359155_largerEvil's brewing, and it's up to the holy crusader and his pals to end it. Deep Dungeons of Doom [$4.99] celebrates a frequently trodden yet continuously enjoyable path with a suitably generic story and enough dry humor to keep it relevant. Wrapped in some gorgeous pixel art and animations, Bossa Studios has one satisfyingly bountiful iOS game on their hands.

Attacks, which are triggered with a tap on the right side of the screen, have a refractory period - you won't be able to mash your way to success. Attempt an attack while the ability is cooling and you'll prolong the cooldown. A tap on the left readies your guard, eliminating any damage the enemy might toss your way. Victory in each duel spurs the chest on the far side of the room to burst, spewing its contents of gold and, potentially, loot. A bottom up swipe of your finger will drag the screen up, sending your character deeper underground (and on to your next fight). Dungeon crawling without the crawling.

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Each fight presents a chance of yielding a stat point. These act as a sort of inter-dungeon leveling system. You can pump up one of four attributes as you wish, but they'll be wiped clean for the next outing. When you start from scratch every dungeon, each point strikes a significant impact. They're satisfying and immediately meaningful choices each time.

A single equipment slot receives the passives-laden gear you'll be drudging up through your adventure. Each carries its own mix of positive and negative effects, offering interesting and drastic gameplay consequences. You're encouraged to consider the mix of your character's existing aptitudes with the effects of each piece, rather than simply trading up.

It offers a rhythmic sort of pace. Attacks tune to the heartbeat of your cooldown, punctuated by preemptive blocks when your foe winds up for a blow. Each enemy type sports differing attack sequences and telegraph times, changing the melody to which you fight on each floor.

Pillaged gold acts as currency for both the item shops accessible during intermissions and a trio of upgrade lines for each character that, unlike stat points distributed mid dungeon, persist once purchased. It also serves as fodder for play-affecting IAPs, though they're easily ignored. Purchased gold acts as substitute for unnecessary dungeon farming.

Rather, Deep Dungeons of Doom takes the meth dealer's route to revenue generation: the first taste is always free. But you'll come crawling back with open purse strings when you reach the end of your dose. Consider the free download a lengthy trial period. But don't worry, it's got enough meat to sink three bucks worth of teeth into.

TouchArcade Rating

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  • James D Paterson

    I downloaded this over the weekend and have been thoroughly enjoying it, harkens back to the old days for sure.

    Excellent review.

  • http://www.silentrocco.com/ Silent Rocco

    I hate that enemy that turns me into stone. So much, that I put that great game aside for a few days.

  • Kotovsky

    Unfortunately not so delivering then pre- patched version. Current version is too hard to enjoy it.

    • Protoman

      Really? I thought it was too easy before. I suppose they could just put a difficulty setting.

      • Kotovsky

        Well, it's not easy for me ) great game but not easy. Can't figure how do you beat tentacle monster in he village, and it's frustrating that I must start it over to figure it.

  • TheFrost

    Just downloaded this one and its better than expected. Thanks!

    • TheFrost

      Forget my comment, its IAP heavy... 60€ for 50 revives says it all. Lost me as a customer.

      Developers need to realize that we have memory and will remember this kind of things for when your next games arrive. We are not stupid and compulsive buyers anymore.

      • ejfarraro

        You've gotta be kidding me.

        Did you even play the game? I cleared the first set of dungeons (the free ones) without using a single revive, oftentimes on the first try. If anything, the game is/was too easy.

        I hate this entitled attitude of iOS gamers that have this knee-jerk reaction to ANY sort of IAP in games. Yes, tons of games abuse it; this game does not seem to be one of them.

      • TheFrost

        Yes, of course I played it, did you think I say this without doing it?. Its a money trap. Believe now or regret it later.

      • Boobi

        Its clear you didn't. There is no need for revives, and your IAP hate is based on revive purchase cost. Revive is a cheat for modern kids who cannot understand that to be good at something you must master it. Revives are not needed.

