Welcome to the Indie Highlight, six-sided adventurers! This week, we delve into the depths of the Dicey Dungeons, presented by Lady Luck herself! Will any of our six brave contestants be able to make their way out and claim the ultimate prize? You’ll have to tune in to find out!
Release Date: August 13, 2019
Roll, Slash, Cast, Defend!
Each contestant’s journey starts with quite the surprise; they all get turned into dice! Worry not, however, as our cube-shaped companions are more than prepared to fight their way through the colorful levels set before them. Navigating said levels is quite simple; click on the thing you want to interact with. If a monster is blocking your path, you have to defeat it before you can move past it. Other things in the simple overworld include apples to restore health, shops to purchase equipment, and anvils to upgrade equipment.
Starting a battle is just as easy; just walk into the thing you want to fight! Now it’s time to throw down, but not before you throw some dice. Combat is turn-based, and at the beginning of your turn, your character rolls a few six-sided dice. You plug these dice into your equipment to activate them. For example, putting a four into the Warrior’s sword will make it do four damage. Simple stuff, easy to figure out. Then the game starts slowly feeding you more equipment with different parameters for activation. Some can’t have numbers that are too high or too low, others require multiple dice in order to tick down an activation timer. You can block with shields, cast spells that freeze or burn, and heal yourself when the going gets tough.
Know Your Enemies
Be careful, however, as the enemy has no shortage of dice and equipment of their own! One of the best things about this game is seeing how creative each newly discovered piece of equipment is and how each new enemy uses its dice to full effect. One enemy only rolls one die but splits into many smaller dice, then barrages you with multiple attacks! Another might have a very long countdown, but once zero is reached, a mighty attack cuts your health bar down to almost nothing! Figuring out how to best use your own equipment to counteract the opponents’ is immensely satisfying.
Roll 6d6 For New Friends!
Starting a game of Dicey Dungeons isn’t as simple as choosing a character, and that’s a good thing. Each character not only has access to different equipment at the start of the game but also has entirely different playstyles and abilities from the other characters.
The Warrior is the easiest to grasp, starting with some basic equipment and a simple reroll ability that can be used to try and change dice into numbers you want. The Robot is a little trickier to play, as they don’t actually roll dice right away. Instead, you play a blackjack minigame, rolling dice until you feel comfortable stopping, hit the jackpot, or go over and completely fry your equipment for the turn. The Witch is on the complicated side, tasking you with building your own spellbook that you must activate mid-fight in order to use what is inside. Learning each character is a blast, and once they really click, then you’re slinging dice like it’s your job.
Each character also has their own set of “episodes” once you beat a normal playthrough with them. This is where replayability shows its true colors, as these challenge runs add new ways to play with the same characters. Start with different equipment and afflictions, fight stronger enemies with better equipment, or even change the rules of the game entirely, it’s all there to further test your dice dealing skills. These episodes give you many a good reason to play the same character over and over.
Lady Luck Is A Lovely Lass
Before a player even gets to play the game, they might first notice the charm that drips off like the sweetest of syrups. The art is bright and stylized, bringing life to each and every one of the dungeon’s residents. The game doesn’t take anything too seriously, something that’s a bit of a refresher after most roguelikes take the dark and gritty path with their art.
Your opponents are not your typical dungeon dwellers, as this is no typical dungeon. Slimes in ice cream cones and annoyed-looking druids with slingshots are some of the more normal-looking enemies you’ll fight. Then things get thrown off the rails when you fight things like a space marine, a literal stereohead, and a porcupine that won’t stop sneezing.
The writing, what little there is, is witty and lends a little personality to the foes that you face. Look forward to fighting the frog with a giant sword who complains that his sword is, somehow, not nearly big enough. A majority of the dialogue comes from the host of the show, Lady Luck, who interviews each contestant before they descend into a new level. The banter is great, as each contestant is eager to beat the dungeon and claim the big prize; one wish granted by Lady Luck herself! While some dungeoneers may not have the most ambitious of wishes (looking at you, Witch), they certainly ooze personality, just another thing that adds to the overall personality of the game.
Do You Dare to Discover the Depths of the Dungeon?
Dicey Dungeons challenges its players to throw themselves into each new game with enthusiasm, whether that’s from trying a new character, a new type of game mode, or trying the same thing over again with a different strategy in mind. Even if you fail, starting a new game is fast, getting you right back into the action to take another crack at it. A run from start to finish averages around half an hour, so no need to worry about making a lot of progress and then losing it all. If this sounds like your cup of tea, then roll up a character and join in on the fun!
Have you played Dicey Dungeons, either before or after reading this article? Let me know what you think of the game in the comments! My most successful character so far has been the Warrior, but the Witch is my favorite mechanics-wise. What are your favorite characters to play as?