It feels like forever since I first played 99 Levels To Hell, back when it was still in alpha stage, and I dare say it has come a long way since. But instead of boring you with details on how I felt each version of the game improved upon the formula, let’s fast forward to the present, as the first non-beta version has just been released.
Your objective is to descend into the depths of hell while beating the crap out of anything that moves. An easy task, if not for the fact that once you die, you have to start over from the very beginning – unless you’ve managed to defeat the 10th, 20th (and so on) level boss, that is. These fights act as checkpoint guardians: defeat one, and you’ll have the option of starting in the following level, which is bound to come in handy as this game can be very challenging. This is further emphasized by a limited amount of hearts for health, instead of the almost too common regenerating health system. Besides, being able to automatically replenish your health in a roguelike would be a bit absurd as it would lower the difficulty significantly, unless of course the game was designed around it, which 99 Levels To Hell is not.
Along the way, you’ll find a variety of weapons, upgrades, magical items, hearts with which to replenish lost health and gold nuggets to be spent in shops or – if you’re feeling lucky – casinos. Provided you can find them that is, since each level is randomly generated, meaning that cartographers need not apply; not that they’d be able to survive the trip anyway. Everything from rats, bats, and spiders to what looks like aliens from an invasion gone horribly wrong, will kick your ass if you’re not careful… and those are just some of the things that you’ll encounter early on! As your descent takes you further down, traps and other environmental hazards join the fray in order to make your life a living Hell. So are you ready for a roguelike that’ll kick your ass, while making you want to come back for more, time and time again?
If you’re looking for more information, check out my beta preview where I covered the game in (almost) too great detail. Once you believe yourself ready to face the dangers lurking in the darkness, 99 Levels To Hell can be acquired from GOG, Desura or IndieCity. Its rockin’ soundtrack can be purchased from Bandcamp and remember to show it some Greenlight love, eh?