Ascendant is the unforgiving beat 'em up in which you are a demigod invading a world controlled by your rivals. Choose your fate by discovering Blessings, equipping mighty weapons and spells, and learning to survive in this brutal realm. Only the most impressive warriors have a chance of victory.
User reviews: Very Positive (84 reviews)
Release Date: May 13, 2014

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Recommended By Curators

"A rogue-lite action platformer with a striking art-style. Very interesting weapon variety and enjoyable brawler combat. Also bloody hard."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (4)

August 18

Ascendant v.1.2 Has Been Released!

Version 1.2 has been released! With this update a number of bugs have been fixed along with the addition of different difficulty levels. Below you will find a list of all the things that were fixed, adjusted, and added.

Update Notes
  • New Stuff and Bug Fixes
  • New game difficulties added: Baby, Normal, and Rage.
  • Time-based leaderboards added for each difficulty.
  • Fixed a bug that would prevent Humbaba from exiting an invulnerable state.
  • Fixed a bug that would prevent the Ascended bosses from attacking after cutscenes.
  • Map generation has been fixed. Players should now no longer be stuck without a boss room in the Winter levels.
  • A certain boss room door has been removed from the wall. (Sorry, TorNis)
  • Hachiman event rooms now occasionally reward players correctly with the Blessing of Hachiman instead of the Blessing of Gran Bwa.
  • Pots in the shooting gallery will now properly self-destruct after 30 seconds if they do not initially break on impact.
  • Blessings
  • Kamoho Blessing on weapons now awards players with 5 influence every time an enemy is eaten.
  • Kamoho Blessing on spell has had its homing buff effect doubled.
  • Spell homing in general has been doubled.
  • Zephyrus Blessing on weapon has had its proc chance increased from 10% to 15%. Additionally, its launch force has been doubled.
  • Zephyrus Blessing on spells now instantly staggers most enemies in addition to its current knockback.
  • Blessing of Kali now saves the player's life when spending health in various event rooms and blood shops.
  • Tlaloc Blessing on spell has had its delay raised from 0.1 seconds to every 0.4 seconds.
  • Gameplay Changes
  • Demon pot projectiles have been made more visible.
  • Enemy shields are now initially much weaker but scale as the game progresses.
  • Launch force has been increased on The Twig.
  • The restart option has been removed upon winning the game. This allowed players to replay the game as the character they had won the game with.
  • Others
  • There Can be Only One Steam Achievement has been fixed.
  • A script has been added to check and see if players have completed certain achievements and award them. This will check to see if players have completed New Challenger based achievements and journal-based achievements (e.g. Heavy Breathing - Discover every breath).
  • 1280x1024 resolution added in the Settings menu.

Difficulty Mode Clarification
  • Baby Mode
  • All characters start with an additional max heart
  • Invulnerability Time (after being struck) is increased by 0.75 seconds
  • Pots drop more loot
  • Health pickups drop more frequently
  • All damage is reduced by a quarter heart (down to a minimum of a quarter heart)
  • Normal Mode
  • The same mode you have been playing since launch
  • Rage Mode
  • Stronger enemy variants work their way in earlier
  • Rooms generally have more enemies earlier
  • Enemies have more hp
  • Bosses have more hp
  • All damage is increased by a quarter heart

Any feedback or bugs can be reported in our feedback and bug thread here

7 comments Read more

June 13

Ascendant v.1.1 Released!

The first update for Ascendant has been released. Thank you all for being incredibly patient while we worked on this.

Update Notes
  • Rebindable keys added to the settings menu. Keyboard keys and controllers are now completely rebindable.
  • Generic icons for controllers added.
  • Added a restart button to the game over screen that quickly takes players back into the game with the last character played.
  • Fixed bug that would occasionally lock Humbaba in an invulnerable state.
  • Fixed bug that would occasionally create a situation where tamed flies could lock players into a room.
  • Ascended Midas' bonus is now correctly applied to the game.
  • Itzli event room now correctly despawns the altar when the Blessing of Itzli appears.
  • Shatki spell should now properly spawn all projectiles. Mana cost and speed have been lowered slightly.
  • +30 to Mana stat upgrade now gives the correct bonus amount.

We will continue to work on Ascendant and update it as bugs are fixed and new content is finished. Please visit our Steam forum to report any problems you have so that we can keep improving the game. Thank you.

