Review – Riptale

riptale cover artDeveloper: Super God
Publisher: Super God
Year: 2017
Platform: Steam
MSRP: $5.99


Super God’s first game, Riptale, is a 2D action roguelike meant to play fast, brutal, and bloody. In the game, Dragons have taken over the land. Only those who can use the power of Astral Gems can kill them with attacks so powerful that take the beasts down in a single blow. You start the game with 3 of these gems, a 3 color palette, and a frantic soundtrack.


Riptale’s controls are super simple. You can run, jump and aim/attack. The game has a frantic pace, yet rewards careful planning and thoughtful play. At the start of the game, you have a power meter of 3 Astral Gems. Every time you attack a gem is depleted. This means you can string together 3 attacks before waiting for your gems to recharge. You don’t just mash the attack button, though. You aim your attack which will send your character streaking across the screen, killing all in his path. You can chain together attacks to cover tons of ground while spilling the blood of multiple foes in a series of slices.


As you make your way through each screen you’ll earn coins along the way. These can be used to purchase different gems in shops. Each Gem grants a different type of attack and can be placed in any gem slot allowing you to customize your attack patterns as you progress through the game. You can even earn more Gem slots through random events scattered throughout each level.

Riptale, being a roguelike, has procedurally generated levels, each with their own theme, music, and boss at the end. When you die, you start the game all over again from scratch. Period. There’s not gradual upgrade system or the like to let you start the game off a bit stronger every time. You play, you die, you hopefully learn from your mistakes and make it a bit farther during your next play. About the only thing you’ll keep are any collectibles found, which are just that. Collectibles.


One of the most striking features of Riptale is its graphics. The game has 3 colors: black, white, and red, all presented in a minimal, 8-bit fashion. That, combined with a frantic chiptune soundtrack, make for a unique atmosphere of stark violence and anxiety.


Once you start playing Riptale it’s hard to put the game down. While it takes a bit to get used to the fast pace of the gameplay and the precision control it takes to successfully attack anything, it’s a satisfying and impactful experience that begs replay. Combos are bloody and rewarding when pulled off successfully, and you’ll feel like a total badass if you can survive long enough to customize your attacks to pull off even more amazing feats of agility and death.

Game sessions tend to be short enough that you can restart several times, getting farther each time, just to find you’ve only been playing for 30 minutes. You’ll die…a lot…but keep coming back for more.

A Steam key for Riptale was provided free for review by Super God.


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