Devolver’s booth played home to some awesome games in its typical fashion this year at PAX East. One such game was the freshly announced Ruiner.
This is a top-down shooter from a Poland-based developer by the name of Reikon Games. The devs are looking to carve their own path in the cyberpunk genre with a game that leans heavily on dystopian future with a hard 80s anime vibe… complete with Japanese-style emoticons, like this: ( ˃̶ω˂̶ ૃ).
This game is also brutally difficult. I didn’t beat the demo, but I did last around 30 to 45 minutes with a few deaths before having to move on to another appointment.
Think of Ruiner like a top-down shooter that feels a little like Hotline Miami. However, there are no one hit kills here with weapons. Instead, enemies all have unique attacks, health amounts, weaponry and abilities. You also sport a digital shield, a sort of teleportation ability and health of your own.
When I was having success in this demo, I was using a blend of the teleportation with my grenade abilities, melee and quick gun shots. I’d phase through enemies, beating them down a little on the way and then tossing grenades into groupings. When it worked, I felt invincible. Stringing those moments together, though, was tough.
You play a hero who’s been hacked in this future. The hacker, I believe, is your brother. It was hard to follow the story in the early goings of this demo, but you seem to be after a girl and this hacker, though the latter feels like a revenge beat.
There will be personal level progression as well. You will get stronger in Ruiner, but I really think this is a game that will demand a lot from its players in terms of skill.
That’s not a bad thing. Tough, moody games have found themselves a home in today’s gaming age. There are plenty of players who will absolutely get excited about the sound of Ruiner. I count myself among them. I may have died a few times before throwing in the towel as I had to move on to something else, but Ruiner‘s gameplay, style, setting and moody music had me pumped to play more.
Oh, and about the music. You might think you’re in for a hard, driving, retro wave, future synth soundtrack here. Something like you’d have in Hotline Miami. That’s not the case. The music is moodier, darker and all its own. Reikon’s doing that on purpose. They’re trying to stand out in a sea of cyberpunk games. So far, so good.
Ruiner will sell for the PC, Mac and Linux platforms on Steam later this year.