TowerFall Ascension is the definitive version of the hit archery combat game. Inspired by classics from the golden age of couch multiplayer, it's a 4-player local party game centering around hilarious, intense versus matches. The core mechanics are simple and accessible, but hard to master and combat is fierce.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (715 reviews)
Release Date: Mar 11, 2014

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Recommended By Curators

"A single-screen platform brawler that’s about as good as the genre has ever been—in versus or wave-survival mode."
Read the full review here.

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May 12

1.2 - Dark World Update!

We've just released the largest update yet to the game, coinciding with the launch of the Dark World Expansion DLC! There's a ton of improvements and fixes here. In fact there's so much to list that I couldn't even fit it all in this post! Check out this forum thread for the full changelog.

Thanks for playing! :)

Dark World DLC:

  • New Versus towers:
    • The Amaranth
    • Dreadwood
    • Darkfang
    • Cataclysm (with procedurally generated levels)
  • New 1-4 player Dark World co-op mode, with four unique boss battles
  • New playable red archer, the Vainglorious Ghoul
  • 9 additional playable ‘alternate archers’
  • New Powerups:
    • Trigger Arrows
    • Prism Arrows
    • Speed Boots
  • New variants:
    • Team Revive - In Team Deathmatch mode you can resurrect your friends
    • Treasure Draft - Everyone picks a powerup at the start of each round
    • Clumsy Archers - Drop an arrow every time you dodge
    • No Quivers - Archers can only hold one arrow
    • Double Jumping - You can jump again in the air
    • Arrow Shuffle - Randomly picks 2 special arrow types to spawn this match
    • No Hazards - Removes all environmental elements that can kill you
    • Start with Trigger Arrows
    • Start with Prism Arrows
    • Start with Speed Boots (renamed from old variant ‘Speed Boots’)
    • No Trigger Arrows
    • No Prism Arrows
    • No Speed Boots
    • 2v2 Tournament Rules preset
  • 12 new Trials

Other New Stuff:
  • Added a new alternate “end of match” music track
  • You can now save up to 5 custom variant presets at once (was previously 3)
  • New Versus awards:
    • Happy Accident Award
    • Mastermind Award
    • Web of Lies Award
    • Gravedigger Award
    • Reanimator Award
    • Exorcist Award
    • Speed of Light Award
    • Hyper Booper
    • Hyper Martyr Award
    • Ally Oop Award
    • Bomb Squad Award
    • Nerves of Steel Award
    • Prism Warden Award
    • Special Delivery Award
    • Too Fast Too Furious
    • Caged Animal Award
  • Added more Team Deathmatch levels to the existing Versus towers. Every tower now has 6 Team levels. Most are modified versions of free-for-all maps, but Sunken City got a brand new level which is also playable in other modes
  • Added the “Session Stats” page to the Archives, which shows stats from the current play session and resets when the game is closed

  • Merged FFA and 1v1 Tournament Rules into one ruleset simply called Tournament Rules. This ruleset contains only No Autobalance and Symmetrical Treasure
  • Slowed down the final “push” of the miasma as it closes in to encourage more kills before it consumes all the archers, and to make center-stage a more advantageous position
  • Sudden Death variant now starts with miasma 1 second into the match instead of 5 seconds
  • Rebalanced a lot of Versus arenas in the original levelsets
  • Jumping on a teammate’s head now shares arrows the same as bumping into them from the side
  • You can now hold the dodge button to extend your dodge time by 5 frames. This is known as “dodge stalling”
  • You can now catch arrows when you have a shield, but only if the arrow is not in a dangerous state (ie it would not hurt you anyways)
  • Arrows are no longer destroyed when crushed by moving solids
  • Arrow inventories are now visible during the round intro
  • Treasure changes:
    • Decreased the chance of no treasure spawning
    • The chance of getting special arrows out of a treasure chest is now normalized. In most towers, there is a 60% chance each chest has a special arrow pickup, chosen from the possible types for that level
    • No more than one of each orb pickup can spawn per level now. If the Chaos Orb spawns, no other orbs will spawn
    • The amount of each upgrade powerup (Wings, Looking Glass, Speed Boots) that can spawn per round is now capped by the amount of archers
  • Added a particle effect for hyper jumping to make it more readable
  • Archers will now slip off ledges while ducking, if they’re on the ledge by 3 or less pixels. Slipping starts 4 frames after you start ducking
  • You can now shoot the falling orbs in Twilight Spire to destroy them as they fall
  • Max Treasure variant now caps the amount of chests spawned per level to the amount of players + 2
  • Return as Ghosts variant improvements:
    • The delay from the last kill to the end of the round is doubled when there are ghosts alive
    • Ghosts can no longer kill for 30 frames after they finish spawning
    • Players can now control their ghost a bit during the spawn animation
    • The shoot button now triggers the ghost’s dash attack (was previously just the dodge button)
    • Ghosts can now open treasure chests. Chests will always spawn bomb traps when opened this way
    • Added some controller rumble cues to ghosts to remind players they’ve respawned
    • Ghosts are now drawn above other gameplay elements so they’re easier to spot
  • Electric shocks now destroy brambles
  • You can now use dodge slides to pick up hats
  • Spinning spikeballs now pick a random spin direction when the level starts

