By: Alehkhs

On: November 23rd, 2009


Xbox Live is starting to look up; with well established Indie names making their way to the Xbox in the next year with Polytron’s ‘Fez,’ and Derek Yu’s ‘Spelunky,’ heading to the XBLA in 2010, and XBLIG starting to have actual, non-massage games, the Xbox is slowly becoming an Indie portal.

However, even with these fine names coming to XBL, there’s a few things I demand before I will consider XBL a true host to the Indie community.

First and Foremost: Roguelikes, and lucky me – not one, but two roguelikes are headed to XBLIG this winter.


First on the list: ASCII Quest, from Jade Vault Games

ASCII Quest was born out of an epic goal, yet as an indie title, quickly ran into restraints. “We realized that the game would require way too many assets; [we were] really interested in making an RPG, but full graphical RPGs take a lot more work than we had time for at the moment,” explained president of Jade Vault Games, Daniel Hanson. “I found a couple online articles on roguelike development, and that inspired me to make a quick prototype. I had begun to notice that there were many people who were asking for a roguelike on Xbox LIVE Indie Games, and realized that there was a market for this kind of game.” Thus began ASCII Quest.

Obviously, aside from crossover pc users, a roguelike will be a new experience for many console players. To this end, ASCII Quest aims to be an “easy roguelike, one that anyone could pick up and play.” Rogue veterans need not worry however, for there are several difficulty levels. The hardest of these levels incorporates several extra features, or rather, it takes away a feature (saving) in leu of another (an online high-score list, the Hall of Heroes).

Although a roguelike might seem a simple project for first-time developers, developing one for the Xbox presented some issues. Hanson explains, “Perhaps one of the most difficult aspects of implementing a roguelike on Xbox 360 is creating an approachable control scheme. PC roguelikes are fond of using most of the keys on the keyboard. Instead of having a universal action key, a separate key is used for each specific action (drinking potions, equipping weapons, and so on). Obviously, this isn’t very feasible when most people have only an Xbox controller. Even something as simple as movement is difficult to get right. Roguelikes are turn-based games, and movement occurs on a tile grid.” In answer, Hanson and his crew have opted for a ‘universal action button.’

“The left thumbstick or DPad is used to aim this cursor around the character. Then the player must press the ‘A’ button to confirm movement in that direction. This ensures that all movement is precise and in the direction that the player desires, which is important in a turn-based game. Movement is also used to perform many actions; to attack an enemy, simply bump into it. In fact, bumping into anything will perform the default action with that entity (open doors, talk to NPCs, and so forth). To pick up items or to walk up/down stairs, stand over it and press ‘A.’”

With the implementation of simplified controls, as well as multiple difficulty levels, ASCII Quest will hopefully be welcomed by players on XBLIG, RL veterans and newcomers alike, when it releases this December for 80MSP ($1US).

[Game Page]


The second roguelike headed to XBLIG is Dungeon Adventure, by UberGeekGames

Dungeon Adventure‘s development was inspired by the developer’s first taste of the RL community. “I picked up Rogue on the iPhone by chance one day, and became completely addicted to it. I’ve been a longtime fan of RPGs and adventure games, but am always sad when I reach the end of a game since there usually isn’t much more content once you’ve completed the main story arc,” said UG.

Like Hanson of Jade Vault, UG understands that there are obvious reasons no one has put a RL on Xbox yet. “Roguelikes are usually regarded as niche games. But,” adds UG, “I think they have a very wide appeal.”

“I’m trying to bridge the gap between hardcore ASCII roguelikes and more casual gamers,” says UG. Dungeon Adventure incorporates several aspects that might make it a bit easier to pick up; the most noticeable is the option to use a graphical tileset rather than the standard ASCII characters. This graphical set doesn’t break the old-school feel of the game, but will definitely make it a bit easier on players eyes, especially for those newcomers who might never have seen a traditional roguelike before. There is even an option to use your XBL avatar as the player sprite, should you so desire it.

As for the issue of controls, UG has put a ton of time into making sure the player has several options concerning how they want to control the game. Besides the ‘standard’ method, using only a few of the buttons on an Xbox controller, UG has also incorporated the Xbox ChatPad as well as USB keyboards. “And I’ve spent a lot of time just playing the game with each input device to make sure the control scheme is comfortable and easy to use on all of them. This is something that I notice is lacking in a lot of games, especially in Indie games – the developer adds buttons for new actions and features as they are made, and since they are playing the game throughout its development cycle it’s very hard for them to realize that someone who’s never seen the game before may have a problem memorizing a wall of button prompts!”

