Choose your weapons and take aim at the most random Serious Sam adventure yet!
User reviews: Mixed (352 reviews)
Release Date: Oct 24, 2011
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Packages that include this game

Buy Serious Sam Complete Pack

Includes 11 items: Serious Sam 2, Serious Sam 3: BFE, Serious Sam 3: BFE Bonus Pack, Serious Sam 3: Jewel of the Nile, Serious Sam Classic: The First Encounter, Serious Sam Classic: The Second Encounter, Serious Sam Double D XXL, Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter, Serious Sam HD: The Second Encounter, Serious Sam HD: The Second Encounter - Legend of the Beast DLC, Serious Sam: The Random Encounter


About This Game

The legendary Serious Sam reloads and rearms in an explosive, turn-based RPG developed by indie developer Vlambeer (Super Crate Box, Ridiculous Fishing). Serious Sam: The Random Encounter follows Sam and his band of oddball mercenaries as they battle across a pixilated world teeming chaotic battles, hordes of bizarre creatures, and mysterious secrets. Choose your weapons and take aim at the most random Serious Sam adventure yet!

Serious Sam Indie Series

The Serious Sam Indie Series is an extraordinary program launched by Croteam and Devolver Digital to partner with gaming's most creative independent developers and design radically unique Serious Sam games in a variety of styles and genres.

Key Features:

  • Turn-Based Awesome: Battle across three worlds of pandemonium with Serious Sam and his band of quirky commandos as they clash with legions of relentless creatures hell-bent on ruining your day. Choose your weapons and prepare for an absolute onslaught of merciless enemies charging from every direction.
  • Extraordinary Visual Design: Behold the pixilated brutality of Serious Sam’s struggle against evil in glorious retro-styled graphics. Visit the exotic locals of Egypt and dangerous caverns overrun by Mental’s twisted horde. Battle by land or take on all-new aquatic variations of classic Serious Sam baddies in underwater skirmishes unlike anything Sam has faced before!
  • Serious Strategy: No magic here, son. Select from a variety of dynamic items to increase your party’s stats, toss out some Headless Kamikaze bait, or bring everything to a devastating halt with the all-powerful Serious Bomb.
  • Challenge Mode: Take on a never-ending wave of Mental’s most fearsome minions and attempt to post the best score to win the admiration of your friends and family.
Serious Sam: The Random Encounter was created by Dutch indie duo Rami Ismail & Jan Willem Nijman and features crisp pixel art by Roy Nathan de Groot & pixel-animator Paul Veer. The game had its chiptune music created by Alex Mauer and the trailers were produced by Canadian video-magician Kert Gartner.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP, Vista, 7
    • Processor: 2.0Ghz or faster processor
    • Memory: 1GB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 100MB free space
    • Video Card: 256MB Video Memory or higher, DirectX 8 or later
    • DirectX®: 8.0 or later
Helpful customer reviews
10 of 16 people (63%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
2.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 3, 2014
Its fun at first, but by world 3-1 its gets impossible. Everything before 3-1 is great, but due to the massive jump in diffuclty, I can only recommend Serious Sam: The Random Encounter to the most Serious fans of the series.
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5 of 8 people (63%) found this review helpful
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 22, 2014
Game constantly crashes. Developers tell us an update is coming soon to fix it but nothing and the game still crashes after a few minutes of playing. Would not recommend the download even if it was free.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: April 1
It's not often that words fail me, but in this case I think they might. There's just no way to fully describe the variety of reactions that I get when playing this game. I can describe SOME of it - enjoyment, amusement, mild frustration, more amusement - but more than anything this is something I simply did not expect in a Serious Sam title.

Briefly, the game plays a bit like a classic turn-based RPG, with you selecting actions (primarily attacking) while facing off against enemies. What makes this a Serious Sam game is that it's initally just Sam against 20+ enemies per encounter, and you're running backwards as they're running towards you. The format is also a bit different in that you can move Sam around as wave after wave of enemy heads towards you, allowing you to dodge attacks, or try at any rate. As you progress through the game you gain two other allies who you can control during fights. This improves your damage output but makes dodging much harder, as all three move as one unit. In between fights you move around on an overhead view map, encountering enemies randomly as you move; thus, the name.

Of course, what also makes this a proper Serious Sam game is the weapons you are given. Initially limited to a Revolver and Minigun, you eventually pick up nearly the full compliment of Serious Sam weapons: shotgun, rocket launcher, laser rifle, sniper rifle, grenade launcher, and even the Cannon. Each has been balanced fairly well for the way the game plays, with differing strengths and weaknesses. Last but not least, the game has no shortage of humor, perfectly on tone for Sam and his usual shenanigans. Many of the jokes are aimed at the game's new format, with Sam complaining about "puzzles" (read: having to pick up a key) for example.

