Review: The Surge: The Good, The Bad, the Augmented – It’s totally… Good?

The Surge_20181008035901

The Surge from Deck13 continues to make a massive splash as a sci-fi Soulsborne title and now, it’s making a bigger one with its latest DLC The Good, The Bad, The Augmented, which just recently released for the game. Find out what we thought in our review of this expanded adventure.

One of the biggest things that have continued to surprise us all is something unexpected. Deck13 isn’t quite done with their game The Surge, which was released almost a year and a half ago. Since its release in May of 2017, The Surge has been a host to numerous micro-DLCs and decent-sized content updates that featured new weapons, armor, and the likes. Now, here we are, another decent size expansion for the game that is swinging in like some classic Clint Eastwood spaghetti western with its own western-themed armor, weapons, and items to use.

But, it seemed when The Surge: Complete Edition launched the end was near as Deck13 gears up for the sequel to the 2017 release. Now, here we are, another DLC later and a few more hours of challenging gameplay that will see players taking on random bosses, events, and modifiers they must use in order to access the new rewards they wish to unlock. But if you are expecting something close to A Walk in the Park, hold those horses and wait for the next train to stop as you may want to know a bit more before you take the dive.

The Surge_20181008032940

The narrative is short, it’s simple and it doesn’t have the depth of The Surge: A Walk in the Park.

When looking at an expansion and gauging what kind of depth it has, you want to take into consideration what the DLC has to offer and just how long it actually is. A Walk in the Park was long, it was challenging, and it added in several more hours of gameplay we weren’t quite expecting due to its narrative-depth.

Now, here we are, looking at the latest DLC in the same way as we did the previous. Unlike A Walk in the Park, our latest DLC The Good, The Bad, The Augmented is rather short. It took me around eight hours to blast through every challenge it had to offer and represented a story that was…

Well, there really wasn’t one to be had. The only thing you need to know is that the mad doctor, Dr. Rischboter, created a device to simulate a Western-styled simulation where you will take on a few puzzles, a few challenges, and eventually a boss that is a bit more difficult than the patrols that populate the area before you encounter your final foe.

Every boss, ever enemy, every piece of scenery is designed around this western-theme which gives it a Westworld style feel. Not that we really needed it, but hey, who am I to complain? Unlike Westworld or the previous DLC, this one has a practically non-existent story. There’s not really one to be had if you are looking for a meaningful departure from your previous stop.

The Surge_20181008033159

The repetition will sink in after the first few tours in the wild-west showdown

What felt like an eternity to complete, was only about a 10-minute adventure when I began to trek through the DLC. Obtaining all of the items, encountering every twist of modifiers you can in order to complete the DLC does become a repetitious trip, one that will cause the DLC to boil down to more and more combat without offering anything refreshing.

Even though modifiers do set the pace to the game, they aren’t refreshing and can become rather infuriating depending on what modifiers you combo together. Unlike the base game or A Walk in the Park, there’s not a lot to add to the core game itself. The DLC is essentially just a testing ground, a place to see if fans want something new and what they like or dislike about the DLC.

To be quite honest, there was little to like about the grind-heavy 10-hour adventure. During that 10-hour grind, I’d almost wanted a chance to take on the mad doctor himself and beat his crazy head into the ground for what he had put me through. His motivations, his reasoning behind the simulations themselves never really amount to much. He’s not a villain you want or need to care about due to how little information there is about him within the story itself, which is a real shame due to how much he seemed to offer as a madman himself.

Sadly, the DLC just doesn’t have the depth of A Walk in the Park or the Dark Souls III DLC’s we’d experienced before. Sadly, the DLC is just basically re-hashed content we’d experienced before that didn’t add much to the game itself.

The Surge_20181008033253

The episodes are just basically new levels of the DLC with different challenges.

While the expansion itself, if you do it in a single shot, can last between 5 to 6 hours, you’ll struggle to find the replay value of the content itself. While the idea of getting every item is something we’d all like to achieve, you can do each of the nine episodes in about 30 minutes each with up to four modifiers active. This means you can knock out a good 10-15% of the content in a matter of hours in a single playthrough while revisiting the other items at a later date.

The only thing changing up this entire DLC is that each of the stages is basically a new level, each level comes with their own encounters, their own modifiers, and their own layout. While this sounds like something you may enjoy, even as a Soulsborn fan, I struggled here and have since not visited the DLC again since I ran through obtaining around 8 pieces from each of the stages and walking out with items and weapons I’ve managed to earn.

The disappointment really began to sink in when I realized just how bored I’d gotten my fifth time through the DLC itself. I was bored, I was already moving on and making my way back to CREO World for another adventure through some of the previously-locked areas on my third time through. Sadly, the replay value just isn’t there, it’s not something you’ll enjoy unless you enjoy beating your head against a wall in order to get gear that feels like reskinned items from the core game itself.

The Surge_20181008034112

Yep… I prefer my older armor than the DLC armor itself.

Just… Yea.. – The Conclusion

When it comes to expansions, I’m normally all for them being added to the core-experience of a game. I love when things get expanded, added onto and made even better than ever before. But, I’m actually left flabbergasted about the decisions made behind The Good, The BadThe Augmented itself. It doesn’t have a story to deliver outside of what you get in the first hour or so.

All you are getting out of it all is a select few challenges, a few new items to use and barely anything that changes the overall experience itself. Honestly, it’s not my place to call a developer out when it comes to a DLC, but let’s be honest here. This wasn’t a thought-out DLC and it doesn’t offer anything that is a make-or-break deal for fans of The Surge and is highly anticipating the sequel like myself.

The Surge: The Good, The Bad, The Augmented
PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One
Version Reviewed: 
PlayStation 4
Deck 13
Focus Home Interactive
Release Date: 
Available Now

After this DLC, I am just biding my time until the release of The Surge 2 in 2019.

Our review is based upon a retail version that was provided to us by the publisher of the game. For information about our ethics policy please click here.

 Final Score: 5 out of 10

About the Writer(s):


Dustin is our native console gamer, PlayStation and Nintendo reviewer who has an appetite for anything that crosses the borders from across the big pond. His interest in JRPG’s, Anime, Handheld Gaming, and Pizza is insatiable. His elitist attitude gives him direction, want, and a need for the hardest difficulties in games, which is fun to watch, and hilarity at its finest. You can find him over on Twitter or Facebook.


Leave a Reply