100 Trials and 100 Rogues

on Feb 15 in Blog tagged by

Last week, we release a new game called 100 Trials that borrows heavily from 100 Rogues’ design, but whose differences took a significant departure in play style. I’d like to talk about how we arrived at the decision to make this new game, and what it’s existence means for 100 Rogues.

100 Rogues has come a very, *very* long way. All of the improvements we’ve made have improved the game without watering down it’s roguelike philosophies, and we’ve kept our gaze always forward.

Still, several ideas have come up over the years, either from the development team directly or based on feedback from players, that would never really work in 100 Rogues without changing it’s fundamental formula. For instance, we’ve had numerous requests for a more linear, ‘completable’ game, which is an obvious example of something incompatible with Roguelikes. Similarly, there were several goals with combat which required regrettable tradeoffs in the context of the heavy randomization in 100 Rogues. For example, if you’ve played 100 Rogues you know how rarely occurring is the occasion is that making optimal use of Holy Fires presents, and even rarer is the occasion when that is the smartest move to make. All of this summed up to make the new game a series of handmade stages, each of which emphasized a different facet of 100 Rogues’ combat.

Since 100 Rogues’ Challenge Mode served as a solid foundation for this kind of game, most of the development time could be spent creating and iterating on our level designs to make them as engaging as possible. 100 Rogues, being the living game design that it is, has benefitted greatly from this, as several opportunities for optimization and bugs were discovered that will be of great benefit to 100 Rogues, as well. Already, 100 Rogues now feature contextual health bars that appear whenever you attack an enemy, helping you make smart decisions about whether to run from an opponent or stay and fight and, if the latter, which skill might best help for the current situation.

While 100 Trials is very much its own game, there are many exciting possibilities for both games to continue improving each other over time. New items, skills and monsters were created for 100 Trials that will find there way into 100 Rogues over time, just as the new player classes we make for 100 Rogues are likely to have their own unique place in 100 Trials’ dungeons as development progresses.

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