“One of the most difficult things to get right was movement. Roguelikes demand precise, octo-directional, digital movement, which analog thumbsticks aren’t suited to at all. That probably took an entire month alone just to perfect, but it was well worth it! There are two different control schemes, one where you move the thumbstick or DPad in the direction you want to go, and another that I call Sure-Move, where you use either the thumbstick or DPad to highlight the direction you want, and hit A to move. This is also why I highly recommend hooking up a ChatPad or USB keyboard when playing, since there is just no substitute for the tactile feel of a keyboard when moving around.”

Dungeon Adventure is set to arrive on XBLIG this winter.

[Game Page]

  • Epitaph64

    Hmm, roguelikes that I have to pay for and no keyboard? Eh, somehow this doesn’t sound too intriguing to me. However, I’ll definitely pick up Spelunky since its control scheme is perfect for xbox live (hell I used my xbox controller to play through it on the PC.)

  • Coded One

    I’ll stick with Nethack.

  • Salty

    I wonder how they’ll work without the cumbersome (but well-loved) keyboard commands.
    Anyway, I own a playstation 3, so I’ll have to pass on this one :)

  • Dodger

    Well, I kinda like the idea. Not so much for myself, although I do love Roguelikes, but for the fact that a lot of the younger audiences (and even some of the older audiences) don’t even know what a Roguelike is. I’m mostly speaking about the people who have only ever played games on a console, and the first console they ever owned happened to be around the time a N64 or Playstation was released. The experience will only be unique to those who have never played a Roguelike but with the right elements it could bring a new audience to the broad genre. As others have mentioned, it’s a little hard to see one of these games D&D style Roguelikes working without a Keyboard (or something aside from ASCII graphics – because I can only see fans picking of the genre picking up an Ascii based Roguelike), but if people do give these games the time and are willing to let their imaginations go for a bit I think some players might find themselves pleasantly surprised by the depth of these types of games. It’ll come down to how user friendly they are while using a controller only, and I think having some form of updated graphics (even if it’s a limited tile set) might find some new audiences to appeal to. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

    Unfortunately, this kind of thing isn’t for me. As Salty said, I have a Playstation 3… though I would like to see a decent Roguelike on the PS3, I wouldn’t pay much for one at all (unless it brought something unique to the table), but aside from that I’ll keep playing the great free ones on the PC.

    Again though, this is great for those that haven’t had the opportunity to see where some current RPG’s and even Adventure games come from.

  • Dodger

    @Derek Yu,

    I almost forgot to add — Derek, Please, Please, Please bring Spelunky to the PS3 via PSN! I’ll buy it immediately! :D It might not be a traditional or perhaps a “Classic” Roguelike, but it’s a damn good game with roguelike elements in place.

    I would have purchased this on the Xbox 360, but since I’ve had two 360’s go through the RROD only to be repaired and then have both of their GPU’s burn out, I will not be going back to an Xbox 360, EVER Again!

    So please, try – using whatever methods you must, not excluding extortion ;P, to bring this wonderful little game to the PSN. I’m sure others feel the same way as I do.

  • To Dodger

    It’s sort of unlikely, the PSN stores are very counter intuitive to indie devs, in addition Xbox Arcade is host to XNA games.

    You may have had some bad hardware luck, but the overall market and online structure of the PS3 is a cash sinkhole.

  • Erebus

    I actually wonder why both of these games seem to be so simple… Are developers afraid of bringing more complicated experiences to the platform? I would like to see DF-adventure mode on my xbox, maybe coupled with the MayGreen tiles… But I guess I am just dreaming :(

  • Dodger

    Sorry but I don’t agree with that at all. To say that the overall market and online structure of the PS3 is a cash sinkhole, without any basis, is ridiculous. Flower sold very well, Trine is selling, and now Braid is selling.

    If you want to state your opinion, that’s one thing, but please state it as opinion. Don’t try to pass off an opinion as factual information. There are far too many biased people who either own an Xbox 360 or a PS3 and if left up to their opinions either side would tell you that the other one sucks.

    Here’s what I know. There are a lot of people buying titles and add-ons at the Playstation Store. There aren’t as many users (yet) as there are for the Xbox Live Marketplace. However, if we’re going to talk about structure, I couldn’t comment how easy it is to get a game online (without an XNA membership), but, I can say that their XBL Marketplace is not structured in a user friendly way. Xbox LIVE (the Gold Subscription you have to pay for) is a shady service at the best of times. Customer and Tech Support is both lacking and sometimes non-existent. Online options (regarding network configuration) are minimal.

