I have always enjoyed games that utilized aesthetics that stepped out of modern-day artistry. Cogmind immediately caught my attention with its ASCII art style – perhaps it’s because some of the earliest games were built using ASCII graphics or maybe its just the geekery inside me. Either way, I enjoy games that take on this primitive art style.
Cogmind takes pride in maintaining traditional roguelike elements to include: procedural generation, permadeath, turn-based, art style, and to a lesser extent combat. But the game still adds its own innovative elements that separate it from traditional roguelikes – something the developer spent a fair amount of time working on.
Take a look at the description and features of the game taken from the devlog:
- While exploring the world you find (or take) power sources, propulsion units, utilities, and weapons, and attach them to yourself to create a slow tank bristling with weapons, or a fast-moving flyer zipping past enemies before they even have time to react, or a stealthy sword-wielding assassin bot, or whatever else you can come up with from the salvage you find. The game can quickly change as you lose components and your loadout changes.
- Action is turn-based but you don’t have “action points” per se; instead, every action takes a certain amount of time, and robots that can perform actions more quickly can continue to due so until another robot is ready to act.
- Combat is optional if you can avoid it, and there is no grinding for XP since the game rewards you for simply reaching new areas.
- While not fighting/sneaking, you can find/construct allies, hack machines, manipulate your enemies, and explore the story through terminals spread throughout the complex.
- Power Sources: Engines, power cores, and reactors supply the power necessary to run other systems.
- Propulsion: Treads, legs, wheels, and hover/flight units enable a robot to move more quickly (multiple types can be attached, though only a single category can be active at a time).
- Utilities: Special devices, processors, storage units, and protective gear that provide a wide range of benefits.
- Weapons: Guns, cannons, launchers, and a variety of melee weapons.
- Energy: Generated by the core and power sources; necessary for moving, firing energy-based weapons, and sustaining the operation of some utility systems.
- Matter: Salvaged from robot remains; used to fuse components, and consumed by ballistic weapons and launchers as ammunition.
- Animated ASCII particle effects (weapons/explosions etc.)
- Animated interface
- Hundreds of Sound effects
- Fully destructible terrain
- Full mouse and keyboard support for all commands
- Drag-and-drop support for mouse
- ASCII art
General Feature List
Many of these are a given for anyone familiar with roguelikes, but I’ll list them here for completeness.
- Resource management
- Inventory and equipment system
- Item identification system (for a subset of powerful items)
- Fog of war
- Several damage types each with unique properties/effects
- Simple yet dynamic combat system
- No grinding/XP (character development is automatic through exploration)
- Multiple AI behaviors
- Numerous items, special abilities, and enemies
- Autosave/load on exit/startup
- Large randomly generated maps
- Turn-based action
- Single player
- All units use the same ruleset as the player
- Score output to an external file, with detailed statistics
Cogmind is definitely a game that we are keeping our eyes on. If you want to know more about it you can head on over to the games official website to learn more.