5 comments Read more

About This Game

"The ancient power struggle between demigods has begun again. The mortal realm will be ravaged in the wake of their desire, their greed, their purpose. I am curious to see who will prevail."

Ascendant is the unforgiving beat 'em up that challenges you with a new world each time you play. It utilizes a number of modern roguelike elements such as permadeath and procedurally generated environments. You are a demigod who invades a plane controlled by your rivals. They will stop at nothing to eliminate you. Only the most impressive warriors will triumph over their armies of zealots and beasts.

By exploring the world, discovering new weapons, spells, and Blessings, and learning how to survive in this brutal realm, you may have a small chance at winning.

Features

  • A Brutal Struggle – The armies of your demigod rivals are relentless. When a foe cuts you with his sword, it hurts. If you slip into a pit of spikes, the blades leave deep wounds. If a bomb explodes nearby you will burn. Health recovery items are rare. Fight with precision, speed, and timing to survive. Dodge attacks and crush your opponent when he is off-balance to seize the advantage.

  • Loot the Treasures of the Gods – The gods hid their ancient relics in secret caches scattered around the world. Discover unique weapons, spells, and Blessings that grant mighty powers. Double jump, choke your enemies with a poison cloud, or jolt them to ashes with lightning. Equip and customize your Blessings to determine your own fate.

  • Agile Beat 'em Up Combat – Slam enemies into each other to deal massive damage. Pummel enemies with ground and air combos or launch a barrage of spells. Launch your opponents in the air with rapid dashing assaults making them helpless against your divine onslaught.

  • Death is Final – When your enemies defeat you, the game is over. No respawning. No returning to the last save point. You will need all your cunning and skill to win.

  • A New World Each Run – Each playthrough creates a new hazardous land for adventure. You will never know exactly what you will encounter in the next room, which hazards will be presented to you, what you will find in a chest, or even (in some cases) which boss you will be fighting next. Expect hours of replayability and new challenges.

...And More

  • Two is better than one. Conquer the world with another demigod using local co-op
  • Unlock new characters with distinct stats attuned for any playstyle
  • Enhance your weaponry to adapt and overcome the enemy swarm
  • Special events make each run fresh and memorable

System Requirements

PC
Mac
Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS: Windows 7/8/8.1/XP/Vista (32 or 64 bit)
    • Processor: 2.4ghz Intel Core 2 Duo or equivalent
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia 260 GTS or Radeon HD 4850 - 512 MB of VRAM
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX compatible sound card
    Recommended:
    • OS: Windows 7/8/8.1 64bit
    • Processor: Intel i5 series or equivalent
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia 460 GTX / Radeon 5770 - 1 GB of VRAM
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    • Sound Card: DirectX compatible sound card
    Minimum:
    • OS: Mac OSX 10.5 or higher
    • Processor: 2.4GHz Intel Core i5
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GT 300 Series or Radeon equivalent
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Mac OSX 10.5 or higher
    • Processor: 2.66GHz Intel Core i7
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GT 400 Series or Radeon equivalent
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    Minimum:
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 or later
    • Processor: 2.4ghz Intel Core 2 Duo or equivalent
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia 260 GTS or Radeon HD 4850 - 512 MB of VRAM
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
    Recommended:
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 or later
    • Processor: Intel i5 series or equivalent
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Nvidia 460 GTX / Radeon 5770 - 1 GB of VRAM
    • Hard Drive: 2 GB available space
Helpful customer reviews
4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.7 hrs on record
There is a seed of a brilliant game here, but it's not as much fun as it should be.

The good first, I guess: The stylization of the graphics is unique, and the visual design is terrific. The BGM is gorgeous, no two ways about it. Vibrant without being twee, atmospheric without devolving into sonic punctuation, Ascendant is an abo♥♥♥♥e delight to listen to.

It's a shame it's not such a delight to play. The combat is well-executed, if with a somewhat steep learning curve. In fact, in my first hour or two of play, I found myself wondering why there are so few action-platformers with such fun and engaging combat. Then you start to notice that the power-ups you're unlocking don't really appear very much, that most of the pots you're smashing (yes, I know) are empty, and that using that cool combat engine in an engaging way is just going to end up with you doing sooner and having to start the whole process over again. There is very little variety in enemy or level-chunk design on a level by level basis, and it all soon starts to feel less like a game and more like a chore.

