5 Solid Rogue-like and Rogue-lite Video Games You Should Play Right Now

A few years ago, I discovered the sub-genre of Rogue-likes. Rogue-likes utilize game mechanics such as procedurally-generated dungeon crawling, and permadeath. Rogue-lites use similar mechanics but also have qualities similar to the Metroidvania sub-genre. I’m hooked by the feeling of knowing that every time I die, I’ll start over again and get a little bit stronger each time.

They’re the best of both worlds: semi-casual, usually more inexpensive games that you can kind of just jump in and out of without dedicated tons of hours to, while at the same time deep, immersive experiences in their own right.

Here are 5 Rogue-lites that you delve into today:

Dead Cells


Dead Cells may be the most fun I’ve had in a game all year.” – Polygon

“I’ve been toying with Dead Cells for the past week, relishing its roguelite slashing and crunchy pixel art. It’s a tough game, often punching you in the gut with powerful enemies and sending you slithering all the way back to the start with each death. But every time you die, you get stronger, along with a chance to re-roll the dice of fate to see what vicious weaponry you can gather this time.” – Rock Paper Shotgun

“Like most roguelikes, every run you embark on is different than the last.” – Destructoid

Rogue Legacy


“A hugely triumphant take on the Metroidvania formula that delights with its fresh take on roguelike gameplay elements, Rogue Legacy empowers the player, rather than punishes them.” – Playstation Universe

“Despite its designation as a “rogue-lite,” Rogue Legacy delivers just as much addictive live-die-repeat challenge as any “full-fledged” members of the genre. Short of maxing out on every possible trait (an undertaking that would prove rather expensive in-game) the optional, RPG-style progression system never robs this roguelike’s random dungeons of their punishing nature and need for patience, a thoughtful approach, and the occasional bout of luck.” – EGM

“Exciting, funny, and addictive: you should play this game.” – RPG Fan

FTL: Faster Than Light


“It’s amazing and you should definitely check it out.” – NZGamer

“FTL offers almost everything one can ask of a rogue-like indie game. It’s deep, it’s varied, it’s intense and quite frankly great fun. It’s a must for everyone who wants a challenge and highly rewarding gameplay.” – Gamer.no

“Gaming can be hit or miss when it comes to getting what you pay for. Sometimes, though, a game comes along that not only provides a good value proposition, but well exceeds what’s expected. As one of the first of the crowd-sourced games to come out of Kickstarter since Double Fine ran the table with donations for Double Fine Adventure, FTL begins to show that as a viable way to finance games.” – DarkStation



“I think I could play Spelunky forever, and now that it has come home to PC, assuring its permanence, I believe I will.” – Eurogamer

“Straightforward and replayable, Spelunky is precision engineered to make death fair, funny, and a story worth sharing.” – PC Gamer

“Those who missed out on the XBLA release of Spelunky and want a good tough rogue-like should pick it up from Steam. It’s a little more based on reflexes than most rogue-likes, but even if you find out you’re not that good at it, it is still a riot to watch friends try to get as far as the can before making the wrong step and getting crushed by a boulder.” – Hardcore Gamer

Darkest Dungeon

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“Darkest Dungeon is an incredible take on the classic dungeon crawl. The game brings Lovecraftian lore to new heights with cool classes, powerful narration, stylish art, and addictive gameplay that will keep you crawling back to battle slithering monstrosities even as your favorite heroes become corpses.” – Game Informer

“Darkest Dungeon is a punishing and awesome game of tactics, management, and pushing your luck to the breaking point.” – IGN

“Darkest Dungeon is the rare game that gets my heart pumping while playing, not because it’s scary (even though it is a little scary), but because the stakes are so high.” – High-Def Digest

What are some of your favorites? Let me know in the comments below!

#5 Solid Rogue-like and Rogue-lite Video Games You Should Play Right Now