Freeware Garden: Roguelight

RogueLIGHT. Not rogue-like. Sheesh...

Seems to me that many readers enjoyed the demanding action of hets, so here’s another tough action-platformer. Roguelight, like everything else in this world, is sort of a rogue-like-like too. In a way. It definitely takes place in 25 levels of procedurally generated dungeons, anyway.

As you may have noticed, this is a heavily-pixelated affair which utilizes a mere four colours to create its lovely subterranean worlds. Yes, it looks almost like a GameBoy game, which makes perfect sense as Roguelight was created for the latest GameBoy Jam that aimed to capture the ageing handheld’s aesthetics. Hence also the tinny music and the simple jump, shoot and move controls.

It was also the highest-rated game of said jam, which does sound pretty fair to me.

Lighting lanterns confuses flying skeletons. One of the many truths gaming teaches us.

Roguelight isa great, beautiful and demanding game, that allows you to play as a sensibly-dressed woman descending a dark network of dungeons with only her bow and a limited supply of flaming arrows to help her. With every subsequent level getting progressively darker and thicker with enemies and traps, wisely managing your limited resources is a skill you must add to your platforming abilities if you want to avoid blindingly stumbling around the dark.

Each time you loose an arrow it will illuminate the area it lands on or, well, should your aim be true, kill an enemy. Or maybe light one of the many hanging lamps. In a brilliantly thought out design move, you can also hold the shoot button to keep your arrow nocked, essentially turning it into a torch and thus fully justifying the game’s title.

Upon your unavoidable first death, you’ll also discover both another smart mechanic and the purpose of those coins you’ve been collecting, as you’ll be transported to an obviously supernatural shop where moneys can be spent to upgrade you abilities and gain extra health and ammo before starting another doomed exhibition.

Roguelight is available to download for Windows on and GameJolt. Oh, and here’s me tipping my feathered hat to Alexey Nikodimov for reminding me of this lovely, lovely game.


  1. Gog Magog says:

    As opposed to Rouge Lide, famous lounge singer.

  2. Spacewalk says:

    I don’t know about Roguelights but I did had a rougelight installed in my room back when I was a no good teen.

  3. DantronLesotho says:

    I bought/played this when it was mentioned from another great game news site, and really enjoyed it. Of all things, this reminded me more of Metroid 2 than anything else, in terms of atmosphere. Really well done game. Apparently this guy Daniel Linnsen also just did a really great LD30 game, but I haven’t taken the time to play it. Definitely a developer I look forward to seeing in the future.

    • Niko says:

      Have you finished it? I was wondering if the path to the left from start area that opens after you beat the boss is somehow different.

    • says:

      reminded me of Metroid 2

      So, dark, depressing and lonely? It may have been 20 years ago, but I still remember The Return of Samus as being one of the loneliest games I’ve ever played. The mood was almost as pervasive as the constant threat of running into a fight you couldn’t handle. (aided by the gameboy screen’s inherently short view distance)

      As for the above screenshot, it does remind me of a the SNES Super Gameboy filter.

      /edit/ After playing ~30 mins of it, I completely agree. The Metroid 2 vibe is further solidified by similar music and sound design.