Monsters' Den Chronicles has come to save you from the grips of boredom and misfortune! Go, worthy knave, and crawl through some dungeon! The adventurous at heart will be thrilled to see Monstrum Games has released the sequel to their very popular Monsters' Den: Book of Dread, and this installment leads the dungeon crawler RPG turn-based strategy pack. If you're looking for a brief respite from your own waiting, for whatever it may be, I'd recommend taking a jaunt into this enchanting tale of heroes.
Starting a campaign requires you to choose four out of ten characters. There are five different classes and two separate specializations of that class. However you set up your party, navigation and adventuring is still a snap. Just click around on the various rooms to advance. If there is a room connected to the one you're, in it will be revealed and you'll discover some villainous group, gold, a treasure chest, or a much needed restoration shrine. But... probably monsters. It's not like the game is called "Accountant's Den" or "Bunny Rabbit Chronicles".
During battle you'll choose the placement of your four fighters, range being more proficient when in the back and melee being effective toward the front. Each player starts with three basic moves. Some are actual attacks, and others are defensive boosts to different powers. If your attack requires mana, you'll be glad to know it regenerates over time... faster depending on what you have equipped. Each character gets three different auras to choose from and the aura is available to be changed with each new turn. Pick wisely based on how many foes are on the field, what their health is, and which move you plan to use to defeat them. You can choose between four levels of difficulty and you even have the choice of choosing the penalty for losing a battle. Word to the wise, it's more convenient in the long run to lose items than it is to lose experience... especially when playing in any mode higher than beginner.
As you gain experience and level up, at the bottom right of your screen your characters will have small up arrows on their portraits. Click on these to bring up the three different spells you can choose from to add to their repertoire as well as adding points to talents like intellect or dexterity. At the bottom left of your screen you have character, inventory, emporium, achievement, and options buttons. Use the character button to view your players' armor and switch it out with that which you've acquired and stored in your inventory. In the emporium you can buy and sell items, though once you run out you have to spend your gold on research to restock items. This is especially necessary with potions.
Chronicles is refreshing in the fact that it's one of those sequels that doesn't conform to the idea that being exactly the same as the original is a good decision. While the game carries over many of the good qualities of the first game, it also improves itself with new features like fully viewed characters, more character options, sleeker dungeons, new spells and abilities, and even a more efficient inventory and store. If you're a good strategist and you've built your team with precision then you will have less issues defeating the enemy as you delve further into the dungeons, but it still won't be some simple task.
This game isn't a stroll in the forest where you're the monsters you encounter are little blobs to be knocked over in one hit. That's part of the greatest appeal of the game. You actually need to think and pay attention to the abilities your four champions bring to the table. Should you choose a cleric, a mage, a warrior, and a ranger? And if you do, which specializations of those should you pick to benefit your battle plans? Whether you're supposed to be doing something or you've got time to spare, you'll find yourself glued to your computer screen battling skeletal guards and trying to get proof of cultist activities. Go forth and, to put it simply, destroy!