DungeonUp


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Rating: 3.8/5 (34 votes)
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dungeonup

Lori.hTerrible evil lurks beneath the dwarven hall. Lucky for our hero all he had to do was go warn them about this. Unlucky for him, dwarves are stubborn, judgmental creatures and refused to listen and somehow managed to release this unspeakable evil in the meantime. While luck may not be on his side it certainly is for us as we get to play this grand adventure and strategic dungeon crawl. The online demo of Clewcat's DungeonUp is packed with content enough to stand on its own, with thirty playable floors, and multiple boss battles, it will give a good hour or two of hack'n'slash, puzzles, and general dungeony stuff. Collect colorful keys to open the corresponding doors to advance forward to slay evil. But there are more doors than keys and different pathways to chose. You're going to need your wits about you to get through this game alive. With procedurally generated levels, starting over could actually be more fun.

dungeonupDungeonUp is a lot more strategy than action based as you'll know the outcome of any fight before you even get into it. Each floor is a maze of doors with a limited number of keys, and the trick is to plan your route, decide what is needed to be gathered first, and what you should go back for later. Upgrades can be bought at special statues, and after you have gathered up enough soul stones, which are given to you by killing a boss, you can purchase new items to help you along your way. The soul stones stick with your character, so even if you have to restart if your plan fails, they stay with you until you spend them. It's a shame to say, though, that this very addicting game has some flaws. The key-to-door-ratio seems to be off, with some users feeling it's impossible on harder difficulties because of it, though on "casual" you gain a yellow key after a minute of using your last one. So get ready to wait, because you'll never have enough keys. The game is very fluid though, and a lot of other frustrations are done away with, such as skipping through battles, the ease of alternating between the mouse and the keyboard, and you don't have a max health so you never waste health potions. Despite the lack of needed keys, DungeonUp is a solid dungeon crawler that will make you want to go back for more. Try out the free demo at the very least if you dare risk the of chance of becoming an addict.

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22 Comments

Reminds me of The Enchanted Cave. There are some clear differences here, but nothing innovative or interesting.

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This is actually more like DROD: Tendry's Tale, which is based on an older game that I can't remember the name of. The Enchanted Cave was not balanced around being solvable your first life in the slightest despite the superficial resemblance (you got upgrades to your character on death) whereas here you really are intended to puzzle things out instead of bashing your face against the monsters until you outlevel them.

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This is supposed to remind you of a game called Tower of Sorcerer, which is what this game is based from, but using Onyx's 16-bit sprite set.

But yes, this is a game where the emphasis is on actually figuring things out and using your brains instead of grinding: in fact, you get NOTHING other than money from killing monsters, and while upgrades at the statues start off cheap, as Rouge says, it exponentially grows for ANY upgrade cumulatively and becomes impractical to money-grind (because monsters do NOT respawn unless you use a one-use item). Combined with the fact that items also do NOT respawn, and you realize that it is detrimental to kill every monster in the higher floors.

The only thing you can grind is Soul Stones. Which you can spend to get late game artifacts much earlier, and makes early-game a complete breeze. However, they do not help in trying to beat the full-version final boss, which I'm still struggling to figure out. For 5 months. Not to mention the true final boss which requires you to figure out secrets for either.

Pretty fun game, thanks for finally reviewing it :)

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Can anyone give any hints or tips as to how to find the secret passages?

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I remember beating The Enchanted Cave on my second life...

While it is true that this game is supposed to not be about grinding, the difference between one and two lives is not a significant gameplay difference. TEC was not about grinding either, unless you were a poor player. Just like Candy Box.

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Fun... not 10 dollars fun (which I didn't realize was coming when I got that far)... but fun.

I mighta thrown a few bucks.

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I completely agree. It is a very overpriced :( For 1-2$ I would gladly buy. But for 10$ we can get many huge games in any bundle sale...

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I greatly preferred The Enchanted Cave to this game. They key mechanic is a good addition, but it was overused. There are way, way too many meaningless doors, and it's too easy to get permanently stuck. You also don't get a feeling of constant progression, which is key in quasi-roguelikes.

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Twinkie23 Author Profile Page September 2, 2014 8:29 PM replied to Anon

Has anyone actually played this game through? I'm unable to find a walkthrough (or even just hints/tips) online anywhere - I've reached the final boss but I'm still missing some key ingredients for being able to defeat him. Any help at all in how to acquire

The Wand of Freezing

would be greatly appreciated!

