This Darkest Dungeon-inspired roguelike has Ghost of Tsushima vibes and a 94% Steam rating

If Ghost of Tsushima was a turn-based roguelike with card battling elements, one can only imagine it would look something like Shogun Showdown, which just launched in Steam Early Access.

Admittedly, the only thing about Shogun Showdown resembling Ghost of Tsushima is the feudal Japan setting. Sucker Punch's take is a modern touchstone for games, and that setting is beautifully realized here with SNES-style pixel art and dynamic lighting. Shogun Showdown's gameplay shares DNA with some of the most popular turn-based strategy games and roguelikes from recent years, specifically Into the Breach, Darkest Dungeon, Crypt of the Necrodancer, and Slay the Spire.

The combat looks like an amalgam of the above listed influences, featuring strategic, timing-based movement, upgradable "tiles" that you can string together for punishing combos, and deckbuilding elements you can use to gain new skills. Judging from the 94% positive reviews on Steam, the system is easy to pick up but challenging to master.

A large share of the reviews describe the combat as intuitive and rewarding, with one describing it as "a dance [where] you weave your way through and around the web of enemy attacks, finding the right time to prepare and the right time to strike." In an abstract way, you could probably say the same of Ghost of Tsushima's stance-based sword fights. 

As mentioned earlier, Shogun Showdown just launched in Early Access with three playable characters, 28 attack tiles, 17 skills, 24 quests, and nine combat locations - which sounds like a reasonable amount of content for the $10 asking price, especially considering it's yet to get a full launch which will presumably include even more. There's also a free demo you can download if you want to give it a try before shelling out for the full – well, Early Access – game.

For more, here's our guide to upcoming indie games of 2023 and beyond.

Jordan Gerblick

After scoring a degree in English from ASU, I worked as a copy editor while freelancing for places like SFX Magazine, Screen Rant, Game Revolution, and MMORPG on the side. Now, as GamesRadar's west coast Staff Writer, I'm responsible for managing the site's western regional executive branch, AKA my apartment, and writing about whatever horror game I'm too afraid to finish.