Caves of Qud is a science fantasy roguelike epic steeped in retrofuturism, deep simulation, and swathes of sentient plants. Come inhabit an exotic world and chisel through layers of thousand-year-old civilizations.
Recent Reviews:
Overwhelmingly Positive (144) - 97% of the 144 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
All Reviews:
Overwhelmingly Positive (6,914) - 95% of the 6,914 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Jul 15, 2015

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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?

Caves of Qud is a colossal project. We've weaved a rich, exotic, and well-researched culture around deeply simulated physical and political systems. The world is expansive, the gameplay is unpredictable, and the plants are sentient. For example, you can:
  • Play as a turtle-shelled gunslinger
  • Play as a telepath with amnesia
  • Dig a tunnel anywhere in the world
  • Swap stories with an albino ape mayor
  • Clone yourself, mind-control the clone, and then hack off your own limbs
Before calling it done, we want to watch the community play Caves of Qud, and as the strange, unexpected stories of their characters unfold, we want to use them to refine the systems and make the game better.”

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“We don't have a strict timeline. At the very least, Caves of Qud will remain in Early Access until you can complete the main plot. In the mean time, we'll be adding all sorts of items, monsters, NPCs, quests, new regions, new systems, tweaks to old systems, and more sentient plants.”

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

“The full version will have:
  • A completed main plot
  • Tile art for every tile
  • Improved UI and graphical effects
  • Sound and Music
  • Less bugs
Additionally, it'll feature refinements to all the game's systems, more monsters and items, new sidequests and locations, and more lore.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

Caves of Qud already has a tremendous amount of game, amounting to 50-100 hours of play. There are:
  • Over 70 mutations and 24 player castes and kits
  • Hundreds of monsters
  • Dozens of overland regions with unique ecosystems
  • Scores of conversable hand-crafted NPCs and infinite procedural ones
  • Rich and varied sidequests
  • Hundreds of items and a tinkering system to craft them
  • Themed dungeons—ruined sectors of a fossilized arcology
  • Diseases, storied artifacts, history books, the poetic ramblings of a mad goatman, cryogenic chambers, and cybernetic implants
Most of the major systems are already in the game. The big missing piece is the resolution of the main plot, and that's our #1 development focus.

Also, while Caves of Qud is very stable considering the complexity of the engine, there are some late-game save corruption and crashing issues. We'd love your help identifying these bugs! If you encounter them, please give us the details so we can reproduce them.”

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

“We plan to increase the price by at least 50% when we exit Early Access.”

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

“You're going to teach us how to play Caves of Qud—from bizarre bug reports...

'I can walk even though a saw-handed robot cut off both my feet.'

—to emergent weirdness...

'Farmer Mehmet's procedurally generated backstory said he hates the Wardens for repeatedly beating him at dice, so he attacked Warden Ualraig, and Ualraig killed him.'

We can't possibly play through all the permutations ourselves, so we're asking for your help. We're active on the Steam forums, Twitter, and our website—tell us your story.”
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“There’s a sense of magnificent history to dredge from its depths.”
Kill Screen

“Caves of Qud is one of the best roguelikes in years, packed with evocative prose and featuring a captivating world of arcane secrets to explore.”

“Narratively, this is one of the most compelling game stories that I’ve seen in a long time.”

About This Game

Caves of Qud is a science fantasy roguelike epic steeped in retrofuturism, deep simulation, and swathes of sentient plants. Come inhabit a living, breathing world and chisel through layers of thousand-year-old civilizations. Decide: is it a dying earth, or is it on the verge of rebirth?

Do anything and everything. Caves of Qud is a deeply simulated, biologically diverse, richly cultured world.

DEEP PHYSICAL SIMULATION — Don’t like the wall blocking your way? Dig through it with a pickaxe, or eat through it with your corrosive gas mutation, or melt it to lava. Yes, every wall has a melting point.

