Turn-Based Cyberninja Action: Ronin Out Of Early Access

You're about to get stabbed, son.

I dug the demo of turn-based stealth-o-swordfighter Ronin [official site], and the more-complete Steam Early Access version that Marsh prematurely evaluated sounded even better. It’s a clever blend of real-time sneaking with gadgets then simultaneous turn-based sword combat when that goes tits-up, turning fights into careful ballet of thrown blades and dodged bullets. Playing it made me feel like the coolest cyberpunk assassin, which is of course the highest class of murderer.

I’ve been waiting for the full release before picking it up, and today it finally arrived.

Ronin sees a young lady exacting revenge on a megacorp by murdering people, sneaking into their facilities with a sword, a rope, and a lot of razorwire. She scales walls, swings across ceilings, stringing enemies up into the shadows, smashes through windows, and stabs a whole load of men. It looks a bit Gunpoint-y because that was an initial inspiration, but it’s quite different.

I really did enjoy the ballet, carefully plotting the trajectories of my leaps and throws and anticipating what enemies would do next. The end result is awfully cool once you get the hang of it, though tougher and more numerous enemies throw in more problems.

Ronin is available for Windows from Steam only as I write this, but should appear on GOG and the Humble Store too when they update their listings. It’ll usually cost £9.99/12,99€/$12.99 but has a 25% launch discount for the first week. A demo’s up on Steam as well. Here’s the launch trailer:


  1. ChairmanYang says:

    I remember ranting on message boards 7-10 years ago saying how it was a shame that turn-based games had been seemingly abandoned by developers, and that they had tons of creative and commercial potential. Now we have plenty of more traditional turn-based strategy games and RPGs, and on top that, multiple turn-based stealth games, turn-based shmups, turn-based sports games, turn-based everything. It’s beautiful.

    • salgado18 says:

      You forgot to pass your turn.

    • Christo4 says:

      Well, i think it’s also partly because, first the player base is maturing and it doesn’t like all that twitchy gaming all that much and secondly, to appeal to more casual gamers, who don’t like twitch gameplay.
      Also, it requires a bit more of strategy sometimes, if it’s refined, than real time games and also allows you to think before you act.
      This is mostly my view on it. Not that it’s necessarily a bad thing, since i also feel like it’s a bit more relaxing lately to play something turn by turn instead of having to be bombarded by explosions and stuff shooting every 10 seconds.

  2. aesir_blade says:

    I’m (from the US) seeing a base game price of $12.99 and a digital special edition price of $19.99; is that what the author of the article saw?

  3. Phasma Felis says:

    Here is a thing I did in the demo:

    I began by throwing myself out of a fifth-story window. As I fell I threw my sword through the fourth-story window, shattering the glass and impaling the first guard. I fired a grapple line into the top of the window frame, twisting my fall through a 90-degree arc that sent me arrowing through the window, hit the ground rolling under the second guard’s first shot, retrieved my sword from the dead man’s chest as I tumbled past, and stopped in front of the second guard, on my feet, sword in hand. He didn’t get a second shot.

    I will be buying this one.