When it rains, it pours.
Roguelike games have gained increasing popularity in the past few years, with titles such as FTL: Faster Than Light, The Binding of Isaac, and Spelunky taking the unlimited potential of random environments, and combining it with short, masterful gameplay.
Risk of Rain treads that very same path, applying the classic tried-and-true Roguelike elements with the nostalgia and simplicity of a Terraria-esque sidescrolling shooter. Similar to its Roguelike kin, Risk of Rain can be punishgly brutal, dropping players into ridiculously impossible scenarios, the majority of which end in a swift and menacing death for the inexperienced.
Environments are randomly generated from a preset of pre-built levels. Within these levels, the entrance, exit, items, and monsters are all randomised. While most playthroughs wont be the same, you’ll often feel a nagging sense of Déjà vu as you explore environments that do feel all too familiar. It is possible to switch things up and play as one of ten unique characters, each of which brings a new and fresh dynamic to the playing experience.
The key stroke of genius in Risk of Rain‘s design is a timer in the top right corner of the screen. Constantly counting ever upwards, the timer has a direct link to the monsters that spawn in each instanced level, and their subsequent power and health. There is a constant subconscious risk and reward management system. Do you play more thoroughly at risk of facing more, stronger enemies, or do you collect the items, kill the boss and leave?
This isn’t made any easier thanks to a lack of any real tutorials or instruction. Players will be dropped into the level, told to find the teleporter and then… well, that’s it, you’re on your own now. If you’re looking for an experience where the game holds your hand, Risk of Rain isn’t for you.
Visually, Risk of Rain delivers, and it oozes character and charm. Your enemies render in high detail, and their animations are superb. This is coupled with an excellent soundtrack and genuinely enjoyable sound design that really breathes life into the game’s world. It’s no Mirror’s Edge, but the haunting sounds culminate with the hectic gameplay to form memorable moments, many of which stand out as my favourite in the Roguelike genre.
Risk of Rain is a refreshingly unique Roguelike title, held back by some minor nuances that some players might find disconcerting. With more polish and patching, this could be a highly renowned title, but as it stands now it’s still a wonderful game. Risk of Rain delivers enticing and enjoyable gameplay that will have you up until 4:00 am in the morning, constantly saying, “Just one more go…”
More information @ http://riskofraingame.com/