Hunter: The Reckoning-Wayward is a third-person isometric action game with RPG elements, that picks up a couple of years after Hunter: The Reckoning. The game plays almost the same as the first, but since it was released exclusively on the Playstation 2, only two players could play simultaneously, as opposed to the previous game's four.
There are four basic statistics: Strength, Dexterity, Stamina, and Conviction. Strength governs how much damage the character will do with their melee attack, Dexterity controls ranged damage, Stamina is how much health each has, and Conviction affects both how powerful Edges are and how much magic points the character possesses. Speaking of Edges, these are the names of the special abilities each hunter has who's affects range from direct attack, healing or making the hunter more powerful for a short time. Several different combos can be unleashed with different button-presses and combinations, including an evasive attack and a 360-degree sweeping attack.
Unlike the first game, Hunter: The Reckoning-Wayward is played from a hub from which the players can choose what order to tackle the missions. Another difference is that the default weapons for each hunter begin with 100 shots and can be depleted. Another difference is that throughout the game, the fight will be joined by two other hunters and one more can be unlocked after beating the game on the unlockable Nightmare difficulty. As in the previous game, health and conviction are restored through red and blue crystals dropped by enemies, though in this game they are more common than previously.
It's been two years since Ashcroft was returned to some semblance of normalcy after a rave turned deadly and unleashed a horde of undead. The four hunters who slew the monsters and sealed away the evil that had possessed the town have gone their separate ways, but an e-mail from Hunter.net has caused them to return to the scene of their original conflict. They find the town overrun by a mysterious cult that is seeking to bring another great evil through a portal located in the town. Innocents are in danger and the hunters are called to once again bring peace to the town. But what of the other two hunters who called the original four here? Especially the mysterious Devin, who seems to have motives beyond merely hunting the monsters.
Once again, the four hunters from the original game return to hunt the evil of Ashcroft.
Spencer "Deuce" Wyatt: A hulking biker with a kind heart, Deuce wields a giant battle-ax with his enormous strength making him extremely mighty in close quarters. However, his rifle does not allow him to deal great damage from a distance, and he has low conviction, meaning his edges quickly deplete his meter and also lack punch. He makes up for this by being enormously difficult to kill, having high Stamina. He represents the "Avenger" creed, when not dealing damage directly, strengthening himself to kill the undead.
Samantha Alexander: A determined police detective who left the force for private sector work. She wields a samurai-style katana and scoped six-shooter giving her middle-of-the-road melee and ranged damage. Her conviction and stamina are also good and her edges involve buffing her friends and debuffing her enemies since she follows the Defender creed.
Kassandra Cheung: The spry young woman with a charitable heart was the perennial party girl until volunteering in a hospital taught her the value of sacrifice. To this end, she took on the creed of Martyr, making herself more powerful at the cost of her own health. She wields two kamas and .45 caliber handguns, making her extremely quick with both ranged and melee attacks. Her ranged attacks are much stronger than her melee though and she can't take much punishment, especially with her edges reducing her health.
Father Esteban Cortez: The Chaplin of Ashcroft prison until the "incident" of years ago, Esteban Cortez uses his holy power and Judgement creed to stop evil wherever it occurs. He wields a crusader-style sword for close-combat, and a crossbow for range, but his real strength in his boundless conviction which allows him to destroy hordes of undead with ease. Another advantage he has are his wooden arrows that can pierce the heart of vampiric enemies, killing them instantly.
There are also two new hunters who join the fight:
Joshua Matthews: The man who summoned the four hunters back to Ashcroft after seeing a resurgence of evil activity has chosen the creed Wayward. This means he's given up a large part of his humanity in order to set emotions aside for the greater good and in defense of the innocent. His own past has become irrelevant to him, all that matters is the hunt. He wields a massive crowbar with the strength of Deuce and an automatic pistol with much greater accuracy. His conviction is the envy of Esteban Cortez and his stamina is nothing to laugh at either. He's definitely a force to be reckoned with when he joins the party midway through the game
Devin: Joshua's former partner, we see Devin in the introduction of the game as a man clearly pushed to the limits of his own sanity. This snaps at some point in the game and he decides that the only way to rid the world of evil is to take away any hold the evil could get. In his own twisted mind, this means murdering all the innocent people he can find. He uses his massive broad sword well enough, but he really excels with his high-caliber handgun and, when being fought as an antagonist, a high-powered rifle. His conviction is the highest in the game. He is unlocked as a selectable character after defeating him in the course of the game.
