Crypt Of The NecroDancer Combines DDR, Roguelikes

Smooth skelegrooves

Back in my day, combining chocolate and peanut butter was the height of invention. Anything beyond that, incidentally, was viewed as witchcraft punishable to the fullest extent of the law – which at that point basically meant having your limbs tied to very determined geese as they yanked you in various directions until it hurt a little. Now, though, we live in a lawless “progressive” society where all sorts of mad alchemical science isn’t just allowed; it’s encouraged! Case in point: Crypt of the NecroDancer combines Dance Dance Revolution and roguelikes. Madness! Heresy! The end of civilization as we know it! Also, pretty cool looking.

It’s definitely rhythmic. I’ll give it that. I’ll reserve judgment for the roguelike elements until I can examine them in greater detail, but on the whole Crypt of the NecroDancer looks like it could actually, er, work. Pretty well, even! But what actually makes this whole system tick? Well, developer Brace Yourself Games describes it as:

“A roguelike with enforced turn duration. The duration of each turn is the time until the next beat. Also, to cast spells you use DDR-like key combos: To cast fireball, for example, you press the left and right keys at the same time.”

As a result, NecroDancer is actually quite playable with a DDR pad, which is something I would never, ever, ever do unless you all promised not to look. Oh, and if you didn’t like the music in the trailer, no problem. You’ll apparently be able to play to your own MP3s as well. Just, you know, maybe pick something slow to start with. A soulful blues number, perhaps. Or Justin Bieber slowed down 800 percent.

The game doesn’t have a release date just yet, but that’s probably for the best. I can’t imagine that Frankenstein-stitching these two genres together is particularly easy, so I can’t fault Brace Yourself for taking their time.


  1. Berzee says:

    This looks fun! Also slightly brilliant, and perhaps stressful.

    Also, the mention of DDR reminds me of that article on here a while ago about the A.I. that invented pun-names for games and came up with the Best Name: “France France Revolution”!

    Those were good times.

    • eliza321 says:

      If you think Dawn`s story is neat,, two weaks-ago father in law basically easily made $9264 sitting there twenty hours a week from home and there friend’s aunt`s neighbour was doing this for 4 months and got a cheque for over $9264 in their spare time on-line. applie the guidelines here,

    • riverman says:

      I’ve been all over the rougelikes this week, and I have to say that you are definitely right about the “stressful” element; I was uneasy just watching the demo. I don’t know why, but it makes me uneasy in the same way that intelligence cube did.

  2. Teovald says:

    Damn you RPS, now I have to consider buying a DDR pad.

  3. pupsikaso says:

    Um, so those with sound on their PC and not 90% deaf like me, can you tell me if there’s supposed to be some kind of funky music that you play to?

    Because to me it just looks like any other modern roguelike but with lots and lots of nauseating screen-shaking.

    And if there’s funky music how does it tie into the mechanics of the game other than just being a funky music track?

    • Sian says:

      Pretty funky music, yes. Everything seems to move in time with the beat, and from the dev quote I’d say that’s what ties music and mechanics together. I don’t know how this’ll work out – it seems to me that it would make the controls feel somewhat unresponsive.

      • golem09 says:

        I guess every control decision you make has to be spot on and executed at the right moment.
        I love music games, and I love roguelikes.

        Oh please be awesome. Please?

        • Rikard Peterson says:

          There’s an iPhone game – Beat Sneak Bandit – that’s built on that mechanic. It’s pretty fun. That game is a “one button game” though (no buttons on a iPhone, but hopefully you get my point), so it’s all about timing.

          • golem09 says:

            What I like about this game so much, is that you don’t just have to follow the beat, but also make decision, and not use one button tap the next thing.

  4. pakoito says:

    24-minute impressions here: link to

    • golem09 says:

      Oh yes, this should be in the article. Looks like a lot of fun.

  5. nebnebben says:

    That trailer made me smile. Nice to see some innovation around.

  6. Monkeh says:

    I’ve never been into turn-based roguelikes, but this looks like so much fun!

  7. MadTinkerer says:

    I can’t believe I didn’t think of this one myself. I need to try it with the Parappa The Rapper soundtracks…

  8. Taiphoz says:

    This game is being made in a Language called Monkey, can be found over at its a brilliant language thats easy to learn and there are a ton of really cool mobile games coming out that were secretly made with it.

  9. Paul.Power says:

    That is a hell of a funky bassline intro.

    Pity the game taps into two of my biggest gaming blind spots though.

  10. Agrona says:

    So I have some PS2 DDR pads. Is there a (cheap) way to connect those to my PC to play this?

    (Also, this would be awesome with co-op)

    • pakoito says:

      Just connect them and plug xpadder in to map the mat to the game’s keys.

    • Kranchan says:

      Just go search USB to Playstation 2 on Amazon…that said there is an issue with Windows 7 where if you use a PS2 pad with a USB converter it will read the up and down as one axis and left and right as another instead of individual buttons. It causes it to not work properly because if you want to push and hold up and then push down it won’t register down because up is the major and down is the minor on the axis. Look into getting a pad that has native USB support.

  11. Bahoxu says:

    This looks like a game i wouldnt want to play myself but i would LOVE to watch a letsplay of it.

  12. golem09 says:

    I just dawned on me now…
    Are really only the four direction buttons used for ALL the gameplay?

  13. LionsPhil says:

    Oh, and if you didn’t like the music in the trailer, no problem.

    Now who wouldn’t like the music in that trailer? Funky.

  14. Bobtree says:

    Screen shaking on every single hit is just ridiculously abusive.