FULLY SIMULATED CREATURES — Every monster and NPC is as fully simulated as the player. That means they have levels, skills, equipment, faction allegiances, and body parts. So if you have a mutation that lets you, say, psionically dominate a spider, you can traipse through the world as a spider, laying webs and eating things.

DYNAMIC FACTION SYSTEM — Pursue allegiances with over 70 factions: apes, crabs, trees, robots, and highly entropic beings, just to name a few.

RICHLY DETAILED SCIENCE FANTASY SETTING — Over fifteen years of worldbuilding have led to a rich, weird, labyrinthine, one-of-a-kind storyworld, layered on top of the simulation, all for you to explore. Live and drink, friend.

TACTICAL GAMEPLAY — Turn-based, sandbox exploration and combat offers as many solutions as you and your mutations, implants, artifacts, and skills are creative enough to invent.

RPG ELEMENTS — Quests, NPCs, villages, historic sites; some dynamic and some handwritten, interwoven to produce a transportative RPG experience.

ATMOSPHERIC ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK — Over two hours of otherworldly music to delve to.

Caves of Qud has one of the most expressive character creators of all time.

Play the role of a mutant indigenous to the salt-spangled dunes and jungles of Qud, or play a true kin descendant from one of the few remaining eco-domes — the toxic arboreta of Ekuemekiyye, the ice-sheathed arcology of Ibul, or the crustal mortars of Yawningmoon.

Build your character out of:

  • Over 70 mutations — outfit yourself with wings, two heads, four arms, flaming hands, teleportation, the power to clone yourself…
  • Dozens of cybernetic implants (and more to find as treasure) — night vision, translucent skin, carbide fists, spring-loaded ankle tendons…
  • 24 castes and kits from across the social order of Qud and beyond Moghra’yi, the Great Salt Desert
  • Too overwhelmed to build a character from scratch? Choose one of 9 preset characters and start your adventure right away. Then return to character creation when you are ready.

Play one of four modes:

CLASSIC — Like other traditional roguelikes, this mode has permadeath, meaning you lose your character when you die. Extremely challenging even for experts.

ROLEPLAY — Play it like an RPG. Save your progress at checkpoints located in settlements.

WANDER — Focus on exploration. Most creatures will not attack you, you don’t gain experience by killing, but you DO gain experience by discovering new locations and treating with legendary creatures.

DAILY — One chance with a fixed character and world seed. How long will you survive?

The game is nearly complete, and there are already hundreds of hours worth of gameplay here. But before 1.0, we’ll also be adding:

  • The last leg of the main quest
  • The new, fully graphical UI
  • Hundreds of visual & sound effects
  • Lots of polish & stability

Caves of Qud is a project of epic proportions that's been in development for over fifteen years, since 2007. It began as the science fantasy roguelike dream of co-creators Jason Grinblat and Brian Bucklew, who released the first beta in 2010. Since then, it's accrued a few more contributors who have enriched the project by helping to add visual effects, sound effects, an original soundtrack, a new UI, new game systems, new lore, and half a world of content. Caves of Qud has grown into a wild garden of emergent narrative, where a handwritten story weaves a path through rich physical, social, and historical simulations. The result is a hybrid handcrafted and procedurally-generated world that's alive in a way few games are.

System Requirements

SteamOS + Linux
    • OS *: Windows 7 (SP1+), Windows 10 and Windows 11
    • Processor: 1GHz or faster. SSE2 instruction set support.
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics card: DX10, DX11, DX12 capable
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
* Starting January 1st, 2024, the Steam Client will only support Windows 10 and later versions.
    • OS: Mojave 10.14+
    • Processor: 1GHz or faster. SSE2 instruction set support.
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics card: Metal capable Intel and AMD GPUs
    • Storage: 2 GB available space
    • OS: Ubuntu 20.04, Ubuntu 18.04, and CentOS 7
    • Processor: 1GHz or faster. SSE2 instruction set support.
    • Memory: 4 GB RAM
    • Graphics: Graphics card: OpenGL 3.2+, Vulkan capable
    • Storage: 2 GB available space

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