    When I had my Xbox 360, I did enjoy the games I had, but I suffered through my fair share of Xbox Live shinnanigans including downtimes and XBL update problems.

    So, from this gamers point of view, I did enjoy system for the games I could play (while the system worked) but the online service I had been paying for was not full of the bells and whistles you would boast it for. I’m giving you an opinion, but it’s my honest opinion and none of what I’ve said is out of a distaste for one side or the other. From a gamer/user point of view, the Playstation Store is a growing marketplace with a lot to offer. It does not have as large a library as XBL, yet, but it is certainly as easy, if not easier, to use from a gamers perspective. On top of this, gamers know exactly how much they are spending on games and add-ons right down to the last cent.

    Please understand that I have spent well over 5000 points on XBL Marketplace items, and though I enjoyed some of the titles while my system was working, I will never be able to get them back, unless I purchase another Xbox 360 (which I will never do again), but worst of all I can not even trade those items off or give them to another user which is something that you can do through the Playstation Network.

    So, without going on about which one is better, which one is worse. All I really wanted to know is if it might be possible to get Spelunky on PSN.

    If someone had told me that it would be difficult due to coding it for the PS3, then I would be a little more understanding, but to make broad comparisons and opinions about the online marketplace without actually thinking about it makes me think that you haven’t actually used PSN or the Playstation Store.

  • Eclipse

    Ascii characters on a tv screen = epic fail

  • pleb

    >However, even with these fine names coming to XBL, there’s a few things I demand before I will consider XBL a true host to the Indie community.

    wait what are the other things

  • Dodger


    I agree, for two reasons, I think the average young gamer doesn’t have the patience to appreciate the imagination that has to be involved in these games (notice I said, average gamer, not all gamers – some young gamers are still quite thoughtful), secondly – it just seems like quite a waste to not have these games brought to the big screen with some sort of graphical update. I think even a decent tileset would make the game more appealing and be a little more tempting, otherwise I only see a few people spending money on the game (even if it only end up costing a dollar or 80 MS Points).

    With that said, having a dungeon crawler with the right elements in place that only costs $1 dollar can’t be a bad thing. It’ll either sell or it won’t. All I know is Ascii characters (literally Ascii characters) on my 32″ or my 42″ HD TV can only make for an irritating,annoying, and wasteful experience.

  • alastair

    Seems decent, should be good introductory games. Once people are done with these toys, you can move onto the bigger more and interesting(complex) games.

  • xot

    I predict two very disappointed roguelike developers this Winter.

  • Eclipse

    yes Dodger exactly, and reading ascii characters from the couch, even if on an HD tv, it’s not that comfortable… Let alone trying to play on an old TV.

  • PHeMoX

    @2: Guess you are stuuuuuuuck. ;)

  • getter77

    Um, it isn’t entirely untamed territory to bring a Roguelike to a non-PC platform—most handhelds and most consoles saw at least some action pretty well each generation in terms of Graphical ones out of Japan. For the most part, they managed to have a control scheme across them that worked well enough with far less buttons than a 360 controller.

    I do hope the devs are met with success though, as it is a rarity for western developed commercial Roguelikes. That said, I also hope for PC ports as I don’t have a 360!

  • Dodger


    You do realize there are hundreds of Roguelikes already out for the PC, right? 99% percent of them are free as well. This really isn’t the kind of thing you need to wish for on the PC.

    If you’re looking for Roguelikes just go here:

    (Hopefully nobody minds me adding this link here, I just figured it was subject related and fitting for the conversation – however, if there is a problem with leaving this link here please delete it moderators)

    So, there you go. I recommend any of the Angband games, Powder, Nazghul, Stone Soup, and Privateer: Ascii Sector (One of my favorites!). Those are all based on the classic Rogue formula, some have tile sets and some are straight up Ascii (mind you some actually have fairly detailed Ascii graphics which is great). I’ll admit, some of them won’t be as easy or as easy a control scheme as some of the handheld Roguelike games you can find for your iPhone, DS, etc. etc., but they’re all worthy of bearing the roguelike tag.

    If the devs of these XBL games do make a port for the PC (a roguelike that has to be ported for the PC??? that just doesn’t sound right), but if they do make them for the PC as well, great – they won’t make any money for them but I guess it just adds to the already long list and library of roguelikes available. However, I don’t think you need to hope for them to become available on the PC since there already is a plethora of available roguelikes that cover almost every theme your imagination can think of.


