Remnant 2 review - Bigger and better

share to other networks share to twitter share to facebook
Remnant 2 challenger facing ravager boss

After being relatively bored of the modern multiplayer scene so heavily focused on online multiplayer, battle passes, and the same business model for every big new title, the original Remnant: From the Ashes was a breath of fresh air. As a Soulsbourne enthusiast, the game checked off all the right parts in my brain, and the co-op experience was one few games could really recreate. It's a mish-mash of procedural generation, "Dark Souls with Guns", and a Borderlands-style approach to co-op, which sounds confusing but makes complete sense once you pick up the game.

However, something still felt missing in the first game. There was a lack of polish, build variety, and memorable bosses, and despite being an excellent game, anyone who played it would tell you that it can be so much more. That's where Remnant 2 comes in, and Gunfire Games really get to flex its creative muscle in a gaming experience that few other multiplayer games can match.

Before starting the review, I'd like to say that I played the game mostly solo on the Veteran difficulty, and I've spent 40 hours and plan on going for a lot more than that. Multiplayer is really its own separate beast, and I'm excited to try it out with friends upon the full release. The game is a joy to replay and explore, thanks to its impressive procedural generation and various storylines. So without further ado, let's dive into our review of Remnant 2.

Revamped builds and combat

Combat, on the whole, feels a lot more fluid and customisable. Not only is there a much larger variety of weapons, but gunplay and melee attacks feel a lot better, too. You're going to need every single tool that the game provides to overcome the challenges it's about to throw your way.

Let me just get this out of the way: regardless of the difficulty you will start on, Remnant 2 is a difficult game. Not just by means of being soulslike; it's a lot more difficult than its predecessor. Enemies are smarter, faster, and more agile, and the game will regularly spawn powerful variants to throw you off. However, the experience is wildly different once you get accustomed to dodging, and the combat turns into a tempo between you and the waves of enemies.

A standout feature is the new revamped archetype system that blows the previous game out of the water. Each archetype has unique skills and perks that make it stand out on its own with a very unique personal identity and play style. That's not even the best part, however, as later in the game, you can mix and match any two archetypes for your own custom play style. Match the DPS character with more support or mix the Bruiser with the medic, experiment and find what suits you and your friends the best!

remnant 2 dual archetype with loaded gunslinger
click to enlarge
+ 9

There's a larger variety of weapons, and more aggressive melee play styles are now viable as well. Weapons now allow for a mod and a mutator that give you a lot more options when it comes to customisation. Unfortunately, the mutator mechanic will take a while before you start seeing meaningful returns, but it's still a good option to have.

Speaking of builds, they removed set bonuses from armour, which allows you to pick and choose armour based on weight, resistance and, most importantly, fashion. Instead, these bonuses have been shifted to the revamped Relic system, the four new ring slots, and the Amulets. I found this method of build customisation to be a lot more interactive and fun to fiddle around with.

Remnant 2 build screen and rings menu
click to enlarge
+ 9

Bigger, beautiful worlds to explore

At its heart, you could say that Remnant 2 is an adventure exploration game, and no such title would be complete without an engaging setting to accompany it. Luckily, Remnant 2 has many.

There are a total of five biomes in Remnant 2. Excluding Earth and the final area (for spoiler purposes), we have Ner'ud, Yaesha, Losomn, and Labyrinth. These might sound like confusing names, but once you play the game, you won't be forgetting them any time soon. This is because Gunfire Games has put an astounding amount of effort into giving each world its own unique personality, design, and lore.

remnant 2 futuristic world of ner'ud
click to enlarge
+ 9

Ner'ud is a futuristic sci-fi wasteland with underground facilities, towers reaching the skies, and a desolate surface world. Yaesha has dense forests, ruins, and even archaic temples floating in the skies. Losomn gives you the shocking contrast between Bloodborne-style streets in a 16th century English city against gilded palaces and massive halls that belong to a race of angels straight out of a fantasy novel.

Remnant 2 streets of losomn with mobs of angry citizens
click to enlarge
+ 9

It's honestly incredible the way these various biomes with so much individual identity fit inside a single game. Swapping from biome to biome can even be jarring due to how different they are, but we say this in the best way possible. Exploring each biome fully is as integral to the experience as the combat itself. Exploration rarely ever feels like a waste of time, and you truly feel rewarded for almost every item or secret that you unlock. The puzzles do not handhold you either, and you're going to need all of your wits.

