With unemployment at a high not seen since The Great Depression, there seems like no better time for a game about the doldrums of entry-level office work and monster slaying. Ill-advised timing notwithstanding, a game like Going Under that looks to lampoon the state of white-collar work while also providing some solid roguelike action might be what we all need right now. The debut-title for Aggro Crab Games—who I assume were big fans of Nickelodeon back in the day—Going Under‘s announcement of a 2020 release date came in a PlayStation Blog post detailing the game’s plot and gameplay.
Playing as Jackie, a recent college graduate, players will guide the heroine through the rigors of an unpaid internship with a marketing firm in the near future. Joke’s on Jackie, as not only are they only paying her in exposure but she’ll also be delving into the depths of her office to fight monsters that risk distracting workers from the daily grind–a.k.a., the “real work”. Procedurally generated dungeons will give way to demonic forces, which must be fought with weapons that Jackie forges along the way with whatever junk she comes across. But that’s not all, according to Aggro Crab Co-Founder Caelen Pollock, “Harness powerful effects that can light a whole room on fire, turn enemies to allies, or just make your arms really buff or something.”
Or something, indeed.
Jackie’s quest to restore workplace productivity is one that is relatable, yet also a shockingly funny premise for a dungeon crawler. There’s been a glut of roguelikes in the past few years–and a few still to come, maybe (yes, confirmed, Rogue Legacy 2 is real)?–so perhaps a goofy premise and buff arms are more than enough for Going Under to stand out and finally reach for that brass ring.
Going Under launches in September 2020 on PS4, Switch, PC, Xbox One.