Tag Archives: roguelike

Hoplite’s Poor Progression

Hoplite is a mobile game in which you play the titular hoplite, descending through hell to retrieve the golden fleece and beat your high score. The game is played on a hex grid: each turn, you move one space and when you make a move, so too do all the enemies. If you move into the hex beside an enemy or if you pass them, you kill them, but if you end your turn in a hex beside you they hurt you. When you complete a level, you select one upgrade from a list for your hoplite. As the game progresses it introduces enemies with more complex moves and attacks.

Since I’ve been out of the country lately, I’ve been playing a lot of Hoplite on my phone. For the most part it’s an excellent substitute for PC strategy games, and it’s the first roguelike I’ve really loved. However, Hoplite’s progression and upgrade system are tedious. Bizarrely, your first few games of Hoplite will be the least compelling you’ll play, and the game only opens up after you unlock a few achievements. As I mentioned, you pick one upgrade from a randomly generated list every time you successfully clear a level of enemies.

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Why I Love: Roguelight’s Bow

Roguelight is a fun little game you should get for as little as you like. You play an archer descending through a randomly generated 2D dungeon, guided by the light from your limited quiver of arrows. As you go deeper, the environmental lights become fewer, the flaming tips of your arrows extinguish more quickly and enemies and traps become more frequent. It’s a simple, challenging premise very similar to Spelunky’s excellent dark levels, held together by a well-designed bow with thoughtful environments surrounding it.

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