Fun Dungeon Crawling and Building with ‘Guild of Dungeoneering’
Recently released gambrinous Dungeon Assault Guild, a PC and Mac game that combines dungeon exploration, dungeon building and roguelike elements in a fun and lightweight way with a unique, hand-drawn look and feel.
The game begins when you embark on creating your own guild, as The Ivory League of Explorers ‘jerks’ won’t let you into their stupid guild. Right off the bat, players are treated to the delightful hand-drawn art on a graph paper style that permeates the game. The music and songs that accompany milestones and upgrades really add to the feel of a game. light and fun gaming experience. Merlin from The sword and the stone combined with some Monty Python and the Holy Grail immediately comes to mind as I listen.
Your new guild has very humble beginnings: a single main room. You receive a map, the Barracks, to start with, which you can connect to your main room however you like. You build your guild by placing coins that you unlock as the game progresses. Each type of room has a unique and cool look and feel, and you can organize your guild however you like, although the way you organize it has no impact on the game.
After building your initial barracks, you receive the most humble dungeon – a Chump. What would you call someone else you’ve convinced to join a penniless guild and go on an adventure? You can also change the automatically generated names of recruited dungeons if you wish.
Clicking on Explore brings up the world map. At the start of the game, there is only one place to go that has two quests to complete. It’s funny that the Guild Hall is an elaborate castle on the world map since we know it isn’t. This drawing seems to reflect your aspirations, not reality.
Once inside a dungeon, it’s up to you to build the dungeon using cards to attract or deter your dungeon from completing the quest. The dungeon has its own spirit, but will generally go towards loot. Each turn, you draw five cards. There are three types of cards: tiles, monsters, and loot. You can play up to three cards each turn, but you don’t have to play any. All unused cards are discarded. After playing your cards, your dungeon will move and resolve any fights with any monsters it might encounter. I built a passage then put Loot and a Monster in the room.
While I could have just placed the loot, having your dungeon battling monsters will earn it extra experience and glory (glory is the in-game currency). Once in battle, you draw three cards from your Battle Deck. Most cards are either offensive or defensive, although some do both, and there are special cards. They will become more and more complex and powerful as you progress through the game.
When your dungeon collects loot, you have three options to choose from. Each option will fill one of your gear slots and put new, hopefully improved cards into your Battle Deck. If you already have an item in a slot, choosing a new item of the same type will replace your current item. You can only have one of each type at a time.
There are four loot slots on your character sheet: Head, Body, Weapon, and Left Hand. The Skills at the bottom of your character sheet show you what additional cards you have in your Battle Deck on top of the base deck from your loot. Another cool touch is that when your character sheet is closed, your character image actually reflects the items you own. While this is generally expected in an RPG game, I was pleasantly surprised to see it in my sketchy character drawing. Also, don’t forget that this is a roguelike game. The level and equipment are reset after completing each quest and there is permanent death. Don’t get too attached!
Once you’ve completed the quests and earned the glory, you can level up your guild. There are three main upgrade categories: Power, Magic, and Loot. Both Might and Magic have the option of building new rooms or obtaining special blessings. The new rooms offer new, more powerful character types. At the start of an adventure, you can choose a special unlocked blessing to grant to your dungeon. Loot upgrades unlock more gear for your dungeon building deck.
For my first upgrade, I went with the library that granted me the apprentice (the lowest magic user), Monet. Whenever a character type is recruited, when a room is first built, or after each permanent death, the name and appearance are randomly generated.
After beating the first adventure and its boss, I unlocked the trophy room and received a trophy. Each boss will add a trophy to the trophy room. Apparently I kept the Rat King’s tail as a trophy. Hopefully, they’re not all equally horrible.
Three more dungeons have been unlocked on my world map after defeating the King of the Rats. I don’t know where I will go next yet, but I can’t wait to keep playing. I know I’m going to have a blast no matter what. Even though I’m gonna be the one to play this game in our house, Dungeon Assault Guild is definitely friendly for a wide range of ages. You absolutely must go get this game and start playing at present.
If you’re still not convinced, check out the official gameplay trailer.
Note: I have received a review copy of the game, but all thoughts and opinions are entirely my own.