    I’ll put down $2 for the both of these.

    Hopefully this will lead to more members in the Roguelike community; you can’t turn down progress :)

  • TIGizzle


    Alehkhs seems aware of this, based on some other posts around here. He just seems to like writing about the spread of RLs

  • getter77


    Oh, I didn’t mean him so much as the statements by the respective developers for each game. In that, I don’t know that it’d be a case for trickily reinventing the wheel in terms of a control scheme for non-PC Roguelikes—the various Fushigi Dungeon games essentially light the way for the bulk of it. UI and content/system would instead strike me as the make-or-break factor in this environ and wanting to reach out to a beginner playerbase on top of vets.

    Then again, in my experience, for some reason not many active Roguelike players even know about Chunsoft’s various offspring in this regard so it may well be an independent set of revelations they’ve had on them.

  • Salty

    1) @Dodger
    -Hey mate, there is a game called “Spelunker” or “Minna de Spelunker” for PS 3 (to which I suppose “Spelunksy” plays homage?). It’s based on a 80’s classic, and it’s being made by none other than Atlus. Google it.
    2) I think people may be a bit unfair when they say “I wouldn’t pay more than 2 dollars…” Even if the production of a Roguelike is not the fanciest, it still involves a lot of work, especially if the game is good. Think of all the processing behind a humble-ASCII graphic game like Dwarf Fortress. i wouldn’t mind paying a little bit more if the game was really good.
    3) I don’t understand how PSN is counterintuitive to indie developers. From what i’ve seen, there is lots of “indie” and “small-but-fun” games on PSN, counting all pixel junk games, everyday shooter, flower, flow, braid, and many others. The library is probably not as big as the Xbox yet, but it will grow eventually, I have no doubts it will surpass the PS2 library and best of all there will be more indie games this time. (And not, this is not saying it is better or worse than Xbox, both are good, to each its own).

  • Dodger


    I know of the “Spelunker” game on PSN. I actually had that game for my old Apple ][+. It was a fun game then, and has a sort of Donkey Kong/Lode Runner feel to it, but it doesn’t have the depth and scope of Derek Yu’s Spelunky. So not to knock the old Spelunker, but Spelunky would definitely be more suited for both fans who remember the nostalgia of those classic games and newer fans who are looking for some challenging run-and-jump platforming.

    Also, everything you mentioned about the PSN Network I agree with… one thing though, if the Library surpasses that of the PS2 it will surpass that of the Xbox 360 as well… Surprisingly, or unsurprisingly, The PS2 has the largest Library of recent generation console titles (recent compared to NES, SNES, Gen, etc.) and games are still being developed for the PS2. The most surprising part is that PS2’s still sell like Hot Cakes! I guess you can’t keep a good gaming system down.

    Anyway, before I stray too far off topic, I think it would be great to see all types of classic remakes on both Xbox Live Arcade and the Playstation Network. I was pleasantly surprised to find Ultra Tron on XBLIC and then to have Space Tripper released for the PSN was a great bonus as well. Broadening the genres that become available would be great.

    Come to think of it, a couple of simple Roguelikes that might be a little more suited for these Consoles might be something like Castle of the Winds 1 & 2, with a nice little graphical overhaul of course. It was a fun little Roguelike during its time and didn’t require you memorize the entire keyboard to play it.

    With that in mind, I think Roguelikes could work on a console platform, they’d just need a proper facelift in both graphics and gameplay. It’s possible to turn this kind of development into a positive and perhaps successful outcome, perhaps not extremely profitable but still popular. I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

  • Raphael <3 Leonardo


    I’d pay a couple dollars for a good RL, and a implemented high-score list is fucking win!

    I love the music on the ASCII Quest video too. It’s the epitome of old-school dungeon music! :D

  • Suko

    You can always check out the games via the demo to see how well they turn out. That’s always my defacto method of buynig any indie game over XBL.

  • JoeHonkie

    “Ascii in HD” sounds like a good name for a geek-rap song. Someone get Super Joe on that.

  • Redford

    I’m still completely and totally addicted to Elona. This may be due to the fact that it was made by a Japanese man. Therefore I am a mage with only limited magic who must rely on a little girl who spends all her time gleefully beating things to death with a mace. Also, I used a stethoscope on her to monitor her well-being and she called me a pervert.

