The Borderlands team now owns Risk of Rain, and it's got big plans for the roguelike

Risk of Rain Returns
(Image credit: Gearbox Publishing)

Sci-fi roguelike Risk of Rain is getting a total remake, as publisher Gearbox Games buys the series off developer Hopoo Games to co-create it with brand new content.

Risk of Rain Returns is a complete remake of the 2D 2013 roguelike, taking everything in the original game, adding in items and heroes released for the 3D sequel, and a load of other improvements and it will launch in Nintendo Switch and PC sometime in 2023. 

“Risk of Rain Returns completely overhauls the original and introduces a ton of new content,” the announcement reads, promising a “whole new game and an upgraded experience from the original Risk of Rain.” Expect new enemies, survivors, enhanced audio, gameplay tweaks, and survivor abilities on top of everything in the original.

Squirreled away in Risk of Rain Returns’ announcement is the news that Gearbox, the developer of Borderlands 3 and publisher of Risk of Rain 2, has bought the rights to the series. Meaning it can create new games in the Risk of Rain series, and original developer Hopoo Games can work on other projects.

Bring an umbrella

Risk of Rain is an action-packed 2D platformer incorporating roguelike elements to amp up the stakes, with enemies getting stronger as you move through a bizarre alien world. Permadeath is a key component, so the aim of the game is to use your characters’ unique skills to get as far through each level as possible, making time to grab high-powered items whilst fending off the bloodthirsty hordes in their droves. You can play on your own or with friends for a multiplayer experience, but watch out – friendly fire is a thing, and if any of your teammates die, you all do.

Although its 2020 sequel, Risk of Rain 2, did away with the platformer stylings for a blocky 3D third-person shooter angle, Risk of Rain Returns will stay true to the original in all its pixelated, side-scrolling glory. From the announcement, we know that the remake offers “a smoother ‘gameplay feel’ without losing that legendary Risk of Rain challenge,” so get ready to experience platforming hack n’ slash goodness that shouldn’t feel janky or all that rough to maneuver. 

Combat still from Risk of Rain Returns

(Image credit: Gearbox Publishing)

“We are ready to move on to new challenges and welcome the exciting and fresh ideas Gearbox will bring to Risk of Rain,” Hopoo writes in the announcement notes. “Completing the console versions of [Risk of Rain 2 expansion] Survivors of the Void remains a top priority for Gearbox, and we can't wait to see what the future brings for Risk of Rain with them at the helm!”

While Hopoo games will be the developer on Risk of Rain Returns, the team says it is “ready to move on to new challenges”. There isn’t a release date for Risk of Rain Returns beyond sometime in 2023.

Jasmine is a freelance writer and podcaster based in the UK. Whether it's a Sims 4 lore deep-dive or a guide to securing kills in Dead By Daylight, her work is featured on TheGamer as well as the door of her mother's fridge. When she's not aggressively championing the Oxford comma on Twitter, you can find her scoping out the local music scene or buying gaudy Halloween decorations all year round.