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Sanctum 2 (Video Game Preview)

Since 2011, fans have been eagerly awaiting the release of the highly-anticipated sequel to Coffee Stain Studios' Sanctum. The game managed to cleverly combine the strategy of tower defense mechanics with the high-octane action of a first-person shooter. Sanctum 2 takes some of the best parts of the original and adds even more over the top fun. Sanctum 2 slightly diverges from the strategy influences of its predecessor and focuses more on the shooting aspects of the game. The graphics have been overhauled this time around and the environments are exquisitely designed and awe-inspiring. Players will notice that tons of new maps have also been added with a better diversity of enemies. The storyline is played out in a comic-style method with some of the plot revealed between levels while the game loads up. Sanctum 2 has a great deal of replay value due largely to its new customizations and character classes.

Players will use their resources to build stronger but a limited amount of towers, and strategy is crucial here, since the perfect placement of upgraded towers will help you efficiently take down your enemies. The method for upgrading your weapons is slightly different now by adding bonus damage and accuracy based on your character class. Towers do not stand up well against the new, tougher enemies in Sanctum 2 which storm in with a vengeance while destroying everything you worked so hard to build.

Several waves of enemies will have to make their way through before you get to the point that you can upgrade and make a decent defense with your towers. While you strategically wait to make your move--it is here that your weapons are truly useful--as you can shoot the lighted areas (weak points) on the enemies to take them down.

Co-op has gotten even tougher this time around with resources going to whoever first grabs them leaving the other empty handed and vulnerable. Once each wave is complete then two floating items will appear near the core which are in-game currency and tower cores. The problem escalates even further with the fact that any player can recycle and move towers that have been placed around the area. If you have a very greedy and uncooperative partner, which often happens in online battles, then the game will become frustrating in no time.

Sanctum 2 has greatly improved when it comes to the graphics and presentational elements while the teamwork elements appear to have been diminished in some aspects. Gamers will also notice that the game's action elements have taken priority over the tower defense aspects which seemed to have been more balanced in the original. We will be posting our review next week and you can look for that for our full opinion of the game. Sanctum 2 will release on May 15th for Xbox Live Arcade and on Steam via PC with a summer release for PlayStation Network users.

Game Information:
Developer & Publisher: Coffee Stain Studios
Platforms: Xbox 360, PC (previewed) and PS3
Rated: T for Teen
Release Date: May 15, 2013

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