A Bunch of Supposedly Fun Roguelikes — Part 2
The continuation of the last thing I did.
A good opening sentence for a written article is among the most challenging tasks that I face regularly. This is why this opening sentence isn’t good, as I’m struggling to come up with something better. However, this is not a beginning; this is a middle point because I’m still going to talk about roguelikes in the future… probably. What I am trying to say is that there are going to be at the very least two more of these.
A while ago, I made a short list of a bunch of roguelikes that caught my attention for whatever reason. And now, I want to talk about more roguelikes that may or may not be worth your time, depending on what kind of person you are, and also because having just one of these isn’t enough. One thing is for sure: I liked these games, which is what matters the most… because I’m writing this article. Other than that, there isn’t much to say.
Anyways, here it is:
Void Bastards is a surprisingly intriguing and in-depth game despite its obscurity. You play as an incarcerated convict in some extra-terrestrial environment, jumping between spaceships to collect resources and complete tasks while defending yourself from psychic aliens. Every time you die, you play as a different convict. It incorporates the familiar action elements of first-person shooters into its design and requires strategic thinking from the player because one wrong move could make all the difference. If I have any criticism, the game is surprisingly short for a roguelike. Once you’re done with the game, there’s not much to do within it afterwards, and the replayability is relatively low because, as I said, it’s a short game. If there was a sequel, it could potentially capitalise on the game’s strengths while learning from its mistakes. However, I don’t think the likelihood of a sequel is high… but it would definitely be nice.
The best thing about Dreamscaper is the presentation, in that you can tell that the developers put a lot of heart and thought into it. The game plays pretty much like any action roguelike out there, in that you have procedurally generated levels with different content and variety, permanent upgrades and non-permanent upgrades, colourful weapons with each one based on the imaginary flexibility of a dream, in that the protagonist can use powers and weapons that are otherwise entirely out of place, like a giant frying pan or a flamethrower or anything else that a dream can conjure. There’s nothing too special about it, but it’s excellent in how it takes simplicity and makes it fun and exciting. It is the sort of game that makes you want to see more of what it could offer. The game is cute in how it tries to emphasise a bit of story in that the protagonist is a woman who recently moved into a new city while socialising with the locals and getting to know them. On the other hand, the narrative bits feel weak, which is odd given that the developers want the player to pay attention to what’s happening with the protagonist. Anyways, this is a roguelike that everyone can expect an enjoyable experience from… it’s like a dream.
Curse of the Dead Gods
This is an interesting addition to the list because I can’t recall why I stopped playing the game two years ago, even though I would say I quite liked it. I recently picked it up again with the intent of giving it a second chance, and it turns out it’s actually quite enjoyable, although the combat is a bit simplistic… but that’s ok. What’s cool about Curse of the Dead Gods is that it has this mechanic where, after a certain amount of effort or levels or whatever, the game applies modifiers that drastically change how the game plays out, from taking away your money to making you weaker in the light to slowing you down and whatnot. I suppose I had a bad hair day when I declared I didn’t like the game, but that was, give or take, two years ago. So yeah, this game is pretty neat.
Astral Ascent is somewhat underrated because I don’t see it promoted or recommended often, i.e., not many people talk about it. The game has excellent 2d combat in that the attacks feel swift and responsive, combined with various magic spells that the player can use in fights. The voice acting is also decent, but the story seems somewhat non-existent when all you want to do is keep on going and fighting all those monsters and casting all kinds of spells. I think it’s good for the gameplay, but the story tries too much. But yeah, if you haven’t heard about this game, then it’s about time so try it out.
Griftlands is unique in that it’s from a favourite (up to an extent) studio of mine, and that is, the Vancouver-based game studio, Klei Entertainment. I have written about some of their works and mentioned that I like their games. Griftlands is unique because it is the only roguelike that is also a deck-builder/turn-based RPG. Because if it weren’t evident already if it’s not an action roguelike, I probably wouldn’t play it… probably. Also, I probably wouldn’t consider playing this game if it wasn’t made by Klei Entertainment, so there’s that too. Though these anecdotes may be somewhat childish, I still think this game is worth checking out since Klei put a lot of effort into it (like all their other games).
This has been yet another list of random roguelikes with a short description for each. Until next time… because there’s definitely at least two more… like I said previously.