A rogue-lite masterpiece!
A polished rogue-lite with an engrossing plot and captivating gameplay, all set in an exuberant neon world. Just like in The Binding of Isaac, you can stack artefacts and modifiers over the course of the game, which can result in some crazy overpowered combinations! As a bonus, the game isn’t too challenging, so dive right in!
Team17 Digital Ltd
Neon Abyss © 2022 Veewo Games, Published under licence by TEAM17 Digital Limited.
The story begins with a conversation between your character and Hades, the god of hell, who is trying to enlist your help: titans have destroyed his family, and he is inviting you to join the Grim Squad, which will be tasked with taking them down.
Hades invites you to drink a strange cocktail that immediately transports you to the first dungeon, armed with a basic pistol. There's no tutorial, explanation, or pointers. From hereon in, it's all down to you, and you'll be deciding the best way to proceed.
Neon Abyss plays like a 2D platformer. You use the left stick to move, and primarily the right stick to shoot. Like in most rogue-lite games, you enter a room, kill all of the enemies, and then move on to the boss room. And because everything is procedurally generated, you'll never get bored!
We loved the pixel art graphics and the general mood of the game. This isn't your run of the mill subterranean world. You'll feel like you're in an '90s underground rave in a church, with neon and glowsticks everywhere. It's all played to a funky soundtrack that picks up when the action kicks off, and calms down during quieter moments.
With every run through the game, you can take over the dancefloor and watch your character boogie. The player characters are all interesting and distinctive, and each has their own special trait. Make sure you try them all.
Just as The Binding of Isaac did back in the day, Neon Abyss serves up a whole variety of items to make you stronger and stronger. As you explore the game world you'll collect keys, grenades, orbs, gold, weapons, and secret items. Each new piece of equipment upgrades your character by boosting their damage, enabling them to fly, enhancing their projectiles, or by poisoning enemies upon contact.
Each new item you equip adds its effects to those you already have, giving your character a chef's hat, sunglasses, a big blue ring, and a crown on top of the hat... and all of the powers and abilities that come with them, all the way through to the end of your run.
So much fun.
Our favourite part? The endless gameplay possibilities found in Neon Abyss, which is packed with hidden synergies. And the further you progress through the game, the more powerful you'll come to feel.
You can also collect eggs, which might just hatch and grow into loyal friends as you make your way through the game's rooms. You can end up with a herd of little animals that constantly follow you around, helping when they can and sometimes getting in the way.
Best get one thing straight from the outset: your little pets come with both positive and negative traits. And because you never know what's going to hatch from an egg, it's a surprise every time. You may; for example, get unlucky and hatch Donald Trump, who's skill is stealing all of your money!
The game is also filled with references, whether in your pets or your skills, but we'll let you enjoy spotting them for yourself.
To give you a hand and stop you rage-quitting, remember that you can only unlock Aries, the God of War, once you've defeated Zeus! There are hints the game, but here we'll tell you how to flush him out of hiding. You'll need to fill your war gauge as often as possible to gain access to a secret room with a chance to obtain the War Token, which will appear after you've selected your skill. But the counter doesn't appear every time, so you might need to give it a few goes. Once you've got the token, though, you'll still need to complete your run, make it all the way to Zeus, and defeat him to unlock level 9! Then you can do battle with Aries at the end of the level! But if you die before you kill Aries, it's back to square one and you'll need to collect the token again. Nobody said this would be easy!
This game has the best a modern rogue-lite has to offer, with almost infinite replayability. A real must for fans of the genre, that holds up well against Isaac himself!