Carpenter: The raspy wraith from the first game returns, brought back through unknown means and still as pissed off as ever, Carpenter returns as a selectable player after completing the game on Nightmare difficulty and is encountered a few times throughout the plot. All his stats are maxed out, he once again wields two daggers and two UZIs. Carpenter doesn't technically have edges, but he has three abilities that approximate Word of Power, Enrage and Ward (called Crescendo, Purify and Phantom respectively).
Edges are the powers that each hunter wields using their conviction. Each Edge possesses three levels increasing in power with each rank.
Cleave: Sets the hunter's melee weapon ablaze with magical energy for a time. Their melee power is increased greatly as long as the weapon glows. At higher levels, the glow lasts longer and is more powerful. Possessed by: Deuce Wyatt, Joshua Matthews
Impact: Similar to Cleave, but for your ranged weapon, impact only lasts for one shot so make it count. As the level increases, so does the damage dealt by the shot. Possessed by: Deuce Wyatt.
Smite: A ring of damaging energy radiates outward from the hunter, causing any enemies around the hunter to take damage. At higher levels the ring's radius as well as stopping power increase. Possessed by: Deuce Wyatt.
Ward: This edge generates a barrier around the hunter that will damage any enemy that gets near, as well as repelling them. As the level increases, so does the area of effect. Possessed by: Samantha Alexander. Deuce Wyatt.
Word of Power: A massive explosion of damaging energy projected outward and forward. It's enough to kill most regular enemies outright and cause massive damage to bosses. With higher levels come higher damage, longer reach and a wider blast. Possessed by: Father Esteban Cortez.
Burden: Forcing any enemy caught in the blast radius to feel the weight of their sins, this edge freezes enemies in place for a short duration. The duration and radius increase with each level. In addition, the amount of health required from the Martyr decreases. Possessed by Kassandra Cheung. Father Esteban Cortez
Rejuvenate: This incredibly useful edge will heal the caster as well as any ally, including ones controlled by the computer during escort missions, standing close enough. With each ascending level, the amount of health restored as well as the radius of effect increase. Possessed by Samantha Alexander. Father Esteban Cortez.
Rally: By imbuing their allies with conviction, a hunter can use Rally to decrease the damage taken for a short time. Duration increases with levels. Possessed by: Father Esteban Cortez.
Demand: By sacrificing a portion of health, the hunter's stats are all increased for a short time. As the level increases, so does the duration and the health cost will decrease. Possessed by Kassandra Cheung. Samantha Alexander
Retribution: Any enemy who strikes you, bosses included, will have their damage not only reduced against you, but visited back upon them in full. Possessed by: Kassandra Cheung
Blaze: Another radiating damage edge, this one not only damages, but freezes enemies as it sets them on fire. Greater levels will bring about greater range and longer stun duration. Possessed by Kassandra Cheung
Pinpoint: A semi-circle is sent forward from the hunter, at first having no effect but to "mark" enemies with a symbol. Any enemy, including bosses, marked as such will be far more susceptible to damage. Possessed by: Joshua Matthews
Enrage: The hunter conjures up all the anger in their heart and projects it out, increasing their own attack and accuracy, as well as those around them. The duration and radius increase with each level. Possessed by: Joshua Matthews
Spiral: Another radiating attack, but this one takes off an increasing percentage of health from an enemy. The radius as well as percentage increases with each level.
Blast: A different type of Word of Power, but with basically the same effect. Possessed by: Samantha Alexander.