Quest Mode Changes:
  • Players are now revived at their corpses, like in the new Dark World co-op mode
  • Level completion time is now tracked on Hardcore mode
  • Removed the old score system
  • The ‘Level Complete’ screen now awards the crown to the player who performs better (based on kills, deaths, and combo). That player wears the crown in the next level
  • Mimic archers now have the corpses of the archer they’re disguised as
  • Ghost enemies can no longer hurt you while they’re stunned
  • Added super jump pads to Twilight Spire
  • Cultist enemies can now hop up one-tile-high ledges
  • Red crystal enemies now only shoot one arrow at a time (blue ones still shoot twice)
  • The final boss’s beam attack now lights players on fire

...see this forum thread for the full changelog!

9 comments Read more


“The new gold standard in the local multiplayer renaissance”
9.5 / 10 – Polygon

“Aggressively focused, humbly spectacular, and nearly unimpeachable in its design”
10 / 10 – EGM

“Destined to be remembered as one of the best multiplayer games of all time”

About This Game

TowerFall Ascension is the definitive version of the hit archery combat game. Inspired by classics from the golden age of couch multiplayer, it's a 4-player local party game centering around hilarious, intense versus matches. The core mechanics are simple and accessible, but hard to master and combat is fierce. Loot treasure chests for game-changing power-ups, master the art of catching arrows out of the air, or descend on your foes and stomp them into submission. TowerFall is best played competitively with friends, cross-legged on the floor within punching distance of each other.

New in Ascension is the 1- or 2-player co-op Quest mode. Players work together, fighting off a variety of monsters and enemy archers across the land of TowerFall. It's a new adventure to explore when you don't have more friends handy to square off against.

New features in TowerFall Ascension include:
  • Brand new 1- or 2-player co-op Quest mode
  • 50 additional Versus arenas, for a total of 120 unique maps
  • More game-changing power-ups, such as Drill Arrows that burrow through walls
  • 4 new unlockable, playable archers, for a total of 8
  • A huge list of variants to customize your matches - a total of 75 ways to mix things up
  • Plenty of hidden secrets and surprises to discover with your friends

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows Vista or newer
    • Processor: Intel Core i3 M380
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Intel HD 4000
    • DirectX: Version 10
    • Hard Drive: 400 MB available space
    • OS: Snow Leopard 10.6.8, 32/64-bit
    • Processor: Intel Core i3 M380
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0+ (2.1 with ARB extensions acceptable)
    • Hard Drive: 400 MB available space
    • OS: glibc 2.15+, 32/64-bit. S3TC support is NOT required.
    • Processor: Intel Core i3 M380
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: OpenGL 3.0+ (2.1 with ARB extensions acceptable)
    • Hard Drive: 400 MB available space
Helpful customer reviews
89 of 112 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
267.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 12
If you have controllers and friends this is the finest local-co-op game you can get your hands on. If you don't have controllers and friends, this game makes it worth the cost to buy both of those things.

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241 of 362 people (67%) found this review helpful
9 people found this review funny
24.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 18
The steam recommandation system doesnt permit mixed reviews so I chose to not recommend this game, but I hesitated for a long time.

Towerfall is a Joust like game where you can fight against a human opponent locally in arenas, solo play levels or play them cooperatively.

1/ The arena brawl mode is incredibly GOOD.
If you have controllers, if you have friends who can come over and play with you, buy this game!
It's the funniest game of this genre I have played locally since the bomberman sness one. It's that good, it's a masterpiece.

2/ There are long time technical issues that are not fixed.
  • There is no network mode.
  • The default bindings of the pad and the keyboard are not really good and worse, you cant rebind them ingame.
  • The game recognizes only xbox pads (which are not very good for the price)

3/ the solo and coop game are terrible.
It seems those modes have been put on top of the real game afterwards, as they are not properly designed. The levels are full of choke points, and the only challenge the game can throw at the player is overwhelming him with more entities, not clever enemy design, not clever mapping.
Solo mode is a grinding chore.
Timings are not properly tweaked, making use of the movement combos awkward and combined with the bindings the game isnt a fast flowing movement and fighting game anymore but an exercise in memory where you try to find the perfect way to beat every level by doing the same thing again and again.
And even that is defeated by the game choice to enter a little bit of randomness in the entities start position, which changes nothing but just add to the time you need to pass to know every pattern.

