Sketchy Adventures: Guild Of Dungeoneering

If you spent any portion of your childhood doodling dungeons onto graph paper then Guild of Dungeoneering [official site] screenshots probably make you go ‘coo’ and ‘awwww’ in the same way that most of the internet responds to pictures of a pug riding a tricycle. Released yesterday, GoD is a dungeon-crawler in which you control the dungeons rather than the invading heroes. Well, strictly speaking you control the titular guild, upgrading facilities and recruiting new classes of combatant, then arranging the tiles of each dungeon to ensure your employees survive as you lure them ever deeper.

I spent half an hour with GoD last night. It’s an odd game and there are certain concepts that I failed to grasp immediately, which hindered my enjoyment somewhat. The most notable is the lack of individual characters. Each trip to the dungeons is a self-contained incident and none of the equipment/skills that a hero gathers during a quest stay with that hero. That’s because the heroes are simply representatives of each class that you’ve unlocked, so they can’t die, level up or change in any way.

Essentially, each class that you unlock gives you an unlimited supply of level one characters in that class, and each quest utilises one of those starter characters. When they complete the quest, they reset and next time out, they start from scratch again. It’s confusing because you’re allowed to give the hero a name when you unlock a new class, even though they’re not actually individuals.

The guild itself is your real central character. You upgrade its rooms to unlock new classes and whatnot, which gives you new cards to use in battle or during dungeon construction. There are similarities to Card Hunter, in that combat sees both participants playing cards from a hand that is based on their equipment and skillset. Aside from the initial charm of the graph paper dungeons, GoD hasn’t gripped me in the same way that Card Hunter’s faux-RPG did.

I may take another look – all the ingredients for something I’d enjoy are there – but for now consider this a short note pointing out some peculiarities (and the release) rather than a set of impressions.

6 Comments

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    JiminyJickers says:

    A lot of people are reviewing it as being very repetitive and gets boring fast. I like the concept of the game but a demo would help me decide if it is worth it. It if is too basic, then I’m not so keen.

  2. Unsheep says:

    This is the kind of innovation the Fantasy game genre needs, instead of copying games I played 15+ years ago. Most indie games are quite casual to me, I only play them once a week or so, and for that this game looks fun.

  3. RCoon says:

    Gah, I’ve got this to review next week, although while Gambrinous said I’d receive my press key a week ago, Vs Evil have yet to email it over.

    I was really looking forward to it. It looked super promising, but the fact that nothing is persistent almost ruins half the point of playing.

  4. Fuzzyaardvark says:

    As a long-time lurker on this site I have this game to thank for finally making me register.

    I have lots of games that I can sit down and lose hours to, but I have been looking for something to scratch that short session itch. So far this game has been perfect for that. It is fun, and has a great soundtrack ( I seriously love the soundtrack). But so far I only have two and a half hours into it, so I obviously cannot comment on long term appeal.

    As it stands right now though, I am having a great time with it.

  5. tumbleworld says:

    Cardhunter kinda spat me out with its repetitiveness. I’m worried this might do the same. Holding off, for now.

  6. RayEllis says:

    I found it too repetitive. Essentially, once you’ve started up the game and done the first dungeon, you’ve seen all that it has to offer.

    Or at least, I think so. It may be that later dungeons get more interesting/cards get more involved and complex, but my ADD didn’t like having to redo everything from scratch with each new dungeon and thus, my interest in persevering was not piqued. If the game had a character progression model within it, I’d think much. much more of it. As it stands now it is a very simplistic (although very well put together!) and repetitive time waster.

    Ultimately, it really should be a tablet game – something to while away the minutes whilst waiting for your dental appointment – not a full blown PC game. Because it isn’t a full blown game. It is an RPG-light affair. There is some depth to the strategy, but nothing major. However, there are only so many times you can weigh up the pros and cons of wearing a paper crown vs. steel skullcap before you cease to care which is best and just want the dungeon to be over.

    If they bring out an android, or iOS version, I’d get it, purely for that dentist appointment time waster I mentioned above. But as a game with anything other than casual drop in/drop out appeal, it isn’t worth it.