Crypt of the Necrodancer

To the surprise that something so niche and specialized as the roguelike has become an inspiration for a multitude of independent projects, we must add something even more surprising: the way it is doing it. Since Derek Yu demonstrated with Spelunky the power of the


concept applied to a foreign theory genre such as platforms, a kind of competition has been unleashed to see who can get the concept in more curious and original directions.

Broken Age

Crypt of the Necrodancer in particular focuses on the rhythmic games as a basis with which to assemble their mechanics and identity, which on paper can sound crazy but in practice it ends up working.

The argument does not deserve much attention, a girl enters a dungeon hoping to find her father disappeared. But a bad movement leads to death, only it does not die. Instead his heart goes to the “Necrodancer” who dominates that cursed place, resuscitating it and making it “dance” to the sound of music along with the rest of the creatures that inhabit the area.


With this second opportunity, we have to go through the different areas generated procedurally, beat the mini-boss of each level and keep going down until we can face our nemesis. Of course, following the canons, death is total and forces us to start from the beginning, although in a nod for less patient players,

Crypt of the NecroDancer (PC) screenshot

Although the tutorial gives us the basic notions, it is in the first zone playing properly when we understand better what the title asks of us. The music sounds, and the rhythm is marked by an indicator at the bottom of the screen. We have to press one of the


four directional keys when the rhythm is marked -yes, the game is generous with the margin-, only in that case our protagonist will move or attack.


If we fail, we will not move or attack, which may leave us sold, but we must insist that the basic movement is not difficult as there is a lot of room. The tricky part is “keeping up with the pace” as we face the enemies.

The approach of the confrontations is that although the levels are procedural, the enemies have very precise patterns of movement, so part of the fun


of the game is to know those patterns and move so that we do not lose the rhythm and we can place ourselves in the place more suitable to attack the opponent without being attacked. The enemies also follow the rhythm of the music and also their animations mark many times when they will move, which indicates if it is the right time to


try to assault them or to make an evasive movement. We also have the option of not moving and waiting if we face enemies that “seek us out”, but in that case we will lose the rhythm and we will have to give up the gold multiplier that we accumulated when we managed to chain several deaths without losing the step.