Dungeon Drafters is a rogue-lite RPG (role-playing game) developed by Manalith Studios and published by DANGEN Entertainment. In this game, players navigate through procedurally generated dungeons. The gameplay centres around drafting and building decks of cards that represent various skills, spells, and abilities.
The Dungeon Drafters need you
In order to vanquish your opponents and create powerful decks that can save the world, you must explore different dungeons, collect rare cards, and use cunning combinations. Learning the best strategies along the way.
Upon entering the game, you can choose which character you want to play (from left to right). We have a mage, brawler, monk, bard, shinobi and explorer. These are each more for aesthetic reasons, though, as you can collect cards from each archetype throughout clearing the dungeons and being able to purchase from the tavern and completing quests. The game features various cards to draft and use, allowing you to experiment with different play styles and strategies. There is no real limit to your cards though you must have a minimum of 30.
You must learn how to balance your rune slots to work with the colour of the cards. For instance, green ‘Traveller’ cards frequently affect your mobility during combat, blue ‘Oracle’ cards specialise in inflicting indirect damage, and yellow ‘Warden’ cards concentrate more on defence and healing. On the other hand, Red ‘Raider’ cards tend to focus on doing direct damage. So if you want a super strong card that gets rid of a few lesser card choices, you must ensure you are weighing your options. You then have your Curio, which is like another extra buff.
Once your deck is crafted, it is time to venture into one of the dungeons; you have several to choose from, each with its own different biomes of frozen tundra, lava land, desert storm, forest, pirate/underwater and, of course, The Tower. What is fascinating is that there is no set way to play these areas. You can enter any of them as you see fit. While in the dungeons, you shall fight using immediate attacks or your cards. You have 3 AP (action points) and 10 HP (hit/ health points); your action points contribute to when you move a square or when you use default attacks or your cards.
Once your AP is depleted, it is the enemy’s turn cycling through the enemy closest to the furthest. If you hover over your enemy, you can see where they can move to and where they can attack, thus making it easier. The enemies themselves may have specific tactical ways to defeat them, such as destroying gems in the area to beat the crystal golems rather than attacking them directly. Maps may also have environmental effects, such as sliding on ice, or barrels that can explode.
To increase your chances of finding extra riches, there are puzzle chambers. One slight hint you can find health dotted around the map. Do not collect it if you do not need it, as this is a waste; you can return to rooms you have already been to. The same goes with the shrines until you are low on cards and health does not replenish as these shrines are one-time use.
Your accumulated items are lost if you pass away during a run. There is an opportunity to return to town with all your treasure provided by a shrine. Instead, if you continue, you risk all but will reap larger benefits. Keeping in mind that difficulty does increase as you progress. You’ll probably need to remain cautious as you develop your deck.
Graphics & Audio
Dungeon Drafters features a visually appealing and cohesive art style that blends whimsical fantasy elements with a touch of darkness. The dungeons are beautifully crafted, emanating their own atmosphere. The character designs are diverse, and the enemies are creatively illustrated, showcasing the attention to detail by the developers. With a stunning what appears to be 16-bit style full of colour bringing the world to life
The game’s atmospheric soundtrack complements the visuals perfectly, immersing players in a captivating world. The sound effects further enhance the experience. From the clinking of swords to the crackling of spells, adding depth and authenticity to the gameplay.
The nature of rogue-lite games is that you must go back and forth dying multiple times before being able to complete the game. You can expect to play this game for many hours. What sets Dungeon Drafters apart is the fact that you are not having to go through the same tedious setting. To switch it up you can move on to any one of the other dungeons; go into the arena mode, or even play some mini games. We have a slime based game in which you must collect all the numbers in a puzzle and then something every good game has FISHING!
Overall, Dungeon Drafters is a unique and engaging game combining deckbuilding and crawling. If you’re a fan of strategy games, deck-building games and/or rogue-lite games. Its replayability, along with its rich and immersive gameplay mechanics, makes Dungeon Drafters a game worth investing in. Though if you are looking for something narrative-rich, this may not entirely be what you are looking for.
I am happy to give Dungeon Drafters the Thumb Culture Silver Award!
Disclaimer: A code was received in order to write this review.