Hail: Risk Of Rain Update Adds Two New Characters

Risk of Rain looks like a side-scrolling roguelite-shooter and in most regards that’s what it is. It’s also got a lot in common with ARPGs, in the way its characters’ skills function and in how a newly unlocked character can completely change the way you approach the game. The latest update, version 1.2, is significant because it i) switches the game to a new engine and ii) adds two entirely new classes.

The patch brings a long list of fixes, but the first major change is the switch from Game Maker 8 to Game Maker: Studio. This brings with it performance gains, as explained when announced back in June: it’s “actually-runs-the-final-level-at-60-fps better.” Which sounds good. The switch also paves the way for the game’s release on Mac and Linux, since the Studio version of Game Maker can export to those platforms.

As for the two new classes, they’re the Chef and the Loader and both need to be unlocked as per any other character in the game. I won’t say anymore for the sake of spoilers, but there’s details of how to unlock them and what their new skills are over in this (not entirely complimentary) forum thread.

Don’t know what Risk of Rain is? Read Adam’s review. He liked it and I would probably like it, had I played.


  1. Niko says:


    • gnodab says:

      I would be so excited, if I’d ever managed to unlock any of the classes….

  2. Skaz says:

    Never finished the game because of the laggy last level. This game put my crappy computer to its knees (like, 10 fps or LESS). I’ll give the update a try !

  3. RedViv says:

    Gosh, that’s good news about the engine. The slowdowns in the last stage were really dreadful.

    • Niko says:

      It looked like a purposeful slo-mo at first, but after a dozen or so minutes…

    • Kaeoschassis says:

      Gonna be honest, my laptop’s so old and creaky that it ran kind of slow anytime there were a lot of bads onscreen – so, most of the time. Having said that I’m pretty sure the only reason I beat the last level at all is because it was slow. Jeez that boss is crazy.

    • Stuart Walton says:

      It also caused de-sync issues when the frame-rate dropped.

  4. lowprices says:

    Ooooh. Just started replaying this as well. Completed it for the 2nd time yesterday, and still have a fair few items and 3 or 4 characters to unlock. Glad to see they’re adding more.

    And yeah, the slowdown was a bugger. Turning off the damage readouts helped a bit, but still, glad to see it’ll be fixed.

    • Hex says:

      Who have you used to beat the game, solo? I’ve made it to the…Temple of Ancients? Or something? Some temple. I think that was the 2nd to last stage?

      Anyway, I made it there just once with the Engineer. The’s the only guy I have much success with, and “much” is very relative here.

      I’m told that the…what’s his name. Acid-vomit dino-guy. I’m told he’s a good candidate for running solo successfully.

      Looking forward to hopping back into the update version. Love the game, despite all the mean things it does to my poor mans.

      • scottyjx says:

        I got by with the Engineer, though I think mine was just an incredibly lucky run (which seems to be the case with me and roguelikes). I managed to get something like ten drones following me around. I can’t wait to go back and check the new (and as yet unlocked old stuff) out.

    • lowprices says:

      I completed it with Akrid and the Huntress, solo both times. Akrid is great because half of its attacks are DPS that can damage crowds from a distance, meaning you can stay out of melee range a lot of the time. The Huntress I like because of her ability to attack while moving (and stay locked on to the same target).

      I will say that success both times has had a lot to do with getting plenty of items that add extra damage types to attacks and healing to me. This is why, as much as I love RoR, it falls behind Spelunky. In RoR victory feels a little too conditional on getting lucky with the loot, whereas in Spelunky you can beat any run with nothing more than knowledge of the game’s mechanics and skill (neither of which I have quite enough of, mind you).

  5. Premium User Badge

    Lexx87 says:

    Risk of Rain is absolutely wonderful – the music man! The music fits that world and experience so perfectly that it gives me chills when that guitar kicks in.

  6. eggy toast says:

    New characters is cool but honestly I never got far enough to unlock any of the old ones, soooo

    • lowprices says:

      Might be worth looking at the wiki and seeing if you can unlock Akrid. It’s probably the easiest character to make any progress with.

    • DavishBliff says:

      Once you get over the initial hump of only having a few characters to choose from (the Enforcer just isn’t very good, unless they buffed him, which they may have done), and you start getting some of the really good items unlocked, you’ll start unlocking things (and characters) really regularly, and you’ll reliably get late into the game with every run. I actually don’t think the game is nearly as hard as everyone makes it out to be, though it is tough in the first several hours.

      • Hex says:

        Wow. Must be nice.


        Once you get over the initial hump of only having a few characters to choose from (the Enforcer just isn’t very good, unless they buffed him, which they may have done), and you start getting some of the really good items unlocked, you’ll stop unlocking things (especially characters) regularly, and you’ll get late into the game on very rare occasions. This game is hard as fuck, but it’s extremely fun, so keep chipping away!

