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Niche Games to Watch in 2021: Roguelites

The Last Spell

Last time, I highlighted some of the platformers and Metroidvanias releasing in 2021. If you missed them, you can also find similar articles on city builders and management sims, strategy games, RPGs, and shooters.

Today, I’ll be focusing on some of the roguelites coming our way this year. As always, I’ll be taking special care to highlight predominately niche, indie, or middleware games that you might not have heard of yet.

“Roguelite” is becoming an increasingly distilled genre, so you’ll find everything from platformers, shooters, RPGs, and card games on this list. However, if you like procedurally generated games with permadeath, then chances are you’ll find something that catches your attention here.

Here is Niche Gamer’s selection of 20 of the most promising roguelite video games releasing in 2021:


Ultimate ADOM – Caverns of Chaos
Developers: Thomas Biskup, Jochen Terstiege, Krzysztof Dycha, Lucas Dieguez, Bastian von Gostomski, Carola Sochiera, Björn Loesing
Publisher: Assemble Entertainment
Platform: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch  
Release Date: February 2021 (Windows PC Early Access)

Ultimate ADOM - Caverns of Chaos

Let’s start things off with Ultimate ADOM – Caverns of Chaos, the next installment in a series of traditional roguelike dungeon crawlers.

Pick from a wide range of races, classes, and allegiances as you explore endlessly procedurally generated dungeons and fight hundreds of different monsters. Interact with NPCs, and take on quests for different factions to increase your reputation. You can also toggle between a graphical interface and a traditional ASCII mode.

 

The Sealed Ampoule
Developer: Cavyhouse
Publisher: Playism
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: TBA 2021

The Sealed Ampoule

The Sealed Ampoule is a farming-based mystery dungeon game where you play as Irene, a budding alchemist that has bought a dungeon so she can gather the materials to open her own shop.

As with most mystery dungeon games, you’ll explore the dungeon looking for resources and fighting enemies to level up the dungeon to find greater rewards. Level up a floor’s Farm and Magic levels to increase the number of valuable items you can find to take on greater challenges.

 

Home Behind 2
Developer: TPP Studio
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: January 22nd, 2021 (Early Access)

Home Behind 2

Home Behind 2 is a roguelite RPG set in a war-torn, borderline post-apocalyptic country named Scaria. Lead a ragtag band of revolutionaries as you try to overthrow a brutal dictator. Capture territory, build up base camps, recruit new fighters, and fight enemies in real-time strategic battles both on foot, and from ramshackle vehicles.

 

Metallic Child
Developer: Studio HG
Publisher: Crest
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4
Release Date: Q2 2021  

Metallic Child

Metallic Child is the next game by the developers of Smashing The Battle, and is set in the same universe. You control a combat android named Rona, one of the only robots on the Life Stream space station that hasn’t rebelled against their creators.

Gain access to new abilities by ripping the core modules out of your enemies. Fight your way through the station in a grapple-based combat system to thwart the rebellious robots’ plan to crash the station into Earth.

 

Tunche    
Developer: LEAP Game Studios
Publisher: HypeTrain Digital
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release Date: Spring 2021

Tunche

Tunche is a 2D roguelite brawler based on Amazonian folklore and shamanistic traditions. Pick one of five characters, and fight your way through a colorful, fantastical interpretation of the Amazon rainforest. Buy new skills and master the game’s stylish, combo-based combat system to get the highest grades and the biggest rewards. You can also team up with three friends on your journey.

 

Blade Assault
Developer: TeamSuneat
Publisher: Neowiz
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 
Release Date: TBA 2021

Blade Assault

Blade Assault is a 2D roguelite action-platformer set in a desolate cyberpunk world. Fight the corrupt military of Esperanza as a vigilante warrior with an arsenal of transformable weapons. Customize your character and weapons’ functions by swapping out core components and transformation abilities that you acquire through loot drops.

 

30XX
Developer: Batterystaple Games
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release Date: TBA 2021

30XX

30XX is the sequel to the hit roguelite action-platformer from 2017, 20XX. Inspired by Mega Man X, 30XX is set a thousand years after the first game, in a world where humanity has been enslaved by the Synthetic Mind.

Like the original, the game features procedurally generated levels and items to ensure that each playthrough is fresh, and there are two playable characters with their own unique mechanics to master. You can also team up with a friend in co-op.

 

Gunhead
Developer: Alientrap
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: TBA 2021

Gunhead

Gunhead is a roguelite FPS that acts as a sort of remake of one of Alientrap’s earlier games, Cryptark. Infiltrate derelict alien ships in your heavily armed hardsuit to loot whatever valuable artifacts you can find. Blast apart enemies with four guns at once, and learn when to take risks, and when to retreat to cash in your current loot without going too over budget on repairs and resupplies.

 

Rogue Lords
Developers: Leikir Studio, Cyanide Studio
Publisher: Nacon
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release Date: TBA 2021

Rogue Lords

Rogue Lords is a roguelite RPG where you play as the Devil on a quest to get revenge against the demon hunters that defeated you. Assemble a party of dark individuals from across history and folklore- such as Dracula, the Headless Horsemen, and Bloody Mary- and send them on missions to sow terror amongst your enemies.

Acquire new skills and abilities to improve your minions, and make decisions during random events that can help or hinder your progress. You can also spend hard to acquire souls during battle to “cheat”- manipulating the HP of enemies and allies.

 

Sword of the Necromancer
Developer: Grimorio of Games
Publishers: JanduSoft, Game Seer Ventures
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Release Date: January 28th, 2021

Sword of the Necromancer

Sword of the Necromancer is a top-down action-RPG where you play as a young warrior named Tama, trying to harness the forbidden powers of necromancy to bring his love Koko back from the dead.

