The harsh and wet ruins of Rain World are now slightly less harsh (but still just as wet), say developers Videocult. That’s good, that’s real good. In the summer we learned there’d someday be an easier “Monk” mode for anyone struggling with the game's "disco lizards", as well as a harder “Hunter” mode for anyone who thought death by a dozen leeches did not come quick enough. Well, it's here in the form of a beta.
Sound delicious? Here’s the main course:
New playable characters, corresponding to different playstyles and difficulty:
THE MONK - “Weak of body but strong of spirit. In tune with the mysteries of the world and empathetic to its creatures, your journey will be a significantly more peaceful one.”
THE HUNTER - “Strong and quick, with a fierce metabolism requiring a steady diet of meat. But the stomach won’t be your only concern, as the path of the hunter is one of extreme peril."
To access the beta, right click on the game in Steam, go to Properties → Betas, and enter “MANYSLUGCATS” into the beta key field. You should then be able to select the beta branch and download the new build!
There’s also a multiplayer mode for up to 4 players, where you have to catch bats and eat them for points while spearing your opponent slugcats. Plus a sandbox mode where you can dump creatures to see how they react to each other.
“This mode is to experiment,” say the developers, “and learn about the behaviour of creatures players encounter in the world.”
That’s useful and pretty neat when you consider some of the horrible things that live in this washed-out post-apocalyptic land. There’s more of those too, with “a large bestiary of strange new creatures to eat and be eaten by.”
I am keen to try this out. The world of this survival platformer and its assorted wildlife was both wonderful and frustrating. The toxic swamps and dripping caverns were excellent to explore and each unusual new beast you discovered demanded close observation before making any sudden moves. It’s a predatory landscape and often feels like a real, brutal ecosystem that has been smuggled into a platformer. But you’re also often the victim of random deaths, and the controls on release were weighty and stubborn. It felt like a missed opportunity.
Since then there’s also been a small patch to tweak some of the problems, but this Monk mode seems to be aimed squarely at my delicate whiskers. Pray for my little slugcat, it looks like he’s going back in.
The final version of the update will be out "very soon".