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'Kinetic arcade action game' Violet Cycle launches from Early Access

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Violet Cycle creator Marek Budik told us its eclectic style was influenced by the likes of Hyper Light Drifter, Transistor, Bastion and Nuclear Throne when we spoke with him last month (opens in new tab). He also said that while Violet Cycle's stay in Early Access had been fruitful, he wanted to keep it as short as possible. That incubation comes to an end today as Violet Cycle officially launches on Steam (opens in new tab) for $10—discounted to $7.50 through February 9. 

Billed as "a kinetic arcade action game," Violet Cycle is built on hack-and-slash combat with an interesting overheating limitation born of its robot-like protagonist. You can only do so much before you overheat, but you can improve your attacks by making clever use of the game's tiled ground. With the exception of water tiles that cool you down, these tiles let you move in different ways, like sliding across ice or down conveyor belts. You can further tailor your tactics with customizable headrigs (don't call them hats) with different properties. 

There's more than a bit of roguelike to Violet Cycle's DNA as well. Its enemies are procedurally generated from a pool of heads, legs, weapons and colors which yield different abilities and approaches. Designing the enemies played a big part in settling on the art style, Budik said, which he lovingly describes as "retina-searing." 

Austin freelanced for PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and has been a full-time writer at PC Gamer's sister publication GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover-up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news, the occasional feature, and as much Genshin Impact as he can get away with.