DungeonScript is a simple browser tool for building dungeon crawlers

If you are reading this now, you could instead be making your own dungeon crawler. That’s the magic of DungeonScript [official site], a fairly simple browser-based game-making tool intended for first-person dungeon crawlers. After a little studying, you could be making your own dungeon crawlers and sharing them online for us all to play. DungeonScript is an adaptation of PuzzleScript, the puzzle-making tool from Stephen’s Sausage Roll creator increpare. PuzzleScript’s simple tools and easy sharing have given us some fun games (and many more we haven’t covered) as well as being used to prototype other games so fingers crossed for some good dungeoning.

DungeonScript overlord (and Captain Forever creator) Farbs explains its origins:

“The other day Blue Manchu’s Jon mentioned he wouldn’t know where to start designing a Dungeon Master style game. That got me wondering how I’d start designing a Dungeon Master style game, and what tools I’d use. Immediately I thought of increpare’s very wonderful PuzzleScript, which is great for turn and grid based puzzle game development, but, like, in first person. That’d be really cool, I thought. If only PuzzleScript would draw in first person.

“So that’s what DungeonScript is. It’s PuzzleScript in first person.

“What’s most wonderful about PuzzleScript, and therefore also DungeonScript, is that you can build and share an entire game using just the editor webpage screenshotted above. Everything from the art to the audio to the game logic sits in one simple text file, and there’s a share button right there on the screen. Some fantastic games have come out of PuzzleScript, and I’m hoping people will use DungeonScript to create crazy new worlds for us to explore.”

As an example, here, Farbs put out a DungeonScript version of Dungeon Janitor, a game he created in PuzzleScript. I hate cleaning up after this damn slime.

Hit the DungeonScript site to get started making your own things, and don’t forget the documentation. The editor also offers the source to a few games as examples so you can figure out what they’re up to.

It’s also totally cool if you don’t want to. I don’t buy the idea that “everyone should learn to code”, which The Establishment seem so keen to promote. That seems pretty low-priority for a society when so many cannot make a good cup of tea (bag, water, steep, THEN MILK oh my god why would you put milk in first please dispose of this weak brew I’ve gone right off it). And I know that learning is never as easy as the Illuminati technomancers would have us believe. It’s peachy if you simply want to crawl the dungeons other people create.

Disclosure: I know increpare a bit through his flatmate. I don’t believe I’ve sampled his tea so I couldn’t tell you whether he’s to be trusted. Milkfirsters are everywhere, and you don’t know until it’s too late.


  1. Premium User Badge

    Drib says:

    My mother is an assistant teacher for kindergarten students. That’s age 5 or 6 in America.

    They had a day recently to teach code to the kids. Granted, it was more like the idea of logical progression, rather than code, exactly. But it was this idea that everyone needs to learn code. The higher grades actually worked with pseudo code.

    I also disagree that this is worthwhile.

    Anyway though, this thing looks neat. Maybe a fun weekend project to make a dumb little dungeon crawler, for personal amusement. Like the dumb little infinite runner I made in PICO-8 when I heard about that thing.

    Edit: As an American, I scoff at your silly tea shenanigans. But on the rare occasions I have milk in my coffee, I put the milk in the cup first.

    • tentacle says:

      Not everyone needs to learn to code but the basics, ie logic, functions, variables, etc are very useful concepts well outside of coding, even outside of IT.

      And you lost me at bags. Tea is made from leaves. Bags shmags.

      • Premium User Badge

        Drib says:

        Learning logic is good, yeah. I just think pitching it as past of ‘code’ isn’t the best way to go about it, I guess.

        Variables and arguably functions, you get that in algebra. That’s required curriculum I think.

        But yeah, maybe there’s some professional concern there too. I don’t want it to be even harder to find work as I age.

        • April March says:

          I dunno. I think teaching kids how code works in an informational society is as important as teaching everyone what a crankshaft is in a society where we expect everyone to drive cars. Even more so, because few cars are capable of spying on their drivers without their knowledge (the drivers’, not the cars’, though perhaps the car is an ignorant patsy).

        • RQH says:

          I think it’s also valuable to expose kids to the idea that coding is something they could learn and do. Not everyone grows up in a household with a lot of technology or with people who are very technically literate. One way of looking at a intro to coding workshop for younger kids isn’t “Everyone has to learn to code,” but “You, too, could learn to do this if you wanted!”

          And even for those who grow up with a lot of technology, a little exposure to what makes that technology work is no more a waste of time than learning algebra or grade-school biology.