    This may be due to the fact that two of the four main magic vendors in my game have been genocided due to hostile magic objects.

  • Wulf

    Roguelikes started only as a commercial venture because it was an easy way to present a sprawling text adventure in something that wasn’t a text adventure.

    As time went on, it become a thing of dreams for hobbyists, to portray their imagination unlimited by needs for 3D modellers, musicians and such.

    Not to mention that roguelikes these days are quirky, sometimes even perverse, strange, rather risque in ways that Microsoft likely wouldn’t allow in their casual ga–err… indie section.

    To me, to go back to the very roots, to a time when computers couldn’t handle modern graphics and to try to make roguelikes a thing of money as opposed to passion is a bit of a devolution.

    I’ll stick with my hobbyist roguelikes, here in the future.

  • Wulf

    Er, a sprawling world in something that wasn’t a text adventure, rather.

  • Salty

    @Dodger -agree with you. Also, i can see how ASCII could be irritating, but they could also make for a good and different aesthetic feeling (one problem to consider is how to make ‘dots’ and ‘commas’ look good and big enough on a HD monitor/tv o.o -Anyway, maybe Roguelikes won’t look so terrible and my fears are unfair. Let’s hope for that.
    Still, my main concern is how they are going to simplify the commands for the console’s gamepad. Would that mean that the gameplay and options will also be simplified? Its funny, but most of the Rogue-likes appeal at least for me is the combination of commands at your disposition. I wouldn’t like that to go away. And I wouldn’t like it to have tens of option popping out every time I click a button on the gamepad :/.
    I second the idea of bringing Spelunsky for PS3 if possible. It’s a game that in principle could gain (=exploit) a lot from the trophies and medals system in PSN. I know it’s silly, but it could sell a lot just because of it.

  • xot

    Based on that video, Dungeon Adventure looks really second rate to me. It doesn’t seem to have proper visibility and lighting and the dungeon generation looks pretty weak too. ASCII Quest looks miles better.

    As for console roguelikes, isn’t there already a Pokemon Mystery Dungeon for WiiWare in Japan? If these guys aren’t reaching for that level of dazzle, I just don’t see these games moving at all on a console.

    @Salty what you are saying about controls is extremely significant. Like the old pre-point-and-click adventure games, a large part of the success of NetHack is its verb-noun interface and the lack of menus. When you quantify player choices by putting them all on a menu, it takes a massive amount of the mystery and discovery right out of the game.

  • AmnEn

    I don’t really understand why Roguelikes should (and do) feature archaic graphics and controls. Why do they have to be archaic? I don’t mind the complexity that roguelikes bring forward but that complexity shouldn’t come from cumbersome controls and an interface where you need four DinA4 Papers worth of identification charts just to survive the first level.

    I really like roguelikes, it’s my favorite genre but that’s something I really can’t fathom.

  • Jam

    I would also buy Spelunky on PS3 in a heartbeat

  • Dodger


    I don’t think the control scheme situation would be impossible to fix. It’s a bit tricky, but when it comes to classic Roguelikes, since they are both complex and simple at the same time, there might only be a need for 20 different command buttons. Yes that’s a lot for a gamepad and a little for a classic Roguelike which usually utilizes most keys on a keyboard. However, it’s very possible. Here’s how I would do it (not that this is the best way to do it). In terms of keys (or buttons) there are already four face buttons on either the PS3 or 360 controller. If you held down each trigger at a time (bumpers, triggers, whatever you prefer to call them), holding them down, or toggling them, could create a whole new set of commands for those four face buttons… do it another 3 times with each of the other triggers and bam, there you go, 20 different buttons for 20 different commands. It might take a little bit of time to memorize each command and where it is but that’s where having a tile set and even some mundane classic 8-bit style graphics could come into play, replacing the ascii characters all together (which I’d prefer on my TV anyway). If that was the case then the four face buttons could represent four icons on the screen at all times, then by toggling any of the trigger buttons those four face buttons change to different commands. If the developers wanted to go even further they could make each of those 20 button commands completely configurable by the player… of course, this is all more work and for a classic roguelike it might not seem worth it to put in all the extra work unless people are willing to buy and appreciate it. Once again though, with a graphical overhaul and some control scheme tweaking, it might be worth it. Lastly, if all those things that I mentioned were in place, there really wouldn’t be any need to drop the difficulty level, but giving the players an option to play at different difficulty levels would only broaden the appeal. With that said, the Controls don’t HAVE to be that complicated, but if people wanted almost all of the convenience of the keyboard command keys it can _Almost_ be achieved.

