You have my sword… and my hat!
In the never-ending quest of melding a rogue like experience into every retro-inspired genre ever, here comes Legend of Dungeon by RobotLovesKitty. A four-player co-op style beat em’ up in the vein of Streets of Rage or Final Fight, but with random dungeon level variation and crazy weapons? Don’t mind if I do!
To side-track just a tad here, Legend of Dungeon is actually the result of a successful Kickstarter campaign completed back in December 2012. Whereas, the studio which is primarily comprised of a married couple, was able to raise more than six times its original goal.
"Diving into the main game, however, and you'll notice the rogue like factors right out of the date. You play as a piddly male or female warrior carrying a standard sword, mucking around in some pub."
Diving into the main game, however, and you’ll notice the rogue like factors right out of the date. You play as a piddly male or female warrior carrying a standard sword, mucking around in some pub. You have the option of switching your gender, but apart from that, your character is standard vanilla fare. You have but one primary attack button, which doubles up as your “use” function when cycling through items. Charging this up will also unleash a more powerful attack, but that’s about it.
The “goal” is fairly simply enough told by the local bartender himself: find the treasure on the 26th floor, while picking up better weapons and equipment along the way. And in terms of overall narrative, that’s all the game really has going for it. Maybe its because I’ve come to appreciate the kind of subtle stories that can be told in similar rogue-lite titles such as Rogue Legacy. But this, by no means, is a deal breaker and more often boils down to personal preference.
"If you're looking to partner up with some randoms online, the game doesn't support it. The developers explicably mention that online co-op or LAN play is not something they can simply slap on, as it would need to be worked in from the beginning."
Regardless, it’s pretty clear early that you’re on your own with the most basic of equipment… Or is it? You can have up to four players join up and quest the dungeon floors together, as having additional help is beneficial in more ways than on.
For instance, if you happen to face death while your other mates are alive and kicking, you can collect these “spirit orbs” to resurrect yourself and jump back in. Because this currently doesn’t seem to be possible in when playing alone, co-op play is definitely advantageous overall.
If you’re looking to partner up with some randoms online, the game doesn’t support it. The developers explicably mention that online co-op or LAN play is not something they can simply slap on, as it would need to be worked in from the beginning. Considering that the KS stretch goal for adding such a feature was never met, its understandable why this isn’t exactly a huge surprise. That said, it’s a feature I would have certainly paid for, as I’m rarely able to get four individuals huddled together on a single set-up. Oh well, maybe the sequel!
"Even the different assortment of weapons despite the simplistic combat provide some colorful results, like wielding the Mighty Hammer of Code which bursts with blue lightning on impact."
When played solo, Legend of Dungeon still has a good amount of randomness to engage you, thanks greatly to its psychedelic on-screen effects and kooky approach to bestowing needed loot. You mileage is likely to vary, but it doesn’t take more than a few floors and space crawling to find something both useful and entertaining to have. If you’re a fan of hat collecting in Team Fortress 2, then this was simply made for you. Steam-powered top hats, cats that rest on top of your head while throwing projectiles, a Cthulhu mask, you name it.
Even the different assortment of weapons despite the simplistic combat provide some colorful results, like wielding the Mighty Hammer of Code which bursts with blue lightning on impact. In fact, the lighting work in general provides groovy attention detail, as floors lovingly illuminate when carrying a lantern through a dark section or seeing your character level up for the first time.
While there’s no spectacular demand for cooperative beat em’ up games on the PC, Legend of Dungeon most assuredly sets itself apart rather well. Given the random generation, the chances of replay improve greatly, and could potentially make for frolicking party-style gatherings.
This game was reviewed on the PC.
Upto 4 players locally. Wield and wear some silly things. Trippy visual effects.
No support for online/LAN co-op in this iteration. Not nearly as great when solo. No story to tie things together, if that's your thing.
Legend of Dungeon manages to set itself apart from other cooperative beat em' up games. Worth a shot if you are into this kind of genre.