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Luck Be a Landlord

Developer / Publisher: TrampolineTales
06 January 2023
Luck Be a Landlord - cover art
Glitchwave rating
3.33 / 5.0
0.5
5.0
 
 
112 Ratings / 3 Reviews
#1,863 All-time
#64 for 2023
Luck be a Landlord is a roguelike deckbuilder about using a slot machine to earn rent money and defeat capitalism. This game does not contain any real-world currency gambling or microtransactions.
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Luck Be a Landlord is a game that takes the roguelike deckbuilder genre and strips it down to a very barebones form, removing a lot of the key elements that were established by Slay the Spire. There is no combat, therefore no decisions to take in combat, no exploration and no HP management. The "cards" here are rather slot machine symbols, and you never decide when you get to play them as they are randomly chosen and placed with luck.

So what's the gameplay left here? Symbol picking. Your goal is to pay rent, in which you do by gaining coins on the 20 square slot machine. You start with 5 symbols, and after every spin you get a choice from 3 symbols to add to your "deck". The name of the game is synergy as you will want to go well with your other symbols. Lots of them work with being next to another on adjacent squares which is something you have to rely on luck for, but with a little odds calculation you can have an idea how soon it will happen. After a few spins your rent is due, and it's game over if you don't have the money... and if you survive well you get to pick a "relic" which has random effects on a subset of symbols. And the loop goes on for spinning, picking symbols and paying rent. The game is won when you have done that 12 times.

Winning a game adds a new floor which just adds some sort of penalty (like higher rent or less removal tokens) upping the challenge a little bit. After Floor 7 you get essences unlocked which are like chaotic relics giving you a little bit more options and tools to tackle on the harder challenges. I've completed the 9th floor and this is where I stopped, kinda saw all the game has to give. The game feels a little bit hard on the first few runs, but eventually you get to know the symbols and all the synergies, and after that it's just repeating the same strategies over again and hope that they land.

It's nice that this isn't just another Slay the Spire clone (as they are so many of those) and the game does really try to go into a different direction, but some of the elements it strips were what made the genre great in the first place. Perhaps a lack of content too? There's not much satisfaction after winning a few runs with just essences unlocks (and eventually the landlord to "kill"), does leave me wondering what's the incentive of keeping playing when you've already mastered the basics. Then again it's a pretty cheap so perhaps my 8 hours of playtime were worth the price. Overall an interesting twist on the genre (which I would argue at this point it's no longer part of), but lacks some complexity to play this game for a long period of time. You are better off with many other Roguelike Deckbuilders if you really want a more complete experience.
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diction 2023-08-27T22:05:36Z
2023-08-27T22:05:36Z
3.0
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Title
And in the ever-growing list of roguelike/roguelites I've played comes Luck Be A Landlord, possibly one of the most interesting takes on the genre that I've seen. The whole idea even on paper of a deckbuilding slot machine game is a pretty interesting one, but it's really the way in which this concept gets translated over to gameplay that makes it so intriguing to me. This is a roguelike without any traditional gameplay attached to it, only meta-gameplay, by picking items and trying to spin the odds in your favour, rather than having any direct influence over the utilisation of the symbols you add to your deck. While this initially can seem like something that could majorly detract from the experience, it ends up working remarkably well here due to multiple reasons.

The most significant way in which this works is due to each individual item's own uses providing a distinct sense of variation even when all you're doing is spinning a slot machine and hoping to gain enough money to progress through a rent cycle. Many of the items on their own may seem weak, but can easily be comboed together with a bit of foresight and strategy in which items are picked in order to reap massive rewards. This dynamic is extremely conducive to the player deeply understanding the potential use cases of every item the game has to offer in order to know which of 3 possible choices given at a time would be most potentially beneficial, encouraging players to make an effort to fundamentally understand the game. This also puts additional focus on carefully considering your options with each choice presented in order to maximise the potential of victory, but also knowing when to pivot if the cards aren't stacked in your favour down a certain path, keeping your options open, but simultaneously having a general understanding of the path you want to pursue in order to not just be picking unrelated items that don't benefit each other at all.

It's these layers of deceptive complexity that Luck Be A Landlord such a fascinating game, especially on the higher difficulty "floors" which stack things further against you to require an even more impressive set of items to be able to succeed. All of this makes the game very easy to get into, but ends up being a massive time sink if you get that tiny bit deeper into things and realise the potential synergies you can create as you progressively learn how to make the absolute most out of whatever luck you receive. I've been throwing the word "luck" around a lot, and that's because an inescapable shortcoming of this is the fact that there definitely always is that element of luck to keep in mind, with the lack of traditional gameplay making particularly bad strings of luck practically impossible. That said, it actually comes up surprisingly infrequently, with the broad nature of many weaker options allowing the player to get some sort of foothold to build their run up from there.

