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Descent II

DOS - 1996

Also released on: Windows - Mac

Alt name Descent 2
Year 1996
Platform DOS
Released in Brazil, Germany, United Kingdom, United States (1996)
France, United States (1998)
Poland (2001)
Genre Action
Theme FPS, Sci-Fi / Futuristic, Shooter, Space Flight
Publisher Interplay Entertainment Corp., Interplay Productions, Inc., SoftKey Multimedia Inc.
Developer Parallax Software Corp.
Perspective 1st-Person
4.47 / 5 - 17 votes

Download extras files
Manual, misc and sourcecode available

Description of Descent II

Read Full Description

Descent 2 is a superb sequel to one of the most original shooters to come along in ages.

If you call yourself a die-hard space shooter fan, but have never played any Descent game before (for example, if you have been living in caves for the past 5 years ;)), here is the skinny: Descent II throws the real world out the window and immerses you in a world where basic concepts like gravity, spatial awareness and up-and-down have no place whatsoever. You pilot a small spacecraft around a zero gravity maze, blasting away flying robots and collecting power-ups as you go. It's a bit trippy at first, but once you get the hang of it (or rather, * if* you get the hang of it), you're in for an incredibly addictive experience that no other game can offer.

Forgot the plot, since it doesn't really matter ;) Descent II expands upon the original's x-y-z axis combat with 30 new levels (culminating in a battle inside the enemy mother ship), a scout recon robot which comes back for you if you fall behind, a suitably loud and grinding soundtrack, a cool but very annoying "thief-bot" enemy that hunts you down and drains your energy, and a new AI scheme that supposedly learn over time to counter your tactics. From a multiplayer point of view, however, things can get just that little bit too confusing, and this is one that you really need to clock up a few hours on before you start to enjoy it to its full potential.

There are two key problems with the game that will confuse and discourage newer players in an online game. First of all, when you get shot you lose all your weapons, and whoever it was that shot you can then collect them all. That means they get even more powerful, while you go back to a pathetic little laser. It can be hard to break that cycle, because it's hard to fight back with nothing.

The other problem is that you can often get killed without even seeing who was shooting you. That's not much fun. You can be bumping around in a corner, trying to get your bearings on the world, when all of a sudden you're blown to bits. Both those key problems assume that the players can actually find each other. Sometimes that's unlikely, especially with some of the mazes being so fiendishly complex that you can simply never really get your head around them.

Despite problems that make multiplayer mode more frustrating than fun for newcomers, Descent II is definitely one of the most rewarding games you will ever play. If you like space shooters or action games in general, you will love this game ? but keep that airsick bag handy and be careful not to walk on ledges after you turn off the computer ;) Two thumbs up, way up!

Note: Parallax has released source codes to the game, to cheers of fans worldwide. This has resulted in numerous fanmade levels for the game. The best places to start looking for them are Descent Network and ZappaFan's Descent Hangout. After finishing this classic, be sure to stop by Interplay's on-line store where Descent 3, the last game in the series, is still being sold at bargain prices.

Review By HOTUD

Descent II has the following addons available: 3D Nightmares and Descent II: Vertigo Series, don't miss them!

External links

Captures and Snapshots

Comments and reviews

Glasses5x 2018-08-22 0 point DOS version

The cut-scenes don't play for me in this one. Also, the screen that's supposed to show you info about the robots you'll encounter in the mine(the same as is in the screenshots here showing the Sidearm 'bot) shows the text but not the image of the bot. What's wrong?

caltrop 2018-07-11 0 point

this is not DOS but Win95/98

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Buy Descent II

Descent II is available for a small price on the following websites, and is no longer abandonware. provides the best release and does not include DRM, please buy from them! You can read our online store guide .

Game Extras and Resources

Some of these file may not be included in the game stores. For Descent II, we have the following files:

ManualEnglish version 2 MB (DOS) MiscMission Builder Manual English version 7 MB (DOS) MiscOpenGL Wrapper English version 2 MB (DOS) SourcecodeEnglish version 1 MB (DOS)
ManualEnglish version 3 MB (Mac)

Other Releases

Descent II was also released on the following systems:



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