Golden Light's new 'Meat Royale' is basically Silent Hill deathmatch in David Lynch's toilet

Golden Light was already one of my favorite new games of 2020, a horror roguelike where shape-shifting meat monsters harass you in a grimy, surreal universe. Learn more about the base game in my impressions from last year, but skim the Steam page too. It's received a ton of updates since then, with new biomes, NPCs, balance changes, and even a co-op mode. Neato. 

But the real meat (sorry) of the latest update is Meat Royale, a 10-player spin on Golden Light's disorienting first-person combat. You and nine other players spawn into a random level, meat monsters included, and need to do the battle royale thing, collecting gear and weapons to take out the other players. 

Thing is, Golden Light is set in dark, winding, cluttered hallways where any object could be a monster. Some weapons are 'alive' too, with odd buffs and perks baked in that often demand some kind of blood or gold sacrifice. And yeah, as you might've noticed in the extremely good and weird trailer up top, you can eat some guns too. Real world logic does not apply in Golden Light, and learning the rules is half the fun. 

Also true to the spirit of Golden Light, you and the meat bros can shapeshift just like the meat monsters, pressing crouch to take the shape of whatever cosmetic you're decked out with. Win matches to earn Meat Crowns to spend on more cosmetics at the Meat Market. Turn your head into a gun, a computer, or even a hand. Fortnite's skins are looking pretty boring now, aren't they?

You can see some of it in action above, a disorienting, stressful game of cat and mouse. Battle royale looks like a surprisingly good fit for Golden Light though. Levels are so winding and cluttered that there's a lot of opportunity for frantic chases, clever ambushes, and close getaways here. 

The Meat Royale update also brings some improvements to the base game, including a new helper NPC, some graphical effects, and, wildly, a much higher 10-player co-op cap. Golden Light is 25% off to celebrate the big update too, so now's a good time to give a shot. $10 is a hell of a deal for that much meat.  

James Davenport

James is stuck in an endless loop, playing the Dark Souls games on repeat until Elden Ring and Silksong set him free. He's a truffle pig for indie horror and weird FPS games too, seeking out games that actively hurt to play. Otherwise he's wandering Austin, identifying mushrooms and doodling grackles.