This week has been all about progress, in more than one way. Not only are we progressing with the game in general, we’ve also been focusing on how you progression in the Roguelike-mode (now officially named Arcade Mode) will affect your character and the town of Arcadia.

We mentioned unlockable town improvements in a previous post, and now we’ve actually put some of them into the game:

TownClick the image for some animated GIF acion!

Our goal is to make you feel like you’re accomplishing more than just another high score for yourself: you’re actually helping the town expand, and in doing so also unlock new quests and perks for yourself.

Most of these improvements are unlocked simply by playing the arcade mode. When you die, your current score will add itself to a total score which represents all of your game runs combined, and once that hits certain levels you’ll unlock a variety of rewards, including town upgrades:


Every town needs a Mayor, and Arcadia is no different! Just like the town, he evolves the more points you manage to score while playing in Arcade mode.




Now it’s time to pack our bags, as we’re set to go represent the game over at Gamex in just a few days! Teddy and Vilya will be there for the entire event, so please drop by to try the game, chat or complain about the nonexistant release date anytime between Thursday and Sunday (check opening hours at the site).

To find us, look for Uppsala University’s GAME booth, where we’ll be hanging out with some of our old classmates who are also bringing their game projects :)

While there were certainly a bunch of you who liked having HD portraits, the majority seemed to prefer the portraits matching the native in-game resolution. We wanted to keep the new look, though, so Vilya made a down scaled version, which can be seen below. We’re quite happy with how it turned out!


Some of you were concerned about the portrait and sprite not matching each other. Don’t fret! This blonde young guy isn’t your father, but a fellow collector :)

Here’s a little teaser gif from when you beat a floor in the Roguelike! Your performance is graded, and you’re given a large score bonus based on how well you played, and how many rooms you braved. This is for the first floor, which explains the relatively few rooms.


The quest for the flavor animations is an ongoing and seemingly endless task, but Fred keeps hammering away at it. The Collector’s HQ has been the main focus this week as well, but some of the local Evergrind residents have also been given some love.

WindowTeacherPat CartWalkStone

This week we’ve kept on working on getting things in order – fixing bugs, adjusting levels and implementing the new animations and interfaces.

We’ve also been discussing the portraits (yes, again!). This time around we’re toying with the idea of keeping the high-res versions of the portraits in the game rather than making them more pixelated, which proved quite a challenge when it comes to keeping all of the details.

Nothing has been decided yet as all our options each have their own issues and advantages, but here’s a mockup of what it might look like with the high-res portraits in the game:

portrait(Click image for full size)

What do you guys think? Is it too distracting to have a high-res portrait among the rest of the pixel art, or do you prefer to see the characters in this form, which is more detailed compared to the old portraits?

In the animation department we’ve noticed that the Collectors’ Headquarters have been in grave need of some extra flare for a while and we figured it’s finally time to start correcting that! We really want to give the HQ a busy feel, so Fred have been bashing away at some minor flavor animations to liven up the place:



We’ve also got some news regarding the game outside of our workroom! It seems like we’ll be going to Gamex again this year, so if you’re near Stockholm/Kista at the end of October, be sure to visit us there!

During the past week, the Roguelike Mode has continued to get some development love, and we’re out for some feedback once again! We’ve been discussing and implementing persistency of the Roguelike, and come up with a little town called Arcadia.

arcadiaSmall beginnings!

The idea behind Arcadia is to give an anchor point between your runs. In the screenshot is a basic version of the town, but as you progress through the mode you’ll unlock town improvements, both functional and purely cosmetical. Let’s break the major features down:

Essence of Grindea

Essence is a roguelike only currency used within Arcadia. You’ll find it as rare drops from monsters and bosses, as well as rewards for quests, accomplishments and at the end of runs. Needless to say, all essence collected will go into a pool that’s not limited to a single character!


Perks are tiny advantages you can unlock and equip to boost your chances. While we’re planning to add quite a bunch of these, you can only have three equipped at one time! Examples of perks are starting items, a small sum of money, a skill point, slightly better drop rates, and so forth. In the screenshot, I’ve equipped a perk letting me start with a Squire’s Sword instead of the Wooden Sword, giving me a slight early game edge!

Quests and Achievements

Quests work a bit differently from the regular game. You can only have one quest active at a time, but you can change and remove the active quest whenever you want. While a quest is active, the roguelike mode is changed in some way. For example, if a quest NPC asks you to “defeat the Pumpking in Pumpkin Woods”, a Pumpking (it doesn’t really exist – yet) will spawn as a boss or a challenge. Perhaps a quest is a challenge to reach a certain floor with no healing whatsoever, disabling healing in runs as long as the quest is active! Quests will never make a run easier, so you can’t use them to unfairly boost your score.

Achievements also exist in the story mode, but as with quests they work a bit differently. While they are character based there, in the roguelike mode they carry over between runs and give rewards relevant to the roguelike. An achievement might be to reach certain floors without taking damage, beating high score thresholds, or completing difficult challenges.

Transferable Items

Transferable Items are things you unlock which can then be redeemed by your characters in story mode! This will probably mainly feature cosmetic items — especially viable with the new style slots — but we could technically also have genuinely powerful equipment transfers with level restrictions.

Please let us know what you think, and don’t hesitate to share your ideas!

No weekly recap is complete without some moving graphics from Fred, so to tie the topic together, here’s a new level up effect for when a player… yeah.


PS: We made the Slime Hammer wobble <3

This week we decided to backtrack and polish parts of the story mode in preparation for a future demo! Our main focus has been to tweak smaller things here and there as well as fixing bugs, but we’ve also been adding some new features such as these long awaited style slots:


The idea behind the style slots is to allow players to show off the gear they think look good without sacrificing combat potential. In the screenshot above, I felt the Bandana and Glasses had better stats, but I preferred the visual appearance of my Straw Boater and Blindfold. Style slots give players the best of both worlds!

There’s also a bunch of weapons being added, with a focus on two-handed weapons as they’ve been heavily underrepresented as of late. Below is a simpler version of the Axe from last week, as well as a Spiked Club and the wicked Slime Hammer:

Axe SpikedClub HAMMER
Lastly, we’ve been making a bunch of new items to balance what you can buy in the stores. Here’s a sneak peek of a couple of hats and facegear which you’ll be able to equip in the near future:

Now it’s back business! See you next week :)