Nuclear Throne is Vlambeers latest action roguelike-like about mutants fighting their way through a post-apocalyptic world. The radioactive waste in the world allows mutants to get ahead by mutating new limbs on the fly, the abundant availability of powerful weaponry make the quest to become ruler of the Wasteland one frought with peril.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (2,289 reviews)
Release Date: Oct 11, 2013

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Nuclear Throne was originally created during MOJAM 2013 as a tiny, two day prototype called 'Wasteland Kings'. We never stopped adding little things to the game, even as we moved on to other projects. We had livestreamed development during MOJAM, and decided to continue doing that while we worked on a full version of the game.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“The game will be in Early Access until it is done, at which point it'll launch on PC, Mac, Linux, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita. Until that point, we release weekly updates (each weekend) and livestream every Tuesday and Thursday frmo 1PM CET to 5PM CET on”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“Nuclear Throne will feature seven full worlds of procedural action, four main bosses, tons of secrets, more than 75 weapons, 10 mutants, dozens of powerful mutations and local multiplayer.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“The game is fully stable and playable, and has new additions made to it every weekend.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“If you want to wait until the game is done, it'll be available for $11,99 after development is complete. We're not doing any sales or bundles until the game is out of Early Access - we want people that really care about the game to buy and play it now. If you're curious as to how a game like this evolves or grows, now is the time to jump in.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“We livestream development every Tuesday and Thursday from 1PM CET to 5PM CET, are very active in our forums and upload a new build every single weekend.”
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Recommended By Curators

"Vlambeer makes fun games that I can play over and over again. Nuclear Throne is an adorably brutal shooter."

Recent updates View all (101)

May 17

Update #73 - Shielder shields shield Shielders - Weekend of May 15th

They say "good things come in small amounts". At least we think they say that. It'd be mighty convenient if they say that. It'd fit the update really well if people say that.

In other words : it's been tremendously busy week with events and unexpected travels! Joonas has been cranking out a ton of new weapon sounds, so those've all been implemented! We're also making some progress with the starting weapon art for the loadout screen. Oh, and on one of the days this week, Jan Willem suddenly jolted up and casually strolled to his computer mumbling something about "nerfing shielders". We're not sure what that was about. He wouldn't, would he? It's so funny to watch people die to those.

Since Justin is still a bit too busy for update art, this week's update art is by the always-talented Paul Veer.

  • A ton of new weapon sounds! Blood cannon is probably our favorite.
  • Partially updated starting weapon menu art!

  • We added a small delay before Shielder shields shield Shielders! It's a work in progress, but a step in the right direction.

  • Fixed some problems with the menu character art.

  • Some small updates to the Labs tiles.

After this week we should have a bit more time to get working on some larger content and the rest of the interface again, so that'll be exciting! Have fun!

25 comments Read more

May 9

Update #72 - The Beautiful Update - Weekend of May 8th

Oh yeah, this is a good one.

Your favorite character now has new, beautiful art in the character select screen, and so does your least favorite character. We've added bubbly sound effects to the Oasis too.

But most importantly, we decided to dig deep into the design and rework some of the basic ammo balancing going on. This is a rather risky move, because changing tiny things down in the foundation ripples through the entire game, so things might be kind of silly. We're pretty certain that these changes will work out well, but we're looking forward to what happens this week.

You'll now find slightly more drops when low on ammo, while Rabbit Paw has been toned down a bit, Lucky Shot has been improved, and Back Muscle no longer helps you get more drops. This design will both help new players (and we've lowered Scorpion HP for them too), but also allow high level players to take more risks and swap their weapons around more as Back Muscle functions more as a storage for un-equipped ammo. These changes should hopefully make everyone less reliant on these ammo mutations, while also allowing them to really make some of the more ammo-hungry weaponry shine. Speaking of mutations, we're trying something silly with Gamma Guts: little area of effect blasts whenever you kill something with it.

Looking forward to seeing how that and all the other fixes and balancing work out!