    Those added elements might add up to a lot more work, but it comes down to how badly people want to develop roguelikes for consoles and how badly people want roguelikes for a console.

    I like my idea though. If I had a little more know-how I’d work on something like that myself using the control scheme I mentioned, since I’ve seen it in mainstream games, Sacred 2: Fallen Angel (Console version) being one of them (that control scheme is fairly close to what I was talking about and would be the best example I could give off the top of my head regarding an existing game.


    Yes, Spelunky NEEDS a PS3 release! ;D

  • Alex

    all roguelikes suck balls

  • Salty

    @xot and Dodger: i never played Nethack or Sacred 2 :( so I don’t know how they ares. I’ve played other Roguelikes where there were a lot of command options using the keyboard, and I guess what I was having in mind unconsciously in my other comments was game like ADOM or Dwarf Fortress (since I love them so much) -DF not being exactly a RL, though. Probably that’s why I’m talking about the command interface for Roguelikes in consoles. But there always will be options, a la point and click or whatever creative way people find suitable.

  • Joshua Jones

    @Salty, xot, Dodger

    Hmmm, but what about DoomRL?

    One of the most welcomed and picked up by the non-RL community, yet one of the most simple in the control scheme.

    That’s not to say the game itself is necessarily simple; there are many strategies in character design.

  • Dodger

    @Joshua Jones,

    I didn’t say that Roguelikes need to be difficult or overcomplicated to control, I just tried to comment about a possible solution as an answer for a Roguelike game on a Console that might require a more complex control scheme. There are plenty of other Roguelikes besides DoomRL that use a relatively simple control scheme as well. I guess the problem is, people who have experience with Roguelikes already know what to expect while all kinds of younger audiences or older players who have just started taking an interest in games haven’t experienced a classic Roguelike yet, how do you make the experience fun for people that want to re-explore or discover the genre on a console? That’s probably the most important question… Otherwise it’s just a matter of, develop it – release it – and then see what happens. Success will come down to the developers expectations and satisfaction with what they’ve created, not how many people will actually pay to play it – however as an optimistic point, games like this sometimes gain decent cult followings once they’re introduced or discovered, and even re-discovered. I guess we’ll have to wait and see what the response is.

  • xot

    @Salty, @Josua Jones:
    Yeah, there are always options but they can fundamentally change the nature of the game. Super Mario 64 feels nothing like Super Mario Brothers. Zelda feels nothing like Zork.

    DoomRL is certainly one of my absolute favorite roguelikes, mainly because it handles the controls so well, it’s ability system is well thought out. It further succeeds with non-RL community because it has a well known brand/universe to back it up which it cleverly exploits, and it has greatly simplified play compared to other more established roguelikes. But it can’t be really be compared to NetHack, which most consider the gold standard of roguelikes.

    NetHack’s success is because of the extraordinary depth of object interaction. If you try to achieve that with a gamepad, you’re going to lose a lot. In NetHack object interactions are largely kept secret because the game doesn’t explicitly tell you what things work together. Even when a list of options is provided, there always other invisible options. The random access nature of a keyboard allows the player to make selections that aren’t shown or obvious yet still work. Without a keyboard you are forced to use menus for everything. How do you make an invisible option with an on-screen menu? Once you get menus involved it either limits your possibilities or it exposes everything that can be done or it becomes far too cumbersome to play.

    The sooner developers realize that a gamepad driven menus are a vastly inferior interface for *traditional* roguelikes, the sooner they can learn to abandon tradition and exploit the console and gamepad for what they are good at.

    I’m not saying fun roguelike-like play isn’t possible on a console. Personally, I’m counting on it because I have such a game in preproduction. But after studying the problem I am convinced that it is a huge mistake to attempt to so literally turn a terminal based game into a console based one and not expect the game to change so drastically that it alienates the intended audience.

  • braks

    I've been playing a psp tailored version of nethack for a couple of weeks now and while i completely suck at it, i'm enjoying it more and more. Figuring out how the controls work on the psp was kinda hard (not unlike figuring out the keyboard commands) but now i know and i can actually explore the game properly. 
    I actually would like to see more console based roguelikes. It's a cool genre and i'm sure it can be awesome on any platform.
    Having Ascii on a hd tv just requires the characters to be bigger / scalable  by the way. Ofcourse having the option to use tiles would really help too.
    Not sure how big the market for this kind of stuff is but i guess we're going to find out eventually :]