Sadly the intensity is broken once you realize the firefights break down into duck, pop up wait for guy to peak his head out of cover, and shoot mechanic. This style of combat is rinse and repeat for most of the game with save for a few battles. Which is sad, because some of the key moments like a helicopter attack on and in an office building and a mission where you need to cover Lynch’s girlfriend in an apartment building across the street are really fun. The level after Kane and Lynch are tortured is one that will be forever burned into my retinas. I just wish there was more of these moments.
Kane and Lynch 2 does make a huge improvement in terms of co-op options over it’s predecessor. Full online play and local play is supported and there’s options for matchmaking too. And while the single player is fun, like all good co-op games, playing this with a friend is much more satisfying. You can really tell that K&L 2 was designed from the ground up for co-op play; level layouts are well crafted into separate paths for cover and flanking maneuvers and there’s a nice balance of weapons to choose from for both close and long range giving players defined roles. One thing that sadly appears to be missing is some of the crazier elements of Lynch from the first game - instance where the players actually see different things. As far as we could tell they weren’t as prominent as the cops/civilians bank scene from the first game.
Co-Op makes the game a bit easier as well. While in the single player game if you get shot you’ll get knocked down and have a chance to get up, a second subsequent knock down will kill you. In co-op this second knockdown is actually revivable by your co-op partner. This can help in some of the trickier situations when the game is throwing what seems like hundreds of guys your way only to be killed by the last group and having to do it all over again. While the checkpoint system seems ok, it never seems to be quite enough, and starting a co-op game will lose any single player checkpoint progress - so you’ll need to restart back at a chapter beginning.
It’s these little nagging issues that constantly remind you that perhaps Kane and Lynch 2 wasn’t quite ready. I hit numerous technical bugs as well - mostly while playing as a guest co-op player over Xbox Live. Cut scenes were missing characters, character animations got stuck, audio cut out on me completely, and the game even crashed at one point. Strangely while playing solo or as the host these seemed almost non existent.