  2. laggyluk says:

    Why would you even put milk in there in the first place?

    • dethtoll says:

      Being friends with a lot of Brits I am struck every day by the cultural differences. The Brit obsession with tea, predictable enough that the power company can set their watches to it, is one thing — I think it’s been normalized enough in American culture that while we don’t ourselves have teatime we don’t particularly find the British custom puzzling — but other things, such as the whole egg-cup thing, are absolutely baffling. Like, I get that you use them for “soft-boiled eggs” but THAT JUST RAISES EVEN MORE QUESTIONS

      • Vurogj says:

        Being raised on weak tea means we lack the strength to dip our soldiers into hard-boiled eggs. Adopt, adapt and improve, soft-boiled eggs is the answer!

      • wombat191 says:

        what egg cup thing?
        *quickly googles* americans dont use egg cups? what is wrong with you people

      • SoundDust says:

        An egg cup is for keeping your egg nicely upright on a table, regardless of how it’s boiled. Eggs don’t belong on plates.

  3. Gravy100 says:

    “Milkfirsters are everywhere, and you don’t know until it’s too latte”

    Fixed that for you…

  4. Kaeoschassis says:

    Sounds good, I should check this out. Always wanted to try my hand at that specific genre, never had the time to sit down and figure out where to start. Thanks for bringing this to our attention!

    Really though, people actually put the milk in first? That’s easily the most horrible revelation I’ve had in at least two days, jeez…

    • phlebas says:

      Generally putting milk in first is a thing (some) people do if they’d made a pot of tea – you put milk in the cup then tea from the pot. It’s considered a bit infra, but not catastrophic in the same way as adding milk while the tea is still brewing.

      The latter is something I’ve only encountered when buying a cup of tea to take away – they want to serve everything up at once and move on to the next customer, so they administer milk at the same time resulting in a lower temperature and inferior tea.

      I don’t take milk myself.

      Still, this dungeon script thing looks quite exciting, eh? Hopefully it’ll be an enabling thing like puzzlescript has been, and we’ll see lots of quirky little free dungeony games.

  5. MajorLag says:

    I tried to prototype something in PuzzleScript once, but the documentation was kinda lacking, and between that and the strangeness (to me anyway) of the syntax it was turning out to be more work than just banging up something in JavaFX. Which is saying something.

    This looks pretty neat though, maybe I’ll try it out again.

  6. Phasma Felis says:

    As a programmer, I’m torn between “everyone should learn to code, yeah!” and “…the tech companies are only pushing for this because they want a labor glut to drive wages down.”

    Also, I’m American and even I know you steep the tea before adding milk. What the hell, people?

    • Chiron says:

      Milk before pouring is a relic of the days when crap pottery was used for tea cups placing the tea directly in the cup could cause the cup to shatter. The milk cooled the poured tea enough to ensure you didn’t get wet feet.

      Of course putting your tea bag in the milk and then pouring hot water over it is, always has been, and always will be, wrong on a very fundamental level and worth being strung up over.

  7. wombat191 says:

    awww reminds me of the first crpg i played..it was a text based dungeon crawl you typed out from a magazine.. 2500 lines of basic on the amstrad :D

  8. SoundDust says:

    All this sounds like, more than a dungeon crawler, we need a game about making a Proper Cup of Tea.

  9. BillyOceansBlues says:

    I would make sure to add the caveat: This is probably not a great tool to make a “dungeon crawler” in even the simplest sense. The assumption is that there would be some kind of combat, some way to receive (you can technically rig it to appear to dole out one-hit kill) damage. You can create a situation where the level is “failed” and make that look like dying, but it would be a stretch. Obviously no equipment or stats or anything like that. This is just a robust sokoban tool rendered in 3D. Great way to learn something akin to code, NOT a way to make any kind of (even super-simple) role playing game.

  10. disconnect says:

    1. Putting the milk in first is an entirely legitimate way of making a cup of tea cos you know exactly how much milk is going in, then you drop the bag in (Yorkshire Gold, no fucking about thank you), fill it up with water, wait a few minutes, mash the teabag with a spoon and then chuck it. It’s a piece of piss mate.

    2. Learning to program can be fun for sure but I’d say that for a decent proportion of working adults the best computer-related thing you can do is get to grips with basic Excel formulae, honestly, all the cool shit I can do with PHP or Lua earns me shit-all in comparison to my low-level (but quite advanced compared to my colleagues) knowledge of VLOOKUP etc. You want your child to get ahead? Sit them in front of a spreadsheet and force them to learn pivot tables n that. They’ll thank you later.