With all the offensive skills in the game, we’re taking a break from skills before looking into how to spice up the supportive ones. Instead we’ve done a bunch of quality of life-improvements to existing systems. One of the more visually interesting of these changes are the new critical strike indication!


Before, critical strikes were displayed as regular damage numbers that blinked white at the beginning, which was difficult to see if you didn’t know what to look for. These fancy new animated numbers, however, should be hard to miss!

Another thing we’ve been working on is Steam integration. Don’t read too much into this; this is not in preparation for an imminent release, but we want to start migrating the beta over from Desura.


While Desura has been great, there are certain limitations with the platform that makes it sub-optimal for running a beta. The biggest disadvantage compared to Steam is that all uploads to Desura must be approved, which is a process that can take several days.

The Desura staff has been really cool about pushing our updates quicker than that in emergencies, but it’s still not as good as the instant deployment available on Steam. Steam also saves all revisions, making it possible to rollback to an earlier version should we accidentally upload a way too broken build.

Another advantage is how easy it is to have a primary and secondary branch for the game. This means that we can have one stable release, and one “in house” build with very new features. Right now we only have one branch, and thus the updates are few and far between since we don’t want to break the game. With an opt-in superbeta we can have dedicated players testing the brand new features and not just ourselves and our close friends.


Now some of you might be wondering what happens to the existing testers and, of course, what about the thread on IndieDB?

Of course, existing testers will get access to the new version! However, this only applies to users that have posted feedback in the forums or have been making videos of the game (you are safe, IHeartPie)! In other words, people invited to the beta that hasn’t given anything in return will no longer be receiving updates.

Regarding new beta invites, we will still be sampling from the IndieDB thread, only we’ll send a message and ask for your Steam account name.

As you might have noticed if you’ve been following the blog, we’ve been focusing pretty hard on finishing up all the offensive skills, and we’re happy to say this week features the very last one: Berserker Style!


The Berserker Style might be our most game-changing skill. It’s a two handed skill which will change the rules of how energy works, forcing you into a offensive play style. When you activate the skill, you will get a varied range of effects depending on the charge level. All charges increases your damage by 15 %, and damage taken is increased by 15-45 % depending on level.

Every time you strike an enemy, you’ll get a stacking attack speed buff which stacks up to 10 times for 30 % bonus on level 1, and 40 % bonus on level 3. Also, on level 3, you will also get a big crit chance buff along with the attack speed.

The biggest change, however, is that energy decays constantly, but you will also gain energy by striking enemies. What this means is that the tactics surrounding energy restoration is completely reversed. Instead of playing defensively while your energy recovers, you must now play offensively in order to use other skills!

Since there are both pros and cons to having the skill active, it has a pretty high skill requirement to use efficiently. It can be really strong if you can manage to play to its strengths (offensive bonuses, energy control) while mitigating the weaknesses (defensive debuff, energy penalty on defensive play).

Vilya has been inside the portrait factory the entire week converting to the new style, and here are some of the latest ones, featuring the priest and nurse from Arcade Mode, as well as Nysbruden, one of the very first NPCs you run into:

hood1 hood2nysbruden

Are you tired of watching gifs and reading about new skills? Hopefully not, because here’s a skill super post about what we’ve cooked together over the past week!

First out of the gates is the revamped Spirit Slash, which has gone from a pure AoE spell to distributed targeting, and at the same time gone through a big visual makeover.

SpiritSlash_v2Click to view animated gif!

As you release the Spirit Slash, it will start picking targets around you, striking at enemies one after the other until the max number of slashes has been reached. If there’s only one target around, each consecutive strike will deal slightly less damage.

Due to its random and non-instant nature, it’s a bit trickier to use than regular AoE-attacks (like the Whirlslash or Ice Nova), but also fits into more situations. At close range, it can be used as a simple damage amplifier both to single and multiple targets, and when battling slow enemies it can even be used for kiting.

Then we have the new earth based skill Insect Swarm, which shockingly isn’t a type of lettuce, but a swarm of insects!