Fight your way through procedurally generated dungeons looking for ancient artifacts and relics to aid you on your quest. Use the mysterious powers of the Sword of the Necromancer to resurrect slain foes as powerful allies bound to your will.

 

UnDungeon
Developer: Laughing Machines
Publisher: tinyBuild
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One  
Release Date: TBA 2021

UnDungeon

UnDungeon is a top-down roguelite action-RPG where you play as a mysterious Herald sent by a shadowy organization to undo the effects of a catastrophe that resulted in the worlds being merged into one.

Upgrade your Herald by acquiring various mechanical implants, and fight enemies using a mixture of melee and ranged combat. Explore a vast open world, and make decisions that can affect multiple worlds and timelines.

 

Endless Dungeon
Developer: Amplitude Studios
Publisher: Sega
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Release Date: TBA 2021

Endless Dungeon

Endless Dungeon is a tactical action-roguelite set in Amplitude’s Endless universe, and is loosely inspired by their earlier roguelite, Dungeon of the Endless.

Control a band of shipwrecked explorers from across the known galaxy, that have all come to find themselves stranded on an ancient alien station of unknown origin in uncharted space. Brave the dangers of the station alone, or team up with some friends to find a way to escape and return to civilization.

 

Fabular: Once upon a Spacetime
Developer: Spiritus Games
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: TBA 2021

Fabular: Once upon a Spacetime

Fabular: Once upon a Spacetime is a top-down action-roguelite where gallant space knights duel with melee weapons in armored, retro-futuristic starships. Explore a quirky universe, equip your space knight with a wide range of melee weapons and defensive systems, duel other space knights in a physics-based action combat system, and save the kingdom by defeating the evil Void Lords.

 

The Last Spell
Developer: CCCP
Publisher: The Arcade Crew
Platforms: Windows PC, Nintendo Switch
Release Date: TBA 2021

The Last Spell

The Last Spell is a turn-based tactical roguelite where you control a party of heroes tasked with defending the last bastion of humanity against a never-ending onslaught of zombies and demons.

Upgrade your heroes, construct buildings and defenses during the day, then fight off massive hordes of enemies at night. Hold out long enough for a coven of wizards to cast The Last Spell, allowing them to banish all evil from the world.

 

The Unliving
Developer: RocketBrush Studio
Publisher: Team17 Digital
Platforms: Windows PC, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
Release Date: TBA 2021

The Unliving

As a polar opposite to the above game; tear down civilization as a fearsome necromancer in The Unliving. Raise armies of undead monsters, learn devastating spells, and lead your legions on a rampage across the land. Crush every army and burn every village in your path to unlock the secrets of immortality.

 

Loop Hero
Developer: Four Quarter
Publisher: Devolver Digital
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: TBA 2021

Loop Hero

Loop Hero is a strange mixture of idle game and strategic deckbuilding roguelite RPG. An evil Lich has locked the world into an endless loop of chaos and despair. Break this time loop as a lone hero by exploring the world, building up base camps, acquiring new cards, and upgrading your character classes. You can find our hands-on preview here.

 

Against the Storm
Developer: Eremite Games
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: TBA 2021

Against the Storm

Against the Storm is a roguelite city building game set in a world of endless rain and storms. Colonize lost lands and manage the needs of three diverse races: Humans, Beavers, and Lizards. Gather resources and expand your territory during the calmer months in preparation for when the storms are at their worst; when lighting strikes are an ever-looming threat and crops are unable to grow.

 

Spire of Sorcery
Developer: Charlie Oscar Lima Tango Interactive Entertainment
Publisher: The Merchant Guild of Rund
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: TBA 2021 (Early Access)

Spire of Sorcery

Spire of Sorcery is a roguelite RPG set in the fantasy world of Rund following a devastating war started by greedy arch-mages of old. The end result of the war is a deep-seated hatred of mages, who are now mercilessly hunted by the Inquisition. Lead a band of mages to freedom by exploring uncharted lands, and repairing the long-abandoned Spire of Sorcery as a new home for mages across the land.

 

The Hand of Merlin
Developer: Room-C Games
Publisher: Croteam
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: Spring 2021

The Hand of Merlin

The Hand of Merlin is a tactical roguelite RPG where Arthurian legends clash with cosmic horror in a medieval world on the verge of collapse. Send out a band of heroes in search of ancient relics to fight back against an otherworldly evil. Equip and upgrade your heroes, and gather the scattered remnants of souls from other worlds to save as many timelines as possible.

 

Hellcard
Developer: Thing Trunk
Platform: Windows PC
Release Date: Q2 2021

Hellcard

Finally, we come to Hellcard, a spin-off of Thing Trunk’s 2017 card-based dungeon crawler, Book of Demons.

Pick your class and build your deck as you descend further into the dungeon on your quest to slay the Archdemon. Hellcard places a greater emphasis on card-based engagements than its predecessor, and unlike a lot of other deckbuilding roguelites, monster position matters a lot. You can play Hellcard alone, or recruit some of your friends to adventure with you.


That’s all for our latest batch of articles highlighting some of the promising games coming our way in 2021. Next time, we’ll be taking a look at some of the action-adventure games releasing this year.

Until then, which of these games are you looking forward to? Are there any other roguelites you are excited for in 2021? Let us know in the comments below!

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Frank Streva

About

Niche Gamer’s resident indie expert. Digs through the Steam new releases so you don’t have to. Massive fan of miniature and board games as well.




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