Risk of Rain 2

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Risk of Rain 2
A person in a spacesuit plays a guitar on top of an escape pod; the works "Risk of Rain 2" are written in a stylised font on the right side.
Promotional artwork
Developer(s)Hopoo Games
Publisher(s)Gearbox Publishing
Producer(s)Dominic Laurenti
  • Duncan Drummond
  • Jeffrey Hunt
  • Paul Morse
Artist(s)Duncan Drummond
  • Duncan Drummond
  • Jeffrey Hunt
Composer(s)Chris Christodoulou
SeriesRisk of Rain
ReleaseMicrosoft Windows, Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
August 11, 2020
Google Stadia
September 29, 2020
Genre(s)Roguelike, third-person shooter
Mode(s)Single-player, multiplayer

Risk of Rain 2 is a roguelike third-person shooter developed by Hopoo Games and published by Gearbox Publishing. A sequel to 2013's Risk of Rain, it was released in early access for Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One in 2019 before fully releasing in August 2020 with a release for Stadia coming a month later.

Players control a survivor who is stranded on an alien planet. To survive, they navigate through various environments, killing monsters and looting chests to collect items that boost their offensive and defensive capabilities. Over time, the game's difficulty increases, spawning more powerful and dangerous creatures. The game supports up to four players in online multiplayer. The game received generally positive reviews upon release.


Risk of Rain 2 follows a similar approach to the first title, in which one to four players must progress several levels while killing enemies. Most survivors are locked until the player completes challenges pertaining to each one; the only survivors available at first are the Commando and Huntress. There are a total of fourteen survivors, two of which are only available in the Survivors of the Void expansion. Each survivor has their own unique set of skills, providing different approaches to gameplay based on which survivor the player chooses. Risk of Rain 2 features several of the same playable characters, creatures, and items from the first game, but also adds new survivors and most notably transitions the game from 2D to a 3D environment.

On each level, the goal is to kill aliens while locating a teleporter randomly placed on the level; once the teleporter is activated, the players must defend themselves from a larger onslaught of aliens, including bosses, until the teleporter is fully charged. Each alien killed drops experience and currency which the player picks up. Experience is added to the player's level, and if enough is gained, the player will level up, slightly increasing their damage dealt and max health. Currency can be used to open chests found throughout the level that drop random items, or to activate turrets and drones which can either attack enemies or heal the player. Currency cannot be carried between levels, as all currency is converted to experience before teleporting to the next level. The items collected from chests offer a wide range of boosts to the players carrying them and provide both synergistic effects with other items as well as the potential to stack their effects if multiple copies of the same item are acquired.

The difficulty of the game increases as the player progresses through a run, based on the duration of the current run as well as an initial difficulty scale set by the player. Every few minutes, the aliens' level increases, thus scaling their max health and damage the longer the player's run progresses. In the metagame, players unlock access to new playable survivors, items, abilities and game modifiers by completing certain in-game achievements; once unlocked, new survivors and modifiers become available to select from at the start of the game, and new items will start appearing randomly from in-game chests.


When they started development on the sequel, Hopoo started with a 2D-based prototype with the player in control of one of the monsters in the first game, as to mix up the formula for the sequel.[1] The transition to 3D was partly inspired by fan art for the original game that showed the various objects the player collected shown on the character. Hopoo wanted to use this approach for the sequel, but the 2D graphic approach did not give them enough visual space to work with. They transitioned the prototype from 2D to 2.5D, representing the character in 3D graphics but otherwise playing as a 2D platformer, but this did not work to their satisfaction and felt it was better to move the game fully to 3D, with the transition being relatively quick to complete.[1] Hopoo Games noted that the 3D option provided "much deeper design spaces and more possibilities for cool gameplay" as well as more ways to artistically express themselves.[2] The sequel was first announced in May 2017, at which time the team had already been working on the game for 6 months.[1] The sequel uses the Unity engine, which Hopoo had to learn to use, and 3D levels which the team spent a long time making.[1] In designing some of the returning monsters Hopoo noted that they had to design new attacks to make them more challenging in a 3D space.[1] Items also had to be redesigned to deal with the dimension change.[3]

Hopoo released the game into early access on Windows on March 27, 2019; at that time they estimated that the full development process would take another year.[4][5] During the early access period, Hopoo signed with Gearbox Publishing to release the game on Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.[6] It was also released in early access for those platforms on August 30 the same year.[7] Its full release was initially scheduled for Q2 2020 but was delayed in order to expand the scope of its 1.0 update.[8] A free content update titled the "Anniversary Update" was released on March 25, 2021.[9] A paid expansion for the game called "Survivors of the Void" was released on March 1, 2022 for Windows, and the console versions of the expansion are currently set for release in 2023.[10]

In November 2022, Gearbox Entertainment acquired the Risk of Rain IP. Hopoo Games remains an independent studio. Hopoo now states that they are working on other games and projects.[11]


The game was released out of early access for Microsoft Windows on August 11, 2020[12][13] and for Stadia on September 29 with a timed exclusive level. The Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One received the 1.0 update on October 20 the same year.[14]


