Space Grunts - But you can't hear it, because you're in space
| Space Grunts

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Space Grunts is a roguelike. So, that's something. It's got all the bits that make up a roguelike, from perma-death to grid-based movement and buffs you can pick up when you spot them.

This time around rather than stumbling through a dungeon you're stumbling through a decaying space station. And you've got a gun. Actually, you've got three guns.

The game is far more action orientated than your usual roguelike though. You're lasering little beasts, blowing up barrels with rockets, and trying to stay alive for as long as possible.

And it all works pretty well. It's not spectacularly original, but there's a lot of fun to be had stalking through the cheeky corridors and blasting everything that moves.

So what does it do different?

Erm, not all that much. The big change is the controls, but that's probably the biggest misstep that the game makes. Usually roguelikes on touch use taps to move, but here you're using a D-pad.

Tapping a direction either moves you in that way or changes your facing if you're looking in a different direction. It works well when it works, but sometimes your taps don't register, which is a bit annoying.

It's not the end of the world though, because of the turn-based nature of the play. Sure you might not turn around, but nothing else will move so you're unlikely to get your face smashed in when things go wrong.

The beef of the game still works pretty damn well. It's fast and furious. Sloshing around the futuristic wreckage is a blast, and figuring out how to handle the creatures who are shooting blobs of fire at you is a lot of fun.

Worth a crack then?

Yeah. Don't make it your first roguelike, there are definitely better examples on the App Store that play around with the form of the genre in interesting ways.

Space Grunts is solid, almost workman-like in pretty much every aspect of its existence. It looks nice, it plays nice, and is just generally nice.

There are problems, it's repetitive, and you'll get angry at it sometimes, but you can't expect everything to be perfect because that's totally insane.

Space Grunts - But you can't hear it, because you're in space

Space Grunts is a decent roguelike, but that's about it
Harry Slater
Harry Slater
Harry used to be really good at Snake on the Nokia 5110. Apparently though, digital snake wrangling isn't a proper job, so now he writes words about games instead.