Text To Screams: Rogue Survivor

John's got brewer's droop, he gets intimidated by the dirty zombies. They love a bit of 'im!

That’s Rogue as in Nethack and Angband, not Rogue as in Han Solo and backstab damage multipliers, alas. Courtesy of the IndieGames blog, Rogue Survivor is a zombie survival game from the Dwarf Fortress school of development- barebones interface and MAXIMUM FEATURES. It’s currently enjoying some rapid development, but you can already recruit other survivors, trade with them, use carpentry to barricade doors and windows and gradually work your way towards a Left 4 Dead style safehouse and/or taking on the mysterious creature that prowls the sewers. You can get it here, read the wiki here and there’s a guide to surviving your first week here. Warning! Movement defaults to the numpad. A Let’s Play video that highlights plenty of the game’s features lurks after the jump.


  1. Kristian says:

    I was holding my breath for a multiplayer roguelike zombie survivor game… but even without multiplayer this seems awesome.

  2. Berm says:

    Between this and Dead State, our sandbox zombie apocalyptic fun will be spoiled.

  3. Mike says:

    That really sounds great. No mac installer I think?

  4. Shakey-Lo says:

    i’ve been playing this the past few days and it is indeed awesome.

  5. Escalus says:

    Love nethack, this looks fun!

  6. Dylan M. says:

    Looks pretty good, so going to have to give it a try soon. I have to admit I’m a sucker for a good roguelike, even if I do suck at them.

    On a different note, I had to chuckle because I have another video up which is a Let’s Play by the same guy.

  7. FalseMyrmidon says:

    How terrible is the interface in this in contrast to Dwarf Fortress?

    • DojiStar says:

      Rogue Survivor has a pretty intuitive and easy interface. There really aren’t all that many commands and you never have to flip around to different screens or anything. You’ll master it in a few minutes and maybe have to look up a few more obscure commands once in a while (like when you start getting followers and building your gang/army).

      Nothing like DF.

    • Caleb367 says:

      Hey, DF’s interface makes perfect sense once you’ve grown accustomed to it. Just think like a dwarf! (that is, stop everything you’re doing to get drunk)

    • Shakey-Lo says:

      I don’t think the comparison to DF is fair, I have had no problems with the interface.

    • Caleb367 says:

      Can’t wait to see Toady One integrating mouse commands in DF, though.

    • Premium User Badge

      Waltorious says:

      Comparisons to Dwarf Fortress are not very good. It’s much better to compare it to a “traditional” roguelike such as Nethack, Angband or Dungeon Crawl. Such games have lots of features and often quite a few commands, but they are much easier to learn than Dwarf Fortress.

    • BAReFOOt says:

      @Caleb367: Yeah, and so does VIM’s interface. (Or Emacs’.) Doesn’t mean it’s friendly or well-designed. Software developers tend to go two ways:
      1. Assume the user is a complete idiot who probably drools himself while using it, and therefore make it as easy as possible. Meaning: Too easy. Or:
      2. Design the “perfect” hardcore professional UI, that nobody is able to use. Then call them idiots when they don’t like it, and act like you’re someone better. Fact is: It’s still just as bad as (1). It’s just the other extreme.

      What apparently no-one gets, is that there is no either-or. You can make it perfect for everyone. By allowing the UI to adapt to the user. I’ve done such things. It’s not very hard. First rule: Always show all directly accessible function and all context/mode switching ones (for the indirect ones) too. Second rule: Offer a keyboard shortcut for every function and context/mode switch that you show. And show those shortcuts too.
      In essence like a always visible context menu with one-key shortcuts.

      This makes it as powerful as VI(M), and as easy to use as Notepad.
      There are other ways too. Like giving your UI functions structure. And multiple ways to approach it.

  8. Xav says:

    This looks cool!

    “Please be as cool as you seem….game….please…please….don’t let me down”

  9. OctaneHugo says:

    It’s a fun game but there’s quite a bit of it that pisses me off. There’s a difference between “challenging” and “ass backwards design decisions that provide pointless challenge”.

    But it’s been a few months, so perhaps it’s time for a re-download.

    • RvLeshrac says:

      I’m sure the developer is terribly sorry that his ALPHA doesn’t meet your expectations.

      You can’t really have valid criticism about a game, or an application for that matter, until it hits Beta. Anything prior to that is really still just conceptual work.

    • DrGonzo says:

      I don’t see why he isn’t allowed to criticise something that has been released onto the internet for us to try. In fact that will be the EXACT reason why he released to the alpha. So leave the man alone.