Remnant 2 fae castle palace with beautiful statue
click to enlarge
+ 9

Furthermore, each world contains not just one but sometimes two and even three self-contained overarching stories. This makes them all worth replaying and gives them even more individual identity. Rerolling your campaigns for different experiences is an integral and intended part of the gameplay experience, as it allows you to see much more of each world. Each world is dense and beautiful; just make sure your PC is ready to handle the requirements (more on that later).

They listened to us about the bosses!

One of the major complaints most people faced with Remnant: From the Ashes was the bosses riddled with additional enemies. It felt like artificially inflated difficulty, which only got worse with multiplayer scaling. However, I'm happy to say that Gunfire Games took player feedback in strides and has massively improved the boss design in Remnant 2.

Remnant 2 has some uniquely designed and very memorable main bosses for each of its areas. I'd say that the boss battles are some of the highlights of the game, and some of them now sit on my list of favourite boss encounters, which isn't a small feat. Each biome will have you face a world boss along with other bosses leading up to it. There are, in fact, multiple world bosses and repeat runs, which have you face down a brand new gauntlet of enemies. It's something to be really excited about on subsequent playthroughs.

Remnant 2 custodian's eye boss
click to enlarge
+ 9

The boss variety includes giant enemies, mobs of grunts, mechanical menaces, magical trees, and even the age-old honourable one-vs-one duel style bosses that are a true joy to fight. Some bosses like the Cancer, Red Prince, and Venom were serious challenges and really forced me to up my game.

Remnant 2 the red prince boss
click to enlarge
+ 9

The enemy variety and reactions are also a lot better than in the first game. Shooting humanoid characters in the legs causes them to stumble, and details like these make the experience truly immersive. Each biome has its own set of enemies, and their stronger variants that you'll have to adapt and learn to play against provide a fresh challenge that never overstays its welcome.

Some nitpicks

"Not enough scrap!" is a message that drove me insane during my initial run of Remnant 2. One of Remnant 2's primary appeals is the amount of freedom and build diversity it provides you. However, scrap is such a limited resource that you can't really freely explore all your options. Buying a new weapon felt like it costs an arm and a leg, not to mention the upgrade costs afterwards. The scrap economy gets better as you progress and reroll more often, but it honestly shouldn't be this much of an issue in a game that prides itself on build options.

The main overarching plot of the game is a very high-concept narrative that doesn't mesh well with the self-contained stories of each biome. It's hard to bridge the gap between shooting slugs in the sewers and facing a multiversal threat. If you're expecting a well-paced overarching plot, you'll be disappointed. That being said, the dialogue in Remnant 2 is still well-written for video game standards.

Remnant 2 all seeing eye explaining main story
click to enlarge
+ 9

Remnant 2 is built and balanced around multiplayer. If you don't really have friends to play with, you'll be locked into a couple of specific classes and play styles, especially early on. In fact, many boss mechanics assume you're playing with multiple people in your party, and the number of mobs can be overwhelming in places. Additional enemies during boss battles have been reduced, but they're not completely gone.

Remnant 2 labyrinth mysterious portals
click to enlarge
+ 9

The approach towards dungeons and lack of guidance does sometimes throw you off. I remember spending hours in my first biome, Ner'ud, completing every single dungeon for the key item only to learn it's found somewhere lying around under some elevator in the overworld. Speaking of dungeons, sometimes they just feel like they end with no greater purpose, which really is a shame considering the fact that they sometimes include set pieces more engaging than the main questline.

Lastly, let's talk a bit about performance. Remnant 2 is a next-gen title meant for high-spec devices. I managed to run it at a stable 60 FPS on low settings while playing on a fairly outdated rig sporting a 1660 Super. The game rarely ever bugged out on me, and frame stutters were a rarity that would only occur when there was too much happening on the screen. In an era of post-release apologies, Remnant 2 stands out as a great example of the stability a game should aim for before release.


If you're a fan of the original Remnant: From the Ashes, then Remnant 2 is everything you could've hoped for and more. However, if you are new to the series, then Remnant 2 solidifies itself as a co-op PvE experience that few games can hope to match in its scale, style, and overall approach.


It's not a game I can clearly categorise into any single genre; it's a unique experience of its own that I'd recommend to anyone who loves games with challenging combat and rewarding exploration. Not only should you play it, but those who enjoy the game should definitely also replay it, as the first run only gives you about 40% of the whole experience!

If you're looking for a fun and challenging co-op experience, then it doesn't get much better than Remnant 2.

Remnant 2 review
Remnant 2 improves upon the original in every way imaginable. It's a polished PvE multiplayer experience that'll go down as one of the best ever.

Reviewed on PC. A code was provided by the publisher.

For more articles like this, take a look at our Reviews and Remnant 2 page.