To be honest Meta progression is what I like least about Rogue games. Stuff like Brogue or Spelunky 1/2 is super cool to me just because you don’t have it/need it. When a game has Meta progression, the balance tends to center around investing in your meta so you can eventually succeed and I prefer something like Slay the Spire or to a lesser extend Tainted Grail’s approach - there are some unlocks, and some progression (StS is the king of this) but you can actually win your first run if you are lucky and clever and the major unlocks such as cards/classes don’t take very long. I love that. Most games with a meta are unwinnable in the early hours because you haven’t unlocked the tools you need, and that grind isn’t really usually something I welcome. An example of two games with a strong meta progression system that I just stopped having fun with before I got anywhere near doing well in are Rogue Legacy and Dead Cell. The latter was probably just me not being good at Dead Cell, admittedly.
That said, a game with some meta (like Tainted Grail) is interesting when I’m enjoying the gameplay loop enough I don’t care about “winning” (which is most of the time with games like this, I just like to know I could win if I was better at this stuff). If you can unlock everything in 20 hours that’s pretty good - I’m 22 hours into Tainted Grail and nowhere near unlocking most of the stuff one can to make runs easier (like extra card draws or better starting stats) - hell I still have a damned vendor I have yet to unlock in the town.
But the game itself seems fun, I’m watching Quill18 play it at the moment. One concern I have that I’ll ask here - are there more than these two characters in the game? Or are these the two characters every run starts with and you expand your decks from there?