  • Brand new character select art! airhorn.wav!!!
  • Bubbly Oasis sounds!

  • A tiny bit more drops when low on ammo.
  • Less HP for Scorpions.
  • Gamma Guts now deals area of effect damage when an enemy is killed by it.
  • Rabbit Paw has been weakened a tiny bit.
  • Back Muscle no longer increases your drop rate.
  • Lucky Shot will trigger more.
  • Allies now have a smaller hitbox.
  • Frog Eggs now have a smaller hitbox.
  • Super Plasma Cannon costs 24 ammo again, and is a bit less strong. Plasma Cannon is also a tiny bit weaker.

  • Angry Big Rats now have a shadow!
  • Less slowdown when meleeing grenades and hitting things with Plasma/Flare Gun.
  • Fixed bosses spawning in groups on loop.
  • Fixed Rogue's shadow at the campfire.
  • Fixed a bug with Big Dog missiles.
  • Fixed a crash caused by Big Weapon Chests.
  • Fixed a crash caused by rads.
  • Ultra Revolver should now be able to hit enemies close to walls.

  • New art for Big Dog missiles and flames that'll get smaller in the future.
  • Updated Crystal's in-game art a bit.
  • Update Rogue on icons.
  • Starting weapon is now displayed correctly in the menu.


38 comments Read more
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“It’s a rapid-fire, deliciously crunchy randomized romp starring a cavalcade of characters from Vlambeer’s past.”
Rock, Paper, Shotgun

“A brutal game that rewards patience, situational awareness and mastery of trial and error.”

“The shootiest of shooters.”

Join us on weekly development livestreams and updates!

Nuclear Throne development is livestreamed every Tuesday and Thursday from 1PM CET to 5PM CET on Updates happen every weekend between Friday and Sunday.

About This Game

Nuclear Throne is Vlambeers latest action roguelike-like about mutants fighting their way through a post-apocalyptic world. The radioactive waste in the world allows mutants to get ahead by mutating new limbs on the fly, the abundant availability of powerful weaponry make the quest to become ruler of the Wasteland one frought with peril.

System Requirements

    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: 1.2Ghz+
    • Memory: 1024 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 256MB
    • Hard Drive: 200 MB available space
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: 2Ghz
    • Memory: 2048 MB RAM
    • Graphics: 1GB
    • Hard Drive: 500 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
39 of 41 people (95%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
4.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 2
Early Access Review
Playtime and Time/money
I don't seem to have a lot of playtime for this game, but I can assure you that I play this game very often when I'm no longer connected to the internet. My playtime aside you may be wondering "Well what kind of value can I get from this game that looks like a bullet hell kind of game?"

A lot.

So first off, the game is endless. That's a big score there, next off is that the game gets harder each time you go through, most of the time getting far too ridiculous by loop 6. So for the most part it lasts a very long time. Recently they've done up the co-op so that it works properly, and while my friends are scrubs and can't handle the game very much I can revive them by picking up health, which makes it playable as a couch co-op game.

I don't know my exact hours on this game, but so far I'd say it has to be in the 40s so 13/40= 0.325/hour+ So for it's value it's really well worth it and still playing itself out.

Exactly what is this game?
Bullet-Hell-rogue-like-top-down-shooter-bit-graphics game with a fair system and an artificial difficulty slide, along with a slew of good unique playable characters, complete with daily challenges/leader boards and Co-op playing.

