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A jam entry

The Dungeon of DarkwoodView game page »

A randomized dungeon crawl
Submitted by Llareian with 2 days, 4 hours before the deadline

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Judge feedback

Judge feedback is anonymous and shown in a random order.

  • This was a solid, focused game. A lot of the little details work well together, like the sepia tone and the mysterious nature of the hero. Battles were balanced and you had to use some survival skills, but at the same time it was made very convenient to go back and forth into the village. A little more variety in terms of enemies might have helped since even though the hero had access to several different magic elements, there rarely seemed to be a major advantage to using one over the other. This was a lot of fun and smartly made within the confines of the contest rules.

    Score: 60/80

  • 37/80

    The later levels feel like the minions are abnormally tough as they are tougher than the boss fights. Otherwise, it feels like the goal of the game becomes keep health low so you can recover MP each battle, but not so low that you die, making the health increase rings much more valuable than they should be.

    So one adventurer was apparently locked up, but apparently it was only one out of many? Why the special treatment? Also, why is it that I see no children at all, only a very small handful of adults that apparently have shops up, but nobody to sell to? Need to make money… Why? You have nobody to buy goods from. And why does every final boss seem to go through the same trope of: Oh, we see the hero, but we won’t stop them preemptively, but instead we will wait for them to grow strong enough to challenge us before we fight them?

    I suppose the graphics work, though the color choice is a bit annoying after a while. The dungeon layout is annoying as most dungeons tend to be with the single width corridors.

    There doesn’t seem to be a real purpose to the hero’s fight with the final boss. In fact, the fight seemed avoidable, but no option was given to avoid it.

Engine
RPG Maker MV

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Comments

Submitted (1 edit)

Here's my review of The Dungeon of Darkwood:


If I understand the game correctly, it seems to be mostly a proof of concept or demo of a randomized dungeon crawler script. The script produces a dungeon with four randomized levels, on map encounters, and random loot. All other features of the game, like the small town and short story, seem to be mostly intended to give some context to the dungeon produced by the script.

Visuals: For the most part, basic stock graphics are used in this project. There are some simple, nice looking cutscenes that convey the story well. The windowskin and fonts are a good choice. There is good use of the tinting effect to produce the "cursed" atmosphere (maybe a *little* heavy on the tint, but not terrible).

Audio: Decent music choices. There's not a lot of story or emotional ups-and-downs so music played only a small role.

Gameplay: Since the game seems to be mostly intended to showcase the random dungeons, that's what I'll focus on. The random maps consist of small rooms connected by narrow corridors. There is a smattering of random on-map enemy encounters spread throughout the map. There is also the occasional bit of loot. You spawn on a randomly placed staircase and navigate the dungeon to find the next one. You can use the staircase to return to town or any previous dungeon level. Another script feature shown in this game is the ability to insert certain predetermined quest-related events into the dungeon levels.

Eventing: Nothing spectacular here, just some basic dialogue, miniquests, chests, and on-map encounters. I like on-map encounters and this script facilitates using them in your game.

Combat: Standard RMMV combat engine. Even if this game is just meant to showcase the dungeon script, it is presented as a game in itself and could use some combat convenience scripts to improve the player experience. I liked the Rally skill and think it was very smart to include as an example of a useful mechanic in a dungeon-crawler.

Story: short but well-written. Serves its purpose.

Overall, even though parts of the game were barebones, it was enjoyable and I'm more inclined to consider a dungeon-crawler script in future projects after seeing it in action.

Developer

Thank you so much for your lovely review! While I had originally intended to use a script to randomize the dungeon levels, due to the time constraints I opted to use RM eventing instead. I was pleasantly surprised with how easy it was to accomplish. (Although, there is heavy use of script calls inside the event processes.)

I'm glad you understood the game for what it was, and I do agree with you that the combat is quite barebones given the nature of the game. For my next project I'll make sure to focus more on the combat interface.

Thanks again for playing and taking the time to review!