Available now via Early Access on Steam, Dead Cells is already a compelling and utterly addictive experience.
If you’ve not heard of it yet, and you really should have, Dead Cells is a metroidvania action-platformer with rogue-like elements, and one that marries them perfectly if I do say so myself. You begin the game as nothing more than a strange pile of green goo, filling out a suit of armour left in a dank prison. From that point on it’s up to you to explore the strange castle you’ve found yourself in, dispatching enemies with skill while enhancing your equipment and abilities so that you may eventually unravel the mystery of your predicament.
Being a metroidvania, there are bosses to kill and skills to learn that will enable you to access new areas. There’s also a persistent upgrade system of sorts, where you’re able to use the cells you’ve collected upon completion of an area to buy and upgrade weapons and enhancements. Upon death, everything aside from what you’ve invested your cells in is lost though; the equipment you’ve found, the stats you’ve increased, and maybe even all the gold you’ve collected. Beginning life once again as a little green pile of goo however, you’ll quickly get back into the swing of things, and with the benefit of experience, you’ll hope to get just that bit further on your next run.
Dead Cells may not be finished yet, but already it’s a game that’s hard to put down. You’ll have a good run and maybe defeat a boss before losing your life, but you won’t be disheartened upon death, you’ll just want to get right back into the action. It helps that it’s largely procedurally generated, ensuring that you’re always kept on your toes. And as development is still in full swing, sweeping changes are often being made that not only enhance the gameplay, but also refresh the experience for early adopters.
If you have any kind of appreciation for the metroidvania or roguelike genres, I honestly can’t recommend Dead Cells enough at this point. I’m reticent to say too much more about the title right now, due to how much scope there is for things to change in the future, but I’m fairly confident that it will only continue to get better. Watch 10 minutes of gameplay captured by yours truly below to get a taste of what it holds in store.