Game Reviews

Tough Game vs. Sissy Player: Steven Long takes on Vermintide II

Mixed feelings about this objectively good game.

Great Expectations

Every indie developer should strive to be like Fatshark Games. Their much-anticipated Vermintide II sold half a million copies in about 6 days, which I’d say is a pretty good week’s work.

The original, Warhammer: Vermintide blew audiences away by taking all the things we loved about the Left 4 Dead series, and bringing it to the Warhammer universe. Not only that, but they expanded on the character set, giving each character a personality, unique weapons and skills that set them apart from each other in a way Left 4 Dead did not.

I got my copy with high hopes and great expectations. So did Vermintide II live up to the hype? Or more importantly, did it live up to its predecessor?

Well, yes. But also, no.

Let me explain.

Vermintide II creepy evening
Really impressive visuals and environmental effects throughout Vermintide II

I was—am—a big fan of Left 4 Dead. When I first got Vermintide and realized it was a sort of clone, I was grateful. I put hundreds of hours into Vermintide, which is unusual for me. It was fun, plain and simple.

Vermintide II is more of the same. It improves over the original with its incredible graphics, new environments, new enemy types, weapons, skills, armor, more crafting, more this, more that, more more more!

Yet somehow I’m not able to get into it.

Dramatic Vermintide II environs
Yet another dramatic scene

The game is tough, and I’m a sissy

I think it may just be the fact that the game is really tough, and I’m a bit of a sissy. And strangely, I have a hard time getting matches with online players. And when I do join another game, it’s always just some player running from point A to point B, whacking everything in sight and snatching up all the loot. But mostly I find myself playing with bots.

That difficulty in finding a match is surprising. Selling half a million copies ought to mean there’s always a match. I have to wonder if the rest of the Vermintide II community feels the same way I do.

The levels in this game are long. Which is good in a lot of ways. They feel big. They feel epic. But when they are difficult, and I don’t have a good team to play with, a big, epic level feels like a big, epic disappointment when I find myself brutally murdalized before I reach the end.

Vermintide II ogre
This guy will make you die.

But really, Vermintide II is great.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve probably spent to much time talking already about why I don’t like the game. There are so many reasons to love it. And yet, I can’t…you know: get into it.

Maybe I just need to git gud? I’m not sure. And it’s not a huge deal because Fatshark has priced their game so competitively, far below what AAA developers demand. And they are already releasing DLC for it.

So it’s a good game and maybe I just haven’t found the team to play with. I guess what I’m trying to say is, if you wanna play, HMU on Twitter!


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Steven Long

Steve is an IndieWatch O.G. He has long supplied marketing information for the aspiring developer. More recently he has been creating content for retrogaming enthusiasts on his YouTube channel. Find him on Twitter @Longie_long and at Patreon.

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