In the end, Serious Sam: The Random Encounter is an amusing and enjoyable spinoff of the Serious Sam brand, though admittedly a very short one. On my first attempt it took me about an hour to get through the entirety of the game to the final boss. I won't say that's a dealbreaker, especially since the game has a reasonable replay value, but it's worth knowing when you're deciding how much you're willing to pay for a copy. If you need something to kill an hour or two, you could do far worse.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
1.3 hrs on record
Posted: April 11
A ♥♥♥♥♥♥ little game classified as abandonware because the devs won't fix the crash issue on windows 8 that tons of ppl are having. Some person just released a fix recently and I got to actually play the game thanks to them. It doesn't matter anyway because the game Seriously Sucks like most Serious Sam games do. The difficulty comes from having to use the exact weapons in the exact line during each fight. If you deviate any tiny bit from what the devs had in mind, you die and lose the battle. The game is 100% trial and error hence the reason it blows. You have zero freedom in how you do battle. It is a neat idea pausing and letting you plan a attack every five seconds but too bad that good idea was wasted on this dog sh-t game. Serious Sam games have a very limited fan base, just enough to register as cult status, enough for them to keep making games, although Serious Sam 3 will probably be the last one. I sure as hell hope anyway. The only one that had any style and was at least somewhat fun was 2. SS1 and 3 are two of the worst games ever made, just boring, bland, lifeless slogfests of boredom. This pile of crap is right up there with them. I have zero interest in playing this garbage past the few levels I played. Maybe in the future they will learn their lesson that people want freedom of choice in games, not to have their gameplay choices handcuffed completely.

Unfun dog crap garbage abandonware 0/10
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: March 5
Its basically call of duty married pokemon and pokemon had a baby but it was deformed and it was this game
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 24, 2014
This game keeps crashing at the third battle. Come on Vlambeer! I Expect Better from you than this!
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.4 hrs on record
Posted: March 9
this game is so bad i cant even start it sometimes and the sound dont work i can play the game in 5 minutes until i crashes and i have to do everything over again dont buy this its just a waste of money...
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 25, 2014
Pleasently suprised...Made 10minutes go in a flash!
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
2.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 14, 2014
Fun game.Gets hard after a few battles but if you like hard games then this is for you.Crashes sometimes
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 30, 2014
Hardcore sh*t
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
1.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 25
Serious Sam: The Random Encounter is a mash-up of Serious Sam, old-school JRPGs (say, Final Fantasy) and, unexpectedly enough, a bullet-hell shooter. Yes, it is definitely all of those things!

Just a little bit of history, this was part of a series of promotional Serious Sam games, created by Devolver Digital to promote the (at the time) upcoming Serious Sam 3.

The other game of the series I've played, was a 2D side-scrolling shooter, where you could mount guns on top of other guns, and had massive mobs of enemies exploding around you. It was a blast!

With that said, when I saw this available on a sale, I decided to give it a go, as ridiculous as the premise sounds!

It's a byte-sized game made by Vlambeer, so you know what to expect, knowing them -- sometimes unfair, yet really fun and chaotic arcade gaming!

The visual style in this game immediately shows what the game is. It features the indentifiable Vlambeer style, with the whole SS crew of headless guys with bombs for hands and lava monters! I'm not too familiar with the Serious Sam games (I own them, just haven't gotten around to playing them), so I can't say how faithful it may be.

Regardless, it looks pretty cool. It's a retro looking and sounding game, but not in a lazy way.

You'll literally fight dozens of enemies at once, in each battle, all with a big flare of explosions and bullet flying around. You may argue that it sometimes obfuscates the screen and isn't very clean -- but honestly, that's not the point. It's supposed to be silly, mindless and over-the-top, and that's exactly what it is! In a good way.

Each area has a very characteristic look, and it's really great to see hordes of enemies on screen getting obliterated.

The music is a bit strange. I can't tell if it's a different and more retro arrangement of SS's music. Regardless I think it's pretty good! Some of it (especially the drumming) sounds like MIDI, and the rest is simply synth based music. It does fit the theme, though!
Futuristic levels sound futuristic, egypt level sounds oriental, that sort of stuff. I really enjoyed the music while I played the game!

