So it’s a roguelike?
On which topic, I played a bit more of City of Brass, with the annoying time-limit turned off. Which meant I got to progress a bit further and mostly enjoy it a bit more, but also somewhat revealed the lack of things to do.
It’s basically just combat, which is mostly just hitting things with a sword or a whip. There are some nice whip tricks, but not actually that many chances to use them. There are some new weapons to find (I got a hammer!) but you’ll be mostly using a sword. There are some different enemies, but they seem to be mainly similar. There is some jumping with the whip, but again there don’t seem to be many chances to actually use it.
The different genie ‘vendors’ you find through the game provide some variety, although it’s partly gambling as you don’t know what anything does until you try it.
But it’s mainly about hitting skeletons with your whip and picking up everything sparkly that you see and avoiding traps. (it basically IS spelunky).
Imho, the floor traps are over-done. I might try the perk that reduces the number. I almost never lose health to enemies, but there seems to be a spike trap behind every bloody door, and I keep forgetting to look down.
I think it’s crystalizing why I don’t really like roguelikes though. Everytime I encounter something new/interesting, I don’t know how to deal with it, so I die. So I have to work my way back through all the familiar stuff again and again, to just get snippets of new/interesting stuff.
I killed a few hundred skeletons with my sword and then I finally met a fire genie… which one hit killed me as I was low on health. He looked kinda interesting but I’m gonna have to fight through a hundred skeletons again to see him again.
I hit things a hundred times with my sword and finally I got a hammer, but then I died shortly after… now I’m back to hitting things with my sword all over again.
I get that the randomization is supposed to offset this, but it also removes a lot of the feeling of progress, from a genre that already lacks a feeling of progress. I also get that the progress is more internal, in terms of learning how to play the game and what things do what, so you can progress further. But regular linear games have that too, but while also making you feel like you’re progressing and also meeting new things.
Every roguelike I’ve played, from Spelunky to FTL to this has ended up feeling like I’m replaying the easy first stages over and over until boredom sets in, in the hope of seeing a little more of the new stuff… which is basically making a genre out of those bloody boss fights with crappy checkpoints where you have to keep fighting through loads of minions to get back to the boss.
I suspect it won’t hold my interest much longer… which is a shame as it looks lovely, and a 1st person PoP game with whip/grappling hook climbing should be right up my alley.