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Tactical roguelike Enemy brings nostalgia to the fore on Kickstarter

Samit Sarkar (he/him) is Polygon’s deputy managing editor. He has more than 15 years of experience covering video games, movies, television, and technology.

Game developer Tom Johnson is running a Kickstarter campaign for his game Enemy, which he refers to as a tactical roguelike with retro games as its building blocks.

"It's basically all the video games we played when we were kids, mashed together and turned into a tactical role-playing game," says Johnson in the Kickstarter pitch video.

Enemy procedurally generates a new game world each time you start a play-through, and it constructs those worlds with pieces of retro games like Super Mario Bros. and The Legend of Zelda. Your mission is different each time, too, and it's also based on premises from the games of yore. In Enemy, you create and level up a character, and will gradually add other characters to your squad.

The roguelike elements come through in Enemy's combat: Permadeath is in effect, and there's no reloading of save games. Enemy's combat system itself is turn-based, with origins in the strategic warfare of the original X-Com: UFO Defense. The action can quickly get hectic, since everything in the world is destructible.

Johnson, formerly a programmer at The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct developer Terminal Reality, launched the Enemy funding drive earlier this month. With about half the campaign left to go, Enemy has raised $8,687 in contributions, 57 percent of Johnson's $15,000 goal.

Enemy is in development on Windows PC and set for release in December.

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