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When you think of real-time strategy games, you think of the PC market. Not that it’s a bad thing, but when I think of these types of games, I think of keyboard and mouse controls. For a while, the genre was stuck on PC, due to the controls on console controllers. That was, unless you worked around the controls. This has happened before with games like the ever-amazingPikmin franchise. Brutal Legend, while still clunky was also a valiant effort in terms of the RTS genre. That is why I was excited to see Dungeons II make it to the PlayStation 4. I contacted the developer, got a review copy, and found myself really enjoying this game on the PlayStation 4. Sure, there are a few clunky elements, but if you love games like the oldDungeon Keeper games, then you will fall head over heels for this game.
The main goal of Dungeon II is to go through different missions, building up your dungeon with loot, traps, guards, and special rooms, and then once you obtain enough to take over a small town, you venture out of your dungeon, and take down those goody-two-shoes that put you into the ground in the first place. You are essentially playing a real-time-strategy game mixed with a Sim City-style building mechanic, where you expand your dungeon with a floating evil hand. Throughout the game, you will gain little goblin creatures that will act as your servants as they break down different blocks to open up new rooms. So, you got servants, but what about minions that can take down the heroic individuals that want you taken down? Well, you get a vast array of monsters like orcs, snake people, and tech-savvy goblins, to name a few. You will need to manage your resources to build new rooms, traps, and ways to keep your army strong, drunk, and ready to beat down on some good guys! As you build up your rep and army, you will also be able to use magical spells, and gain special unit types that can give your army special abilities. The overall experience will take you about 15 addictive hours, and that’s not counting the multiplayer mode.
Dungeons II runs on the Unity engine, and it uses pretty cartoony graphics. Think of pre-World of Warcraft Blizzard games like Warcraft 3. It looks great with also a bit of visual reference to the Overlord games. It also has a great sense of humor with the narrator and the world they have built that is similar in tone to something like Shrek. The music is also very similar to something like Shrek or the Overlord series, with grand scale fantasy music that fits within the game’s quirky world.
If I had to complain about a few elements of the game, it’s easy to make it hard to pick out certain units to deploy first when you are attacking the enemy. What I usually do is simply send out the large group, and while controlling everything in the game is done well enough, knowing how limited you are with a controller, it can still be a tiny bit overwhelming and clunky to maneuver certain menus. I also experienced some slowdown when opening up huge areas in the dungeon.
Overall, Dungeons II is a great game, and a great port to the PlayStation 4. If you love strategy games, and are not a PC gamer kind of individual, then you should definitely pick this game up. It not only shows the great use of the Unity engine, but it’s also a great example alongsidePikmin and Prison Architect, in terms of how to port these games to consoles. If you are interested, you can get it for the PlayStation 4 and PC. Just sit back, and enjoy slapping some goblins!
This game gets an 8 out of 10