So now the standard game rating:
  • Story: 3/10 You and your mutant buddies have to go find the nuclear throne, on the journey there you become more and more mutated and then you do stuff like shooting things (spoilers) The story is not the very deep kind.
  • Gameplay: 10/10 I already explained what type of game this is, but it's both satisfying and has a high skill cap to it. You can play it to perfection and at the same time you could get royally ♥♥♥♥ed over or on the other end gifted by the gods at Vlambeer.
  • Presentation: 10/10 Nothing to complain about. At all. the game looks how it should, it plays how it should and it acts how it should. I haven't come across any game breakers be it by immersion or by engine failures. Not only that but its fairly cheap on system use.
  • Soundtrack: 10/10 Memorable, lovable soundtrack. I love it. Plain and simple.
  • Replayability: 10/10 This is the sort of game that you play when you feel like setting a new record, or when you feel like shooting up a bunch of aliens, or when you have a friend over and you want to show them ur skillzzz All of it is worth playing over again.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
36 of 42 people (86%) found this review helpful
10 people found this review funny
11.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 5
Early Access Review
All you need to know is there's a character that is literally the Illuminati Pyramid who makes airhorn noises when you press B.

If that didn't make you want to buy this game, then I don't know what will.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
12 of 12 people (100%) found this review helpful
129.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 3
Early Access Review
I'm reluctant to purchase early access titles due to the rampant abuse of greenlight - you know the story. But with a reputable developer like Vlambeer, who have delivered games that feel like, well, actual games, I was pretty sure I would get my moneys worth. And if I were to stop playing the game now, it still would have made it worth the purchase. Luckily, Vlambeer has been consistently updating the game on an (almost always) weekly basis with new content being added all the time. They take criticism to heart and listen to the players.

The action roguelite gameplay allows for a variety of gameplay styles within the somewhat limited top-down shooter style, but a variety of "Mutations"(that function like perks which alter your statistics, abilities and expands and also limits how you play) which you are given the choice between when you level up can dramatically alter your plans. Even if you decided on a "melee" character, the selection of mutations you are given as you level up might not cater to that playstyle at all, nor might you get the preferred weapons for how you intended to play in the first place, so the game is dynamic and spontaneous in that it can crash your plans and force you to re-consider your strategy throughout your game.

Permadeath keeps you at your toes. You can forget about checkpoints. This is good because modern games are plagued with these and they make your actions have less consequences. Vlambeer brings back the thrill of old school gaming, and the high-risk/high-reward mechanics is something that draws people to roguelites.

Now to the negatives.

There are balancing issues in the game, sometimes game breaking generation parameters that can give you a seemingly impossible spawn. This has been heavily debated on the forums. This is an obvious problem area when you combine a bullet-hell shooter with a randomly generated roguelite, but Vlambeer have taken the criticism to heart and have improved on the generation parameters throughout the game development and continue to do so consistently.

There are also the obvious limitations and confines of the gamemaker engine, which Vlambeer insists on using. The game is locked to 30fps which is downright horrible on the eyes for extended playing sessions. The slideshow effect and clumsiness of this low a framerate is very detrimental to a genre that requires the player to be observant and react quickly. What makes it problematic for gamemaker creators to increase the framerate is that a lot of events are executed per-frame through the step event. This basically means that the devs have to re-write every part of the code that utilizes the step event and change it if the game was to run at, say 60fps. It is a shame that on a dynamic platform like the PC that a game is locked to perform like that.

There are also balancing issues between characters. Vlambeer seem stubborn on keeping some characters underpowered(Fish being the number one example) because they insist on keeping useless active abilities that nobody actually finds useful which becomes ridiculously underpowered in comparison to other characters abilities. At one point, some characters were ridiculously overpowered, like Rebel and Chicken. They were both nerfed, which somehow changed completely the way people play and sort of took away the novelty and personality of said characters. But I must add that criticism like this is aimed at something that takes time to perfect and that there is no one right answer to. You always give some and lose some with such decisions.

To sum it up, I have gotten my moneys worth at least two times over and I intend to also purchase the game again for the PS4 platform, even with the negatives mentioned because the game is still very fun to play.

The game keeps becoming more polished and new features are always added, so I am confident that the game will be great at release. It's just a shame about the framerate. I think it's important to know that a game is locked to 30fps before purchasing.
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9 of 9 people (100%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
506.9 hrs on record
Posted: May 17
Early Access Review
(scroll down for tl;dr)

I love this game. I love it so much that I have nearly 500 hours into it. I wouldn't so much call this a review, just some (hopefully) objective experiences I personally had for the game I love so much while explaining a bit of the game in general.

