At first glance, Terri Vellmann's Heavy Bullets might look like your average shooter-meets-indie. The first-person gameplay functions exactly like you’d expect, and the aesthetic is definitely the super-polygonal stuff we’ve come to see from many small teams.

Heavy Bullets charm doesn’t come through in screenshots, though. The title eschews the speed-heavy bent of so many modern shooters by infusing elements of the now-prevalent rogue like movement.

Players start with six bullets, which can be recovered after discharge (even if they destroy an enemy). The game only has eight levels, and it’s possible to get through them quickly once you understand the title, but the learning curve is steep.

Erasing years of run-shoot-die-respawn thinking takes a bit of time, and until you do, you’ll find yourself staring at the Game Over screen often. Because Heavy Bullets’ levels are procedurally generated with a variety of enemy types, taking things slowly is the smartest course of action.

Peeking around corners to see if turrets lie in wait, listening for the telltale hiss of a hidden snake (which can poison you), and smartly using the very limited items, all contribute to Heavy Bullets genre-bending uniqueness. Like some roguelikes, you can purchase life insurance with in-game currency, preserving some of your money for your next play.

Vellmann tells us that he expects the speedrun community to latch onto Heavy Bullets given its easily digestible level structure and intense difficulty. Heavy Bullets is currently in early access on Steam with release planned for the near future on PC, Mac, and Linux.