Rogue-like dungeon crawler.

User Rating: 8 | Dungeons of Dredmor PC

Dungeons of Dredmor is a rogue-like dungeon crawler. You define your character by choosing several skills, then venture into the randomly generated dungeons, defeating enemies, looting, and working your way down through the dungeon's many floors.

There are many different skill trees available, covering offensive, defensive and crafting. In terms of weapons, you can specialise in physical weapons such as sword, pole-arms, daggers, crossbows, projectiles (crossbows and thrown weapons), or rely on several types of magical masteries. Other skills include abilities to dodge, block, detect traps and more.

The gameplay is turn-based, so when you move a square in the grid-like map, the enemies will then take their turn. This allows you to plan a strategy rather than frantically hammering buttons.

The graphics are functional. The basic graphics work for what the game is trying to achieve, but the disappointment is that your character never changes from the boring stock avatar. No matter what type of character you are trying to play as, or what armour you have equipped; he/she is the same. It doesn't affect the gameplay, but it loses that customisation aspect.

There are three difficulty levels, with the option of permadeath, so can be played by hardcore RPG fans, or a more casual gamer. You can also have smaller sized floors if you want to experience the game faster, where enemies give more XP to compensate. With a normal-sized dungeon, the game will last several hours which is a bit too long; given the appeal of a game like this is to replay with a different type of character.

At first I thought the interface felt a bit fiddly and involved too many clicks to pick up items. In the menu you can configure it so clicking on an item instantly places it in your inventory. Also, you can configure an auto-loot setting so you certain items will be picked up when you walk over them.

There's also a lot of items in the game and it can be a bit overwhelming to newcomers to understand how certain items are used, or what all the symbols and stats mean. A lot of the potions and mushrooms you find are either really beneficial, or can really hurt you. This is why I prefer to play without permadeath. You really don't want to be hours in to the game just to die by drinking a potion!

There's a lot of humour in the game which can also make the descriptions nonsensical. The enemies have text pop-ups to show what they are saying. These are mainly jokes about RPG games.

It feels fun and addictive exploring the dungeon. Your character has limited sight, which the game represents with Fog of War. As you uncover areas, they are drawn on your map at the top right, and there's plenty of branching paths and multiple stairs to manoeuvre up and down through the floors. The deeper you go, the tougher the enemies, so it's important to explore each floor to gain the experience and find better loot. You will find multiple stairs that lead either up to the previous floor, or down to the next level. Due to the structure of the map, if you want to fully explore a floor, you will need to find a staircase on the floor below/above to reach other areas.

Like most rogue-likes, it can feel a bit too tough at times. It can feel quite tough to start the game, but even once you have established your character, there are difficulty spikes here and there. The games multiple difficulty levels and the ability to turn off permadeath is a welcome decision. This does ease the frustration and makes the game much more fun as a result. However, the game is one of those games where you may think your character in unbeatable at the end, only to find out the boss is way overpowered.