        • David Bliff says:

          Huh, it must depend on what characters you play. I don’t consider myself terribly good, I just don’t tough it out with bad characters once I’ve completed at least one of their challenges.

          On normal difficulty with most (not all – some of the challenges are downright impossible) items unlocked, the huntress and acrid are basically automatic guaranteed game-winners if you don’t go for the endless levels, and the engineer will usually get you to the end too depending on what items you get around the second and third level.

  7. rondertaker says:

    the biggest problem with this game for me was trying to climb ladders while playing with a gamepad. incredibly frustrating. other than that i really enjoyed it, maybe the new engine will fix that?

  8. Discosauce says:

    Good news indeed! I’ve beaten the game with a few characters, but then set it aside. I welcome a reason to jump back into it. Has anyone tried out the multi-player? I never did get around to it (as it is only really appealing to me if I’m playing with someone I know, and no one else had it).

    • DavishBliff says:

      The netcode occasionally has issues, but a lot of this has to do with the engine causing desyncs, so it could be that that’s been resolved. It’s fun with a friend or two, though you have to communicate about who’s getting which items or you get radically unbalanced games where one player has all kinds of power-ups and the other doesn’t have much of anything. So in that sense it helps to know the strengths and weaknesses of each character (you don’t want a “chance to do extra damage per hit” on the sniper, who fires really slowly).

      I think the main thing is that there are some characters who aren’t viable on their own (like the sniper) but who can do reasonably well in a multiplayer match. I enjoy it a fair amount.

  9. Hmm-Hmm. says:

    Mac version inbound? Excellent!

  10. Tusque D'Ivoire says:

    I love everything about Risk Of Rain, the pixely small-and-cute but at the same time large scale art style, the music, the characters and their abilities that make this game such a thoroughly original crowd-control platformer.

    However, I still cannot completely fathom the long term grinding that is required to unlock the later-stage characters. I completed the game a few times with acrid and another character, but the skill and patience that was required to progress further into the unlocking tree was too much for me. I was hoping that some kind of shortcut would be patched in at a later stage, but instead it just seems to have been extended. Still, for teeth-grindingly fanatic Roguelike enthusiasts, this has a lot of meat!

  11. DavishBliff says:

    Easily my favorite game of 2013 (and my most-played through most of 2014 until CoH2 sucked me back in). I’m super excited to get home from work and jump back into this for the first time in months. I’m really glad the game’s been so successful, as it’s really well deserved, and I’m even happier it’s been supported so well post-launch. The developers owned up to the fact that some characters just weren’t very good and they made meaningful changes to improve that. I can’t wait for the Vita port!

  12. Michael Fogg says:

    Interesting to know this is made with Gamemaker. Makes you think that you could too, one day… ‘Okay, let’s remake Pong in Gamemaker’ [15 minutes later] ‘Heck, this is complicated, maybe I’ll rather play something instead’.

  13. jalf says:

    To all the people complaining about the difficulty, one word:


    Get a friend, and play together. Not only does it become infinitely more fun, so you won’t mind starting over regularly, it also helps balance out the difficulty quite a bit.

  14. kikito says:

    I was never able to get past the first levels with the starter character. Maybe it is not my type of game.

    • David Bliff says:

      The starting character is really boring. I reinstalled the game on my laptop which unfortunately means I lost the progress I had made on my desktop which is unfortunately in another country, and it’s really annoying being stuck with the starting character! Play until you get Acrid, the Huntress, or the Engineer, they’re the most interesting and the easiest to play as.

      • Kaeoschassis says:

        I love the commando to bits! Got my first and thus-far only win with him, and still play him despite having a bunch of other characters. Probably the only one who interests me about as much is the sniper.

      • MaXimillion says:

        The Commando is a great solo character. You’ve got mobility and survivability in your roll, AoE damage in your penetrating shot, and single target in your full auto, which also synergises well with all the proc items. It’s probably my favourite character after the Mercenary.

  15. joshg says:

    FYI, the new engine seems to have brought with it a few new bugs. When I tried yesterday, keyboard play is completely broken unless you go to the options and disable gamepad support. (No idea what happens if you want to do local co-op with both.)

    Also, pro tip to those who haven’t played since last year: the Artifact update from earlier adds interesting changes to the game, and the one you want to get the most is the “Items are no longer random” artifact. Getting to choose items makes those tough solo runs much more possible, and lets you customize how your character improves to match your play style.

    (Stacking on-kill effects: priceless.)

    • MaXimillion says:

      If you want to really cheese the game with artifacts, use the mod that spawns all enemies as elites, grab a clover as your first green item, and then just farm the first level stacking barbed wires. You’ll get a large enough damage aura that you just kill everything off-screen. For extra fun, add in one ceremonial dagger.

  16. BooleanBob says:

    This is no small potatoes; really generous stuff from Chucklefish. As if I needed further temptation to sink hours into that game…

    • MaXimillion says:

      The game is made by Hopoo Games, Chucklefish just helped them with publishing.