Whip-cracking roguelike City of Brass, made by former Bioshock devs, leaves Early Access

City of Brass puts me in mind of a 3D, Arabian Nights-themed version of Spelunky. As you sprint through its shiny, procedurally-generated metropolis you'll grab treasure, buy items, lay traps, whip enemies and slash your scimitar, avoiding permadeath at all costs. It's been in Early Access for just under a year and now it's out on Steam, with the 1.0 update adding the final boss fight.

As you'll see in the trailer above, your whip is perhaps the most important part of your kit. It knocks enemies back to create space and you can use it to grab onto bits of the environment, pulling yourself across gaps or out of danger. By the looks of it, you can upgrade it to add different effects, making it freeze enemies or set them on fire. Presumably that will be controlled through genies, who will barter for goods or grant you wishes to boost your powers.

Unlike Spelunky, however, you won't have a lot of time to think in City of Brass. You're running against the clock, which means you'll always be on the move between a series of mini bosses. You'll be facing lots of enemies at one time, and you'll have to slide or jump to avoid environmental hazards like spikes or moving blades. It all looks suitably fast-paced. 

As well as adding the final boss battle, the 1.0 update tweaks a long list of features, from item swap timing to arrow whipping, and fixes lots of bugs. Read the full patch notes here.

The early user reviews are positive, as you'd expect from the team that also made Submerged, and Tom enjoyed his time with it last year. A lot of the team from developer Uppercut Games also worked at Irrational Games on both Bioshock 1 and 2, so expect a high degree of polish.

It's $19.99/£15.49 on Steam.

Samuel Horti

Samuel Horti is a long-time freelance writer for PC Gamer based in the UK, who loves RPGs and making long lists of games he'll never have time to play.