Indie VR gem COMPOUND has taken its Early Access status to heart. Over the last year, the game has seen consistent updates every month which have added new enemies, weapons, bosses, and more to the game. Developer Bevan McKechnie says the game’s demo has been recently updated allowing new players to get a glimpse of the changes.

Compound is an impressive but lesser-known roguelite VR shooter with a deliciously authentic pixel-art aesthetic. Having launched in Early Access on Steam back in 2018, developer Bevan “NotDead” McKechnie has been busy bringing new content to the game ever since.

In the last year alone Compound has seen 17 updates which have added six new weapons, five new mini-bosses, and two major bosses to the game:

Weapons: Dart Gun, Revolver, Sticky Grenade Launcher, Sonic Pulse Generator, Blast Pistol, Laser Pistol

Mini-bosses: Giant Rat, Accountant, Spider Tank, Booster Bruce, Lab Director

Major bosses: CEO Helicopter, Gold Leader

There’s also been feature updates and fixes along the way. v0.5.1 added new hand models to the game with support for Index finger-tracking. v0.5.3 added ‘Mutators’ which change the gameplay in challenging ways:

Mutators:

  • Gun Magnet (enemies drop weapons but you can’t reload)
  • Damage Amplifier (all enemies die with one shot but so do you)
  • People Populator (enemies have less HP, bullets move faster, and more enemies spawn)

v0.5.14 updated the game’s weapons to support ‘momentum reloading’ meaning that you can now articulate many of the hinged weapons (ie: swing shut the Revolver’s cylinder) by swinging them naturally; it also added a new enemy (‘KANi’ Reception Security bot).

v0.5.16 was a key update which added a Save & Continue feature. Compound is all about surviving as long as you can, but that meant that longer runs could become a time investment. With the Save & Continue feature, players can now store their progress between levels and resume at a later date.

Image courtesy Charmander

The game’s latest update, v0.5.17, which went live today, brought balance changes to the game which its creator says were focused on “improving the smoothness of the difficulty curve while also giving Easy and Medium players access to more of the mini-boss content.”

According to today’s update, the game’s free demo has also been updated to bring it in line with the latest version of the game; it’s available on the Compound Steam page.

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We spoke with Bevan McKechnie about Compound’s latest updates and what he has planned for the future. In the near-term he expects to focus on adding more Mutators to the game, bringing the total count to “at least nine,” he said.

“Being a solo dev, my style of development is very organic. I like to add, remove, and change ideas all the time. This means I can never be 100% sure of how the game will turn out,” McKechnie told us as a caveat before listing some of his longer term goals for the game “in no specific order:”

  • More map specific ‘hazards’, like the explosive barrels in the sewers.
  • More variation to the early game.
  • An overhauled unlock system
  • A completely new tutorial system with audio and video instructions for clarity, with a bit of fun world building thrown in. The current one has always been a placeholder as no-one wants to sit around reading pages of instruction text.
  • AI improvements, overall polish, and misc. QOL features.
  • Many more story elements and multiple unlockable ‘endings’
  • Some fun secret items for completionists

We awarded Compound the ‘Excellence in Indie Development’ award in our 2018 Game of the Year Awards and are happy to see that McKechnie has continued to show that it was well-earned recognition.

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  • impurekind

    A really great fps game in VR imo, and getting better all the time.

  • starchaser28

    I really hope this game will be released on the Quest at some point. It seems perfectly suited for it.

    • Ad

      In this case yeah. I can easily run this game at 144hz with plenty of room to spare. It was basically leaning on early VR being really conservative with graphics and now it would work on Quest. I’m betting he would try PSVR first since that’s a huge market though.

    • Jonathan Winters III

      True.

  • Definitely one of my favorite games to pop in for a few hours with each update. There’s always something new to shoot at!

  • Ad

    It’s a great game, although I think level design and enemy AI should get another pass to match the quality of the new guns and other improvements. I’d kind of like two handed on the guns, but that may not fit the gun models or controls so I get it if that didn’t work.

    Also he added an ad for H3, which is weird since Anton added one of his guns with a little compound logo underneath, whereas he just added a poster with H3’s name, logo, and website. Out of content it looks like some kind of paid ad, or like H3 is a company that published Compound. He should just add a potato gun that says H3 on the side and take out the poster.

  • Rosko

    A great game even though i’m not into the idea of ‘rogue’ games. I would probably play it more if there was some feeling of progression.

    • Max

      The progression in rogues is your skill level and knowledge of the game, rather than feeding the urge to see meaningless numbers go up.

  • I love it! And it is impressive that it is the work of only one solo dev! :O

  • Jeff Axline

    Love those burgers. Soooo good!

  • Indie gem? Meh. The Forest is an Indie Gem. This is a curious aesthetic mixed with generic game play.

  • Jonathan Winters III

    It’s been in early access for years, with no final release in sight. I personally wouldn’t like to play an incomplete unfinished game, as good as some gameplay elements may be thus far. I’ll wait for the actual release.

  • Zobeid

    Confession… This is the game I have played far more than any other on my Vive. It’s addictive.