In a dark and desolate future, the city of HEAVEN shines bright as an ideal metropolis. In contrast of the city above, conspiracy, treachery and despair run below the deepest bowels of HEAVEN’s dystopian society. This is the setup of Devolver Digital’s “Ruiner”, a top-down arcade shooter game.
The story begins when a nameless assassin goes on a hit-gone-wrong and ends up in the cyber metropolis of Rengkok. A mysterious female hacker saves his life and informs him that his brother is captured. Armed with nothing but a pipe and his thirst for vengeance, he rampages through the corrupt city and rescues his brother from his captors.
Underneath that violent gunplay is a complex RPG filled with eccentric characters and deep lore. Combat is fast and loose as the Ruiner has access to many weapons and combat abilities; so it is no surprise that the enemies come in droves. Skill trees play a role as the player can customize their abilities on the fly. Fights do get hectic from time to time as one wrong move can lead to many untimely deaths.
Currency in the game requires reputation and the only way to gain reputation is by doing side quests with NPCs (non-playable characters) located around the hub. Side quests range from simple fetch quests to performing bounties. Each reputation unlocked rewards players with upgrades and bios that help expand the mysteries of HEAVEN.
The aesthetics blends well with the dystopian setting as the neon lights suits the mood of the world. The use of synthesizers, guitars, and a few atmospheric sounds breaths life in each level. Sadly, some of the weak things about Ruiner are the levels, as it always looks the same with just minor adjustments. There is no mini-map in the stages, save for the hub world in Rengkok.
The game may not be flawless but overall, Ruiner is a fun yet violent RPG that has more to give than expected. Ruiner is developed by Reikon Games and published by Devolver Digital.
Final Score 3.5/5