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onlyredflowers Author Profile Page September 2, 2014 11:37 PM replied to Twinkie23

@Twinkie23

Hint 1

Have you talked to all the Elders in the fire zone?

Hint 2

One of the Elders wants you to think carefully about what a Scroll of Depth might be good for.

Hint 3

A Scroll of Height will take you up one level, say from -5 to -4. But what's the good of a Scroll of Depth to go back down to levels you've already visited?

Hint 4

On what level could you go backwards and see something you haven't seen before?

Solution

Find the Scroll of Depth in the fire levels. Go back to level -49 and use the scroll. You will find yourself in a chamber with a dragon. Defeat the dragon and you will receive the Wand of Freezing.

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onlyredflowers Author Profile Page September 2, 2014 11:40 PM replied to Twinkie23

I also am in need of some help in beating the final boss.

I think you need to get the

Fire Sword that the Dwarven smith mentions.

However, I only have

1 shard from beating the dragon on level -50.

Does anyone know where I can find

other shards so that the Dwarven smith will make me the super-awesome Fire Sword?

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@onlyredflowers,

Thanks for the hints - I actually used the scroll of depth to go to

level 17 from a start point of level 16 - you'll notice it's missing from the list you open up when you use the Wand of Flight

, never occurred to me to do what you recommended.

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Any idea what to do if you run out of keys? Do you just die and start over? Is there anyway to get keys?

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Twinkie23 Author Profile Page September 3, 2014 2:06 PM replied to onlyredflowers

@onlyredflowers,

Thanks for the hints - I actually used the scroll of depth to go to

level 17 from a start point of level 16 - you'll notice it's missing from the list you open up when you use the Wand of Flight

. While there, I asked

the genie all three possible questions you're allowed to ask and got (I think) all 3 results, but I was never given a shard of the Fire Sword. I think you're supposed to kill the genie but I never have anywhere near enough health to get out of that battle alive, and once you start fighting him you must fight him to the death.

For some reason I feel like the Wand of Freezing should be retrievable BEFORE you go to

level 50 to battle the dragon

since you can't get the Dragon Slayer glove until you've frozen the lava and you'd think that would be a helpful weapon to have... but I still have no idea how to do that. Gah!

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Twinkie23 Author Profile Page September 3, 2014 2:08 PM replied to onlyredflowers

@Maude Buttons - I've been playing in Casual Mode where you get a free yellow key in 60 seconds if you run out - honestly I can't imagine playing this game in a harder mode, it's frustrating enough without the free keys! :)

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@onlyredflowers OK I know I'm posting way too much now but I just realized I misread your post and didn't notice that

you already told you me gain the Wand of Freezing after fight the level 50 dragon

- I ended up using 2 teleport scrolls to get the Dragon Slayer :)

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steamfly7 Author Profile Page September 5, 2014 1:19 PM replied to onlyredflowers

I think you will find

the other pieces for the fire sword on level -49, I found the broken pommel and the guard

but you will need to

dig your way to reach them ;)

If I remember correctly

they are in the upper left and right corner, you only need to dig once or twice, then secret paths will open. Unfortunately I don't remember where was the sweet spot, but I believe it was from the top right and left prison cells into those thick walls above.

Hope this helps!

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Help! How do you beat the illusionist lord?

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Yeah- help on the Illusionist Lord would be really helpful- I've already died twice trying to kill him, but he seems invisible. Also some thing cool

you can actually teleport out of that chamber with a teleport scroll, which I have done to try to level up some before I actually have to fight him.

Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks,
Engimoore

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but he seems invincible* (sorry not invisible).

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quinlan.schultz Author Profile Page November 22, 2014 2:42 PM replied to Engimoore

I had trouble with this too, but I figured it out.
Hint 1:

Remember that elder that said something like, "To pass this test you must know the formation of 5 on a die"?

Hint 2:

What does the formation of the illusionists in the boss fight remind you of?

Solution:

To weaken him, you need to kill the four illusionists directly above, below, and to the left and right of him. Leave the diagonals, and BE CAREFUL not to scare them away and out of formation. The idea is to form the die symbol meaning 5 with the Lord and his minions.

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So basically I'm screwed if I killed all of them... *sigh* Welp- there goes a soul stone.

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