Soulstone Survivors is an upcoming action roguelike that just released a demo last month, a free prologue where you can experience the mix of wildly over-the-top builds and classes that fuel bullet heaven. You know, a reverse bullet hell where you are hell.
It feels like a mix of Risk of Rain and Vampire Survivors, with character classes that have their own unique abilities allowing for complex builds when mixed with a wide range of generic powers. At the same time, it has the basic vanity of Vampire Survivors: you don’t control when your abilities trigger, they just do.
Soulstone Survivors shares both games’ penchant for big bad bosses and waves of enemies, but they’re more like Risk of Rain in that the varieties of bad guys have their own powers to unleash on you. Bosses also have special moves, often four or five of them, and learning to dodge what’s coming is a big part of the game.
The demo available on Steam (opens in a new tab) has three character classes, the Barbarian, Pyromancer, and Houndmaster. Each has their own playstyle and an unlockable secondary weapon, which launches them with a different ability and set of stats. Personally, I really liked the Pyromancer, which got big buffs to the ability’s damage and area of effect. Enhanced by speed, he became an elusive meteor-throwing monster.
You can also customize each character with a tree of permanent passive buffs like experience recovery range, health, attack speed, and more, as you’d expect. Adding clutch to the formula, for me, was adding a single activated ability: a dodge. It’s great for jumping off enemy AoE and just adds that bit of situational control that I so often crave in Vampire Survivors.
I have a hard time disliking single-player games that are all about creating an extremely broken ability combination and breaking the game with them. There’s something about knowing that the devs want me to go absolutely wild that I really love.
You can find Soulstone Survivors on Steam (opens in a new tab), where it will be released this year. You can also find the free demo, Soulstone Survivors: Prologue (opens in a new tab), on Steam. It is developed and self-published by independent studio Game Smithing Limited.