I have never played the original Rogue for two reasons. For one, when Rogue first launched I was around negative-15 years old and two, despite my adoration for the subgenre, I’ve never really had that patience of going out there and finding a working copy. Look, I’m sure there are plenty of ways to play Rogue strewn about the internet but the trouble with growing up in a post-Steam society is that convenience is obviously key. Of course, I’m now left in a position where I don’t really have a good excuse to not play Rogue because the game has officially launched on Steam and even better, it’s dirt cheap. I mean, it’s 40 year old game. It would be overly cheeky to make it cost too much.
This version of Rogue, developed by Epyx, involves the standard gameplay loop you’d expect from the game that shared its seed with so many modern titles. You’ll have to navigate top-down 2D ASCII maps, each one filled with loot and monsters to help or hinder your journey, in an effort to find and escape with the Amulet of Yendor, the most MacGuffin of all the MacGuffins. Since this did come out before developers actually knew how to refine the formula it’s obviously fairly unbalanced and more than a little janky but as a historical piece or a spot of nostalgia for all the old people, I think it’s worth R27.
Just be warned that you’ll need a monster of a computer to run it. You’ll need a minimum of Windows 7, an x86 processor and 5MB of memory. I know, it’s time for an upgrade, don’t you think? If you’re the sort of nerd who lost hours to the original Rogue maybe consider dipping your toes in as an adult; maybe you’ll be more successful than when you were a dumb kid, I don’t know.
Last Updated: October 23, 2020