InsectsVsPillarMountainsClick on it, we dare you!

The Insect Swarm spell is a soft-summon, meaning they behave like a pet but for a limited time only, and they only consume energy rather than block it out completely. The other soft-summon in the game is the Plant spell, which we added way back!

When cast, an insect swarm will spawn from the tip of your hands, traveling straight forward. If it hits an enemy, it will swarm around it, dealing damage over time until the swarm dies off, or the enemy is defeated. If the swarm gets the last hit on a monster, it will revive a portion of its lost members, increasing its duration. When the targeted enemy dies, regardless who killed it, the swarm will move on to another target and continue dealing damage until the last insect has died off.

While the spell is easy to use and deals consistent damage (unless you miss completely), getting optimal results is a bit more tricky. Due to its self-healing mechanic on kills, you’ll get more damage out of targeting monsters with low health, making it suitable as a follow up after softening enemies up with something else.

Last off, we’ve implemented the Flame Thrower silver charge!


Unlike the regular version, which required you to stay put in order to complete the channel, silver charge lets you strafe around while casting, opening up for new and more efficient ways to use it.

If you just can’t get enough, here’s a VOD of a massive 8 hour stream Fred did, featuring mostly animation work but also some Arcade Mode gameplay.

Once again, Teddy have been hard at work in the Skills Workshop. This week we present the third and final skill of the Air-tree, the Wind Slash.

WindSlashClick to view animated gif!

The Wind Slash is another projectile based skill. What makes it  stand out from the rest of our skills is the way you fire the projectiles.

The moment you start charging the Wind Slash, a spinning, double edged arrow appears under your character. Once the charge is released, two Wind Blades will shoot out from the character in the directions that the arrow is pointing, damaging all enemies they pass through.

At higher charge levels, a second arrow will appear spinning in the opposite direction, firing an extra pair of Wind Blades. This makes it possible to land double hits if the arrows are aligned during the charge release.
The Wind Blade is deviously hard to control, demanding good positioning and timing. If used correctly however, it has the ability to deal tons of damage to multiple enemies at once!

Other than skills, we’ve spent a good amount of time focusing on balancing Arcade Mode. Besides changing a ton of small things such as damage numbers, item costs and skill nerfs, we’re also investigating changes regarding health recovery.

The health recovery is a major element that really ramps up the difficulty in Arcade Mode compared to Story Mode. In Story Mode, every enemy has a chance of dropping a Health Orb which restores some of your lost health. The chance of enemies dropping orbs is also increased the lower your characters HP gets. To top it all off, your death only means having to replay a small portion of the game!

In Arcade Mode, Health Orbs can only be obtained by either clearing a floor or receiving them as a reward for clearing a Challenge or Bet. While this makes things a lot more unforgiving and challenging (which is what we want Arcade Mode to be!) it also makes it incredibly difficult to mount a come back if you’ve taken some heavy hits in a room, and if you die, that’s the end of your run.

To mitigate this, we’ve messed around with adding a small health regain every time you managed to clear a room quickly enough to get the S-grade. What (we hope) this will do is promote more aggressive and risky play when your characters HP is low in hopes of receiving the S-grade and added health regain.

One drawback to this is the creation of an artificial “skill bump”; a player will get better and better at a relatively steady pace, but when he starts getting S-ranks with some consistency the game suddenly becomes easier, possibly causing an unintended spike in the player’s progress. We’re still experimenting with this to achieve the best balance!


In addition, or as an alternative, we’re also adding a nurse, which will appear at semi-random intervals and offer you healing for cold, hard cash. The more health you’ve obtained this way, the steeper the price! Our hope is that this will make gold management more interesting than it is now, since buying a better weapon in a shop might mean less healing if you run into a nurse, and the other way around. This solution also opens up healing to every player, regardless if they have the skill to clear a room with S-rank!

The balancing act of both Arcade and Story Mode is a task that we’ll keep wrestling with up until release, but hey, that eternal struggle is one of the twisted appeals of our trade :)