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Overview

The game was first made available on Steam Early Access on August 13, 2014. Its full release was on October 23, 2014. It was released on the Xbox One on March 20, 2015, with a PlayStation 4 release following in April.

Gameplay

Ziggurat is a first-person dungeon crawler that features randomly generated levels populated with a random spread of a variety of monsters ranging from flaming skulls that charge at the player (not unlike the flaming skulls in DOOM 3) to poisonous mushrooms that fire homing missiles and emit dangerous clouds of noxious gas.

The quick pace of movement and focus on casting different forms of magical projectiles from wands, staves and magic tomes evokes comparison with the likes of Hexen. Each type of magical weapon is fuelled by a separate kind of mana, making thoughtful balancing of each weapon's use critical to success in battle. Each weapon has an alternate fire which consumes more mana but is often better in tight situations - the wand's alternate fire is a shotgun-like spread which is more effective at close range, for example, while the stave's alt-fire dramatically increases its rate of fire.

Rooms are laid out randomly across a level with small corridors connecting them. When a player enters a room, its monsters spawn in waves and the doors lock until all enemies have been dispatched. When killed, monsters drop experience which can be used to level up. Upon levelling up, the player can chose between two randomly selected perks from a large pool of possible upgrades. More cards are added to the pool of potential perks by earning milestones and clearing runs successfully.

Room modifiers alter gameplay in that particular room.
Room modifiers alter gameplay in that particular room.

There are multiple playable characters to play as with each offering a different set of strengths and weaknesses. For example, Argo, the starting character, has balanced stats with no particular deficits or advantages, while Kraz, the first unlockable character, is proficient with Wands but slightly weaker with all other forms of weaponry.

The player must proceed through a level's rooms earning experience and searching for the Portal Key, which can then be taken to that level's Boss Room where a fight with a randomly selected Boss will begin. If the player defeats the boss, a portal will open to the next floor of the dungeon. Before beginning the next floor, however, a screen showing statistics about the last floor is displayed and the option is given for the player to save and quit, allowing progress to be continued at a later date. If the player dies, the game is over and the player must start anew in a fresh dungeon, but unlocked characters and perks are persistent and can still be accessed.

The rooms of the dungeon themselves can have random properties assigned to them which modify the gameplay in some way. For example, the "Red Moon" room modifier causes Alchemy-based weaponry to deal +50% damage, while causing all other weapons to deal half their usual damage. Some rooms do not contain monsters, but instead are host to various traps and deadly devices that the player must navigate to progress.

System Requirements

PC

Minimum

  • OS: Windows XP
  • Processor: Dual Core processor
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: DirectX 10 capable hardware
  • DirectX: Version 9.0c
  • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space

Recommended

  • OS: Windows 7 or newer
  • Processor: Quad core processor
  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: GeForce 460 or better
  • Hard Drive: 1 GB available space

Mac

  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: OpenGL 2 Graphics card
  • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space

Linux

Minimum

  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Graphics: OpenGL 2 Graphics card
  • Hard Drive: 800 MB available space

Recommended

  • Memory: 4 GB RAM
  • Graphics: GeForce 460 or better
  • Hard Drive: 1 GB available space
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