When Shank released for the PC, Xbox LIVE Arcade and PSN towards the end of the summer of 2010, it arrived as a unique, independently developed, 2D hack n’ slash that almost no one saw coming. The title had made small, respectable waves at both PAX and E3 before it dropped; but, it’s likely that Klei Entertainment, the game’s studio, didn’t expect its strong reception. Mostly positive critical reviews and strong sales have lead the studio to work on a sequel.

Shank 2 has officially been announced.

The game has not earned its own specific release window yet, but the press releasing indicated that it will enjoy a new multiplayer survival mode and is rooted in the same storyline as the first title.

Jamie Cheng, Founder of Klei Entertainment and one of the leads on Shank, was quoted in the press releasing announcing this sequel. that fan response has helped them work on Shank 2:

“Creatively, Shank still has a lot to give…We took the feedback from the community and ran with it, putting our own flavor on every change. For Shank 2, we literally took apart the game and put it back together to push the envelope in combat mechanics, visuals, and 2D animation in games.”

Part of the love heaped on the original Shank came from the blend of animation fluidity and combat. Moving from one opponent to the next felt almost liquid as the connection between every type of attack was downright seamless. According to both Cheng and the text of the press release itself, that animation will be pushed even harder in this sequel.

Finally, Shank 2 has an official blog. In its second post, Klei made this bold, exciting claim:

Shank 2 is the best thing that Klei has done to date: we didn’t want to just “build more Shank”, we redesigned all the underlying systems to give you twice the fidelity and far more control over our favorite stabbing man.

We’ll take it.

Just like the first game, Shank 2 is being published by EA.