Swords and spells are all fine and dandy, but what if you could make the dungeon itself into a weapon? That’s the basic idea behind Loot River, a Tetris-inspired action-roguelike indie game that’s due out next year. If that sounds interesting to you, we have good news: there’s a demo you can try out right now.
The demo lets you play through Loot River’s tutorial and two short levels, which should be enough to whet your appetite. Developer straka.studio calls Loot River an “island-shifting action-roguelike” – the first part of that is based on the fact that you can move pieces of the dungeon floor around like Tetris blocks, while the second part refers to the fact that it’s all procedurally generated.
You play as a hyperviolent person in a plague doctor’s mask, using an ancient relic to control the movement of the floor. Even with the ability to move the floating floor tiles at will, you’ll still need to be quick on your feet: the dungeons are filled with terrifying beasts, nomads, and boss encounters.
Here’s a trailer that demonstrates how the control scheme works.
As you explore, you’ll collect upgrades, treasure, and a variety of different weapons, which each has its own set of moves to master. By default, you’ll move your character with the left thumbstick, while the right stick will shift the platform on which you are standing.
As you can see above, that creates space for interesting tactical decisions: do you kite a few mooks away from a central cluster, dive straight in with a slam and a heavy attack, or avoid the fight altogether?
The Loot River demo is available now on Steam, and the full game will launch in 2022.