Sanctum 2: The Last Stand DLC ReviewJanuary 2, 2014
The end has finally come for the Sanctum 2 saga. In this final chapter, the war against the Lumes reaches its climax. In the last DLC, the Titan was destroyed, and the war with the alien horde seemed like it was nearly won. Or so it seemed. As this final DLC – Sanctum 2: The Last Stand – opens, the world is still under siege, and the government is poised to evacuate the planet. It’s up to our five heroes to stay the Lume tide, in order to allow everyone to escape. That means some will be left to die. Brightholme, Tsygan’s city, is left to perish in the aftermath. And in one final blaze of chaos, bullets, and fading hope, they take on the overwhelming Lume threat. However, this isn’t a battle that can be won.
Sanctum 2: The Last Stand takes place on Arc Island, and adds four new maps to the Sanctum 2 universe: Below Arc, Arc, Radar, and The Last Stand. With the other DLCs, it seemed like there was a specific enemy theme to the content, and The Last Stand is no exception. Road of Elysion had the over-powered enemies, and The Pursuit dealt with having two bosses appear at the same time.
The Last Stand’s theme, if I had to guess, would have to be aerial domination. There are several new enemies that have something to do with flying. Spore Pods are the new flying creatures. These Lumes look like a more evolved form of the ground running Snorkers from previous games. Along with the Bliskeblaskes, they slowly hover through the sky, in horrifying droves.
Spore Keepers have bony crests protruding from their shoulders, gems in their heads, and walk on two legs. They don’t have arms, and when they attack they float into the air, toss their heads back, and hurl orbs of energy at you. Then there are the Jumpers, which are the only walking Lumes that can leap over your tower bases, so your maze means nothing to them. They look like alien fleas, with long, segmented tails.
To combat these new additions to the Lume armada, you have been equipped with a few additional weapons and perks. First off, instead of the normal, human soldiers from previous installments, there are SiMo units, standing ready to aide you in every level. You can give them commands with F, and tell them where to go with the left mouse button. Another addition is the The Rolfinator Defensive Turret, which is a turret that you can sit in! It fires duel energy orbs at a rapid rate, and allows you to add more firepower to your final stand. There’s also the Anti-Air turret, which destroys aerial enemies but cannot hit ground troops, and the Orbital Strike Relay, which is slow, but calls down massive damage in a specific area.
The enemy types for The Last Stand DLC are really nice, especially the Spore Keeper. I wish there were more Lumes that had the level of design and detail of this one enemy. It stands on two legs, floats into the air while tossing a projectile, and almost appears to be wearing organic armor. It’s really cool! Seeing a larger, boss-type version of the Spore Keeper would have been amazing.
I enjoyed the story of The Last Stand. It surprised me, and didn’t end in the way I thought the narrative was going. Sanctum 2: The Last Stand concludes on a very melancholy note that tugged a bit on my heart strings. After following this epic till the end, I was satisfied with how it all went down, and felt a piece of me go missing when I realized it was over. All in all, it was a great ending to the Sanctum 2 story.
Strangely enough, there were never any bosses. I thought, this being the last DLC, there would be new boss battles, or boss types, or a higher concentration of them. But there wasn’t. Not a single boss enemy, denoted by a skull –as all bosses are– appeared in this DLC.
Which brings me to the last issue I had with Sanctum 2: The Last Stand. It was too easy. And the end was anti-climactic, gameplay wise. This DLC, despite the overwhelming odds, never felt like it was very challenging. I never felt threatened, or worried. Except for the final stage, but that’s because it goes on till you die. Wave after wave continues, and you must only survive 10 waves, while the rest are bonuses to your score. I held out for about 14, before finally being overtaken the first time I played. I was expecting more from this farewell DLC. I truly wanted to go out in a blaze of glory.
The Last Stand was a solid final DLC for Sanctum 2, despite being the easiest of them all. The conclusion was surprising, and it also left me feeling empty, and a bit sad, based on the direction they decided to take the story. It didn’t live up to the epic I was hoping it would be, but it was still enjoyable. The enemy types were interesting, the final battle was very intense, and the sheer force of aerial enemies was a bit daunting. A bit. If you loved the rest of Sanctum 2, you owe it to yourself to finish this DLC. While it’s still a great addition to the overall game, it wasn’t the final blaze of glory I was hoping for.