Hardcore Roguelikes For Those Who Love A Challenge

Reading Time ~ 5 minutes


Are you someone who loves a challenge? Who stimulates their mind for fun? Or just someone who wants to test your adaptability to overcome hurdles? Then I guess roguelike games are your kind of game.

If you’re a gamer who loves that mix of adventure, role-playing, monsters, loot, and dungeons, then roguelike games are for you. This genre has been around a long time and is available in almost every console with variety to choose from. Since roguelike games were based on the game Rogue which originated in 1980, 2D graphics have been the craze and are considered to be pioneers in the field.

Now, with the comeback of roguelike games, make sure to get some Steam Wallet Codes as these games are all available on Steam and get immersed in them once more! Now, without further ado, let’s take a look at some of the most hardcore roguelikes you will come across below.


Crypt of The NecroDancer

Crypt of The NecroDancer

Let’s start with Crypt of the NecroDancer. This has been a fan favourite mainly due to its catchy OST and the nifty boss fight levels. Why is this game challenging you might ask? Compared to traditional roguelike gameplays, this game makes you come up with decisions right on the spot. This game is also rhythm-based and highly relies on combos.

Here are a few tips and tricks for you. You have an advantage over the monsters since they always act after you do, so use that as leverage. The catch of this game is to somehow compose yourself under pressure, in order to surpass each level.

In case you encounter a new enemy – be patient, observe and assess your enemy real closely until you could go in for a blow. Remember, the game has a permadeath element so once you die, you’ll have to start over from scratch. Better safe than sorry, especially if this is a boss level. If you’re a beginner, don’t buy items blindly. Invest in some good items and gear that are worth your gold and would help in the long run.


The Binding of Isaac

The Binding of Isaac

This comes as no surprise to roguelike and horror gaming fans out there, The Binding of Isaac is equal parts fun and terrifying. Not only because you’re accompanied by the continuous cries of Isaac, but you are also faced with the horrors that plague this little child as he attempts to survive.

This is definitely one of the older roguelikes on this list, and there is The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth which is a remake of this old one for those of you who are looking for the game. Not to mention the three expansions you could take up – this game goes on and on!

It is a hardcore game with a messed up premise on religion, and the graphics will freak you out to the point where you’ll be screaming along with Isaac. But hey, it’s a good hardcore roguelike game if you’re down for a challenge and dying over and over again for one reason or another.


Curious Expedition

Curious Expedition

The next game would be Curious Expedition, which blended retro with modern. It’s typical old-school graphics with a simple plot and storytelling. You enjoy the game and you enjoy the story. Win-win.

Some roguelike games tend to focus on challenging boss fights and collectable items but this one focuses more on exploration as its name implies, so knock yourself out. The challenge? You need to be meticulous and obsessed with detail as you will have to look through everything on every level in order to not miss out on anything, or else it will go downhill from there. You need to be a team player and consider logical decisions to be the leader your team needs you to be.

This game is all about alleviating disasters to the best of your ability. Be very careful since ransacking temples will get you cursed and cause the locals to loathe you. You don’t want to anger the locals as they can hunt you down and kill you, so try to befriend and make peace with them instead.




Alright, everyone has probably heard of Hades by now – the roguelike that has captured the hearts of hundreds with its enticing graphics and hardcore gameplay. It’s like, no matter how many times you die in this game, you’ll somehow find yourself coming back for more.

You play as Zagreus, the son of Hades and prince of the Underworld who is ironically trying to escape from Hell. What makes Hades hardcore is its lightning-quick gameplay and the seemingly endless tides of enemies coming for you – aside from the ridiculous boss battles with Zagreus’ own relatives.

The game is rewarding not only in completion but through death as well. The game gives you bits and pieces of information on the storyline, even when you die. In a way, dying is not a loss in this game but just a passing concept.


Darkest Dungeon

Darkest Dungeon

Saving the best for last, this game is highly considered hardcore. You could tell by the visuals right away that this game is no joke. Most of the time, you’ll be invested in building up your party by spending resources and just when you think you’re ready, your enemies would make it seem like you were just born yesterday and crush you.

If your character’s mental health is unstable, your character might not make it through the game. It’s a combination of mental stability, strategic planning, teamwork, advanced thinking, and allocating resources appropriately. This game should be played with patience, play it slow and you’ll finish it quickly.

Knowing which enemies need to go first is something you need to pick up early in the game to keep it short and move on to the next levels quickly. Debuffs are your friend. They not only serve as a shield but they become powerful since they multiply the damage.


So, that’s only five of the many hardcore roguelike games out there, this doesn’t even cover half of it! Different gameplay and different visuals could challenge you to think outside the box. Most people, especially the new generation who did not grow up with 2D graphics may not like it at first but it will get you hooked! Try it out and see for yourself.


Do let us know of any other hardcore roguelikes that you’ve tried out before in the comments below! We love to hear your thoughts.


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