Torchlight 2 Review

by  •  Sep 24, 2012

And there I was…

After waiting for months for Torchlight 2 and numerous push-backs on its release schedule to tease the fans, on 20 September 2012, we no longer had to sit around with our mouse fingers twitching for some good ol’ loot-collecting and enemy-killing goodness. After a surprisingly small preload (under 2 GB) and the game had arrived at my hard drive via Steam, and 65 hours in I haven’t been able to pull my head out since… and it has yet to even be beaten!

Writing this review is taking me away from the game itself, so I’ll make it brief…

(Review spoiler: Buy it.)


You’re catching up as to what took place in the original Torchlight, where the Alchemist has gone effectively rogue and decided it’s high time he got his payment. You’re dropped into the story after he’s gone on his rampage, and you’ll spend your time running through broken cities, moldy ruins, and dungeons-o’-plenty by the time you catch up to him.

However, you have many more chewy bits of goodness coming your way.

Multiplayer!! Finally, we’ve been waiting since Torchlight and it’s here! Makes me all giggly inside! Really, it does. Seriously! And with spots for 6 of your buddies, the party won’t stop until everyone’s faceplanting their keyboards in the wee hours of the morn’.

There are new customizable characters:

  • Engineer – A mechanical genius who surrounds himself with shields, bots, and lots of fiery goodness
  • Outlander – A ranged specialist dabbling in poisons, debuffs, minions and ‘low magic’
  • Embermage – You shall not pass up this master of the elements tossing fire, lightning and ice into the fray of enemy hordes.
  • Berzerker – The all-in-your-face animal of melee DPS eating up baddies with carnivore-inspired glee.

Each class has 3 different trees to put skill points into and four main attributes.

Each skill ‘tree’ consists of skills that are active (you choose when to fire them off) and passive (always on). Every one of the skills improves with your characters level, or has a percentage increase (such as 1% to critical strike) so you’ll never feel like you wasted a point because you outleveled the usefulness of that ability.

The attributes come in four varieties:

  • Strength – Increases your base damage and critical strike damage.
  • Dexterity – Increases your crit and dodge chance, as well as decreased the effect of “Fumbling” an attack (i.e. glancing blow, weak hit)
  • Focus – Increases your Mana pool, as well as all elemental-based damages. Also increases your chance to “Execute”, or use both weapons you are dual-wielding (if you so choose) at the same time.
  • Vitality – Increases your Health pool and armor. Also increased your chance to block with a shield (for you sword and board types).

I could go into detail behind the lore behind Torchlight, but that’s best read on their website:

The main features of the game come from each other attribute in this review, and add up to the whole  experience as to why you need to pump out that 20 dollar bill for Runic’s Torchlight sequel:


Runs silky-smooth. In other games, I monitor my GPU temperature and it’ll read normally around 50 celsius, but in Torchlight 2 it runs a cool 35 degrees on max settings. Seriously, Runic? Whatever demons you sold your souls to to make that happen was well worth it.


Crisp and clear, the way sound should be. You hear monsters die, weapons hitting targets, and it’s all done over a wonderful soundtrack of music that isn’t too ambient, but also not too glaring to your ears.


You’ll find yourself easily drawn into the world, where you start off with your weapons, an ability, and a burning desire to obliterate everything around you. You start fighting a monster. Said monster dies. More are around. Proceed to destroy them as well. Repeat. It’s joyous slaughtering you’re working towards, and the game pumps you full of it.

The multiplayer component, which was regarded as Torchlight’s biggest weakness by far, has been implemented in this sequel. You, along with five other friends, will run through the dungeons and levels causing nothing short of mass havoc and wanton destruction to the level of which hasn’t been seen. It also is fun trading between friends you play with so that everyone’s sharing their loot gains and helping the group play more effectively.


Tons. Metric tons. Boatloads. Bushels. I could run out of synonyms for how much you’ll be doing multiple playthroughs both with and without friends spread over many different difficulties and characters.


Buy it, now. Seriously, make a new tab on your browser or open Steam and get it right now. I can’t believe that a game with this quality, depth, subtle nuances and overall badassery is twenty bucks. If we had a rating above 5 stars, this game would be at a 10.

It’s damn worth every penny.

One last note: Developers, this is how you make a proper sequel to a game. Runic kept all the good from Torchlight, fixed a host of issues, and still improved upon its formula without changing what made it great to begin with. This is how a game is made well.

Now, if you will excuse me, I have to get back to the game…

You can find Torchlight 2 via Steam, as well:

Torchlight 2, 19.99 USD:



Format: PC
Release: 20 September, 2012
Genre: Action RPG
Developer: Runic Games

Final Score: 4.8 out of 5

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