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Nov 7, 2013
Average Playtime: 4 hours


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Living in a city where the sky is gray 90% of the time, the words "Risk of Rain" feel like an emotion and have a sense of home, calmness and serenity. After seeing the title I had to take a closer look; needed to know what lies beyond. So, what did I find? A very hard, action platformer with few rogue-like elements. You jump, run, shoot and the longer you play the harder it gets. "But every game gets harder the longer you play!" That might be true, but this game has a timer which increases the difficulty every ~3-9 minutes(depending on the difficulty). --> There are 13 character(1 starter + 12 unlockable ones) --> 3 difficulty levels (somewhat managable, hard, ultra hard) --> 10 artifacts which act as gameplay modifiers --> 1-4 player local and online coop So what is the game about? Your spaceship gets attacked and you strand on a nearby planet... that's it. Your first character is the 'Commando', who is the ships ¿captain?, but as you unlock more characters you can also unlock "pieces of story" as each character had a role on board of the spaceship. There's a cook, a repair robot, a prisoner and 9 more individuals. Everyone has their own goals, reasons and endings. After a gruelling journey fraught with slaughter, the impact on the player's character is accentuated by nothing but a single line: "...and so he left, with everything but his humanity." Minimalistic to the point of not existing; only visible to those who want to see. Is there even a story? I'd say, no! Not in the traditional sense at least. There is information, characters and their motivations. And even though the games makes clear that it is not about the story, I still enjoyed the small pieces I was given. This simplicity is somewhat shared with the style of this game. Pixel art which won me over with beautifully drawn backgrounds and the dance of a million particles filling the screen. While there are not many different monster types, the existing ones differ greatly in style and attacks. Additionally the game tries to compensate the few types by having multiple variants of each, where some are invisible and others are on fire. The downside of that simplicity is that you can loose track of the player character easily on higher screen resolutions, or if you zoom out too much, or later in the game when every enemy encounter becomes a fireworks spectacle. The Soundtrack is made by Chris Christodoulou ~and his music was electric~. Songs bound to the level which start slow and build over time, accompanying the ever increasing difficulty. It's a small selection of tunes that range from unremarkable to simply amazing and some are contenders for "best soundtrack ever". Chris manages to put all the sorrow and pain into a haunting melody that also manages to portrait the action on the screen. The soundeffects are rather basic; focusing the players attention and still lending the scene a hint of danger, but never more than that. The sound effects, no matter how loud, lack impact and diversity. Fazit: 5/5 The gameplay is fun, the music is haunting, the story is basic, the style is simple and the _ game _ is _ awesome. The menu is worth mentioning for how bad it is. There is not enough settings, navigation is a nightmare and some elements are not clearly visible. The menu is a UI- and controlability disaster. // Positive + Style - I just love the simplicity + Atmosphere - Denser than Osmium + Music - 5/5 Will become melancholic again + Difficulty - The good kind of hard // Negative - Volume can only be turned from loud to extreme - Menu navigation could use a lot of work - Developers moved on - patches unlikely (there are bugs) - Needs patience and skill, which only few people are ready to practice nowadays
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