“QUICK A HORDE OF ENEMIES ARE SMASHING DOWN YOUR CASTLE’S GATE!” Do you A) build many intricate tower defences along a series of paths to guard your home or B) hide under a table and cry like an adult baby? If you choose the first, then Trendy Entertainment’s title “Dungeon Defenders” is right up your alley and don’t worry if you choose the latter because so would I.
The tale around Dungeon Defenders is pretty simple. A long time ago a dark evil called the “Old Ones” plagued the lands of Etheria but was successfully trapped within Eternia crystals by a group of champions. These champions are now away in far away lands as part of a crusade leaving their young apprentices in charge, these apprentices have accidently released one of the crystals and now hordes of enemies march towards them to liberate the other while our mini heroes much prepare to withstand them.
The game is a excellent mix of tower defence and action role playing. Each level has five waves of enemies (though some have boss battles thrown in) with each wave being spilt into a build and battle phase. The build phase allows the defender to erect towers and prepare defences which depending on difficulty is either timed or limitless. The combat phase see’s these defences put to the test to see as well as let the character let loose with a barrage of weapons on the mobs of orcs, goblins, dark elves and wyverns.
You get to choose between four classes (Squire, Apprentice, Huntress and Monk), each has their own series of towers and traps, weapons and abilities. A great aspect to this is the game is it allows you to change between these character types which make the building phase exciting as you experiment with different combos for maximum damage, though you can’t change between characters during the combat phase of the levels. With each kill that you or your contraptions gets, make you gain both experience and mana. Experience is used to level your character up and improve their stats or the stats of their beloved deathtraps, while mana is the games currency and is used in building/repairing of defences, purchasing new equipment and for the use of special abilities. In-between levels you can return to your tavern which acts as the games hub so you can sell/buy equipment, replay previous levels and well …. take in the sights and enjoy a cask of ale.
Combat is pretty solid as you are spilt between melee (Squire and Monk) and ranged (Huntress and apprentice) attacks. One problem I encountered at times was the game wouldn’t target an enemy whilst up close, and I noticed at times enemies wouldn’t take damage from my towers but could deal damage out to them. Overall these incidents were few and the flow of combat never suffered because of it.
The visuals of Dungeon Defenders is pretty and has a very cool cartoony vibe, which I love. The settings for each level are interesting and detailed with each level splashed with vibrant colours, this makes them aesthetically great to look at. The character designs are cartoony but complement the overall feel of the game, which doesn’t takes itself too seriously.
Dungeon Defenders is a great game with a solid gameplay, this is a game for people who enjoy their tower defence games and is an excellent addition to your game library. It can also be very challenging, with five difficulty settings which each vamp up dramatically and will easily overwhelm you if your not prepared. Plus the additional challenges and replayability of the levels makes this a great game to sink some hours into …. then some more!!