      • TheFrost

        I did play it

      • Boobi

        No. You mashed some buttons and died, used all your revives, saw how much more revives cost and had a childish tantrum. You missed the complete gaming experience. Games are about the journey, trying different strategies and tactics. Take a deep breath and ignore the rives even if you have them, sure you'll get close but the skill is developing strategies and skills to conquer, no just powering through them cause you have a revive. Also you totally missed the character skills upgrade.

      • Protoman

        Totally agree with you. The only iap I found myself buying was an expansion I was more than happy purchasing. I never used a revive during the first dungeons. Even if you ran out of revives you just have to start from the beginning of the dungeon anyhow. This game doesn't force iap on you so the only reason to whine about is personal whininess.

  • ejfarraro

    Undecided on this game so far. The presentation is amazing -- really well-done sprites and animations (the heroes in particular seem styled like Swords and Sworcery, which is a beautiful game)

    Overall though, I feel like it's lacking in some strategic depth. I do like the simple 'one button' style mechanic, but I think they need to add some extra layers. I've only played the first 6 dungeons, so maybe it gets more interesting later.

    I'll probably grab the $2.99 dungeons IAP and see how it goes.

    • TheFrost

      Don't do it, spend your money on other games, this isn't worth it at all...

  • grits

    This game kicks ass. It's brilliant. I'm not sure why they added such expensive IAP options since I doubt anyone will use them and they will turn some people off at first glance. Anyway, I haven't spent anything yet and love the game. I'm sure I will buy the expansion pack. The difficulty of the game and skill involved puts it over the top for me. Love it!

    It's like punch out meets dungeon rpg.

    • grits

      Also, some of the most unique pixel art and best animations I've seen in a long time.

    • TheFrost

      1$ for 1 revive also says it all... Despicable.

      • grits

        I hear you that price is ridiculous, but you don't need to buy them. Again I'm not sure why they even included. Makes them look really bad when in fact you don't need to buy them.

      • Zentatsu

        Who cares? Do you even need it?
        Losing on a dungeon will cut the 90% of your gold you earned "within" the dungeon, its not like you'll lose everything or the game is over and you need to start over again. I'm not sure but i guess you'll get free resurrection every time you finish a dungeon for the first time, plus the 5 free tokens from the very start.

    • Benegesserit

      It would be nice if it was more Super Punch-Out!! than Punch-Out!! simply because SPO always let you get hits in if you knew how to counter hit and were fast enough. In this game you either don't do enough damage so are forced to block and interrupt your rhythm or the enemies have the fail mechanic of free immunity (zombie moose and shield soldier) and you just get to bore yourself until they are vulnerable.

      You can beat SPO fast w/o ever having to block or dodge if you are skilled enough. This game lacks that skill cap.

  • grits

    For me the challenge is beating a game like this without buying any insanely overpriced items. The game is free anyway LOL and pay 299 to unlock the whole game. If you don't like challenging games then you definitely will not like this... Unless you don't mind spending lots of money.

  • laszlo_kovacs

    While I admit the presence of expensive IAP gives a negative perception, this is not a paywall game at all.

    You get a revive token at the end of each dungeon, & you can replay the easier ones & keep getting the reward (takes probably 3-5 minutes, & you're earning a couple hundred gold as well).

    When you read this site & find a review, several comments, & many more in the forum thread that endorse the game as a non-money grabber, then you're complaining for whining's sake.

    • TheFrost

      You find it normal to buy 1 revive for 1$? Perhaps they wont get any money from you or hardcore gamers, but there is a lot of people that will fall into this trap. Im just warning people to check the IAPs.

      • Renegade

        Revives are not an integral part of the game; they just have it there as an option. And no, you're not just warning people to check the IAPs, you're simply flaming this game since it doesn't cater to you personally. If you were really warning people of the IAPs you just need to say, "don't buy revives" instead of replying to every comment on here that this game sucks just cause you can't learn to block.

    • TheFrost

      Please re-read the thread as you have gotten the wrong impression. All I can read there is: too expensive, paywalls and to a less extent, good game.

      • Renegade

        A paywall is a point in the game where you can't continue normally unless you pay money.
        There is only one point where this happens in this app.
        (the $2.99 used to unlock the whole game)

      • AndyLC

        This game costs less than McDonalds.

