Ruiner is a top-down shooter that features fast-paced gameplay, a high skill ceiling and an amazing art direction. Being published by Devolver Digital, there’s a misconception among some people that think this game may be related to Hotline Miami in some way. In short, it isn’t.


Reikon Games have focused on a mature storyline for this game, though I’m not sure if I fully understand it even after playing the game through twice. The game takes place in Rengkok, a cyber-metropolis, during the year 2091. You start the game under the control of a hacker who has forced you to kill a man known as ‘The Boss’. Your friend saves you and together you fight to stop the major corporation named Heaven… there’s a lot to do with the idea of virtual reality becoming too good… it’s a lot to take in.

The world of Ruiner is incredibly strange and yet fascinating at the same time. The hub world, Rengkok, is where you’ll be spending time between missions. Most of the side quests are in place to get players to explore their surroundings. In one of the side quests, players are tasked with hacking the robot cats around Rengkok in order to stop them from snooping on people.


Part of what makes the game so fun is that you feel both overpowered and fragile at the same time. Your abilities range from multiple dashes to get around enemies, personal shields to protect yourself and even stun grenades to stop enemies in their tracks. You can’t acquire all thirteen abilities in one playthrough. Instead, the developers encourage their players to play through the game again in order to unlock the remaining abilities. Each time you play through the game, it then becomes easier as your character will be stronger. If you are a fan of top-down shooters like this, you should be used to playing through the same levels in order to achieve the highest rank possible.


As you can see, Ruiner can get very difficult at times. Even if you spend half an hour dying on the same section, at no point do you ever blame the game for being cheap. Ruiner gives you thirteen different abilities to choose from, all of them being extremely powerful. With these tools in hand, you know if you mess up at any point that it’s completely your fault. You also have the option of reassigning any of the abilities in the talent tree in case you need to spec for a specific section.

There’s a lot of value to be had from Ruiner. Playing through the game on Easy without exploring any of the environments or attempting any of the side quests will probably take you around three to four hours. Even if you find yourself not really enjoying the story, you can still blast your way through the game and still feel as though you’ve gotten your money’s worth. We imagine most players will want to play through the game a second time just to get to grips with the story, and its quite fun to try the early missions with all of your favourite powers.

At £15, if you are remotely interested in these types of games you should consider picking this up.

Check out our video review for Ruiner on YouTube.