Dungeons - The Dark Lord Reviews

TSA Score for this game: 96
Posted on 07 March 18 at 20:39
This review has 3 positive votes and 0 negative votes. Please log in to vote.
I like the idea of Dungeons, but there are so many issues I have with the game that I can't recommend this game. It's not that it's a bad concept, I mean to be a dungeon boss, and rule with an iron fist. Ok.

I like the gameplay mechanisms, build out the dungeons and entertain heroes.

I'll even accept the stupidity of that last statement. Your dungeon is there to entertain or get heroes "excited" then you can kill them and get soul energy.

What I can't stand is how the game actually plays. The concepts are great, and in fact, they even mix up the gameplay. You'll run a dungeon, but you'll also run through "dungeons" or caverns and then explore. That all works in theory, however, the fact is the "what am I supposed to do" is often unclear.

After the first full level (which contains 3 different objectives, each relatively understandable) the second area has a cave you're supposed to explore. When you get to the end of the cave, you're told to wait and hold off the horde. So I did that, and new entrances to my dungeon open up. It's apparently a part of the game where you hold back an ever-increasing enemy until some time limit runs out and you can proceed.

And all my enthusiasm for the game dropped quickly. The first issue with this map is that the map is poorly laid out, and this is the third real dungeon you run. The second is there's just entirely too many enemies thrown at you, there's not even a good layout to get them because the minute they see you, they forget about their "needs" and rush your lord. The third is that it's just mindless waiting. And then suddenly I lost the game, I couldn't find anyone attacking my heart, there's no clear indicator who is doing it, though the game keeps telling you someone is attacking your heart, after three laps of the very small room, I realized, I was going to lose and there was no way to find the guy.

Ok so there's challenge, but let me explain why I didn't try again. That level took over an hour and a half to get to that point, and there's an autosave (thank god)... it's from the beginning of the area. The game expected me to play for an hour and a half of mindless goals. There's no information about how close I was or how long I have to wait, just an order of "wait". There's no way to speed up the process. There's just "waiting".

And the waiting is LONG, 90 minutes or so of waiting for nothing to happen? No thank you. The autosave that only saves once an area is a problem, but the tediousness with that last area I think drove me insane. I like the idea of the game, I really do, but the fact is the game just feels poorly implemented. There are enough little issues I have with the game, and the overabundance of effects, that I couldn't really feel what was actually going on.

This is a game that works when the player is given clear goals and a clear path to those goals, even if the steps are a little obscure. Instead of that this game revels in unclear goals, and a path that you either learn in the tutorial, figure out through trial an error or suffer because you don't know.

Even when you're doing everything right, the game is never "very fun". The heroes in the game seem to have more excitement than the player, which seems like a mistake. In an RTS game I can enjoy myself because I have to constantly manage the battlefield, or I'm waiting for a big battle to happen, but in this game, the game almost plays itself, you only have to step in and murder heroes after they're happy, but the thing is they become happy from you doing nothing, so you're constantly waiting.

It's not even interesting to watch the heroes, which could have helped, instead you sit on your hands after building a dungeon (which also takes time as the goblins have to dig through the wall) and wonder if you could be doing anything else.

Honestly, because of that, I can't even think to recommend this game because of all that.

(not to mention the game's 'story' is just Lord of the rings, but honestly, I kind of liked how they played with that lore, it's a shame that the game was so dry that I can't even fully get invested in the story)
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