I feel like someone of my near-OCD-levels-of-completionism should absolutely love this, but I just don't. Perhaps if there was more actual platforming (where, at the risk of sounding conceited, I do have the skills) I would find it more engaging, but the platforming is simply window dressing for the fighting, which is a shame, because the fighting is very, very good. The platforming however, is not even at the level of Rogue Legacy, and certainly nowhere near Strider, Guacamelee or any of the 2D Castlevania games. I'm not going to say I don't enjoy it at all, because I do, but only in short spurts. It doesn't have the ability to keep me pinned to my chair for hours the way, to pick an example of a 2D action-platformer on Steam, Valdis Story: Abyssal City did. I believe Hapa Games should be rewarded and encouraged for the stunning art, beautiful soundtrack and inspired fighting mechanics of this game, and reservedly recommend it on those grounds. But caveat emptor; this game might not be for you.
Posted: September 28
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0 of 1 people (0%) found this review helpful
0.7 hrs on record
I've been spoiled with a lot of cool, quality platformers from indie devs this last week, and this game is no exception.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zwrTZqhOQIU
It looks fantastic and has a superb graphic style and atmosphere. This is a a fast-paced and unforgiving beat 'em up that challenges you with a new world each time you play. It's action packed and has you taking on all manner of different demi-gods. The game oozes class in all area's and puts a lot of AAA games to shame. - Superb and highly recommended.
Posted: October 8
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43.3 hrs on record
Expansive, strong combat, and unlocking items to be found make this an interesting experience every time. 36 hours to beat the game with all seven characters. I would strongly recommend this to anyone who enjoys brawly combat and great replayability.
Posted: September 26
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73 of 89 people (82%) found this review helpful
3.9 hrs on record
Type of Game:

2D Brawler/Beat-Em-Up with strong PDL elements

Version Played:

PC version through Steam

Similar Games:

Risk of Rain, Guacamelee, Spelunky, and to a lesser degree Super Smash Bros

The Good:

- An innovative genre combination of brawler and procedural death labyrinth that blends the two seamlessly
- Gameplay is fast and frantic, which keeps each play-through exciting
- The procedurally generated “maps” also keep the game feeling fresh every time the player restarts, which will happen many times
- The difficulty level, as is expected of a PDL, is very high. The game gets progressively more challenging the further you progress and health power-ups are very limited.
- Combat strategy is thankfully very complex and features parries, counters, and numerous different attack combinations
- This supports the notion that when the player perishes it is due to their poor play strategy and not the game’s design
- Progression is similar in method to Risk of Rain, where different characters with different abilities are unlocked by performing certain feats in a play-through
- I would be remiss not to mention the beautifully colorful artwork and animation that Ascendant contains. A cell-shaded “nature” themed design creates a vibrant and living game world
- Treasure and loot are bountiful, if the player survives long enough, and contain weapons, currency, stat boosts, spells, and Blessings.
- The latter of which are really unique and can change how the player continues their play-through
- Each unlock or new item picked up is logged in a “journal” that describes each item in detail
- Two-player local coop is a blast and can create some very fun “juggling” mechanics between the two players, plus exploring this beautiful game world with a friend (or child) is exciting

The Bad:

- Lack of networked coop is an extreme bummer. This game is a fantastic experience when shared with another person and to limit it to local multiplayer only is a shame. I understand that the coding required would be difficult, but to be able to play Ascendant with a long-distance friend over Steam would keep it in my library permanently.
- The User-Interface and presentation could be much more intuitive. A couple examples:
- The aforementioned unlock “journal” is difficult to navigate as it is tab-based with a full page for each item. This makes it difficult to quickly get to the player’s latest unlock to view it. While there is a copious amount of information for each item/blessing it would have been much cleaner to put them in an icon spreadsheet format which expanded when clicked on. Would potentially have been easier to identify the “new” unlocks too.
- I may be nit-picking, but transitioning around the game menu is clunky and could be streamlined. Any time the player is returned to the parent title menu the logo animation plays again, which is brief and pretty but can wear on the player the more they navigate the menu.

Can you play it while the children are awake?:

Yes. The local coop testing I mentioned earlier was based on my play sessions with my 8 year old son. Game violence is on-par with Super Smash Bros. and while the combat strategy is complex, it is also easy to pick up and button mash while still enjoying yourself. We had a blast!