In the way of options and interface, it's a bit limited, but it doesn't really matter very much. I beat the game in less than 2 hours, so there weren't any major problems that I've found worth mentioning.

The writing isn't at all serious, being very self aware and constantly poking fun at both SS and JRPG tropes. It was amusing to me, taking the context of the game into account.

General Structure
In this game, you have 3 different levels, each with 3 different stages.

It plays like a JRPG. You have a topdown view and a small map, sometimes with "puzzles" to solve. I say "puzzles" but I don't think they count as that. It's more the concept of puzzle that the game uses to poke fun at. Go to A, press switch, door opens -- with guts and explosion in the middle.

In these maps, there are, as the name suggests, random encounters!
Yes, about every 2 steps. Literally. Don't worry, the maps aren't all that big. At the end of each battle, your characters gain a bit of armor, if they didn't get hit, so it definitely rewards "decent" play -- skill isn't a big factor in this game, no worries!

You'll have to balance exploration (very minimal, each stage fits easily in one screen) and just rushing to the end. Why? Because there are chests spread around the stages. These chests contain weapons and items that will certainly prove useful. On the downside, you'll have more encounters, which is more dangerous.

At the end of each level there's a Boss fight, which mainly involves a big horde plus a really big unique monster.

Death is punished, buy it's not too punishing by any stretch. I find it completely fair! You have 3 lives. If you die in any encounter, you'll go back one step behind that encounter, and lose a life. If you lose all your lives, you simply restart the stage. Since the stages are really short, it's never a problem.

You start with only one character, but then pick another 2, on later levels.

General Mechanics and Combat System
Ok, this is the interesting part of the game, of course! How exactly do they combine JRPG combat with bullet-hells?
Well, honestly, not very well, from a design standpoint. It is, however, a fun idea to experiment in a game like this!

Basically, it's a turn-based bullet-hell game. The game stops every 5 seconds. When it stops, you get to choose an action. Use an item? Change weapon? Or maybe you'll simply attack. When you attack or change weapon, you'll chosen which direction you'll want to shoot, and that's about it.
While it's really simply, conceptually, it has many more ideas thrown in, which I'll talk ahead, regarding weapons. (1)

Outside the turn, you basicaly move vertically, trying to shoot your enemies, and dodge bullets (which is worth mentioning by itself (2)). The items aren't very interesting, although they certainly are useful. There are items that heal the party, give them full armor, 4x damage, speed, huge bombs, etc. Nothing very unique, but I'm glad they're there regardless! It adds variety and some degree of tactic to the combat.

I think that's enough to give you a general idea of what the game is. Now, I'd like to discuss some aspects that may make-or-end the deal, for you.

First off, I'll write about the weapons, since I think it's the coolest aspect of the game. There are several different weapons. And when I say different, I mean different! Not just more powerful, faster, bigger -- they actually feel different, and have mechanics of their own, playing with the turn-based side of the game.
For example, there's a Revolver that is a bit weak, but auto-targets close targets, killing them one by one.
There's a Shotgun that shoots only in a certain range that you assign to it when you choose your turn-action -- Trading individual damage for less, spread damage.
There's a big Cannon that is piercing and very large shot, basically killing everything in front of it (or the direction you choose) -- however, you always have to wait for a turn for it to recharge! And using items doesn't count.
Then, there's a Grenade Launcher and damage a radial area of your choosing.

I could go on, but this gets the point across. The weapons are really different from one another, and it adds quite a lot to the combat! It also adds interesting aspects to the weird, unique concept of this game.

2. Dodging enemies and bullets with 3 characters
I've talked about my favourite aspect; now it's time for by biggest problem!
The game is very unbalanced. Period. There was certainly some thought put into it, since the game is beatable for sure, and item placement helps with that. However, this is a very byte-sized game, and such a thing wouldn't work on a bigger game. But I'm digressing.

The point is, when you're in battle, it's almost impossible to dodge enemies and bullets. Your only defense is actually a brutal offense. If you can kill everything before it gets to you, you're in a good spot! Otherwise, you're screwed.

I mean, there are 3 characters, with a decent space between them. So, if you want to dodge, you'll have to dodge with all three at once. Besides, with the amount of enemies that there are, you'll often be overwhelmed, at one point or another. It happens a lot, but you can be more prepared on your next try.

