Mayan Death Robots Is Worms With Cyborg Gods

I adored Worms when I was younger. By the time I’d gotten round to Worms 2, I was (The People’s) elbow-deep in WWF Attitude-era fandom, and named umpteen squads after wrestling teams. I loved it. I loved the weapons, the arenas, the competition – against friends or against the AI. Above all, I loved the turn-based rules the battlefield enforced that made nailing your opponent oh-so-important with each shot. Mayan Death Robots [official site] takes those familiar mechanics, removes the worms, and adds, well, Mayan Death Robots.

In a nod to the 2012 Doomsaying, the world as we know it hasn’t quite ended, but has entered a new age of automaton juggernauts fighting each other. Each bot is equipped with four moves, such as ‘Jump’, ‘Boulder’, ‘Banana’ (a doff of the cap to QBasic artillery classic Gorillas, perhaps), and ‘Build’, among others, and must strive to destroy the opposing barbarian’s CPU sitting elsewhere on the map. Build letting bots reshape the landscape by dropping tetrominoes, which puts a nuanced and entertaining twist on the basic artillery formula, particularly as battles run longer.

The turn timer adds an element of urgency to each move and external factors serve to scupper your strategy – during my playthrough a flying dragon-like creature, who I later discovered was Kukulkan the feathered serpent god, rose from a pit to block what would’ve been my last, fatal blow to my opponent’s mainframe. They then got the jump on me and I was annihilated on the spot. Curse the gods. More levels and robots can be unlocked by racking up victories, which is something I’m clearly still working on.

Check out the launch trailer:

Like what you see? If so, Mayan Death Robots is out now for Windows, Mac, and Linux, on Steam at £9.89.

8 Comments

  1. Rumpelstiltskin says:

    I doubt the Mayans were az technologically advanced as the video suggests

  2. Premium User Badge

    heretic says:

    Looks cool, WiT? I bought Worms Armagedon at the last sale, brought back memories! This looks like a nice spin on the genre :)

  3. Zankman says:

    Note:

    It does NOT have Online MP and is unlikely to feature it.

    Note #2:

    This isn’t the case because the Devs are out-of-touch jackasses that cite nostalgia “and good ol’ couch gaming”; Instead, they are a small, two-dev team with limited resources (time and money).

    Unfortunately, there are many of those aforementioned jackasses to rag on, but these Devs are thankfully not like that!

  4. Chuckaluphagus says:

    Played this at PAX East back in March, and it was a lot of fun. Very clean, entertaining graphics and UI, a nice system of weapons and counters, and very dependent on skill rather than luck to get your win.

    I can only imagine that it’s improved with 7 more months of beta and development. Definitely worth the money.

  5. Durkonkell says:

    I dun a video-word-chat with the lead designer Karel at EGX this year (among other indie types). He said lots of stuff about the game, the setting, how the (rather memorable) name came to be but also about the current state of the industry. LOOK IT’S OVER HERE link to youtu.be

    Indie developers are interesting and I like them.

    I’ve also played the game a bit, and it is a FUN TIME, especially if you can cram a couple of people around a keyboard (I suppose you could use controllers if you were that way inclined). It’s not just “worms but with robots and also it’s real time”, either. At what point do you turn on your opponent when you’re clearly supposed to just be concentrating on the deadly serpent god? You can block your enemy robot’s shots by placing down tetris-alike terrain blocks, but that uses up your action that turn. Is it better to shoot back or jump?

    I’ve not tried the single-player but it’s certainly fun with a friend.

  6. wraithgr says:

    It makes me sad that the best iteration of this type of game is still worms:armageddon.

    It makes me really happy that people are having a go at making something new with the same ingredients. Will be checking it out.