I understand that this game is a one man operation and came from an other platform. This could explain some of the technical difficulties or some bad design choice. As I said it is still one of the best game ever in local multi.
But those issues have been tackled to death by other games for a long time and they are resolved by other one-man games. Take a look at spelunky. Wether you like it or not, the timings of the entities, the reaction of the pad, everything is 100% precise and you can rebind controls.
The game could have somehow worked in solo mode too and warrant a recommandation if some of those issues had been taken care of.
In 2015, even if your game is an indie game with a retro look, we can't accept this kind of backward usability issues.
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20 of 28 people (71%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
118.7 hrs on record
Posted: March 13
First off, the elephant in the room: This game is local multiplayer or single player only and essentially requires controllers to play. That being said, if you're interested and that's not a problem - it's worth it.

It's well designed to cater to both those who prefer casual play and those who want to master it. While new players will certainly feel less skilled, after getting a hang of the controls even they can get a few good shots in. Everyone I've played it with has enjoyed it after only a few rounds.
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8 of 10 people (80%) found this review helpful
6.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 14
The best casual party game I have probably ever played. It is great for people with friends (or siblings).
P.S. Plz get controllers if you don't already. But seriously, by now all of you should have controllers.
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56 of 105 people (53%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
70.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 18
This game is a ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ delight. It's got fast paced multiplayer that feels easy to learn but difficult to master, and the single player challenges are well designed and have perfect difficulty scaling.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
9.6 hrs on record
Posted: May 19
TowerFall Ascension shines brilliantly, to put it bluntly. I had this on my wishlist for quite some time, but for some reason I couldn't match up what I would see on the trailers with the overwhelmingly positive reviews. What was it about this title that had people so wrapped up in it? Let me try to explain:

1. The controls are excellent. Only a few buttons, yet there is sooo much difference between being skilled at it, which requires a fairly complete understanding of the system, and being ‘meh’. It seems simple at the start, where you are clunkily platforming around the levels (at the time you think its just fine), until you start learning how to 'dodge-cancel' and soon enough you will be flying around in a way you would have previously thought impossible.

2. All the action takes place on a single screen. This allows for purely awesome couch co-op or versus. TowerFall revels in how simple it feels, but yet has many layers of complexity that it rolls back as you dig in.

3. The action is fast and furious. It doesn’t get any better than this, as far as couch co-op or versus goes. I even had friends playing this that would never touch a platformer. I mean it was complex enough for a serious gamer, yet could draw in newbs. Tons of mode customization as well, and lots of cool trophy unlocks (tons actually) and statistics that keep me coming back for more.

Caveat: the only deal-breaker for this game, is that you must have controllers, and you must have friends willing to come over and sit on the couch to play local. If you don’t have this, go elsewhere. Single player is really fun since I look at it as training, but other than that, I would not recommend just for single player experience.

I could go on and on, but at the end of the day – I am hooked. I think my friends may be hooked as well. At this point, it’s my favorite game at the moment, and I plan to get many hours out of it (I even set up a competition and invited 8-10 people over in early June 2015).
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
132.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
Dark World Expansion DLC Review

I've been playing Dark World a lot. I've cleared all stages on Legendary without continues. Going to try for no death runs next.

I love everything about it. I've mostly only played solo but I'm glad there's 4 player co-op now. My only request would be that the two campains are merged allowing for 4 player in the Ascension Quest. The problem would be unifying the difficulty system and reseting everyones achievements so I can see why it wasn't done, I still think it would be a nice addition.

I don't miss the scoring system. All the stages have an achievement for clearing the highest difficulty with no deaths, this being the highest achievement pretty much made the scoring superfluous. Additionally the game now tracks fastest times which I think is a much more easily understood and meaningful measure of skill. Speed runners rejoice! The Dark World campaign isn't overly long and be cleared on the easier difficulty in around an hour, but those who enjoyed playing for gold skulls in the Ascension Quest will get a lot out of playing for the harder achievements.

Prism arrows I think are designed to affect high level competitive play, where no one misses a dodge catch, in which case it makes a significant change to the meta game. Trigger arrows are fun but damn is it easy to SD with. There is such a huge number of arrow varieties now that adding more might start to subtract from what makes each arrow interesting, as well as increasing the barrier of entry for newcomers. Haven't had a chance to play much versus yet but the Dark World content should make a great addition.

Also love the additional Trials stages. It's a part of the game I didn't expect myself to take so much pleasure in, but once you start aiming for the red pearl dev times the mode becomes a kind of rewarding puzzle game, though it does play havoc on my RSI and I fear my controller will crumble in my hands before I ever clear them all.

