I saw one of the weekend deals on Steam was "Hack, Slash, Loot", a very simplistic indie roguelike game.
I checked out a couple reviews, and there seemed to be two prevailing opinions.
1: This was a totally inferior roguelike game with no strategy whatsoever and you'd be much better off getting something like Dungeons of Dredmor.
2: This is a different kind of game from Dungeons of Dredmor and other "real" roguelikes. It's designed to reduce roguelikes to the simplest elements and remove any complicated decision making form the game, all you do is, well, hack, slash and loot.
Both opinions certainly correct, depending on how you want to look at it. However "simple and brainless" sounds like about my speed at the moment, so i went ahead and got a copy.
I played three or four games last night, over the space of about an hour. The first two or three ended pretty quickly. The last session i made it down to level three before dying. There certainly isn't a great deal of strategy involved in the game. Really the only choices you have to make are which equipment to equip and maneuvering to try and take on enemies one or two at a time. (Which given that everyone has the same movement rate isn't always very feasible.)
The most interesting thing about the game is that there are no levels, only stats. There are four ways to raise your stats that i have discovered so far. Get better equipment (duh.) Drink every potion you can find (so far all potions i've drunk have been good.) Pray at every shrine you can find (currently i've had about a half dozen good shrines and one bad shrine.) And most importantly, Divine or Necro weapons.
The reason the last game lasted so long was that very early on i found a bow with the Divine attribute, and quickly noticed that at least half the time when i killed something a random stat or two would get boosted by a point. A quick check of what little online info there is about the game seems to indicate this is a unique property of Divine and Necro weapons. It seems the best way to get through the game is to grab the first Divine or Necro weapon you see and stick with it regardless of what bonuses any other non-Divine or Necro weapons you find might have. Some monsters are resistant to a particular attribute, but thankfully you can carry two weapons (though it took me a couple minutes to figure out how to switch. I might not have noticed at all if one of the reviews i'd read hadn't mentioned it was possible.) Ideally i suppose you'd like to end up with one Divine weapon and one Necro weapon. ...well, at least i'm presuming for the moment that you won't run into any monsters that are resistant to _both._
Also, there are three classes available at the beginning, a warrior, a rogue and a mage. I started all my games as a warrior, but after picking up a bow and finding out how awesome ranged attacks are (killing people before they get in range to hit you is a BIG DEAL in a game where you're dependent on random potions for healing) i'm thinking i may try the rogue (who's an archer) or mage next.
Of course the tricky bit is going to be what i do when and if i find a Divine/Necro weapon... but it's a melee weapon.
Without lucking upon a Divine/Necro weapon it seems doubtful whether you can find better equipment quickly enough to survive the deeper levels, but perhaps there is some element of strategy i'm missing. We'll see. In any case the unlockable classes are supposed to be a little tougher, so maybe after i die enough times or something i'll get to use one of them =P
So overall, yeah, it is a pretty simplistic roguelike without too much depth to it, but sometimes that's okay, especially if you don't feel like taking the time and brainpower to delve into something like Dungeons of Dredmor or Nethack or the like.