The game doesn't require a lot of skill, directly because of this. It's a mindless game about slaughtering hordes of enemies at once, with big guns.
Still, it's chaotic and fun! If you want a short, little, but mechanically ball-sy game, look no further! It's not perfect, but it has its moments!
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1 of 2 people (50%) found this review helpful
3.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 23, 2014
Serious Sam was almost never hard for me but this is hardcore I tottaly recomend.This is really challenging to kill bosses (not the first ones)
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40 of 57 people (70%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 8, 2014
This is an old school RPG based around the Serious Sam franchise. You'll have a top down map with enemy encounters and be taken to a RPG style battle system. The map worlds are literally one screen sections, if your party is wiped out three times, you need to restart that one map. It would feel right at home on the original Gameboy or a mobile phone. Random battles can happen when you walk one space on the map, so if that angers you, avoid this game.

The real game is the combat, each battle pits you and your allies against several if not dozens or hundreds of enemies chasing after you. You select fight, swap weapon or item. Any of your characters can use any weapon. Here's where it gets interesting, the weapons and enemies have uses like in an action game. The revolver will shoot at the closest enemy, the shotgun is a defensive weapon if any enemies or big projectiles get within a proximity of the user, the rocket launcher sends a spread of 3 rockets one per turn, the grenade launcher does big damage.... if you can hit your target in it, since enemies move, they might be gone before the grenade lands, and there's a mini gun where you aim the line and fire until the end of the turn.

Enemies have different properties too. Some will stay far and shoot, others will chase after you and damage you, killing themselves. Enemies are quicker and slower than you, so you can either outrun them or they'll catch you. All of the combat is a really fresh take on RPG turn based combat. Oh and as your turn is happening, you can move your party up and down on the screen to dodge projectiles or stall for time as you wait for the next shotgun blast.

After every battle, you get full health. The items mostly consist of armor power ups, health, attack buffs. All of which seem to be needed for bosses at the end of each one screen map.

So if I enjoy the game how could I give it a negative rating?

The game is a steep climb in difficulty before you know it. Walls of bullets, things become unavoidable, deaths are inevitable even if party members are revived with full health after a battle. Everything needs to be done in battle and that is the real downfall. You cannot use any items such as armor outside of battle. So if you're facing a wall of bullets against dozens or hundreds of enemies, you'll just get slaughtered again and again. Luck of who you fight plays a big part of your survival. You can grind all you want before a boss battle. The catch is once you've used your 3 lives, you'll need to start that map over again without all of the grinding you just did. Another problem with lack of grinding is that you can't go back to a previous map to grind and no amount of grinding will save you from bullet walls that comes with every enemy encounter past a few maps. Another downfall is there is no native controller or steam support. Not even key binding, but everything else is a much bigger glaring issue.

In all, its just a fresh take on old school RPGs and I like it, but its as if the developers didn't play the game past a certain point. If you're looking for a very difficult new RPG that is unforgiving and makes grinding meaningless, this is the game for you.
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30 of 42 people (71%) found this review helpful
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 6, 2014
Most serious game OF ALL TIME! Contained absolutely no joking around, horsing off, rigamarole, goofin, flim-flam, ballyhoo, jim-jammery, ribbing, ribaldry, jesting comments, light banter, hoopla, slapstick, vaudvillian wisecracking, farcitude, slack-cutting, or campiness of any kind.
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22 of 31 people (71%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 24, 2013
A great use of the Serious Sam franchise. An old school top down desktop exploration game combined with JRPG fighting mechanics. Save Sam and support Vlambeer in the process for only a few bucks!
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21 of 30 people (70%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 13, 2014
IF you own windows 8, DON´T BUY THIS. I doesn´t work at all, sound is bad, it´s a laggy game overall
IF you own windows 7, definitily buy this, it´s an awesome take on a JRPG wqith the Serious Sam theme, humor, lore.
(I just not recommend this because the devs said they would fix this and Super Crate Box two years ago, no progress yet).
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20 of 29 people (69%) found this review helpful
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: July 4, 2014
If you want to play a bullet hell in which you can't dodge bullets, go ahead and buy this game.
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12 of 15 people (80%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: January 17, 2014
This game is stupidly hard. its way harder then it looks honestly. i bought it because i wanted to own every serious sam game. so i did. when i played it i remember thinking, "this is nothing like the trailers." the game is pretty much ok this guy shoot at these people he- oh wait im dead.
but its still amazingly fun and worth it :D i still love it
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17 of 25 people (68%) found this review helpful
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: July 17, 2014
Pretty bad. Combat is clunky and the difficulty isn't paced well at all. Seems more a low effort tie-in than a legitimate indie title with the Serious Sam license.
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15 of 23 people (65%) found this review helpful
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 10, 2014
Crashes. Don't know why? But it crashes:(
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