All in all I love every bit of TowerFall and can't wait to see what Matt works on next, TowerFall or otherwise.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
Ok, bought this game because it's another 4 player local coop game. Didn't expect much. First impression: "uhhh another retro game..."

But then we started playing ... and we could not stop!!!

Bought the expansion "Dark world" soon after the first minutes of game play.

My recommodations:
  • Play with controllers only. Forget mouse and keyboard.
  • Play with at least two other friends. Better 4 local players.
  • User area settings to adjust treasures, weapons etc. Especially when playing the hard campaigns.
  • Do not play alone. That's boring.
  • Perfect party game because round can be very short.

Now this is one of our very favorite local coop games beside Gauntlet, Monaco, Hammerwatch.

I absolutely recommend this game!!!
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
2.0 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
As fun as I thought it would be after watching the gameplay, or even more. Actually, I got it only to play with my friends (we've been laughing on Worms since forever, it was time for a change!) but even the one-player game is super cool!!!
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.4 hrs on record
Posted: May 26
my only complaint is the fact you cant play against bots
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
15.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 27
One of the best competitive local multiplaying games I've played. No online mode though, and the campaign (while entertaining) is not the main attraction of the game. In other words, highly recommended if you have friends you can invite and play against.
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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
77.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 25
If you have up 2 or 3 friends that can come over a lot this is the game to buy and it is only like 15 dollars ive put in about 70 hours its worth it. here are some pros and cons
- it has 14 maps and about 8 arenas in each
- 4 archers to start plus 4 to unlock
- keeps records for each archer in the archive
- 1-4 players local great party game
- intense co-op mode up to 4 people
- each arena is balanced nice
- team death match is really fun

- co-op has friendly fire (killed my friend multiple times)
- co op is just wave based with no story
- xbox controller support only ans their pricey (if you already then your fine i did have them but ps3 or 4 users will have to pay up to $50)

overall though it was great cause i did have controllers i have 4 friends that i can play with so for me its perfect if you dont have friend that can come over then dont buy it. but if you do its the best local co op game out there and super fun modes you have to check out

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1 of 1 people (100%) found this review helpful
7.3 hrs on record
Posted: May 25
If you like playing games with friends on a couch this is simply the best game available for multiplayer chaos. Think super bomberman but with tons of customization for matches and endless variety.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
62.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
This is pretty much the only game that gets any play when friends come over to my house. Forget Smash Brothers, forget Mario Kart. Towerfall is easily the best time you'll have with four people and a television.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
14.9 hrs on record
Posted: May 25
This game gave me RSI.
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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
6.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 20
I think its a pretty neat game to play with your friends, but it likely won't last long enough to merit $15. There really aren't many alternatives when it comes to Steam party games. I suppose if you're someone with a Steambox who is just realizing Half Life 2 and Sakura Spirits do not make for very good party games, it may be worth the investment. Otherwise, just bust out the Gamecube. Play some smash bros.

I'm not saying the game isn't a unique experience. The archery is fun, but it has its problems. In Co-Op/Singleplayer you can only shoot in 8 directions, and your arrows will curve slightly towards any enemy. On a couple occasions I was trying to shoot something directly above me. So I shot up, but the arrow curved towards a closer enemy who was above and to the left. It missed him then tried to curve and hit my original target. Ended up missing both stationary enemies.

Playing alone is not very fun. Thats alright, most party games aren't meant to be played solo. A lack of Online really sucks. Some website named Polygon even wrote an article on why you don't want Online in this game. Which was all I saw when googling if there would ever be online. I'm going to take a wild guess and say that the dev told them to write that so Steam reviews would stop complaining about it. An easy fix would be to add a LAN mode. Normal people are forced to play the way the dev intended it. But those who live out in the middle of nowhere can still use Hamachi to play with a friend.

There was also going to be a map editor but the $10 dlc was of greater priority. Make your own conclusion on whether you want to support that or not.

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2 of 3 people (67%) found this review helpful
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 24
Unless you have a controller to use, I would not recommend this game. There is currently no way to re-bind keys and the current keys are really off-putting.
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3 of 5 people (60%) found this review helpful
7.8 hrs on record
Posted: May 17
this game is really addictive
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4 of 7 people (57%) found this review helpful
14.2 hrs on record
Posted: May 15
Pretty fun, even just in solo mode.
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2 of 4 people (50%) found this review helpful
16.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 13
Sadly, local-multiplayer games on the PC are severely lacking, but games like Towerfall give me hope for the genre. I installed the game on my laptop, carried it to my cousins' house, plugged in 4 USB controllers, and proceeded to have an awesome time.

This game alone is worth buying controllers for and getting some friends together. And when it's as cheap as it is now (5/13/15), you NEED to pick this up.

There's also some decent single-player content, but it's not the main draw of this title.
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