Dungeon of the Endless “Redlight, Greenlight?” Review

Dungeon of the Endless

Type of Game:

Dungeon-crawler meets tower defense meets roguelike

Version Played:

PC version through Steam

Similar Games:

The Binding of Isaac, Sanctum/Defense Grid/other tower defense games, and Nethack/Diablo/Gauntlet/other dungeon-crawlers

The Good:

  • This is by the same studio as Endless Space, and shares some of the same UI/music design aesthetics.
  • The “one more room” factor keeps the player interested, and does a good job of making time fly by.
  • The animations and lighting are really well done; even though they stick to the current retro trend. There is an exceptional amount of detail everywhere, from the player breathing heavily after a fight to the dynamic lighting of the rooms as you move through them.
  • There’s an interesting resource mechanic – as you take over rooms, you can choose which resource each will generate. Leaving one of your heroes in a room increases the amount of that particular resource, leading to the question: do you forge ahead with a full group, low on resources? Or do you have a lone wolf exploring, while the rest stay behind?
  • The items you find range from standard fare (swords, spears, etc) to the silly (“Ricewind” is a rice-shooting machine gun; “Tutu” is a piece of armor). Their descriptions usually stray toward the latter.
  • Each hero has distinctive strengths/weaknesses which complement the group (with a caveat; see The Bad).
  • This studio is known for their community involvement (called “Games2Gether”) during development – many features in Endless Space were the result of suggestions from players. Dungeon of the Endless is no different, and I’m eagerly anticipating their planned features (tech trees, science upgrades UPDATE: recently added!, etc).

The Bad:

  • Some UI elements could be easier to access, for example the inventory. I instinctively hit “I” to bring it up, and nothing happened. UPDATE: True to their reputation for community involvement, you can now hit “I” to bring up the inventory.
  • When moving your hero, you can only tell them to move to a room – there’s no positioning within each room.
  • There isn’t a “move entire group at once” command.
  • Sometimes your randomly-given starting team members are both melee or both ranged, which (while not crippling) feels more difficult than being given a balanced group.

The Writing:

The hero descriptions are well-written and do a good job of attaching significance to each one. If you lose a hero, a message appears saying, “So-and-so was killed. Let the tears flow,” and, unlike many other games, you actually do care when they die (which is often).

Did I make time to complete it?

If you’re a fan of tower defense and dungeon-crawlers, this game is a lot of fun. I’ve died and restarted this game many times; was able to make it to the third level, but I’m going to keep trying.

Redlight or Greenlight?

greenThis game is currently at a greenlight.

There are currently two tiers available – the Pixel Pack for $12.99 and the Founder Pack for $19.99. As I mentioned above, if you’re a fan of tower defense and dungeon-crawlers, this game is definitely worth $12.99, just expect a few features (which are clearly marked in-game) to be implemented in the future. If you’re interested in Endless Space, it might be worth grabbing the Founder Pack for the included 50% off Endless Space and its DLC, as well as the “Vaulters” faction for Endless Space and a skin for their upcoming Endless Legend. Either way, I consider this game worth the full asking price.



Disclaimer: Gamer’s Glance was provided a review copy of this game

Game Information:

Link to Dungeon of the Endless’ Steam page for full game information

Posted on December 13, 2013, in Redlight, Greenlight? and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. -Sometimes your randomly-given starting team members are both melee or both ranged, which (while not crippling) feels more difficult than being given a balanced group.

    The game has an element of luck that makes some playthroughs easy and some ridiculously hard. For example, on Level 3, the exit could be two rooms away (though it took me exploring every other room to find it), or as far away as possible from the crystal room.

  2. I think the review would be better with some screenshot of the game.

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