PLATFORM: PC, SWITCH, XBOX ONE (REVIEWED) | RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW (PC), JULY 30TH (SWITCH), JULY 31ST (XBOX ONE)
Making its way to consoles (well, some of them) after its well-received 2018 PC release, Heroes of Hammerwatch is an action-packed indie take on the roguelite dungeon crawler genre, hitting many notes that will be familiar to players of games like Diablo 3, The Binding of Isaac and Nuclear Throne. After choosing a character from a range of classes (eventually, nine wildly varying options will be available, each suited to different playstyles), your journey starts in the bustling but run-down village of Outlook. From here, your mission is to ascend the nearby Forsaken Spire but, before you can do that, you'll need to trawl through countless dungeons to build up your funds and restore the town to its former glory in order to unlock more advanced upgrades.
At first, the game throws many hurdles in your way with its refusal to sufficiently explain what's going on, but persevere through a few initial runs around the nearby mines and things start to fall into place (restart a few times to try out the various different characters if it's not clicking straight away). The procedurally generated dungeons provide all kinds of randomly generated monsters and loot, making each run different to the last, and experience gained can be spent back in the town on upgrading your character. Similarly, any gold you manage to bring home can be spent on revamping the local shops which, in turn, can then be used to enhance your character even further in a huge variety of ways.
The Ultimate Edition supports online co-op for up to four players, and contains the base game as well as three previously-released expansions so there's countless of hours' worth of adventuring in store for those who are up to the challenge. It might not look quite as eye-catching as some other titles, but roguelite RPG fans will surely find Heroes of Hammerwatch to be just as addictive as any of their favourites.