In Dungeons 4, step into the shoes of the Absolute Evil, a conqueror who has dominated most of the Overworld. As the forces of good unexpectedly fight back, the Bone Crushing Unstoppable Evil finds itself struggling to destroy the last city standing. In an effort to destroy all remaining forces of Good, this real-time strategy game puts you in control of building and managing a dungeon. Protect your precious Dungeon Heart from outsiders with traps and units, and then send your army to defeat the goodie-two-shoes in the Overworld. Now let’s chip our way into my completely honest review, and thank you to Kalypso Media for the free game!
Dungeons 4 Goes Bigger and Better
The overall theme of defeating heroes is still the main goal, but Dungeons 4 keeps the gameplay fresh. Since each mission introduces a new objective or extra ability, Dungeons 4 tries its best to prevent the staggering feeling of repetition. The dungeon map is 4x larger from the previous installments, and the addition of Dwarves battling for resources adds an extra layer of complexity. The overall variety of what you find in the dungeon enhances the discovery aspect of gameplay. I quite frankly enjoy mining every inch of the dungeon in every mission.
Strategic Development with 4 Factions
Controlling up to four factions in the dungeon brings a wealth of strategic development. With the Dungeon faction, the player will utilize mischievous creatures called Little Snots to mine resources and maintain your dungeon. Snots harness Gold, Evilness, Mana, and Artifacts essential for upgrading your empire. This faction also influences the use and damage of traps. However, Dungeons 4 falls short in trap variety (at first). Until you reach mission 10, there are only four simple and three advanced traps. Not to mention only two of the seven traps are wall traps which is a complete buzzkill.
Autonomy of Little Snots: A Gameplay Highlight
I want to highlight how out of the entire Dungeons series, Dungeons 4 has done extremely well in the autonomy of the Little Snots. You can basically request over 20 things for the Snots to do, and they effectively do it in the same order as requested. Along with repairing all equipment damaged by enemy forces, Snots do all of these things automatically without an extra manual input from the player. This is very nice compared to previous games that required a lot of manual intervention.
Dungeons 4 Military Factions
Despite controlling three military factions, most missions push players to primarily level up only one, limiting freedom in playstyle. This design may benefit newcomers to Dungeons 4 but can be restricting for seasoned players seeking more strategic diversity. The Horde, the Demons, and the Undead consist of 4 units each. All three factions have simple units for melee and ranged fighters. The resource management for each faction is a little different though.
The Horde Faction Dynamics
Like previous installments, The Horde units are the same in Dungeons 4 with goblins, orcs, nagas, and gnomes. They are permanently gone on death, but they are the cheapest units to spend your gold on. Their unique quirk is upon reaching level 7, the unit will automatically transform into a Champion. I won’t spoil it for you, but it’s pretty awesome to see what they change into at level 7. From my experience, The Horde is the middle ground for combat. Big tanky orcs will survive even the most brutal battles, but overall The Horde does very little damage output compared to the other two factions. Great faction for guarding your dungeon.
The Demons Faction Dynamics
Demons in Dungeons 4 are fire-breathing creatures who are immune to fire (great for lava environments). All 4 units are 666 gold which is hilarious. If killed by the forces of good, they are resurrected at a Portal for the cost of Evilness. If no Portal room exists in the Dungeon, the Demon is lost forever. Demons have high damage output, but every unit is squishy and easy to kill. Another benefit is they automatically heal outside of combat.
The Undead Faction Dynamics
The Undead in Dungeons 4 are bone-chilling monsters like wraiths, skeletons, and vampire queens. Although these units are the most expensive to buy in gold, they will resurrect from death in a graveyard. Every unit also has the ability to summon up to 2 minions to fight alongside them. The Undead faction is relentless at aggressive assaults on the heroes. Personally, it’s my favorite class to use, but building them up requires massive amounts of resources.
Dungeons 4 is Sarcastic and Over the Top
The game’s lighthearted tone, coupled with references to epic entertainment like Star Wars and Lord of the Rings, adds charming humor. For example, story elements in Dungeons 4 were heavily inspired by the Infinity Gauntlet in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and Grogu in Mandalorian. Sarcastic banter between characters is extremely over the top, so you’ll either find this obnoxiously funny or dreadfully overbearing. The narrator is very talkative as well. The good news is there is a setting to limit how much he talks if you are annoyed by him.
While not ultra-realistic, the graphics maintain the charming aesthetic of Dungeons 3, with slight visual updates. Smooth hotkeys and buttons contribute to a fluid gaming experience. Online co-op can be played through the entire campaign. As you complete special objectives within each mission, you unlock skills for your Lieutenant Thalya. You may equip up to 3 skills per mission and can replay older missions for extra advantages. If you grow tired of story mode, five scenarios are available, including an endless dungeon mode.
Dungeons 4 Wrap Up
Dungeons 4 presents an expanded and engaging experience for fans of the series and newcomers alike. The game successfully builds upon its predecessors, introducing larger maps, and an improved autonomy system for the Little Snots. While the trap variety falls short of expectations, the gameplay remains dynamic and fresh, thanks to diverse mission objectives and additional abilities to unlock. While some aspects could have been more diversified, Dungeons 4 succeeds in delivering an entertaining and immersive real-time strategy experience. Whether you’re a fan of the series or a newcomer to the dungeon-building genre, Dungeons 4 is a worthy option to add to your gaming backlog!
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