On its launch into early access, Hopoo Games offered Risk of Rain 2 with a "buy one, get one free" promotion for the first few days. A week from release, Hopoo announced that over 650,000 players had played the game, with about 150,000 of those having taken advantage of the special promotion.[23] Within a month of the game's early access release, it had sold over a million copies.[24] By March 2021, the game had sold over four million units on the personal computer side alone, not accounting for console sales.[25]


Risk of Rain 2 was nominated for awards following its release. At the 2021 SXSW Gaming Awards, the game was nominated for Indie Game of the Year and for Excellence in Multiplayer.[26] At the Indie Live Expo II, the game was nominated for Best "Game Feel" Award. [27]


  1. ^ a b c d e Wood, Austin (December 22, 2017). "We finally get our first look at Risk of Rain 2". PC Gamer. Retrieved December 22, 2017.
  2. ^ Foxall, Sam (May 8, 2017). "Risk of Rain 2 is in development and it is making the jump from 2D to 3D". PCGamesN. Retrieved May 8, 2017.
  3. ^ Harris, John (August 14, 2019). "How moving from 2D to 3D shaped the design of Risk of Rain 2". Gamasutra. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  4. ^ Chalk, Andy (November 9, 2018). "Risk of Rain 2 Early Access release is planned for early 2019". PC Gamer. Retrieved November 9, 2018.
  5. ^ Chalk, Andy (March 28, 2019). "Risk of Rain 2 makes a surprise appearance on Steam". PC Gamer. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  6. ^ Kim, Matt (March 28, 2019). "Gearbox Publishing Announces Partnerships With Astroneer, Risk of Rain 2, Justin Roiland, and More". USGamer. Archived from the original on March 28, 2019. Retrieved March 28, 2019.
  7. ^ Devore, Jordan (August 30, 2019). "Risk of Rain 2 just popped up on Switch, PS4, and Xbox One". Destructoid. Retrieved August 30, 2019.
  8. ^ Bailey, Dustin (May 22, 2020). "Risk of Rain 2's full release date delayed to August". PCGamesN. Retrieved August 17, 2020.
  9. ^ "Risk of Rain 2 - Risk of Rain 2 - Anniversary Update - March 25, 2021 - Steam News". March 25, 2021. Retrieved August 20, 2021.
  10. ^ "Risk of Rain 2 - Dev Thoughts #26 - Survivor #2 Reveal - Steam News". store.steampowered.com. February 15, 2022. Retrieved February 18, 2022.
  11. ^ "Gearbox Acquires Risk of Rain [Updated] - Blue's News Story".
  12. ^ Winslow, Jeremy. "Risk Of Rain 2 Leaves Early Access This August, Price Increase And New Updates Coming". GameSpot. Retrieved July 21, 2020.
  13. ^ Bourdeau, Ian (August 11, 2020). "Risk of Rain 2 leaves early access with a tenth character, the Captain". PCGamesN. Retrieved August 11, 2020.
  14. ^ Wales, Matt (October 20, 2020). "Risk of Rain 2 gets its version 1.0 release on Xbox One, PS4, and Switch today". Eurogamer. Retrieved September 20, 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  15. ^ "Risk of Rain 2 for PC Reviews". Metacritic. CBS Interactive. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  16. ^ Hancock, Patrick (August 11, 2020). "Review: Risk of Rain 2". Destructoid. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  17. ^ Tucker, Kevin (August 11, 2020). "Risk of Rain 2 Review | Controlled Chaos". Game Revolution. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  18. ^ King, Andrew (August 11, 2020). "Risk Of Rain 2 Review - When It Rains It Pours". GameSpot. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  19. ^ Duggan, James (April 28, 2020). "Risk of Rain 2 Early Access Review". IGN. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  20. ^ Vogel, Mitch (September 10, 2019). "Review: Risk of Rain 2 - Rough 'Early Access' Edges Can't Spoil This Rewarding Roguelite". Nintendo Life. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  21. ^ Fenlon, Wes (August 11, 2020). "Risk of Rain 2 review". PC Gamer. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  22. ^ Coombes, Lloyd (September 9, 2019). "Risk of Rain 2 - Frantically Challenging Action Makes for Compelling Co-Op". Push Square. Retrieved August 13, 2020.
  23. ^ Kerr, Chris (April 4, 2019). "Buy-one-get-one-free sale helps Risk of Rain 2 attract 650,001 players in first week". Gamasutra. Retrieved April 4, 2019.
  24. ^ Wilson, Jason (May 3, 2019). "Risk of Rain 2 storms to over 1 million copies sold after 1 month in Steam Early Access". Venture Beat. Retrieved May 3, 2019.
  25. ^ Bonthuys, Darryn (March 23, 2021). "Risk Of Rain 2 Sells 4 Million On Steam Alone, Big Update Coming This Year". GameSpot. Retrieved March 23, 2021.
  26. ^ "Gaming Awards | SXSW Conference & Festivals". SXSW. Retrieved November 15, 2021.
  27. ^ "INDIE Live Expo Awards | INDIE Live Expo II | Broadcasting All the Latest Info on Indie Games". INDIE Live Expo Awards | INDIE Live Expo II | Broadcasting All the Latest Info on Indie Games. Archived from the original on November 15, 2021. Retrieved November 15, 2021.