Have A Nice Death Lets Me Grind My Way To Making A Difficult Game More Approachable

Have A Nice Death Lets Me Grind My Way To Making A Difficult Game More Approachable

I enjoyed my first few hours with Have a Nice Death. 2D roguelike platformer released in Steam Early Access, and his morbidly charming adventure is already becoming an exciting ordeal. Have a Nice Death sees you playing as a titled Death. He is exhausted and in serious need of a vacation but cannot leave with all the necessary paperwork. He eventually snaps, furious at his subordinates’ refusal to give a damn about him and all the extra work that their apathetic nature causes. Deciding it is high time for him to show some respect, Death goes on a rampage through various departments of Death, Inc. to remind his henchmen who is really in charge.

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Narratively, I don’t think this setup is anything extraordinary. Have a Nice Death doesn’t seem to achieve any depth of narrative other than simple messages about “crunching is bad” and “burnout is bad for health .”Important things, but the first hours of the game are more about inviting you into your fascinating world, despite the dark nature of the narrative. A Pleasant Death claims that this situation is more of a “business as usual” case. And that these characters are your run-of-the-mill office workers trying their best to get by. Day.

On paper, I shouldn’t be a big fan of Have a Nice Death. I wouldn’t say I like bagels despite spending an ungodly amount of hours in Hades. The evolving narrative and incredible characters convinced me to work hard on Supergiant’s complex game loop. At the same time, Have Nice Death implements similar devices for storytelling. They don’t quite reach the same heights. Instead, Have a Nice Death appeals to me because it makes the roguelike cycle more accessible.


As with most roguelikes, the overall goal of Have a Nice Death is to complete the perfect run by completing all available levels in a single session. Otherwise, you’ll have to start over without all the fancy weapons and items you managed to find on your last playthrough. However, there are permanent abilities linked to the three skill trees that you can unlock to make subsequent runs a little easier. Apart from this skill tree, Have a Nice Death also offers ways to improve Death’s arsenal continually. And increase her survivability with new weapons and health items. You buy these upgrades with ingots. Which can be found during races and earned by killing enemies.

In the beginning, the prices to unlock these new weapons and health items were pretty high. For example, unlocking Shake Spear costs a whopping 105 ingots to start with (you usually only earn ten or so per run if stuck in the first area of ​​the game). But Have a Nice Death includes a challenge system in their updates. Kill any 15 enemies during the game (ie. specific target), and the price of this weapon is reduced by 25 percent. Kill 15 more enemies, and he will drop even more. By the time you kill 50 enemies. The price will drop to one ingot. So, even if you don’t complete The Good Death on your first, second, or third playthrough, simply killing enemies during those first attempts increases the chance you can afford this permanent upgrade.


All upgrades are also connected to challenges that allow you to earn discounts. Some challenge you to get kills with a specific weapon. At the same time, others ask you to find a way to deal massive damage with weaker weapons or reach. An area or defeat a boss multiple times. And speed up the process of acquiring more powerful weapons and healing items.

Because of this, I spend the first dozen or so playthroughs of Have a Nice Death aiming for smaller goals – far more achievable than “defeat all the mandatory bosses and levels in one run. In the end, I’ll be up to the task. But for now, I’m content just getting stronger and seeing how my efforts contribute to me doing a little better at these early levels.

And of course, many roguelikes divide their seemingly overwhelming goal of defeating them into more manageable challenges. Dead Cells has elements of Metroidvania that let you chase minor improvements that make it easier to get past chunks of the game. Hades has episodic stories that connect with everyone. of its main characters that you can chase while trying to escape from the underworld. But Have a Nice Death is new in the sense that it lets you see what you’re aiming for. You can see what weapons and health items you’re working on in the shop menu before even trying to buy them. And allowing you to determine if they’re worth pursuing. He respects my time.


And now, in just a few hours, I’m mastering the attack patterns of enemies and bosses and discovering new strategies for myself by following the instructions of the tasks and not just experimenting on my own. I can’t go through all of the early areas without getting hit, but I’ve come close to it a few times already simply. Because I was told to try a bunch of different playstyles and see what works for me.

All this suggests that my efforts do not facilitate a happy death. While they certainly made the difficult task of defeating her more plausible, it’s still quite a challenging game. Speaking to GameSpot, lead game designer Simon Dutertre compares the experience of playing Have a Nice Death to climbing a mountain. In my experience, this seems like an apt comparison – The Good Death includes several punishment systems that take time to get used to.

For example, taking damage not only lowers your health but can lower your maximum HP. It is preventing you from fully healing if you’re not careful. It seems to be a game that wants you to play almost perfectly in the first half to have a chance to win in the second. This is usually too much of a challenge for me. But the challenge-based upgrade system makes it doable enough that I’m willing to give it a try.

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