First impressions of Synthetik 2 are really conflicting. On one hand, I love a lot of the new ideas for items/classes and am looking forward to playing them and learning them. New environments can be really fun to walk around in. However, there is something that I really heavily disagree on. And it's the non implementation of active items outside of your starting kit. For some, Synthetik 1 had an item overload issue where some players felt uncomfortable having 7 active items. Many felt like they couldn't get value out of them and were instead a lot more comfortable with 2-3 main ones and everything else being passive. Fortunately for them, Synthetik's design allowed for this. There are a plethora of both active and non active items to form a build around and to craft an identity around. If you wanted to have a bunch of tools for a situation you could run around with all of your actives or if you wanted to be braindead you could fill up with passives. It was relatively easy to side either direction due to the quantity of both and the nature of tokens. Synthetik 2 allows for none of this. The identity of your run will be heavily determined from the get go. Every active item you get you start with. There is no swapping them out. This limits possibilities greatly and will have an over arching effect of making each run feel less unique. It's hard to build an identity around stuff that is proccing independently of the player. Less direct control and more randomness tends to lead to less mastery required for a better result. Knowing when to use your knife, methadone, or refractor crystal can be crucial in Synthetik 1. And it's something that comes with a lot of playing. Having your Rosarius proc mid-fight can technically be planned around and played with. But it also just happens. You can't save it for an unforeseen situations. On the same topic of runs blending together. The chip progression sounds cool and will probably be fun. But again more control at the start of the run before things get going and less variation after the run starts is really disheartening to see. Learning to deal with the random bullshit the game gives you is at the very heart of roguelike/lites . Having guaranteed things is fine but if it's not balanced out it becomes overbearing. In Synthetik 1 I would get excited about the prospect of playing Specialist and getting both shotgun systems. And then maybe Kunai too. My entire build would be messing around with all my projectile items and then getting an eminence. Or maybe I would try and get all of the active grenade/explosive items. And not fire my gun ever. Stuff like this just won't happen in a comparable capacity. Another item related thought.
Deciding what items were better or more useful than others in Synthetik 1 was pretty interesting a lot of the time. The the reverbing blade was a lot weaker and tied to Commando instead of Raider, there was a time and point where you would heavily consider selling it. Making room for other things. The same can be said about many other class items. Having only 4 slots competing for room means less room for experimentation. It encourages sticking to the meta as close to possible. In Synthetik 1 there was usually room even in tryhard runs to have 1-2 items (depending on the class) to experiment with.
While the current iteration of items in the S2 build is not as we like yet, in general the plan is to make items behave similar to before but not require the ability press anymore. Also we noticed that in S1 most items that had a press were only being used in the early game and then required way too much attention mid-lategame, like shotgun system and kunai, so we put these type of items more into the classes and class specializations or convert them to trigger based
The new system will still give you a turret or shotgun system but automatic
Also we have much greater upgrades now and upcoming, items can now be upgraded with extra or reduces charges, double / quad proccs, multi cast, free casting and all such things and allows for things we did not even consider
You will also a bit later be able to upgrade class abilities (or maybe items also) with further 'actions', it is now technically possible to add abilities onto abilities, so one can do things like make your dash cause an AOE stun or such things
Something like Kunai by design was 100% a class core item, something you play around all the time, so something like that will return as class ability. One concern I see is with an item like a health vial or shaker, but then shaker people use on cooldown and vial you always want when going low health, so this could be automated without any downgrade
Shops in general now also provide multiple choices and things have more synergies so it should be easier to go for certain paths
so far in our build I did not feel like I was missing out on abilities to press, I felt more like I was already forgetting to use my existing 4 class abilities to be honest but I will monitor this topic closely If it really dosn't work then we likely add a ROR style slot for one switchable active ability/item