When someone uses the words Dungeon Crawler to describe a game, I usually have to repress a bit of an eye roll. The term is thrown around quite often these days and more often than not, incorrectly. While I have spent quite a good amount of my life playing many genre of game, this one is not a favourite of mine. I find them to be repetitive at the best of times. Far be it from me to be on too negative of a spin though, as Quest of Dungeons easily brings a straight up creepy and interesting gameplay to the table and I am really pleased with how well it works.
Graphically you can find some wonderful retro style characters and enemies in gorgeous sprite forms, environments that are suited to the feel of the gameplay and easily add to the creepy elements found in the dungeons. From Gravestones to Skeletal Warriors there is plenty of horror available here. The design for the enemies is refreshing and well styled, showing that a lot of thought has gone into how this game presents itself to the player. Include the fact that there are four character types to choose from and you have a game that will change on a regular basis.
Quest of Dungeons also has “Feats” which is essentially the equivalent to in game acheivements and something that I really like to see in games. Call me whatever you want for this opinion but I really like that it gives a little more depth to a game and that you have something further to work towards. Another nice feature in the game is the online leaderboards, in case you want to see how long you are surviving compared to other players around the world. Completionists and speed runners are going to really enjoy having this option.
However, there is one part of this game that could easily split some people’s opinion. The fact that the game has permadeath, whereby no matter where you are or how far you are getting, if you get impaled by a Skeleton’s sword, gnawed by a rat or set ablaze by a mage, you are dead and there is no coming back. No continues, no save spots. Straight up RIP your poor character. Given that Permadeath in other games has caused upset for some people it can be said that this game demands that you improve your skills or suffer the consequences. Cue me playing through this game dying numerous times, each time to come back again with the mindset of “This time I will get further, this time I will be better”. It feels like if this game were to be taunting you for not doing very well, it equally encourages you to come back for more.
Of course, dying and revisiting areas of the same dungeon over and over could get rather tedious, except for the fact that in this game the dungeons are never the same, thanks to enemy placement, various items and collectibles and even gravestones all change positioning around the map each time you re-enter. Adding to the sense of perilous adventure that you are undertaking and really making this game a unique experience each time really gives it another special feeling of wanting to stand out and grab your attention.
Quest of Dungeons is an engaging title that I would recommend to players who are confident in their skills of dungeon crawling but I would also say that it can easily draw in many other people as well, if they enjoy a challenge, love retro styled yet modern feeling gameplay and the opportunity to get good. For a game that I hadn’t seen advertised in many places, much to my own dismay, im happy to report that it easily won me over and I want to go back again and see how much further I get this time. For me this game gets a 7/10 rating, boasting graphical beauty, creepy atmosphere and you better come to slay not play.
Quest of Dungeons for Nintendo Switch releases on September 14th Priced at $8.99/€8.99/£7.99
In order for me to review this game I received a copy from a PR which has had no impact on my opinion or writing.