I’d never seen Loot Rascals [official site] before this morning and yet it seems to arrive fully-formed: it looks great, it looks fun, you can buy it now. Although it’s not fully-formed, and that’s even why you can buy it now: the Refinery Edition is so named because the game’s developers hope to use it to refine the game. There’s a cracking trailer below.
Cracking, that. The art is partly by Dave Swatpaz, an animator and illustrator who previously made cartoons including a guest episode of Adventure Time, and Brent Kobayashi, who previously worked on Alphabear. I love the colours and the character designs, both of which remind me MOUK. Big heads and nice yellows.
I also like the look of the card-collecting and ability-arranging system too, and the sound of the “asynchronous ‘steal or share’ multiplayer’ mentioned on the game’s site. Being a roguelike of course means that there’s permadeath and procedural level generation, and they’re aiming to force you to be strategic in your decisions through, for example, a day/night cycle which gifts enemies different abilities at different times of day.
Because they’re mainly looking for feedback at this stage, developers Hollow Ponds are only selling a limited number of keys and, as developer Jonathan Whiting explains, they’ll gather data from your play sessions such as which world you died on, what killed you, and what the game seed was. Aside from the two art bods mentioned above, Hollow Ponds was co-founded by Ricky Haggett, who previously co-founded Honeyslug, the makers of Hohokum. (Honeyslug sorta dissolved last year). You can see all the other people working with them on Loot Rascals here because they seem a talented bunch.
When the beta is over you’ll receive a copy of the finished game, and you’ll get a Steam key at that point as well. The game won’t be available on Steam prior to being finished, but you can get auto-updating functionality through Itch’s own desktop software.