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Roguelike dungeon-crawler Ultimate ADOM now in early access

The original was a good'un

If you enjoy discussing the fine points of whether a roguelike game is Rogue-like or just roguelikelike, here's one for you: what's Ultimate ADOM - Caverns Of Chaos? Launched into early access today, the dungeon-crawler is the sequel to a bona fide vintage Rogue-like roguelike. But it's got a modern UI and fancy modern graphics. Buuut it has the option to use ASCII art. Honestly, I think matters of classification are secondary to this: you can graft monster limbs onto your body, and that's wicked cool.

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Ultimate ADOM will again send players to into procedurally-generated dungeons, fighting monsters, zapping spells, looting treasure, and all that, though this time with a friendlier modern trimmings. But it's still meant to be complex roguelike-y enough that with the right skills you can pull tricks like grafting monsterbits onto yourself and bringing the very walls of the dungeon to life.

"We're all extremely excited to welcome players new and old back to the world of ADOM," creator Thomas Biskup said in today's announcement. "We know what players loved about the original title in 1994 but also what players are looking for from their games in 2021. Ultimate ADOM - Caverns of Chaos is the perfect blend of tried and tested mechanics and the quality and depth of contemporary titles."

Our former Adam (RPS in peace) back in 2015 that the original Adom was "one of the first things I install on any computer I own or borrow". Big fan, that man.

The plan is to leave early access by the end of 2021, with a series of bimonthly big feature-adding updates on the roadmap. Early access periods can always stretch and slip, mind. The devs plan to keep adding to the game after that full release too.

Ultimate ADOM is available now on Steam for Windows, Mac, and Linux. A 15% launch discount is on until Thursday the 25th, bringing it down to £14.86/€16.99/$16.99.

Oh, but is Ultimate ADOM a roguelike or a roguelikelike? I guess purists could quibble with parts, particularly the UI. As ever, for an impartial ruling we'd need to consult Ben Porter's super-mega-serious Roguelike rating tool.

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