  10. Caleb367 says:

    Played with it a bit and man it’s awesome. My character just spent the better part of an afternoon pushing a bed stolen from across the street into a pharmacy i had turned into a safehouse, by breaking the glass doors and blocking the way with shelves. More shelves to form a second “wall” inside to house my bed and food storage, i was getting in and out by pushing the shelf away. Raided the grocery store down the street for food, got chased by zombies, got inside and thought to reinforce the barricade by pushing a car in front of the doors. As pushing a car leaves you exhausted and midnight – when new zombies get out – rapidly approaching, i called it a day and stuck with the basic barricade.

    Bad idea.

    Zombies smashed the shelves without me noticing (sound asleep…). Got jumped by one and killed.
    Note to self: only one way in means also only one way out.
    Note on note: that was the entire freaking point of Night of the Living Dead. Hey Me, you’re a moron. :P

    • Bret says:

      Why I always leave helicopters on the roof.

      You never can tell when you’ll need one.

    • DrGonzo says:

      Well, I wouldn’t say it was the entire point of Night of the Living Dead, but it was A point.

  11. Pani says:

    Love PlumpHelmetPlump, his laid back style suits Let’s Plays (watched most of his SS13 vids).

  12. Jsnuk says:

    I woke up in the middle of the night and heard screams to the north, hastily unbarricading my little grocery story I rushed out and was immediately greeted by the horrifying sight of several skeletons attackin an injured man. I dispatched them with my pistol and then went over to the man, expecting to be thanked, or rewarded sexually. However, he just offered me a can of food for my gun…

    • dadioflex says:

      Yeah, but have you played the game yet?

    • NecktieGrins says:

      Yeah, I’m hoping he puts a little more logic behind the deals NPCs offer. A panicked policeman running from a zombie offered to trade me his fully-loaded pistol for a can of food.

      Uh, officer, I don’t think hunger is the foremost of your worries, but, thanks!

      Also, the downside to getting a gang is that they don’t often seek out food for themselves and so will follow you unitl they die of starvation unless you give them your own food.

  13. Shagittarius says:

    This game is not very good.

    • Tilla says:

      This comment is not very good

    • Kristian says:

      This reply is even worse

    • geldonyetich says:

      Technically, a critical comment pointing out the lack of constructive feedback while lacking constructive feedback in itself is slightly better than the original lack of constructive feedback to begin with as it does at least contain a modicum of constructiveness via the context.

      Also: brains!

      Haven’t installed it yet, but judging by the gameplay video I’d say the game is somewhat lacking in polish and content. Provided the author keeps hammering away at it, those should come in time.

  14. Harlander says:

    I started making a game ages ago that, if I’d have finished it, would have been very much like this.

    However, I sucked and failed to get it even remotely finished. If I’d known this was going to be made, I’d never have even started.

    Behold, the power of laziness!

  15. Robsoie says:

    It is impressive how much this survival game improved since its original release.
    It was very interesting originally, and it grew a lot of new content and gameplay that it is really a must play if you like survival games in zombie outbreak setup.

    Oh and find the hospital and all the nurse, patients and doctors inside, go into another floor and sleep in one of the room.
    Then try to exit the building, just epic.

    • Harlander says:

      Don’t forget to look in the basement for some sub-genre-crossing fun.

  16. NecktieGrins says:

    Anyone know why the guards in the office building shoot you down?

    • geldonyetich says:

      Because CHAR Corp is basically the bad guys, like Umbrella Corp in Resident Evil.

      I don’t consider that much of a spoiler considering I figured that out just watching the gameplay video.

  17. Pemptus says:

    From the screenshot I thought it was some kind of roguelike Frogger.

  18. the blueprint project says:

    i love this site full of great content

  19. DJ Phantoon says:

    It’s fun.

    That’s all there really is to say on the matter.

  20. Orteko says:

    I liked it – managed to survive 16 days until a horde of zombies overran my safehouse and I was forced to make a run for it.

    Almost made it out to another district before getting surrounded – didn’t see another living npc so i’m guessing they ate everyone else and I was the only treat left around.

    Checking the creators site it looks like he has many more features on the way so this will be something to keep an eye on.

  21. Orteko says:

    Alpha6 is now out, adds some more bits and pieces including the ability to attack and murder other survivors to steal their stuff (and for them to do the same to you).

  22. Robsoie says:

    Alpha 6 is wonderfull, the survivors having some kind of personnality definitively add another layer of depth and tension in this wonderfull survival game.

  23. Lightbulb says:

    I think I will return to this in a few months when its a bit more complete… Or maybe thing afternoon :)