Nuclear Throne sports a roster of 12 playable characters, diverse with their own unique passive and active ability. From shielding to bullet-time, to air strikes to rolling, every character offers up a variable play-style each go around. The art for the game suits the game's overall direction and is generally nice to look at. Remember this is still early access: We've had some hilarious placeholder ms-paint stick-figure art that would be redrawn into worthwhile, lovely pixel portraits. You can watch the developer stream to see just how great the art assets become as it's being done live.

Despite its seemingly very simplistic design, the game coddles a sinking depth in terms of mutation selection, weapon diversity and character synergy that overlaps well with one another.

The core component of your journeys in the wasteland. I'd categorize mutations in the following categories:
  • Weaponry - Mutations that give certain weapon types added benefits
  • Utility - Mutations that directly or indirectly buffs your character through various means
  • Survivability - Mutations that increases the players lifespan
Mutations are randomly generated out of a mix of 4 (5 for a specific character) which can provide you with a mixed variety of mutations. Each mutation handles, generally, fairly better or fairly worse for every character and finding a good synergy is key. Aside from the regular mutations, each character that reaches Level 10 (Ultra) gets to choose from 2 (3 for a specific character) Ultra Mutations. These are generally better than regular mutations and, generally, are a power spike to the character.

As of now, there are over 100 weapons in the game, categorized in 6 different weapon types, with multiple subcategories:
  • Bolt - ex. Crossbow (Bolts, Splinters, Seekers, Disc)
  • Bullet - ex. Machinegun (Bullets, Pellets)
  • Energy - ex. Plasma Minigun (Laser, Plasma, Lightning)
  • Explosive - ex. Grenade Launcher (Launchers, Cannons)
  • Melee - ex. Sledgehammer (Non-ammo, Hybrids)
  • Shell - ex. Shotgun (Flaming Pellets, Slugs)
Many weapons perform differently under many circumstances and get better by taking the mutation for the specified weapon. Weapons are tiered and drop according to how far you have progressed in the game. To go into the details of every weapon would be exhausting and I will not do that for the sake of this already wall-of-text-y piece. (but we all know there's only one true energy weapon)

At its core, Nuclear Throne is a rogue-like, twinstick shooter bolstered by the accompanying variants and mechanics the game brings to the table. It's a really fast paced action shooter with split-second decision making keeping you on your feet. Unlike most games with randomly generated variables, you don't totally live and die by the RNG. It does indeed factor into the game and what weapons, mutations, etc you get throughout a run, but usually player skill will often trump in a nerve-wracking circumstance.

Nuclear Throne is a game about trial and error. That is, in order to get better at the game, you will need to lose. A lot. Like I mean it, a LOT. I can recount a fair number of times I have died in situations similar to my 5th hour in the game in my nearly 500 hours of it. Half of your first few hours with the game will be spent looking at your post-death stats screen. That is how often you will be dead. You have to realize and understand how everything went wrong and learn from it.

But that's it for this review, I've spent more time than I originally planned typing this up. I hope something in this post inspires you to try the game out despite it being in early access. It's a game that is really worth the money.


(the less dishonest review)
Lightning Cannon is Jesus
Rami is RNGod
Shielders are bull ♥♥♥♥
Necromancers are bull ♥♥♥♥
Maggots are OP
Multiple gold scorpion spawns is Rami showing dissatisfaction with you living
If you die, Rami was dissatisfied with you living.

100/10 game, would be sodomized backpedaling into an assassin again.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
65.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 7
Early Access Review
Nuclear Throne Review

''One of the best indie games currently available on steam.''


In a world where indie games are becoming an important part of the video game industry, it is hard to find a worthwhile indie gem which gives you a bang for your buck. Search no more. If you are a fan of shooting games, rogue-like games, 2d games or bloody good games, then Vlambeers' Nuclear Throne is the game you need in your library. This top-down shooter is perfectly designed and suitable for alot of type of players. The hard, solid gameplay aswell as the endless replayability of this title will let you stack hours upon hours of fun. On a more personal note, this game is one of my favorites of all time. It is truly unbelievable..