This depth and opportunity for a player to further tune their run and luck closer to what they want is further improved by the addition of reroll and removal capsules. These limited resources provide yet another layer of decision making by making players further consider their current situation and the optimal way to improve it. This can be in the form of whether they want to wait for a guaranteed better outcome a bit later down the track or use some of these now in order to more comfortably progress with the chances of bad spins ruining everything being less likely as a result, it's all a balancing act that keeps getting tweaked and retweaked. A final point strongly in favour of this game is the way visual and audio feedback is implemented so perfectly to essentially be a constant dopamine release while playing. This comes especially from the rising audio tones when the game is displaying a progressively higher amount of earnings from a spin, and the clever way the game displays a number at a time on the board, starting with the lowest and working its way up to the symbol that gave the player the most money that turn. This builds a constant sense of anticipation as the player awaits their highest payout of the round and goes a long way to make each individual spin maintain a sense of excitement even after you've had 20 - 30 runs of it.

Along with my previous issue with there being a bit too much focus on just getting lucky occasionally, I also believe that the visuals need a bit of a touch up, as looking at the game for long periods of time genuinely hurts my eyes. I feel like there should be an option to change the background to a less glaring, aggressive shade of orange in particular, as it just would make the game a far more pleasant one to look at. Some option to also reduce the stark contrast in colours would also probably be useful in order to make it generally easier to look at for longer periods of time, because for as appealing as I find the simple pixel artstyle to be, the colours are definitely a bit much. Even with these complaints along with being a bit light on content currently, I still think that this is a very interesting game that has a lot of potential and has already been able to demonstrate how much fun this concept can be. Even in its current early access state I'd undoubtedly recommend this to people who enjoy this sort of game in what's essentially an extremely complex, convoluted and satisfying dice roll. Looking very forward to seeing how this game will progress from here.
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Kempokid 2021-06-26T08:38:40Z
2021-06-26T08:38:40Z
3.5
1
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Catalog

tlamb93 Luck Be a Landlord 2024-04-22T12:20:16Z
2024-04-22T12:20:16Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Marnix_ Luck Be a Landlord 2024-04-15T02:17:49Z
2024-04-15T02:17:49Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
sungtheusual Luck Be a Landlord 2024-04-11T05:44:26Z
2024-04-11T05:44:26Z
3.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Blazing910 Luck Be a Landlord 2024-04-09T11:07:18Z
2024-04-09T11:07:18Z
3.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
gukovic Luck Be a Landlord 2024-03-31T18:49:38Z
2024-03-31T18:49:38Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Meatlejuice Luck Be a Landlord 2024-03-25T20:12:07Z
2024-03-25T20:12:07Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
beekbirb Luck Be a Landlord 2024-03-21T01:33:58Z
2024-03-21T01:33:58Z
B
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
deanblunt Luck Be a Landlord 2024-03-20T23:03:55Z
2024-03-20T23:03:55Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
IgnacioMoreno Luck Be a Landlord 2024-03-19T01:18:34Z
2024-03-19T01:18:34Z
3.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
eliottstaten Luck Be a Landlord 2024-03-09T07:19:22Z
2024-03-09T07:19:22Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Jiiro445 Luck Be a Landlord 2024-03-06T09:37:50Z
2024-03-06T09:37:50Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
GeniusStupidity Luck Be a Landlord 2024-02-27T17:54:40Z
2024-02-27T17:54:40Z
3.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Player modes
Single-player
Early access date
08 jan 2021
Media
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  • Previous comments (3) Loading...
  • TheScout 2022-05-04 09:13:48.614194+00
    fun and based
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  • Threntall 2023-01-14 18:44:47.171456+00
    Its somewhat of a hidden blessing that its relatively easy to "beat" this roguelite, because this might just be more addictive than an actual slot machine during the first hours of gameplay
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  • closed 2023-01-21 05:13:51.041589+00
    game is so based
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  • feudhi 2023-03-11 16:57:31.505393+00
    roll me
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  • to_noid_or_not_to_noid 2023-05-22 23:07:38.735263+00
    Don't know anything about this but good title!
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  • nephilim93 2023-09-08 07:07:43.494001+00
    Its fun game but it can be beaten in an hour and then its just achievement hunting - nothing wrong with that but the amount of achievements and grind required to get some of them is so absurd that it spoils the fun for me - who in its right mind will motivate himself to beat the game 777 times?
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  • scrunky 2023-11-01 22:12:57.978285+00
    good silly game
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  • Drawdler 2023-11-30 02:23:33.888503+00
    Not sure this is for me but great concept
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