Ghostrunner 2 hands-on preview - Still hard, but more approachable

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the player traversing a level in Ghostrunner 2

I found Ghostrunner to be effortlessly cool, but a little frustrating. It’s tough by design - it was just a little unforgiving for me. If I couldn’t get past a certain enemy or section, there wasn’t a whole lot I could do to progress beyond persevere.

When Ghostrunner 2 was revealed, I was excited to give the series another go, but I was still concerned about how difficult it’d be.

Getting my hands on Ghostrunner 2 for 30 minutes at Gamescom, my concerns were legitimised, but it’s far, far more forgiving than the first game.

More freedom to experiment

That’s due to one key design change. The developers say that the game is twice the size of the series debut, but a lot of that is down to there always being multiple ways to approach an area.

Rather than being funnelled down one path, banging your head against the same enemies in the same situations, there are multiple paths. You can grapple across a gap to attack from behind, barrel through a group of enemies head on, or sometimes even pick them off from above.

an enemy approaching the player with a sword in Ghostrunner 2
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It makes the fast paced loop of die, try again, die, and try again far less frustrating. You can experiment with different approaches or attack in a different way. That allows for multiple attempts before any frustration kicks in, helping the whole experience massively.

That’s not to say Ghostrunner 2 is generally any easier than the first game. It’s still one hit, one kill, it’s still really fast-paced, and enemies will still seemingly come out of nowhere. There are just more options for how you approach each situation, making you feel more in control of the action.

There’s your standard sword, throwing stars to toss, an instant dodge, a grapple hook to jump around and grab enemies with, and even explosive barrels to use to your advantage, and that’s just in the early section I played.

I think that variety will lead to more players sticking with the game, even in the hard moments. Instead of giving up, like you might in the first game, all you need to do is go a different way or try a different approach, seeing if that works better with your skills.

On your bike

The other main new addition to Ghostrunner 2 is your character’s new motorbike. Much like the sword-based action, it’s fast and frantic, and quite challenging.

The Ghostrunner 2 bike mid jump
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You need to keep your speed high enough so that a bar doesn’t deplete, jump between tracks, and swing your sword to break some blue glowing items. It’s all about forward momentum still, the level I played making me think of the motorbike level in Final Fantasy 7 Remake, even if there are probably much better comparisons.

It’s so quick that there really is some challenge to it. It’s not challenging to the degree that the standard gameplay is, but there’s certainly some skill required. The bike is responsive and the level I played was really well designed, making for a nice change of pace (not literally) from the hand to hand combat.


I’m sure the levels will become bigger and more varied as you progress too, especially since an estimated third of the game will take place on two wheels.

The addition of the bike, and the level design changes, make Ghostrunner 2 much more welcoming, which will hopefully see many more players stick with it through to the end.

For more articles like this, take a look at our Features and Ghostrunner page.