#841 Spelunky

Posted: 18th November 2018 by Jeroen in Games
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740th played so far

Genre: Action/Adventure
Platform: PC
Year of Release: 2008
Developer: Mossmouth, LLC
Publisher: Mossmouth, LLC

When listening to recent gaming podcasts, people whose taste I generally agree with or at least respect mention Spelunky as a game they really enjoy, its daily challenges especially being something they love to engage in as being a great driver to keep playing and offering an experience that relies so much on skill and player knowledge.

Spelunky is a roguelike platformer – featuring random levels like Nethack, but focusing on platforming skill and action to take on enemies and challenges rather than a turn based RPG system. The challenges, though, come from how systems combine and never just a single problem, or they would once you get the experience. Emergent gameplay and all that – we’ll see how it goes.

Our Thoughts

Spelunky is a challenging game. A lot of the individual challenges aren’t too difficult – correct jumpins and taking out enemies – some can make your life difficult if you don’t know the trick yet. The real challenge comes from the accumulation of elements, as enemies pop up at the wrong time, jumps are tricky and while reaching the exit isn’t always the hardest, doing so optimally is.

Because there’s always something else to go for. Shops have tools – once you can’t always afford early on, but want to get. Treasure is buried underground and there are even entire rooms that you can only reach by getting through the walls, mostly using your bombs. They are, of course, a limited resource, so you need to consider whether you’ll get enough benefit out of using There are constant trade offs, which adds a strategic dimension beyond the action segments.

Even with the time I spent on it, I noticed I was starting to discover more systems even towards the end and even as I didn’t progress in levels. As I’m meant to get more as I progress in levels, I’m curious to see where all that will end up.

Graphically, the game is fairly simple. I played the HD version, which uses redrawn, cartoony graphics rather than the sprite work of the original version, and the bold colours help make everything stand out. They’re effective and the changes as you go through are enough to add to the fun of discovering and exploring these levels.

Final Thoughts

In the end, Spelunky is a difficult game and I probably missed out on a lot. The systems just don’t seem readily explored like this, but the layers that I’ve already seen are enough to pull me in further.