There’s a strange expression for ideas that are ridiculous or reckless, they’re called: harebrained schemes. Making a dungeon-crawling RPG using a shape-oriented artistic style with bright colors and playful humor, but asking players to take it seriously, would seem just that: harebrained.
Necropolis, from developer Harebrained Schemes, sure does sound a bit crazy. The trailer reminds me of much older games with its geometric-heavy style and general lack of detail. But this is certainly not an old game, and it’s not a simple one either. Nor will it be easy, according to the developer.
Since it is procedurally generated, each play-through will be entirely unique. “Every play-through offers new threats, room layouts, magic items and more. The system is designed to shift and change, even as the adventurer moves through it, and there are areas that allow the player to change, modify or “reroll” their [the map’s] current layout,” according to Necropolis’ website.
Even a player’s character will be randomly generated at the start of each attempt. No two heroes will look alike or share the same name. This may disappoint gamers who wish to spend half the day playing dress-up, but it will also serve to put emphasis on other, more important aspects of the game like combat, monsters, the environment, plot, etc. And yes, clothes and other items found in Necropolis will still allow a certain level of customization for those who simply cannot live without it.
Controls are going to be kept simple and uncomplicated. To account for this, gameplay is going to be fast paced and lethal. Players will be forced to learn and anticipate their enemy’s timing and attack patterns, striking at the perfect moment to achieve maximum damage. Harebrained has even created an “ecosystem” or “food chain” whereby monsters might have a favorite food (perhaps another creature, perhaps you) or a most feared predator. These traits, once discovered, will be very helpful and could mean the difference between dying or fighting ahead, if exploited properly.
Necropolis offers a fresh take on dungeon crawling with their distinct artistic style and poetic, charming humor. Oh, and, nearly endless replay value. Not sounding very harebrained anymore, is it?
Preorders via Steam begin on February 2nd and the official launch will be March 17th.