The Good's and The Bad's

The goods
  • Incredible replayability
  • A varied and enjoyable roster of characters
  • Tons of crazy guns
  • Weekly updates
  • Alot of ennemies
  • A huge number of secrets
  • Action-packed fun
  • Local Co-op
  • Very neat design

    The bads
    • Some may find it a little too hard

      Score and closing line

      9.5: Outstanding.

      ''Vlambeers delivers an ambitious indie game that sets a new standard in gaming.''
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 9 people (89%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
99.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 1
Early Access Review
I don't need no friends
I don't need no phone
Just everybody dead
And my nuclear throne

But seriously, this game is perfect, one of the few instances I'd recommend dropping money on an alpha.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
8 of 10 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
64.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 7
Early Access Review
The greatest sitcom of 2015, featuring a giant fish, living jewelry, some poor guy stuck in the process of changing forms of matter, a guy with lots of eyes, a plant who can somehow run faster than everyone else dispite having no legs, the illuminati, the bronze and brains, a robot cube, the hot rebellion leader you see from all the movies, a weeaboo chicken, a dog made of nuclear waste, and the one whos always getting into trouble that's not yung venuz

join them on their adventures to overcome the wasteland, score some dank memes, and become WASTELAND KINGS

but they have to face sinister villians such as the bandit leader who you can basically kill in one hit, and to prevent this he multiplies, the defender of hell, and DPS/Skill inspecter.

the only bad thing about this series it that it's pretty repetitive (GET IT CUZ LOOPS) and there's a lot of reruns (EHEHEHEH)
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7 of 9 people (78%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
19.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 4
Early Access Review
you can't even tell the game isn't finished yet because i bet you you'll never get to the nuclear throne
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
5 of 7 people (71%) found this review helpful
4.8 hrs on record
Posted: April 27
Early Access Review
-Fast paced
-Very challenging
-Updated almost weekly
-Good character variety
-Satisfying weapons
-Pretty decent soundtrack

There's a lot going for this game and I'm very pleased by it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
19.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 11
Early Access Review
This game is totally worth the money and the fact that it is not even done yet is more of a reason to buy it. They have a lot of cool features planned for this game including tons of more characters and even versus modes, The future of this game is bright and I highly recommend it.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
15.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 8
Early Access Review
fish can roll
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
12.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 15
Early Access Review
If you enjoyed Binding of Isaac this is probably the next best thing.
It's a great casual game as it is, and it's only going to get better considering its still only in early access. There is plenty of random generation to make each run feel unique.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
Early Access Review
It's probably the sequel to Hotline Miami 2: Wrong Number and Fish is maybe Det. Manny Pardo after the blast. That means he was born with thick fish skin. O_o
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
16.6 hrs on record
Posted: May 21
Early Access Review
This game gets me so pisses me off so much, but its addicting and well made. Nuclear Throne is a game that is not afraid to be extremely punishing.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.4 hrs on record
Posted: May 19
Early Access Review
This game, has it's bugs, and downfalls - but that is expected from an Early Access Game.

When I bought the game, I jumped right in and must have been killed at least 30 - 40 times.
But honestly, I just kept getting back into it.
This game, is honestly so fun, bunch of weapons, cool characters and a great concept.

ONLY downfall i have, is the menu.
but other than that i would give this game..

8.9 lazer pistols out of 10
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
60.7 hrs on record
Posted: April 27
Early Access Review
very fun and exiting game
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: May 5
Early Access Review
One of the best games I've played, I just have to do a few runs every day.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
41.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 6
Early Access Review
The only game I actually need on Steam
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 12
Early Access Review
A short guide on Nuclear Throne.


That's basically it.
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
6.4 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
Early Access Review
How To Reach Nuclear Throne:
You Don't!

You're Welcome.
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