feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes


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Snake Sneak

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 11:21

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

Ayutzia wrote:I argued with the Catacomb Kids developers about marketing their game as a roguelike. It's just a dungeon-themed action platformer, therefore lacking the two most defining attributes of roguelikes: turn-basedness & item destruction. I'm not so sure about that second one, but gammafunk insists.

According to your definition, Worms is more rogue-like than Catacomb Kids :D. Item and environment destruction? Check. Permadeath? Check. Random loot? Check (crates drop from the sky).

In what sense does CK not have item destruction? You can close a door to decapitate a corpse. You can put most items on a pressure plate and wait until the falling block destroys it. Potions break when thrown against a wall. You can destroy traps and stuff with Break spell, burn wooden bridges, freeze lava solid. In the second stage, Anticropolis, there's more environment destruction.

As for what is Roguelike, I think it's not binary, but rather continuous. The most rogue like game is Rogue. Rogue is the most like Rogue. The more in common a game has with Rogue, the more Rogue like it is.

Catacomb Kids is a magic system with a platformer attached. CK has many of the traits Rogue has - leveling up, unidentified scrolls and potions, a dungeon filled with monsters, traps; staircases, random level generation, random loot, permadeath. CK is not turn-based but the world is tile-based.

Diablo is more rogue-like than CK in the sense CK combat relies on skill and Diablo only on stats. On the other hand, consumables in CK are found randomly like in Rogue, while Diablo has a boring set of consumables you can buy in town. CK has only pressing forward like Rogue, while Diablo lets you return to town and DCSS lets you backtrack. Neither Diablo nor CK have a food clock - DCSS does. Multiplayer Diablo doesn't have permadeath. Catacomb Kids, Diablo and DCSS have a single hero character. DCSS and CK have a goal - get to the last level, Diablo does not, really.
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Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 14:16

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

Man, this is a blast from the past. Thought I could resist, but sorry folks...

"Roguelike" is a brand. There's this network of platforms, podcasts, and so forth called by their managers a "community," but computer games are, at least potentially, products and therefore there is an unavoidable commercial character to it. The work of building, promoting, and managing these platforms is ongoing and has little to do with production of new games. It's largely about building the brand.

The relationship between products that have been marketed as "roguelikes" in the past 10, 15 years and the games that are supposed to be the major influences in the putative "genre" is often tangential. You would be hard-pressed to argue many of these games were "influenced" by rogue or nethack, for example. The connection is the brand. The tendency to talk about defining characteristics, it seems to me, comes from the inaugurating act of enclosure by which those who attend conferences on "roguelikes" fenced in a design space in which a particular kind of product exists on which they are the experts. You come to them to promote your product and access their audience of dedicated consumers.

Of course, this is not to say it's a conspiracy or that it's big business. There's nothing novel or particularly nefarious about it. I do think there's something futile about arguing over what is and isn't "roguelike" though. It's a basically commercial question where most of us are not stakeholders. And of course, a lot of these games, whatever their connection to rogue or larn or whatever, basically suck and so did rogue and larn.
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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 17:25

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

Most modern chastity belt designs are descended from Hal Higginbottom's designs from 1956. Sometimes modern Florentine-style belts are described as "Tollyboy-style" or "Tollyboy-type" belts as references to his company's original design.

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 18:29

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

We don't owe capitalists anything here. The original Rogue was freely distributed, and only later on commercial versions appeared. The most notable games in the genre were free - or maybe it was the other way around, they became popular because they were free. Roguelike games will remain, and the new trend will be something else. I mean does anyone really make zombie games anymore?

I would be happier if the indie products were called Roguelite, or Roguelike-like, but the latter sounds silly and I can't blame anyone for not using that. Even when abused, the label is still very useful, and only a single glance at a screenshot is usually enough to determine how roguish it is. At minimum, it implies a heavy dose of procedural world generation and high replayability... which is why I would object to calling Teleglitch a roguelike. It gets old pretty fast, levels are made out of the same segments put together in random order. With some enemy placement randomization. It feels like a campaign (linked scenarios).

Counterexample: D.R.O.D., formerly Deadly Rooms Of Death, looks superficially like a roguelike. But it's a completely deterministic puzzle game. The devs never tried calling it a RL. That's a game that COULD actually fool people at first glance.

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Post Thursday, 13th February 2020, 08:44

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

this is some serious necroposting
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Post Thursday, 13th February 2020, 11:38

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

nago wrote:this is some serious necroposting

So what?

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Wednesday, 19th February 2020, 20:09

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

So yeah this is a super old thread, but I think it's worthwhile to mention this part:

Ayutzia wrote:I argued with the Catacomb Kids developers about marketing their game as a roguelike. It's just a dungeon-themed action platformer, therefore lacking the two most defining attributes of roguelikes: turn-basedness & item destruction. I'm not so sure about that second one, but gammafunk insists.

Apparently, DCSS no longer meets its own definition for a roguelike, since item destruction was removed (in .15 I think?)

We're going to have to come up with a new term. I recommend "Orc Blood Farming Simulator".

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Post Thursday, 20th February 2020, 07:24

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

Item destruction as a sign of roguelike was probably a joke.
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Post Thursday, 20th February 2020, 11:25

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

VeryAngryFelid wrote:Item destruction as a sign of roguelike was probably a joke.
Player destruction is probably more accurate !

Also about necroposting, it seems that this thread becomes alive every 3 years... He's now back for some weeks... then will hibernate until 2023... :D
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Post Thursday, 20th February 2020, 11:28

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

VeryAngryFelid wrote:Item destruction as a sign of roguelike was probably a joke.

Maybe he referred to throwing the keyboard away in frustration?
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Post Thursday, 20th February 2020, 12:07

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

Shtopit wrote:Maybe he referred to throwing the keyboard away in frustration?


Maybe, but then there are roguelikes like Slay the Spire which don't make you want to throw the keyboard away.
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Post Wednesday, 8th April 2020, 03:15

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

This thread is old and there have not been many indie games mentioned in a positive note. So here is one, and I am curious if anybody has any other recommendations.

I bought Realm of the Ghost King on steam sale for 0.99 (til 4/13/20) on a whim, and had fun for about 2 hours so far... so, money's worth.

More on the puzzle side, but somebody a long time ago in this topic said they all are. Reminds my slightly of that Hydra Slayer one I tried before.

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Post Wednesday, 8th April 2020, 11:04

Re: feels like alot of indie games are now called roguelikes

aaron wrote:This thread is old and there have not been many indie games mentioned in a positive note. So here is one, and I am curious if anybody has any other recommendations.

One Step From Eden is kind of fun. It's a deckbuilding shmup mashup that's broadly similar to Slay the Spire, only your turns have bullets and they are ticking down in realtime.
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