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    dkirschner's Risk of Rain (PC)

    [October 30, 2019 09:22:00 PM]
    I caved and looked up how to unlock more characters and watched some Let's Play of the whole game. That gave me an idea: play it on easy mode to just beat the thing, then bump the difficulty back up once I have the satisfaction of seeing credits roll. Well, I played a few rounds on easy, died surprisingly often, but did make it to level 4! Or 5...? Either way, there were multiple bosses and it was very scary. I unlocked another character for beating level 3 and another for finding some hidden container, which I probably wouldn't have investigated if I hadn't seen the Let's Play where the streamer talked about hidden characters in a few levels.

    All in all, Risk of Rain was a really enjoyable game for the 4 hours I spent playing around. It was starting to get a little repetitive, as roguelikes do, since there were just three abilities to use and there wasn't much variation between levels except difficulty increases. I hear Risk of Rain 2 is in early access and it's in 3D. I'll have to check it out!
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    [October 29, 2019 10:58:46 PM]
    A friend showed me this unique roguelike a few years ago and I was smitten with the time-based difficulty mechanic. The longer you play, the harder the game becomes. You have as much time as you want in any given level to collect and buy items, gain experience, and so on, but the more time you spend doing that, the more likely you are to die. Oooh, the tension that balancing act produces!

    At some point, you will need to activate a teleporter to leave to the next level. When you do, a boss comes, a ton of enemies spawn, and you have to stay alive until a 90-second timer runs out. I initially thought that once the timer ran out, you could teleport, but no! You have to kill everything. The function of the countdown seems to be to let you know how much longer until enemies stop spawning, and maybe you get some rewards for killing all remaining enemies before the timer runs out (?).

    Risk of Rain is an engrossing roguelike. Thereís a large pool of random items that really modify your character. You get all sorts of attack bonuses, health bonuses, and movement bonuses. Each character (you start with one, the Commando, and I've unlocked one more) has four abilities and can equip one reusable item. The Commando shoots a gun at long range, has a knockback shot, a dodge roll, and a machine gun burst for a lot of damage. I didnít unlock any new characters for beating level one, and I don't remember where I got the second character (the Enforcer), but there are about 10 more.

    The Enforcer really changes your playstyle. Whereas the Commando is a fast run-n-gun kind of person, the Enforcer is slow and armored. They fire a close-range shotgun blast that penetrates enemies and their special abilities are a knockback, a huge AoE blast, and a crouching stance that increases your rate of fire. Playing the Enforcer is all about lining up enemies, crouching down, and blasting away at them, whereas the Commando is all about rolling around enemies, popping up on the other side of them and firing before moving again.

    One brief criticism is about the items. You can collect a lot and their buffs all stack. But there are no tooltips for them except a brief description that floats away as you pick it up. But unless you know what the item is or does by what it looks like, then you don't really know what all your buffs are or what any of the items you can choose from will do. There's a row of pixelated icons (a green blob, a couple guns, some round thing...) on the bottom of the screen, impenetrable as night. It would be nice if you could hit ESC and have a list of buffs or items that you have. Some of them play well with certain characters, and I imagine I'll learn more of these "combos" as I play. For example, the Enforcer benefits a lot from items that activate when you're standing still. Since the Enforcer is supposed to stand still in a crouch and shoot things, these items are natural fits. But I don't always know if I've got the item because I can't tell what the pixelated objects are supposed to be half the time! I'm sure I'll learn to recognize more and more of them, but it's fairly annoying for now.

    In my second play session I did better than the first, getting to the third level. I didn't unlock any more characters and have no clue how to do so, but I did unlock a ton of new items that now have a chance to drop. Achievements in Risk of Rain are tied to item unlocks. I like achievements that have value within the game. It's more motivating than just achievements for achievements' sake. Anyway, I wind up being absolutely crushed by the third level. I think I've realized that the trick is finding the teleporters as fast as possible, activating them, killing the boss, killing the extra enemies, and getting out of there to the next level. I think the faster you can do this, the easier the game will be. I'm sure there are difficulty modifiers applied to different levels, but it's probably got nothing on the difficulty increases as the timer goes up. It even tells you that it's "easy" or "hard" or "impossible" or whatever. Your character does become pretty badass with like 20 items, but I always become totally outmatched at some point. Sometimes you find teleporters right away; other times it takes 5 minutes. So there's a huge window within which to get screwed over. Fun game, looking forward to trying to press a little further and hopefully see a few more characters.
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    Status

    dkirschner's Risk of Rain (PC)

    Current Status: Stopped playing - Got Bored

    GameLog started on: Monday 28 October, 2019

    GameLog closed on: Wednesday 30 October, 2019

    Opinion
    dkirschner's opinion and rating for this game

    Fun roguelike with tons of weapons and a sweet time-based difficulty mechanic. ------------ Worth a few hours of your time!

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

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