One your former employers, Kira, has an offer you can't refuse, and this involves venturing beyond the familiar arcology into a brand new zone, known as the Dark Playground, which is owned by the rival Malhorst-Gelb Group. If like me you were hoping for a change in atmosphere from the new zone you're going to be disappointed–it's still very "5th Element meets Blade Runner and they bump into Cyberpunk."
The Ascent: Cyber Heist is set after The Ascent’s main story and is accessible only when you've completed the main campaign–which–as you'll know if you've read our review of the main game–is no mean feat solo. It was probably wise that they made it so only the host had to have completed the original story, so you can invite 3 friends in to play regardless of how far they'd progressed or what level they are.
Naturally there’s some new weapon tech to be found and utilised but you're going to have to fight to get your hands on it. The Cyber Heist will put all the skills you learned in the original campaign to the test and teach you some new ones—including using melee weapons. I'm not sure if swords and sledgehammers really suit the way the game plays, but they do provide one-hit kills and a different style of gameplay. I certainly had some fun with them before returning to my tried and tested loadout from the original game.
The game obviously still suffers from the same old problems due to the "Diablo" top-down view, the extremely complex scenery and the ever-present neon lighting, which can get blindingly harsh and deliberately makes things difficult to see. The Cyber Heist supplies a series of extra Main & Side Missions (from NPCs you meet) often seemingly against impossible numbers of enemies and with the tired old "standoff" missions that became the norm in the main game.
I saw Cyber Heist priced at £7.99 on Xbox.com which I thought was rather overpriced, but at £3.59 with Game Pass it represents pretty good value to The Ascent veterans hungering for a chunk more of the same. It's just a shame they didn't show a bit more imagination with the gameplay, the storyline and the setting.