Iconoclasts finally jumps out in January


A few indie passion projects years in the making have finally come to fruition this year. While it’ll be missing December by a couple weeks, we’ve now got Iconoclasts to look forward to, an ambitious metroidvania by Swedish solo developer Konjak which will finally launch on January 23rd after over ten years of development.

While the release date was announced over a week back, and accompanied by a trailer, we’ve got a little treat for those late to the party; A longer ‘rough-cut’ uploaded recently, featuring a little more gameplay and a little more of that gorgeous full-screen character animation.

Some good stuff here, as well as a teensy tiny peek at a few setpiece moments that we’ve not seen before. I find it especially interesting to compare it to the debut trailer from way back in 2011, So many of the basic sprites seem unchanged, thanks to it being a highly polished ‘vertical slice’ of game even back then, but (according to some folks I know who have been playtesting it) the scope of the game seems to have grown explosively, along with the level of polish. Even the screen-shake feels smooth, somehow. Oh, and the title seems to have lost it’s ‘The’ at some point.

Being the perfectionist sort, very few of Konjak’s earlier games were ever completed, so it’s not a huge surprise that a few of his older projects get referenced in his biggest game to date.  Most obvious being one of NPC party members you can recruit; Mina, the pirate, referencing one of his first games, ‘Mina of the Pirates’, unfinished but released for the public to poke around at.

You can find Mina of The Pirates on Konjak’s site, along with a mix of other free tidbits, some being complete (if short) games, others being abandoned prototypes. Manic-paced Zelda parody Legend of Princess being especially great. You can also see and try out Ivory Springs there too, the earliest shown prototype of the Iconoclasts concept from back in 2007. Smaller, cuter sprites and a brighter overall tone aside, it’s fascinating to see how a lone developer has grown over the course of a decade.

Iconoclasts is set to launch on PC via Steam, GOG and and probably a few other places besides on January 23rd, with a variety of ports to other platforms to happen not long after. If you want a taste of what kind of creativity and quality of boss design awaits next year, take a peek at Noitu Love 2: Devolution, Konjak’s previous major game.


  1. Top Hat Zebra says:

    I am not interested in this at all, as a game. I don’t particularly like metroidvanias.

    However, my goodness, the style, the music, the characters, it’s all so charming, I love it! If this were a movie I’d watch it in a heartbeat.

    • fenriz says:

      I agree. It feels so epic anime kolossal

      but that’s it. console boys will love story over gameplay, but usually pc gamers don’t.

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      Phasma Felis says:

      Go play Noitu Love 2. It’s an action platformer.

  2. LTK says:

    Wow, Sunflower’s (is that her name?) colour scheme is point-for-point identical to Cadance from Crypt of the Necrodancer. Yellow hair, blue headwear, red top. Not a crime, obviously, but the similarity is striking.

    • Darth Gangrel says:

      But since it’s from a Swedish dev (with Swedish spelling of “cognac”), it makes sense that her hair/headgear are the colors of the Swedish flag. At least, that’s what I as a Swede immediately thought of when looking at her.

    • Baines says:

      Iconoclasts has been in development for a very long time (at least 2010), and it spawned out of a canceled game idea (Ivory Springs) that had already been in development for a few years before.

      The main character of Ivory Springs already had the blond hair. The red outfit was already present in the 2011 alpha of Iconoclasts.

      Not that there is anything special about a girl with long blond hair wearing a outfit with bright red, and wearing a headpiece of some design (blue or otherwise.)

      • Ghostwise says:

        I don’t know. If we translate the colours into numbers traditionally associated with them (red = 6, yellow = 6, blue = 6) then it becomes pretty clear that this game is a Satanic vessel, likely intended to disrupt the production of micro-breweries in Botswana in order to advance the liberal agenda.

        • durrbluh says:

          Well, duh. That would be pretty obvious to anyone with even half a brain.

      • LTK says:

        You can be defensive about it or you can agree with me that they look similar, which is all I’m saying.

        What’s also nice is that the dev for Iconoclasts actually made fanart of Cadance:

        link to blog.braceyourselfgames.com

        • Shirsh says:

          You just said it in a way that sound like a bit snide implication that Crypt of Necrodancer was shown to public first and Cadance “inspired” Iconoclasts’ Robin, but timeline is opposite, Iconoclasts demo released in 2011, years before Crypt of Necrodancer was introduced to public.

          • grimdanfango says:

            That’s the internet for you I guess… the way I read it, I thought he went to some effort to be clear that he *wasn’t* making a snide implication, and was just making a observation.
            It’s very hard to communicate subtext on the internet… might be better to lean on the side of giving people the benefit of the doubt. Generally if someone wants to make a baseless accusation, they don’t tend to hold back and veil it in ambiguity :-P

    • somnolentsurfer says:

      Having somehow missed all previous coverage of this game, my first thought on seeing that image was, ‘Ooo, Crypt of the Necrodancer sequel!’

  3. Telkir says:

    Wow, tremendous! That is how you do trailers. Fantastic art and very refreshing to see that it’s gotten decent scaling that doesn’t suffer from misshapen pixels. Way too many pixelart games have this problem and it rustles my jimmies.

    • ropeladder says:

      What drives me crazy is when they mix and max pixels of different resolutions. If you are doing pixel art then all your pixels need to be the same size! That’s just, like, how pixels work…

  4. Bunnymancer says:

    There’s something very Starbound about this. I can’t put my finger on what it is though.

  5. April March says:

    Very nice. Been waiting for this since I tried one of the demos. It seems to be a metroidvania that isn’t as mad about super high difficulty as games in the genre’s recent renewal have tended to be.

  6. racccoon says:

    I see a lot of nice animation & some of course unmistakably resemble other games past, references are a good thing.
    It is good to see a game like this crawl in anyway. I believe its a one man band job. So nice work dev! :)

  7. Ham Solo says:

    Finally! Played some alpha of it ages ago. Looking forward to this one.