Devil's Dare is a love letter to the 80's and 90's kids who grew up playing classic beat-em-ups like Final Fight, Double Dragon and Turtles in Time. The main twist to the formula is roguelike elements, but it doesn't feel as refined as other games in that genre. Players must acquire money from monsters, objects and kill bonuses, and said currency is used to purchase continues upon death, as well as upgrades at the end of a level. There are four stages to choose from, and the order they are completed in determines both their overall length and the boss fought at the end of the run.
The combat is standard beat-em-up fare with some modern additions. Each character has three special attacks that can be used as long as the SP meter is full, and the standard combo breaker move at the expense of a full SP bar. Dash attacks round out the moveset, and each special attack can be upgraded via post-level purchases. There is also a unique kill bonus mechanic where killing several enemies at once with an SP attack yields money and/or healing items. Mastery of this mechanic is probably what causes the discrepancy on this review page in terms of players saying that the game is too easy or too hard. A player who mastered older beat-em-ups will be able to use those old tactics here to get an abundance of money and healing items, while someone newer to the genre will struggle to get a run past the first level. The combat is nothing innovative for the genre, but all the systems work in conjuction with each other.
Sadly, the roguelike element of this game needs some work. Unlike other games in the genre, there are no unlockable items in this game; everything is unlocked at the start and there isn't a large selection to choose from either. This indirectly means that the game doesn't have as much replay value as the games it will be compred to. Character builds will always end up quite similar regardless of how many times you play through the game, and there's simply not much to do after unlocking both endings aside from achievements. I played this game for three hours and was able to learn the game, unlock both endings and fight all but two of the ending bosses, and there's not much else to see. I feel that it's best purchased during a sale where one wouldn't feel pressured to get tons of hours out of the game, but it's good for a couple runs. Each run is a little over an hour long, so it would probably only take 8-10 hours for the average player to see everything the game has to offer. Multiplayer runs apparently make the game harder since money management comes into play, but your mileage may vary with that as it's local only.
Overall, I don't regret my purchase, but I do wish the game had more to offer. I have already seen 80% of the game's content, and I've also tried out the majority of the items in just two full playthroughs. Check it out during a sale for sure, but don't expect to dump dozens of hours into this game like other roguelikes.