Did I make time to complete it?

Not yet – as mentioned earlier this game is quite difficult and will take awhile for someone to complete all the seasons. I did, however, unlock a handful of characters and greatly enjoyed doing so in my many hours of gameplay.

Recommended Purchase Price:

Ascendant is a remarkable game that blends together the best parts of a brawler and a rogue-like. Fans of either genre would be doing themselves a disservice by not picking this up. The unique art style and complex mechanics create an unmatched robust gaming experience among a sea of “me too” rogue-likes and PDLs. It is a steal at its current price of $9.99.

or

100% of current retail value of $9.99

A Quick Look at Those Games You Might Play:
http://www.gamersglance.com
Posted: May 13
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208 of 309 people (67%) found this review helpful
238.5 hrs on record
Ascendant will change your life. Before this game existed I was a clean-faced baby and now that I've beaten it I'm a bushy-bearded man earning upwards of 8 beard compliments a week. Think about what something like that could do for your life and then buy the game regardless of how that thought process went down. Also I helped make this game and my mom is pretty proud.
Posted: May 5
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35 of 40 people (88%) found this review helpful
6.7 hrs on record
Ascendant is a 2D rogue-like brawler, and pretty dang good one at that. No run will ever be same, and there is quite a bit of variation in the layouts every time. This game offers consistent challenge, but with variation every run. And that is the mark of a good rogue-like.

Here's a quick look video of the game if you want to see it in action and what it has to offer. Or if you'd rather read something more concise, just read the review below.

http://youtu.be/pb_gYupS07s

I'll first begin by explaining the basic mechanics of this game. You play as your selected magic swordsman that's able to slash down foes, launch them with a hard swing Guacamelee style, or fire magic at them. You continue doing this until you reach the boss of the randomly generated dungeon, who can also change every run. If you manage to beat them, then you progress to the next part of the season, or to the next season if you already did so. Each new progression brings a harder challenge than the last with enemies that behave differently and are generally tougher.

But what makes that so good? It's the way each run feels like something new and the way the game still makes you feel like you're making progression. There's always some new weapon, spell, item, blessing or spirit that you'll come across and want to experiment with, the blessing being the most unique of the bunch. You'll only get them by defeating a boss, and where you equip them (body, sword, or magic) will offer you different boons that change the way way you play. And when you start progressing farther into the game, you'll probably be combining several together to make something that's really interesting and fun to do. I once found blessings that allowed me to slowly fall while casting and that enabled projectiles to bounce off walls. I then stumbled upon a spell that consistently fired off random projectiles every .1 seconds. Needless to say, the mayhem that ensued was a blast.

But let's break down a few negatives this game comes with.
*A lot of people may be turned off by the fact it looks like a flash game. A lot of games don't get the chance they deserve because of this.
*While there is a decent number of enemies that fight differently, a lot of them are simple reskins of others. I would've liked to see different mobs. And it would've also made it less confusing how to handle something when I found melee mobs that that now shot projectiles.
*Sometimes the random nature can be a bit too harsh. I once had a run where I found 3 keys to enter a shop, but I coudn't for the life of me find money to spend in them. Another time was when I consistently found hearts when I didn't need them, but when I actually did, I hovered on half of one for the longest time until I finally died. There should be some sort of mechanic that favors a certain outcome based on your current state.
*There's no story at all. While I personally don't mind, some people like a reason behind what they're doing, even if it is something simple like saving the world or your girlfriend.

Now if you can look past those negatives, you'll find a game that's challenging, fun, and even comes with local co-op if you want to bring a bud along. Even when you die, which will probably be often, you'll keep coming back for more and gradually get better. Why is that? Because the game feels fair for the most part. If you got hit, it's because you messed up and didn't dodge or parry in time. There's a high skill-ceiling in this game, and it's satisfying when you're beginning to breeze past the early levels that once gave you once heck of a challenge.

So to sum up, I recommend this game to all who like challenge. You're going to get exactly that here, and it'll feel like a fresh experience every time.
Posted: May 13
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25 of 26 people (96%) found this review helpful
50.0 hrs on record
I highly recommend this game if you enjoy challenging rogue-like side scrollers. The game is artistically beautifully, the characters are unique and offer variation to the gameplay, and the bosses are fun and rewarding. If you like risk of rain or rogue legacy, you will enjoy this game and if you arent a fan, you should become one because this game is great. The game also has an excellent coop (local only) mode and youll likely get more fun out of the two player experience. I've only played it briefly so far, but I think this game is a top contender in its genre. Thanks for reading.

