Orcs Must Die! 2 has quickly replaced its predecessor as one of my go to games for when I only have a few minutes to kill. The pick up and play gameplay is incredibly entertaining and, even after a month of fairly consistent playing, I haven’t unlocked everything. Unsurprisingly, when Robot Entertainment announced an expansion less than a month after release, I was enthralled to know that I’d be able to lose even more time to the game. Well, I probably should have held back my expectations just a bit.
The Fire and Water Booster Pack includes three new story levels, three new Endless levels, three new traps, two new enemies and a new bonus skull. The levels themselves won’t wow you; in fact, I found them to be a bit bland compared to the core game’s stages. That’s not to say that they’re bad by any stretch of the imagination but, while playing through Traffic Jammed, The West Wing and Double Decker, I didn’t encounter anything that made me feel like I had to play through them over and over again. The new Endless levels suffer from the same problem, because they didn’t present anything new or noteworthy.
The two new enemies do completely change the landscape of the game when they appear, though. The Fire Lord and the Fire Elemental will break apart into Firelings capable of powerful explosions that are almost guaranteed to take you out if you’re unlucky enough to be in their blast range. The Waterlings, on the other hand, are the polar opposite of what I’ve come to expect from the baddies in Orcs Must Die! 2. They start out as little blobs of water that are more adorable than terrifying, but don’t let your guard down. They leave behind small puddles of water when they’re killed and, if another Waterling walks through them, it will end up growing into a Waterlord, while walking into two puddles will turn it into a Water Elemental. You’ll have to take them out quickly in order to keep their numbers in check.
You’ve got a few new traps to help with this monumental feat, although I question how useful they may be. The Dart Spitter hangs from the ceiling, waiting for enemies to pass underneath it before shooting poisonous bolts in all directions. Next, the Web Spinner shoots out webs from its walled position, giving you a chance to slow down any enemy making a break for the rift. Lastly, there’s the star of the show, which is certainly the new Floor Portal. When a baddie walks over this new trap, they’re instantly transported back to the start of the map, giving you a second chance at taking them out. Considering that there are already poison and speed traps in the vanilla game, this is the only truly unique trap to be found here, and I imagine that it will make its way into a lot of players’ loadouts.
The new bonus skull will reward you if you somehow manage to complete an entire level without using any traps. To be perfectly honest, I’m not sure how this is even feasible outside of some of the early stages, but I’m sure it will only be a matter of time before someone shows off their massive skills on YouTube.
I love Orcs Must Die! 2, but its Fire and Water Booster Pack just doesn’t offer enough to justify a purchase. Hardcore fans of the game will probably get their money’s worth, but everyone else would be better served by waiting for it to go on sale. Here’s hoping that Robot Entertainment can offer more with its next expansion.
This review is based on a copy of the game that was provided to us.