Vlambeer has a lengthy history that has been gone into great detail through many interviews and retrospect, and has also been very well documented. As such this page will not cover those portions - the Wikipedia articles on Vlambeer and Nuclear Throne are both great resources to read on their entire history, and as that already exists this page will be more targeted towards the Throne community specifically rather than just being a birds eye view for non-Throners.

This page will focus on Throne, however here is a link hub to find projects that Vlambeer has worked on:

The versions page shares much more documentation on the dates and time of each update and will be referenced on this page. This is the other half of NT's history.

Wasteland Kings

Back in February of 2013 Vlambeer was invited to participate in the Mojam Humble charity, in which indie developers were invited to stream themselves developing games over a few days. The result of their work was Wastelalnd Kings. While their development was around their other game Luftrausers at the time, they found themselves returning to Wasteland Kings to continually add more content which would be the framework for the eventual development of Nuclear Throne.

Wasteland Kings is still available for download online for free by Vlambeer on itch. It only features 5 characters being Fish, Crystal, Eyes, Melting and Plant. Only the first three areas in the game are present being the Desert, Sewers and Scrapyards. Many basic features that are used here would find their way into the official game.

Nuclear Throne's development

As the game entered its early development cycle, a decision to change the name from Wasteland Kings to a new title was made after Vlambeer was approached about its name and the unrelated Wasteland series making a return. JW later shared a tweet in 2020 that showed names they were considering as a replacement for Wasteland Kings. While Nuclear Throne did not receive the most initial votes, it did end up being the winning pick as it is known today.

As Wasteland Kings was developed on a livestream initially, Vlambeer decided to continue its development as Nuclear Throne via Twitch. By August of 2013 the project went full-time, and it launched into early access on Steam on October 11th, 2013. In the early access notes they shared that the game would be streamed twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays for around four hours and would release an update every weekend.

Weekly updates stayed on a fairly consistent schedule during development. There would be two streams a week, and then a build uploaded on the weekend normally. During the livestreams viewers could watch members on the project actively develop the game and give feedback/ideas. The devs were also fairly active on the Steam discussion forums as it became a hub for feedback discussion. These paired together meant that there was an emphasis on community feedback/engagement during the development cycle and any issues could be readily addressed and fixed, usually within a few updates.

Active development of Nuclear Throne continued on for over two years until December 5th, 2015, in which the game officially released to the public on Update 96. This meant that across 111 weeks, 96 of those included an update for the public to try out and give feedback on.

The game would receive an update just ten days later, Update 97, which included cloud saving. This would be the last update in 2015, and can be considered the end of the main development cycle of the game.


Following the end of the original development cycle, there were only two more official versions released since.

The first being update 98 on February 21st, 2016, in which Thronebutt was officially integrated. This is a fan-made site to track the daily leaderboards, but was shut down due to the addition of weeklies among other issues that broke the site. This update saw that the site would be tied into the game for better tracking/support and official website hosting. There is a separate page for Thronebutt with its extensive history here.

During 2016 the popular mod Nuclear Throne Together was released by YellowAfterLife(YAL) which supported online co-op and by 2017, support for mods to be loaded in. Following its success YAL was invited to work on update 99, where the focus would be bringing many NTT fixes into the vanilla version. The full story about u99 can be found on YAL's site.

Update 99 released at last on November 6th, 2017. This would become the last 'stable' update of the game with a large focus on bugfixes(particularly with co-op) and some balancing. Most or all versions of Throne are based on either some form of u98 or u99 build in the present day.

Following the release of u99r1, YAL would continue to develop official betas of the game to present day to work towards u99r2, where he actively participates in the NT Discord to look at bugs found in the latest NT beta version and latest NTT beta branch(being v100). The first beta branch released in early 2020 and over a dozen branches have been released since then through late 2023, usually with multiple branches released back to back followed by longer gaps of waiting.

There is no official release date for u99r2 yet nor is there any indication it is releasing in the near future, however the beta branches can be opted into and tried by anyone with a Steam version of the game. Notable changes to the game include 60 FPS support and in the most recent beta, custom FPS/aspect ratios and widescreen. The main focus of these are bugfixes and balancing however, with major improvements to performance. A summary of notable changes can be found here.

On September 1st, 2020, Vlambeer officially 'shut down' during its tenth year anniversary. A large part of why Vlambeer was kept running was to help propel both Rami and JW into the gaming industry better, and its shutting down was made out to be more of its success rather than a failure. Rami would continue to work on advocacy in the video game industry towards diversity and indie developers from non-Western countries, while JW planned to continue working as an independent developer on various projects. Shutting down mainly seemed to cease functions on the official front and clearing out merchandise.

Despite shutting down Vlambeer still operated to some capacity. They still provided customer support and gave their games maintenance. Thronebutt was still being hosted, and YAL was still developing betas for NT. They also still had their game ULTRABUGS in active development. With all these factors, Vlambeer wasn't truly 'shut down' entirely.

On April 4th, 2024, Rami decided to sell out his portion of Vlambeer as JW now runs the company solo as he shared in a blog post. Along with this announcement, JW made a post about the current direction of Vlambeer, including the continued development of ULTRABUGS and an update to Ridiculous Fishing, with the intention to help preserve all of Vlambeer's games.

NT's future has much of its focus on the beta updates but much of this focus should also go to the dedicated community. Between an active modding community who has released a series of higher quality content mods, and an active meta community that hosts occasional tournaments and constantly try to push the limits of the game. While the main content of the game is around either beating the Throne or obtaining all the achievements for many players, the game has a lot of depth beyond this which can be attributed to years of passionate game development and helping foster a very active community.