Edit: I've now beaten the game with every character and I can still say that the game is extremely enjoyable. Each run has been very unique and it feels great to stomp the last boss a couple of times. I highly recommend this game.

Edit 2: Check out the wiki for help with bosses or anything else. I recently added a bnuch of stuff and looked at the rest to make sure they were correct or useful. http://ascendantgame.wikia.com/wiki/Ascendant_Wiki
Posted: May 13
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17 of 17 people (100%) found this review helpful
113.7 hrs on record
#Intro
I am not much of a rewiwer, more of an analyst. This review is based on experience both with the game and the genre, at the time of writing sunk 40-50 hours into this game. I will not play a bad game for 40 minutes let alone 40 hours. If you are a fan of the genre buy it, game is excellent. If you would like a more detailed reasoning behind why keep reading, there wil be very very minor gameplay/story spoilers as it is impossible to talk about certain mechanics of the game without referencing them.

#Plot
The plot of the game is simple. You are a Demi-god, There is a God, Overthrow the God, Become the new god. Each Demi-god has its own story and reasons for wanting to be God. The level structure is similar to Binding of Issac, there are multiple floors in groups of two with semi randomly generated rooms between you and the boss of each floor. Every odd numbered floor has a random boss from a select pool of possible bosses for that floor, and every even numbered floor has that levels guardian which is the same every time but there are two possible variations of it. Each boss is a challenge in its own right and each has its own set of attacks, attack paterns, weaknesses to exploit and most have multiple phases. Some are more challenging than others and some can end up being trivial if RNGesus loves you but personally that is half the fun.

#Combat
Before I begin I will say the game has an excellent Tutorial that covers pretty much everything I am about to cover. If you buy this game play the tutorial, it is not boring and gets straight to the point.

Combat boiled down is - Attacks, launch attacks, Magic Attacks, Parry and evasion. You may also occassionally find a 1 use items called Breaths which offer numberous effects for the room you are in. Most are combat focused but for the most part you'll be depending on either your weapons or magic to clear the path between you and the next room. Attacking an enemy with either magic of spells will also do stagger damage. Stagger damage is a separate health bar of sorts. Once an enemy has taken enough stagger damage they will glow yellow allowing you to use a launch attack to send them flying across the screen taking massive damage and doing massive damage to anything they collide with. Its a very simple mechanic and very satisfying. Feels very meaty especially if you are able to stagger and ping a larger foe across the room. For survival you can dash left or right through enemy attacks and flank them or parry the attack sending them flying (or in the case of projectiles reflects them). Timing is key, you'll have to be rather skilled at the game to successfully pull it off especially in the late game or against certain bosses but using the room to your advantage is also a viable tactic, You don't have to parry or dash through attacks, you can always jump over, run away, lure foes out of position among other things. It is very well done.

As for what you'll encounter there is quite a bit of enemy variety but you will not notice it at first since each season is tiered. The first season will always have a mix of melee flies, Grunts, mage grunts, worm brawlers, worm hitters and suicide grunts, The next season will expand this roster adding elite versions ontop of new enemy types with their own elite versions. Many enimes especially later ones are a challenge in their own right and their mere presence can change the whole way you tackle the room. You may also encounter one of many many possible event rooms which range from being ambushed, blessing themed obstacle courses, mini games, gambling and straight up "Here is a awersome free thing, have fun". You won't know until you enter what it is and it took me around 20-25 hours of playing until I was finally able to experience all of them. Adds a lot of depth to each floor if you decide to explore them especially if they are locked costing you a valuable key.

#Progession
Every playable Deity in this game (7 in total) has its own strengths/weaknesses which cater to certain playstyles which you'll disvoered as you unlock them. Every floor has at least 1 item room and a shop. Items rooms contain 1 gold chest either locked or unlocked which can provide you with high level stat boosts, breaths, weapons, a chunk of influence (the shop currency) or something else that I won't spoil. Shops on each floor are always locked and always have 4 items for sale and are one of the few ways to get a new spell. Each spell replaces your magic attack with a new one which can range from tripple shots to spread fire or mines.

