Monsters and Monocles is a frantic top-down shooter for 1-4 players. Use teamwork and your arsenal of weapons to defeat the overwhelming hordes of evil, either locally or online. All the levels are procedurally generated with new layouts, objectives, and secrets each time you play.
All Reviews:
Mostly Positive (56) - 78% of the 56 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Aug 16, 2016

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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?

“We've been working on Monsters and Monocles since early 2014 and have spent the bulk of that time making sure that the core of the game feels great for solo, local co-op, and online play. We are now at the point where we need to expand on this foundation with more variety and content across all aspects of the game, including levels, enemies, weapons, and customization, to ensure that each play session is unique and interesting.

Early access provides a great opportunity to get the game in front of a larger audience to help us fine tune and shape the game's balance and content, while also making sure that network play is as smooth and robust as possible.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“We’re aiming to finish the game within 10 months while doing monthly content updates along the way.”

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

“The full version will have a much wider variety of weapons, enemies, upgradable abilities, objectives, unique random events, traps, and unlockable characters. We’re aiming to have 6 distinct zones, each with their own secret areas and bosses.

The full version will also have full steam workshop support for player created characters, weapons, enemies, and environments, as well as standard steam features like achievements, trading cards, and cloud saves.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“The current early access version is fully playable for 1-4 players, both locally and online. There are 4 playable characters and 3 complete zones, each with their own distinct type of procedural generation type, enemies, and boss. There is also a functioning HUB world in which levels can be selected and unlocked, and relic abilities can be equipped and upgraded. There are currently 20 distinct weapons and more than 20 relic abilities.”

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

“We plan to have the same fixed price for both early access and full release so that all players get the same value whether they adopt early or wait for final release.”

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

“We plan to have a fully transparent task list available to everyone to show what we’re currently working on, along with future update plans. We’ll be actively following the steam forums and email feedback to collectively help us balance every aspect of the game. The community will also play a hugely important role in helping us create fully featured and stable network play across all supported platforms.”
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Recent updates View all (20)

May 10

Content Update 12: Time to Get Active!

Hi everyone!

This update ended up being one of our largest to date, as we added new things, polished some old things, and generally made some big core changes.

The primary focus on this update was to improve all of the elements relating to items & relics, as well as finally adding active items! Players now have a single active item slot that can be triggered during key moments using ‘F’ on the keyboard, or the ‘X’ button on XBox controllers. We felt that providing players with powerful one-off, or limited use abilities was a good way to compliment their weapon and passive item selections.

Right now, there currently 2 active items for testing - The holy hand grenade (applies set damage to all enemies on screen with 3 minute cooldown), and the coolant flush (resets cooldown on carried weapons with 3 uses). As this is just the initial pass, they both lack clear HUD indicators, final effects, and general balancing, but those are all things we’ll be addressing in future updates as we roll more active items into the mix. The holy hand grenade does have a red overlay as it recharges, to at least show when it’s usable/unusable in the short term.

Alongside the active items, we also added animations, and general visual polish to all of the existing items, relics, and treasure chests. Our goal was to make collectible items both more satisfying to collect, and to improve their readability during gameplay. The last big addition on this front, are the new soul gems, which act as second, relic-specific currency. These gems are used to purchase and upgrade relics, and are persistent across runs, meaning that you can gradually work towards upgrading specific relics, without the fear of losing a large amount of regular coins upon death before reaching the airship. Right now they’re only a guaranteed drop from bosses, and upgrade amounts aren’t tuned, but we’ll be working into things in subsequent updates.

Aside from items, we also felt like it was a good time to make a couple of more fundamental changes to the core gameplay. The two largest being the removal of both lives and objectives. As we tuned enemy behaviors, damage, and overall challenge, we began to feel like the concept of lives was diminishing the sense of tension/reward, as all lives prior to the final one felt somewhat inconsequential. Having just one life in single player now means that health is much more precious and rewarding when found, and items like the ankh (which offers a single-use revive upon death), and relics relating to HP feel much more important. We also carried this concept over to multiplayer, with players able to revive one another indefinitely, as long as at least one player is alive. Although the shared pool of lives was interesting, we felt it was much too unforgiving at times, as it often forced players to sit-out and be unable to play for long stretches. As this is such a large change, we would love to hear your feedback on this front across both single player and multiplayer. The tuning and balancing of health drops etc is still ongoing, and your input on this front would be a massive help :)

Similarly to lives, we also took a good look at the current objective system, and asked ourselves whether or not they truly benefited the core gameplay. Although we’re happy with the fundamental ideas behind some of the objectives, we felt like having them be a mandatory requirement to complete the floor, often meant backtracking, and aimless searching for specific things that didn’t add to the core gameplay in a meaningful way. With that said, we hope to experiment with reincorporating certain aspects like the key gun and minibosses back into the new map generation system as optional elements in future updates.

