I'd describe One Finger Death Punch back when it came out in 2014. It knew kung fu, and it was both a redemption story for the developers and a surprisingly awesome game that other releases, such as Kung Fury: Street Rage or The Fall Part 2: Unbound, would try and emulate. However, there was some room for improvement. One Finger Death Punch 2 is finally here, and it tries to show if all the training has paid off.
There's no story or basic plot for One Finger Death Punch 2, something the game proudly displays at the start. All you need to know is how to play it. It's really rather simple. One button causes you to attack to the left, the other to the right. If an enemy is in range of your attack they'll either die instantly or take damage. That's it. Within minutes you'll know the entire game. You attack to the left, or you attack to the right. Don't make the mistake of thinking it's that simple though, and definitely never button mash.
Simple Controls and Stick Figures in One Finger Death Punch 2
You'll quickly be introduced to many elements that compound upon this gameplay style. Enemies will begin to trap you in long brawler fights, having you deal with lengthy battles against a single foe. Weapons give you more range, allowing you to hit someone from further away. You can dodge ranged attacks, causing them to instantly kill the enemy behind you. Each time you kill an enemy you raise the bars for several skills, eventually letting you perform actions like creating an earthquake to kill everyone or turning them all into one hit kills. Sometimes you pull a laser sword out of the ground, because it looks cool so why not?
Attack left and attack right. That's all there is to One Finger Death Punch 2, and yet the game manages to do so much so impressively with so little. Each level quickly becomes an absolutely hectic battle, characters flipping through the air, performing levels of kung-fu I only dream of seeing in action movies. Random effects will see time slowing down, dramatic Mortal Kombat styled x-ray blows that clearly break bones for you to see. This is the other secret to One Finger Death Punch 2. It makes you feel like a badass for doing something so simple. Every attack is awesome and feels like it hits hard. You'd think after so long I'd get bored of watching my kung-fu warrior rip someone's heart out and show it to him before they die. I never did.
Stick Man Variety in One Finger Death Punch 2
Just when I think things are finally starting to get dull, that I've finally punched my last man, One Finger Death Punch 2 changes up how levels work. Fun situations are always around each corner. One type of level required me to knock enemies into traps to kill them, while another gave me a chainsaw and let me go on a bloody massacre. There are over 400 levels in the game, so it's a good thing there's such variety to carry it through.
However, trying to beat all 400 levels in a single monster session feels like it's missing the point entirely. This isn't a game you play for hours straight. You pick up One Finger Death Punch 2 between other games, play a couple of levels here or there, then put it down. It's a pallet cleanser, prepping you for a new experience between games while still keeping your attention. If, however, you do get through all those levels there's still plenty more to do. A survival tower needs climbing, there's a randomized gauntlet to fight and a particularly hilarious mode where you have to move the mouse to push a cat out of the way from blocking your screen. Also, not only is there already a wealth of content, but the entire original game is an unlockable reward. As is another canceled project by Silver Dollar Games.
Zen and the Art of PC Games in One Finger Death Punch 2
There's a zen to playing One Finger Death Punch 2 that is prevalent in point-chasing games such as Tetris or Guitar Hero. It's tough to describe in words, but this is one of those absolutely perfect "easy to learn, difficult to master" games. Almost every element meshes together perfectly to combine into a beautiful dance of destruction. Almost. There's one new minigame sequence which requires you to press a button quickly in a small window of time, much like a QTE. It doesn't really flow with the style of the rest of the game, and I wished I could turn it off before long.
Thankfully I never really wanted to turn off the various effects I saw (though the game did allow me too, which was appreciated.) The fights felt like they were ripped right out of one of the Xiaoxiao animations I watched endlessly on Newgrounds. It's impressive that it's done with such skill, and there's a ton of animations to play through. Every time I think I see it all I'm suddenly introduced to a whole new set of animations, with my character flying through enemy ranks and doing splits to hit people on both sides.
One Finger Death Punch 2 Review | Final Thoughts
I knew I first wanted the original One Finger Death Punch when I wandered upon a trailer that featured the song Kung Fu Yu by BBOSS. However, I knew I wanted One Finger Death Punch 2 from the second it was announced. All I needed was for it to clean up the first game some and perfect its formula. In other words, do exactly what a sequel should do. One Finger Death Punch 2 doesn't just manage to succeed in that regard, it excels. This is one kung fu fight you absolutely need to participate in.
TechRaptor reviewed One Finger Death Punch 2 on PC via Steam using a copy provided by Silver Dollar Games.
One Finger Death Punch 2 manages to take a simplistic gameplay system and turn it into one of the most bizarrely addictive score chasers I've ever played.
- Simple to Play
- Feels Fantastic to Master
- Varied Items and Levels
- Awesome Combat Animations
- Tons of Content
- Occasionally Annoying Minigames