There are two levels of passives in this game. First are spirits which are straight up passives, you pick them up and you get a bonus. There are 57 to collect in all and most have a chance of appearing on weapons you'll find to. There is no limit to the amount of passives you can get and they pretty much all stack flawlessly naby offering very cool interactions with each other. Bklessings are the second teir of passive in the game and each Deity can only hold a limited number at a time but they are very powerful. Blessings are rewards for beating the levels boss and can be placed into 1 of 3 body slots augmenting your attacks, magic or passively. Each blessing has its own unique effect depending on where you socket and they all interact with each other. 21 blessings with 63 passives in total to discover and many many combinations and synergies to experiment with. Because of how potent blessings are they will shape your run meaning no two runs end up the same but that should go without saying, its the whole point of the genre.

#Conclusion
Overall the game is fantasic and a must have if you are a fan of the genre. There is a lot of depth to be had but it will require a little investment since you will have to learn encounters and most likely need to unlock new items before you are able to get a successful completion. It does have a few balance ♥♥♥♥les mainly when you encounter a room with multiple shielded enemies which will be very intimidating at first but apart from that the game is paced very well and is very rewarding to play and much more than a simple 1 button combat system that is the fault of many other games in this genre.

#Verdict= Highly Recommended
Thanks to Totalbiscuit for his WTF is...? coverage of this game. If not for him this game would have completely flown under my radar as I am sure it flew under yours. If you need any more convincing check out his first impressions of the game.
Posted: June 14
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
0.5 hrs on record
Ascendant is a great roguelite with solid mechanics and a beautiful art-style. If you're at all into the genre, it's a refreshing experience and definitely worth the small price.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b70CYZ6N7TE

I covered the Steam release of Ascendant recently on my YouTube channel. Feel free to check it out if you want my two cents on the game.
Posted: May 14
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.7 hrs on record
A really fun and stylized Rougelike Brawler where you can launch minions into spikes, fight bosses, and collect a multitude of items. It's also pretty challenging, as any Rougelike game should be.

Want to know more? Check out a first impressions video of the game I recorded for Geekenstein.com. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKtSBe_SDTM&list=PLGZzj3oUhxhsCNa9eEbyc9w9vueaDfBAG&index=2

Full Disclosure: Geekenstein.com covered the development of this game and are friendly with the developers. They're cool dudes.
Posted: May 28
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19 of 31 people (61%) found this review helpful
0.3 hrs on record
A brief lets play is up on youtube: http://youtu.be/2sv6xTQrZ6Q

Replay value???? Yes and tons of it, if you are a fan of the following: Binding of Issac, Risk of Rain, and Spelunky mixed with beat em up elements then this game is right up your alley with random power ups and a "new world" every time you play the game is pretty cool. The game is very hard but with a addicting flavor that keeps you going to try and get to the end. Lots of unlockables as well a solid game through and through.
Posted: May 12
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
6.7 hrs on record
Ascendant is unforgiving and brutal and cannot be compared to Rogue Legacy where your heir will follow you up. It is a true rogue-like game where you can't just rush through maps while mowing down your enemies. You need to do so with careful planning, punch the right badasses and use them to your advantage to kick them towards any other enemies in your surroundings. The first few playthroughs will utterly destroy you and possibly your gamers ego but the more you play, the more you will learn from your previous mistakes.

The combat system in Ascendant has a nice mixture of melee attacks, ranged spells and dodge and parry attacks than can backfire ranged spells amongst other things to your enemies. Several combo's are prominent in the game and will require some getting used to. Once you're more familiar with the combat and the enemies themselves, you will venture further and further in the rooms, finding various blessings, breaths and weapons that will help you become a fierce but not unbeatable warrior. Luckily there's a shop where you can buy upgrades which uses the influence gained by treasure chests and enemies as a currency to become even stronger. Each new item you will find along the way will be kept in a log split into various categories. This log can be accessed in the main menu but also in the game itself which comes in handy if you want to know more about what powers the blessing, breaths or weapons beholds.

The replayability in Ascendant is absolutely brilliant as each playthrough will generate a complete new world, with new enemies in each room that are waiting for you. Other items such as the pots and chest will contain different bonuses and often the bosses you will need to face rotate. Each new adventure is a new challenge you have to face as death is final in this game. There are no checkpoints where you can restart from. That being said, the game is merciless and requires the player to have a serious amount of self-control while you study the enemies moves.