The final major addition for this update, is the inclusion of the new room-based tomb zone! Although it’s a very rough pass as we still develop room shapes, enemy art/behaviors, and overall variety, it represents a nice step towards expanding out and applying all of the work we’ve done in the mansion, to the remaining zones. The ‘new’ tomb should start to take shape and begin moving closer to completion in future updates as we work towards bringing all of the existing zones up to the same level of polish as the mansion.

Thank you for reading, and as always, please leave any feedback you may have in the forums :)


Craig & Ryan

2018/05/10 - 1.14.6704 (Content Update 12) --------------------------------------------------------------------------- What's New: * The digsite has been reworked with the lessons learned from the mansion changes over the past several updates. * Added an initial set of 10 digsite room configurations (6 combat, 3 trap, 1 treasure) * Added initial digsite enemy waves and challenge waves * Reworked digsite props to have rounded corner colliders for better pathing around them * Fully reworked tile art for digsite levels * Lives have been removed as a resource. In single player you now have a single life. In multiplayer revives are now free and the game ends when no one is left to revive downed players. * Added 'active' items - they are items that you trigger with a button press and either have limited uses or a cooldown. * Active item: holy hand grenade (explosion damage to all enemies in room, 3min cooldown) * Active item: coolant (instantly resets gun heat state, 3 charges before item is consumed) * Small red treasure chests now only contain coins and health * Added 'soul gems' a currency for relic purchases and upgrades * All bosses now drop a soul gem on death * All items and relic art was reworked and given idle animations * Coin sprites and animations have been reworked * Reworked selection of 'special' rooms to be per-zone instead of per floor, increases variance between runs * Damage flash has been switched from red to white to improve overall visibility/readability * Active items can now be rewards from a challenge room * Active items can now be a rare drop from item chests * Added ability to require certain rooms to appear on a floor in the map generator. Each floor in mansion and digsite will always have at least one treasure room * Updated to Unity 2017.4.2f2LTS * Removed per-floor objectives from game, investigating reworking some of the elements for optional/secondary zone content * Fixed several map generator bugs that could cause hangs on loading * Fixed several map generator bugs that could cause invalid rooms to be selected for combat arenas * Reworked all of the pickup/collection effects for items * Added upgrade code to input bindings to auto-assign new functionality (e.g. active items) to default keybindings * Reworked fragments and soul gems so a single pickup will add to all players in a network game (instead of only the player who picks it up) * Reduced room count of mansion levels to improve overall flow * Reworked plaement phase of 'special' rooms to try and improve chances of them being scattered throughout the map more * Items that can be picked up now have a bounce tween to help with visiblity on busy maps * Updated art and animations for all treasure chests * Treasure chests now leave a debris remain after opening * Fixed issue with colliders in challenge rooms where sometimes you could not pick up the item from one side of the podium

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February 22

Content Update 11: Charting a Course

This update tackles one of the oldest tasks we've had on the todo list: an in-game map! There's a persistent minimap in the HUD, and you can display the full map by going to the pause menu. Rooms will appear on the map as you enter them, and special rooms will be marked with an icon. Currently we mark entrances, exits, shops, npcs, treasure rooms, and challenge rooms. Currently we do not have the ability to mark individual objective items on the map, although we hope to add that in the future.

We've also added challenge rooms! These are rooms where the combat difficulty will be higher, but there will be a reward for anyone willing to take on its challenge. To start with, each floor in the mansion has a challenge room containing a map of the floor, in the future we will add additional high level powerups as well.

We've also added several NPC's to the mansion, currently with 1 appearing per floor, each offering different benefits. Talk to them and see what they can do for you! (And beware the Widow, her blessings are not always a boon). The NPC's are currently static with a simplistic chat system, but we'll be changing that down the line.

There are also several changes to game balance around player health, enemy spawn counts, and adjusting spawn counts per each additional player in multiplayer games. Tread carefully!

