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Dungeon Crawlers

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A Song of Ice and Fire Traps

Product: Dungeon Crawlers | Developer: Drowning Monkeys | Publisher: Ayopa Games | Format: Android | Genre: RPG, Strategy | Players: 1 | File size: 92.2MB | Version: Europe
 
Dungeon Crawlers Android, thumbnail 1
With its cel-shaded graphics and 3D playscape, Dungeon Crawlers is positively fizzing with technical virtuosity. This is a mobile title, with less hardware muscle than a games console, but the team responsible has coded its wares with spectacular aplomb.

Which is kind of baffling considering how horribly generic it looks. Its heroes are cookie-cutter stereotypes, and the world they inhabit is so unremarkable it must have been furnished from a mediaeval branch of Ikea.

Which is to say, Dungeon Crawlers isn’t presenting itself in the best light by looking so damn mediocre. The only saving grace is the humour, which valiantly hoists the game out of the hole it’s dug itself into. It’s pretty funny.

Goblinbusters

As the game opens, a trio of fantasy archetypes – Payter the barbarian, Aegon the druid, Roy the alchemist – are bickering among themselves. They’ve been hired to go clear a dungeon of a goblin infestation, and they’d like to get the job done in time to go home for their tea.

But as the screen pans from face to face there’s a sudden flash of recognition. It’s the Ghostbusters. The game has unofficially cast the leads from Ghostbusters as their protagonists in this dungeon trawl. It’s an inspired idea, and thanks to the murky fog of fair-use and parody it skirts on the right side of legality.

From there, the game sets off on the familar arc of every tactical role-playing game before or since. Explore dungeons, fight baddies, collect loot, then rinse and repeat. Quite frankly, the game could be an extended tutorial on virtual knitting - as long as as the Ghostbusters are along for the ride, we’re happy to play it.

The control scheme is well considered. With the elements laid out on an isometric grid, you tap out where you want to place you party and which action you'd like them to perform. Things like action or movement points aren’t clearly delineated, but broadly speaking each character can make one movement and one action per turn.

Your Princess is in Another Dungeon

The combat mechanics are also solid. Whether you’re a seasoned player or an absolute beginner, you’ll quickly forget about learning how to play and focus more on your strategy and approach to each room.

As is traditional, each character has his own strengths and weaknesses, and you need to take these into account for every beastie you fight against.

For example, the barbarian is great for soaking up damage, but his attacks aren’t that effective. The druid, conversely, can really dish it out but he can’t take it.

Slight problems occur with the in-game camera, which expects you to adjust your perspective on the action at the same time as you move your party and set out your fighting stall. It’s a minor distraction, and one that we could do without. Hopefully a future update will remedy this.

When all is said and done, however, what you'll remember most about Dungeon Crawler is the jokes. It’s a pop-culture scatter-gun that takes in Super Mario, Game of Thrones, Ghostbusters, and more besides. And what better way to relax between bouts of dungeon crawling?
 
Dungeon Crawlers
Reviewer photo
Bulent Yusuf | 3 February 2012
A generic presentation doesn’t do Dungeon Crawlers any favours. Nor does the irritating game camera. But it’s a robust tactical RPG with some smart gags
 
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Joined:
Oct 2011
Post count:
17
Teaweasel | 17:35 - 3 February 2012
It crashes for me. Every lvl, sometimes twice a lvl, I really wanted to play this, bit I had to uninstall. I have an iPad 1.
 
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