Turns out Exiting the Gungeon is similar to entering it, except you’re moving upwards instead of sideways.
The legendary dodge roll is very much alive and well. You still have an insane arsenal of weaponry at your disposal, and there are more bullets to avoid than any one person should ever have to see in a lifetime.
Most importantly, the formula is still incredibly good fun.
If you’re a fan of Super Crate Box and the like, you’re going to feel right at home in this ever-collapsing, frantic funhouse. But brilliantly, Dodge Roll have made this feel distinctly Gungeonesque by adding classic franchise staples to the action.
Interestingly billed as a spin-off, Exit takes place immediately following Enter, and has the Gungeoneers climb precariously procedurally generated towers, connected by jam-packed elevators using a constantly changing gun to fight back the Gundead.
It’ll all immediately feel familiar, even though you have an ascending/descending jump roll which lets you move between platforms, rather than skirt across the floor.
Differently this time, though, is your randomly changing gun. It’ll take on various forms as you fight back the hordes and it’s pot-luck what you’ll end up with. Which is both the game’s strongest and weakest suit.
That’s right, your gun is ‘blessed’ at the beginning of each run, meaning it will keep changing after emptying a few clips on your unsuspecting enemies – like the Bullet Kin, Poopulon, and Gunjurers – and you’ve had a few chances to reload your weapon, which varies from an Elephant Gun, to a Membrane, Heck Blaster, and even a Unicorn Horn.
As you can tell, the unique brand of humor Gungeon is known for is ever-present, as is the ability to change between adventurers, purchase upgrades in-between bosses, and access shops post-run.
Exit still captures that roguelike adventure you love, but there’s this much more fast-paced, arcade-like feel to the experience that is both dynamic and exciting, offering a refreshing change of pace from what you’re previously used to with Dodge Roll.
Of course, this is smaller in scale than Enter – originally releasing for Apple Arcade earlier this year – but just as addictive and entertaining. To balance out the size and scope of the game, there’s some surprisingly interesting ideas, like a combo system that gets interrupted when you’re hit with a bullet, and the fact that each character has a unique path to escape.
The levels remain procedurally generated and in true Gungeon style, the game is full to the brim with puns, but now you can wear hats and equip unlockable skins. It’s a fun, appropriately modern inclusion, that works really well in context of the game.
And apparently there’s more content to come, which almost certainly means new and cool ways to kit out your gungeoneers.
Exit the Gungeon was a uniquely suited mobile game, finding a perfect home on Apple Arcade. It’s translated nicely to PC and Switch, though it lacks some of the spark which made Enter such a cult classic. Random weapon changes, lengthy reloading of guns, and some overly harsh boss battles which lack the sense of strategy the original game made famous spoil things a little bit.
Exit the Gungeon is a fun diversion, though. I adored the gameplay and found myself eagerly trying to complete each run, loving the different feeling each character adds to the run.
Gungeon fans and action aficionados alike will love this as it tweaks classic gameplay in some clever and creative ways, managing to give us something enjoyable and different.
Exit the Gungeon is now available on PC, Switch, and Apple Arcade
Reviewed on PC
Review Code Provided by the Publisher