Smaller additions to this update include new combat and treasure rooms, double difficulty arenas, nine different widow potions, and changes to the map generation to prevent rare degenerate cases (e.g. - entrance spawns on spikes, objective collectables spawn inside an indestructable prop). We also fixed several small networking bugs and exceptions that were causing gameplay issues.

At this point the last 3 or 4 updates have changed the gameplay considerably in our zone of focus (the mansion), so if you have feedback about how the mansion is playing we'd love to hear it! We're approaching the point where we're going to take the lessons learned from the mansion and start applying it to the other zones to get them up to speed, so if there are things you particulary like or don't like please let us know so we can consider them. If you've been playing in local or network multiplayer we'd especially be interested to hear how the latest balance changes are working for you!

Ryan & Craig

2018/02/21 - 1.13.6627 (Content Update 11) --------------------------------------------------------------------------- What's New: * We finally have a map! Added an on-screen minimap as well as a full map in the pause menu * Added minimap room markers (currently for npcs, challenge rooms, treasure rooms, entrances, and exits) * Added a map item that gives you the full map for the current floor * Added 3 challenge rooms with more difficult spawn wave patterns * Added 5 new combat rooms * Added 2 new treasure rooms * Added rare 'double difficulty' arenas * Added NPCs: Widow, Klunk, Garrison, and Meredith * Widow: Offers 3 random potions, may be helpful or may be harmful there's only one way to find out * Klunk: Trade in 2 guns for one random one * Meredith: sells relics at a significantly reduced rate * Garrison: Sells weapons at a significantly reduced rate * Added 9 widow potion items What's Changed: * Made adjustments to all possible arena waves * Tweaked enemy generation to be slightly friendlier for single player, but added additional enemy spawns per additional player in MP. * Adjusted enemy costs during generation * Reduced player health, but increased invincibility time after taking damage * Changed mansion rooms so the entrance or exit will no longer appear on spikes Misc: * Fixed several small networking bugs * Fixed occasional bug where 2 maps would be generated on a single floor
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About This Game

Monsters and Monocles is a frantic, Victorian steampunk themed twin-stick shooter all about using teamwork and heavy weaponry to battle the hordes of evil. A naive occult collector has unknowingly unleashed a great evil that is spreading across the globe, and it’s up to you and a team of quirky paranormal investigators to find the source of this dark energy and blast it back to where it came from.

Online and Local Multiplayer

Take on the challenge solo, or play with up to 4 players online or locally. Your team shares a single pool of lives so you need to stick together, revive fallen comrades, and watch each other’s backs.

Customize Your Play Style

Search out and use powerful weapons to aid you in battle like the blunderbuss, stake launcher and the crumpet cannon - a steampunk toaster that fires weaponized crumpets.
Find and equip relics to customize your weapons and add new abilities to match your play style, and upgrade them by looting chests and destroying enemies.

Procedurally Generated World

Each level is procedural so you and your comrades will be faced with unique enemy placement, traps, secrets and objectives each time you play. Your trusty airship the HMS Scone acts as your hub and lets you gear up before taking on challenging levels like the haunted mansion, snowy Victorian streets and a cursed Pharaoh’s tomb. Each area ends with a fearsome boss encounter, such as a demonic chimney sweep or a giant cyclops skull.


  • 4 player co-op - both locally and online
  • Co-op centric gameplay - Revive teammates and shared pool of lives across all players
  • Challenging single player
  • Every game is different - Procedural levels, enemies, relics, objectives, and secrets
  • Customizable abilities - Collect relics that can be upgraded across play sessions to match your play style
  • Full Controller support
  • Huge bosses
  • Sound design & Music by Hyperduck Soundworks
  • Dogs wearing smoking jackets

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows 7
    • Processor: Core i5 or Core i7
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: GTX 400 Series or better
    • DirectX: Version 9.0c
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 500 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Additional space required for any mods downloaded
    • OS: 10.8 or greater
    • Processor: Core i5 or Core i7
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Discrete GPU required
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 500 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Additional space required for any mods downloaded
    • OS: Ubuntu 14.04 or SteamOS
    • Processor: Core i5 or Core i7
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Discrete GPU, Nvidia GTX 400 Series or better
    • Network: Broadband Internet connection
    • Storage: 500 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Additional space required for any mods downloaded
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