Well, if you’ve been following TouchArcade for a while and you generally have an idea of what our tastes are, then this week’s pick shouldn’t really be much of a surprise. Cool retro-style pixel graphics? Dungeon crawling mechanics? Roguelike elements? Yes, it’s all here in 1 Bit Survivor from solo indie developer Chaz Acheronti. There were several really great releases this week, but man, this one just screams “TA game" and as usual it’s the game that I keep coming back to that always ends up as our Game of the Week pick.
First off, I love the premise here. You play as a survivor in a zombie apocalypse, but in 28 days the government is going to drop some sort of mega bomb in an effort to wipe out all the zombies, and anything else that might be standing in its blast. That includes you, and given the dire state of the world, you kind of are ready to just accept your fate. But then… you meet a cat named Leo. All of a sudden you have a friend. Someone who loves you, someone to care for. Now that you have a purpose letting your self die in a zombie-eradicating explosion doesn’t sound so appealing anymore, so you pack up Leo and find some wheels and try to make it to a bunker in the city before those 28 days are over.
In 1 Bit Survivor each level counts as a day, so essentially your goal is to survive and make it through all 28 levels. Gameplay is like a turn-based top-down dungeon crawler. Levels aren’t all that large but your visibility is limited, so you’ll need to explore a bit with the main goal of finding a gas can so you can return to your vehicle and move on to the next level/day. Of course enemies abound so you’ll need to make careful and strategic use of your limited ammo and health to deal with them. This may include defeating them, or just avoiding them altogether. Like many great roguelikes death can come extremely quick if you aren’t careful.
A member in our forums described this game as “like a 1 bit version of Death Road to Canada" and that actually does track really well. However, with the single screen levels, turn-based combat and movement, very tactical resource management, and sparse mechanics that have a lot of hidden depth, I also get a heavy Michael Brough vibe from 1 Bit Survivor. That alone might be a selling point to you, but why even take my word for it? This one is totally free with ads and a one-time IAP to remove those ads if you find them pesky. Just try this sucker yourself and I dare you not to fall in love with Leo.