What is Rounds?

Rounds is a 1v1 rogue-lite competitive party game where each round the loser is given a selectable upgrade from a random card pack.You can choose to lean into a certain type of build or try to counter your opponents build. Only equipped with a gun and shield, these upgrades can entirely change your play style from shooting a single, giant homing bullet or drilling bullets that penetrate walls, to shield builds that let you zoom around the map unleashing AOE bursts of damage. Being smart with your card decisions is what can lead you to victory, but pure skill can still get you through some of the most intense rounds. The amount of laughs to be had with friends also makes this one of the best party games whether you are playing online, local, or through their twitch match-making option.

A rogue game, but should it be?

             It’s not the first competitive rogue-lite game but it’s one of the best I have played. People often associate random loot/luck to being non competitive but in this environment, as more of a fun party game, it works really well. The excitement to see what your next upgrade could be, and how you can try and make a whacky build with it, is brilliant and you will even find yourself cheering on your friends to make that one crazy build that just obliterates the entire screen. You can also customize your little doodles’ faces and give them hats and funny objects so when you smack your friends around it looks hilarious.

The Gameplay:

            This game can be incredibly challenging at times with its bullet drop, shield mechanics, map physics, and super smash bros-esque feel.

Bullet drop is determined by bullet speed which can either make you an explosive lobing cannon, a high precision marksman, or give you a homing shot that bounces in every possible direction. But be warned: your own bullets can hit you.

The shield can be used defensively, like a parry, rebounding your opponents bullets right back at them or you can turn into a walking bomb blowing up everything around you. The out of bounds mechanics makes it so when you touch the edge of the screen you take a decent chunk of damage and also bounce away from whatever side you touched. These can also be blocked, if timed properly, which presents some fun times when you have a low block cool-down, just bouncing on the bottom of the map.

The maps are an absolute blast with all the different layouts and the crazy physics, boxes can literally crush you if they land on you or get projected at you. Some maps even have parts of it held up by tiny wires you can destroy, causing sections of the map to fall, which is honestly so much fun to shoot while people are standing on them.

Let’s talk mods:

            The only thing that bummed me out about this game was its lack of player count as I was hoping to play with a few more friends but it lacked the ability. That was until I saw that this game had a modding scene.

This scene even included a mod that allowed 4 player FFA and 2v2 TDM, which literally blew my mind. Upping the player count to 4 made the game even more fun with complete mayhem going on by the end of matches. On top of that, we also played with a mod that allowed rounds to go up as high as you want, making your builds absolutely bonkers, and sometimes almost tearing the map in a split second. There are also mods that allow the addition of more cards and maps to the game, giving you laser beams and mysterious powers.

I laughed so hard during these games that I was crying.
            I was not expecting a modding scene for this game but boy am I glad it does! Don’t be afraid of the modding process as it was fairly simple. There is even a mod manager to help you if needed.

Rounds is available on Steam for $5.99