Visually the game sets itself apart completely from various other titles in the same subgenre, a feature that will attract many players despite the steep learning curve of the game. It is said that the ancient power struggle between the demigods has begun once more and that is noticeable from the overall graphical features in the game. The characters you get to play share a resemblance to the ancient samurai's with various types of armor and colors. However, it may not be the characters themselves that stun you visually. The backgrounds that create the setting of each room will. The artistic landscapes are pleasing to your eyes and details are not left out. While Ascendant is a beat 'em up game, it is not filled with blood and gore. This makes it a perfect game to play local coop with your kids or your faint of heart friends.

Conclusion
Ascendant is the most brutal beat 'em up game that combines features from the brawlers and rogue-like games with elements from platformers. Visually the game is outstanding and the ancient Asian touch can give you a clear sense of the demigod that you supposedly are, if it wasn't for you constantly dying. Thanks to the procedurally generated environments, each playthrough is a complete new challenge. The game is extremely difficult and has a very steep learning curve that may leave you bitter for a while but you will find yourself going back to it sooner or later. Ascendant is a title you should have in your collection, especially if you are addicted to the rogue-like genre.
Posted: May 14
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
32.1 hrs on record
This game is great, its a platforming roguelike with strong influences from Okami and Shadow of the Collossus. It has a good difficulty curve with tons of replay value. I can't recommend this game enough! 5/5 well worth your 10$
Posted: May 14
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6 of 8 people (75%) found this review helpful
32.0 hrs on record
Great rogue-like. Really fun. Very challenging. I want to get further than late summer!
Posted: May 13
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8 of 12 people (67%) found this review helpful
5.7 hrs on record
Its a great game with lots of replay value, i love the combat, and finding out the new abilities after beating a boss is a lot of fun, an addicting game well worth the price.
Posted: May 13
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
26.8 hrs on record
This game reminds me in a lot of ways of The Binding of Issac... which is my all time favourite rouge-like game, and Ascendant is VERY simillar in many ways, but one of the biggest (and obvious) differences is the art style, i absolutely LOVE the gorgeous colour pallet in this game, really simple but oh so pretty! as well as the soundtrack...

Just like Issac, its laid out as rooms connected together... up, down, left, right... which is perfect for the format, with some chest rooms that may sometimes need keys to unlock, and shops as well (influence being the currancy)... all these basic mechanics from Issac are here, and for a good reason... THEY WORK!

As for the gameplay itself, its very simple combat, nothing too complicated, the only thing ive had a slight struggle with is being precise in smacking enemies into other enemies that arnt right next to you... and timing the block/parry attack (which is VERY freakin usefull if you can perfect it).

On my first run, id honestly felt a bit dissapointed because all the enemies were very easy to kill.... that is untill i got up to the first boss.... DAMN YOU THE MAW!!!!........... freakin jerk.... but like alot of games once u figure out the pattern its not THAT hard... which is probably the only thing im not 100% on with Ascendant, its not quite as brutally sack crushing like The Binding of Issac, but that being said it doesnt make it any less enjoyable, just a bit more relaxed.

All in all, i really like this game... most definitely recommended for anyone who like the genre, and actually worth the price.


9/10.... only thing stopping me from giving a full score is the difficulty... but seeing as ive not played a HUGE amount yet... i could very well change my mind later.........

EDIT........

Having now played over 20 hours i do indeed change my mind... 10/10... hands down one of my favourite rouge-likes... the more you play the more you unlock to be able to pick up in runs, which just makes it so much more fun... and it does indeed get considerably harder the further you go. love it... just freakin love it!
Posted: May 16
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
51.3 hrs on record
Nice little game that mixes brawling with rogue-like elements and offers a nice challenge.
Posted: May 19
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.6 hrs on record
A fun little rogue-like in a similar vain to Binding of Isaac. It isn't a twin-stick shooter like Isaac and the combat does have a slight learning curve to it. It's a fun permadeath game at a decent price. There are a few negatives including a seemingly limited variety of enemy encounters in the early stages and a limited variety of boss fights. Navigation also isn't as straight-forward as one would like, but the maps make finding your way a lot easier.

There appears to be a wide variety of powerups and abilities that will make the replayability high. For $10, I would recommend the game for fans of the genre.
Posted: May 15
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
2.5 hrs on record
This game is freekin' beautiful 10/10
Posted: May 16
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