BENGALURU: You wake up on day one in your house, set out aiming to do your best everywhere — catching the quickest commute to your workplace, killing the assignments you are handed, eating delicious meals, and going to sleep on time. But imagine waking up on day two, with the house looking completely different, and a random set of targets to achieve. Today, you travel 100 miles to meet a stranger, finish a fifth grader’s homework, and hack a computer. You fail in one of these objectives, and eventually fall into an unsatisfying night of sleep, hoping tore-emerge on day three to resolve the previous day’s faults. But day three…is completely different. You are flummoxed by another unfamiliar environment with new rules of existence.
This above paragraph is the simplest way to explain Streets of Rogue — a rogue-like with procedurally generated ‘cities’.Streets of Rogue is by no means the wackiest indie game to exist, but is intriguing, and cleverly made. The levels in the game are non-sequential and uncorrelated. A typical mission involves getting past trap doors and lasers, freeing fugitives, and dodging fire fountains which could end with you dying in the hands of an unknown gangsta (in-game deaths are beautiful with artistic explosions). However, you can’t respawn to the same level again and hope to learn from your mistakes. Unlike real life, Streets of Rogue has no do-overs.
No do-overs simply mean that you cannot strategise a precise method of hacking and slashing your way to victory. The procedural generation of the city inserts you into a random (random within the limits of the game’s environment) level with new targets, gives you the ability to take on a new character (I strongly recommend the Gorilla over doctors/soldiers), and encourages you to probably try not to die this time around. However, some might find it repetitive, especially if you are not impressed with this pixelated format of videogames.
To compensate for repetitions in its wider schemes, the game is peppered with chaotic elements — bear traps, shrink rays, a variety of absurd characters with distinct traits, a co-op mode to make you feel less lonely, an advertised 600 hours of unique playable material, and the ability to finish the game non-violently if you wish it! This completely insane game recently came out of early access. If you win it, you have the satisfaction of beating artificial intelligence at its game.