Almost six years after its launch, Axiom Verge is getting its first piece of post-launch content–and it’s free! The new content is a Randomizer Mode, which is currently live in beta for the PC version of the game. The mode will be released for consoles (also for free) at a later date.
Originally existing as an unofficial mod, Randomizer Mode has been worked on by Axiom Verge speedrunners NoReset Games, Chris Couture (aka VideoGameRoulette), Dimitrios Lianopoulos (GVirus), Mark Rawls (Willow), Lars Lehmann (Leemyy), and CrowdControl’s Matthew Jakubowski (Jaku)–as well as the mod’s creator, Pozzum, for years. Now, the mod is being officially implemented into the game.
“They spent years working on this and refused any compensation I offered,” Axiom Verge developer Thomas Happ wrote in a blog post. “It was a labor of love, and I’m hugely grateful to all of them.”
As the name suggests, Randomizer Mode randomizes the order in which you acquire items and power-ups in Axiom Verge. In order to ensure that you’re never stuck, you’ll always find an item that at least allows you to progress, though you may be doing so in a way that’s different from how you’re supposed to beat the game.
“The Randomizer is smart enough to know that in certain areas you need weapons with certain characteristics to progress,” Happ writes. “For example, the first item you get in the game really only needs to be able to shoot. Without that, you wouldn’t be able to get through the barrier on the right. So the Randomizer knows not to give you, say, a health node.”
To access Randomizer Mode, open your PC storefront of choice and then open your library. On Steam, right click on Axiom Verge, select Betas, and then navigate to the Randomizer beta. If you use Epic, the Randomizer Mode beta will appear as a separate game that you just need to launch.
Once you’ve booted up the new mode, there are actually three different difficulty levels of randomization you can pick from. Beginner randomizes the items in a way that assumes you’ve beaten the game and knows how every power-up works. Advanced randomizes the items in a way that assumes you know about speedrunning exploits to find ways past seemingly insurmountable obstacles. And finally, Masochist randomizes the items similarly to Advanced but also assumes you can complete the game with a low completion percentage.
“As of right now, there are exactly four people in the world able to play [Masochist],” Happ writes. “If you don’t know that you’re one of them, you’re probably not.”
Additionally, the team that’s working on the Randomizer Mode is also designing additional Saved State and Crowd Control features. The former will allow players to practice speedrunning specific sections of Axiom Verge, while the latter will allow a Twitch chat to influence the layout of a streamer’s Randomizer mode. Both features are scheduled to arrive at a later date.
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