‘Dice equipment management’ might not be a phrase that ignites your passion for turn-based roguelikes, but it does accurately describe Terry Cavanagh’s latest game. Don’t be fooled though: Dicey Dungeons is still in alpha, but it’s already a blast.
Update 0.11 landed last night, introducing new art from Marlowe Dobbe and new music from Chipzel. You might remember Chipzel from Super Hexagon, a previous game by Cavanagh that I found hard to stop playing for entirely different reasons – apart from the music. As of this update you’ll need to pay if you want access to the latest version, but you can still play the builds from the pre-Chipzel era for free. You might not want to though, after bopping your head to the trailer below.
It’s a deliciously simple formula. On each turn you roll dice, then slot those dice into your equipment. Strategies start off basic and never reach the complexity of Slay The Spire, with which the game shares much of its DNA, but I still wind up putting serious thought into how to bodge my dice around to dish out damage while keeping myself alive.
Here are the patch notes, though they’re fairly bare bones. Basically: new art! New music! New Korean and German translations! Less stuff!
As Cavanagh explains, “the Robot and the Witch still need to be implemented in the new engine, and the editor currently isn’t working”. Those characters will be back soon, although they may or may not appear in the next two weeks – Cavanagh and his team have been pushing out fortnightly updates up till this point in the project, but have abandoned the strict schedule now that they’re “nearing the end”.
This is the first build I’ve played since the first one, so I’ve been having a merry time playing with revamped versions of the characters I already knew. I had a great run with the warrior last night, who plays more than a little like his counterpart in Slay The Spire. He’s very much a starter character. While the thief and inventor get up to tricks like stealing their opponent’s equipment or scrapping and reinventing their own, the warrior mostly just hits things real hard. The highlight of my (victorious!) run last night was when I realised I could swap out my fiddly dice-manipulating equipment in order to charge in with two shields and a broadsword.
You can pick up this build and all future builds of Dicey Dungeons on Itch.io for $7.50/£7.15.