    • sanitymops

      Thank you. This comment has me downloading it for a spin. I'll leave me impressions on the thread.

      • TheFrost

        Please do post them

    • TheFrost

      When you reach the endless dungeon and try to compete with pay to win users you will see my point.

      • Renegade

        You can't really pay to win...
        Leader boards are based on score.
        If you use a revive it wipes your score.

      • Cheeseball

        Compete with what? When you use a Revive, your score gets erased.

    • Benegesserit

      There's a ton of grinding for gold to afford the last few tiers of altar buffs for each class.

  • TheFrost

    Okay do as you want and support this kind of games, hope you like the future you are creating

    • Talaen

      You've stated your opinion as a reply to almost every other positive post. Time to move on now, eh?

      Te game is great for a quick lit RPG pick me up on the move. I've played through the first set of free dungeons, and after a bit of a learning curve, have he rhythm of most of those monsters down well enough to farm for gold/drops.

      I like the ability to choose between carrying equipment over to the next dungeon, or store it away in the stash. This adds a nice strategic element to the game and gives farming a better purpose (especially if you build up the passively for each class differently).

      I have died numerous times and resurrected a few of those (you don't have to resurrect of course). I have not hit any pay wall yet except the completion of the free content and will likely pick up the expansion shortly. I would certainly rate 4 stars for the game, with maybe one minus due to a lack of depth in the free content (but might revise based on the experience in the paid content),

      Great game, well worth playing especially at the free entry price.

    • chlamydia

      Are you a dev making a competing title? Did this game knock you down and take your lunch money?

      Your overwhelming anger over the game and IAP in general is bewildering.

  • Blabber Flappystein

    Hey everyone, I was originally going to reply to TheFrost, but figured it'd be more constructive to just leave my own comment. While the IAP prices are certainly rather ridiculous (for the consumable items, at least, meaning coins and revives), you will never, ever have to buy them. In fact, it's a bit of a waste to use a revive since simply starting a dungeon over from the beginning gives you a good chance of receiving some kind of bonus power-up when you go back for revenge.

    Anyway, this is a fantastic game. The pixel art is beautiful, well-animated, and charming. The combat is creative and interesting, and best of all the game is free to try. Download it yourself and you'll be able to see that you do not need to use the IAPs.

    • TheFrost

      I never said the game was bad, just trying for everyone to see the IAPs before buying. Im fact I was so pissed off because the game is actually really good but relies too much on consumables. But now I am determined to finish it without buying any....

      • Blabber Flappystein

        I never said you said the game was bad either...?

      • TheFrost

        Not directed towards you

  • Benegesserit

    They need to change the enemies that have long invuln periods like the zombie moose and the soldier with the big shield. It makes those floors long and boring

  • http://www.friv3.co/ friv 3

    I am definitely bookmarking this page and sharing it with my
    friends.

  • philadendron

    So is this a rogue-like where all your progress gets wiped after each game? A la Slayin? Cuz I loved that game but I don't play anymore because I hate grinding through the first few levels every time?

  • Uberhamster

    I'm really enjoying the game but can't figure out how the secrets work! Or how to access the endless dungeon. :1

  • Bearzy

    This game is fantastic. It's free and gives you around 4 levels, if you like the game you can buy the rest for 2.99. The complaining about the revives is ridiculous. I've died several times and haven't used a single revive.

    There is a button that lets you keep 10% of the gold you earned this run when you died, but you lose your items you had on your body. There is ANOTHER button called "Revenge". This gives you a random buff and throws you back into the dungeon without items, BUT, if you can reach the floor that you died on, you will get 1 of your 2 items back. There is literally no reason to ever use a Revive unless you are overly attached to an item you were carrying. Using a revive in the endless dungeon provides no benefit or bonus, as it erases your score.

    There is NO paywall of IAP. You never need to use a revive, you simply pay once to unlock the rest of the dungeons if you want them. Think of this as the lite version and then you pay 2.99 to unlock the game. Revives and coins are never needed to be purchased AT ALL.

Deep Dungeons of Doom Reviewed by Kris Goorhuis on . Rating: 4.5