There has been nice tower defence games over the past months, but few as good and exciting as this one. After a long year the wait is over and fans all over the world can enjoy this fantastic title, we speak of Dungeon Defenders! The popular title for mobile devices has finally arrived to Xbox Live Arcade, Steam and Playstation Network, and did it with a blast.
The game did surpass all my expectations, what appeared to be one of many cute looking games with a twist of RPG turned out to be a fabulous and highly addictive tower defense, action, strategy RPG with much life ahead and tons… TONS of fun!
Some brave heroes trapped evil and powerful forces inside magical crystals, one day the heroes leave the kingdom and the young and inexpert younglings are in charge of the castle until their return.
One day cleaning and playing around, by accident they release the evil powers trapped inside a magic crystal. Now it’s up to them to defeat hordes of; orcs, evil wizards, ogres, demon lords and vicious terrible dragons, to one more time return peace and order to the kingdom of Etheria.
Heck! This is how Home Alone the movie should have been, dont you think so? who needs a pair of silly thieves when you have waves of monsters!
As i said before this is a tower defense game. You build defenses and use magic to defent the Eternia Crystals, melee and ranged attack to defend the magical crystals from wave after wave of monsters. Featuring 15 different maps, 30 challenges and 4 difficulties going from Easy to Insane. But what makes this game stand apart from the rest? There is a lot we can say about the game but lets start with the different classes you can choose from.
Monk: The first class i tried, monks can summon auras, including; Lightning Auras to damage enemies, Ensnare Aura to slow the advance of the monsters, Enrage Auras turn monsters against each other, Healing Auras that are excellent to cure your allies and Strenght Drain aura that lower the attack power of the enemies.
Monk is not as powerful as the squire but is good with his ranged and melee attacks, knowing how to combine both can make a monk a killing machine. Also a fantastic class that can also provide support due to healing auras.
Huntress: This class is good with ranged attacks and laying traps; Gas Trap makes monsters stop, Proximity Mines explode when monsters get close, Inferno Traps burn all the nearby monsters, Darkness Traps blind enemies and Ethereal Traps are good against aereal assaults.
They can do massive damage as they increase their attack speed, not so good at close combat at low levels. Once they get a decent level they can be totally lethal, you dont want to challenge one in PvP believe me.
Their traps unlike other towers need to be repaired often, as they have 2 or more uses depending the amount of upgrades.
Squire: Slice N Dice blockade,Bowling Ball Turret, Bouncer Blockades that send enemies flying away, Spiked Blockade that harm enemies and Harpoon Turrets against aerial attacks. By far some of the most efficient towers as they can harm monsters with element resistance.
The squire is a real power horse and a tank for excellency, their power is unrivaled and they can take entire hordes at close combat alone. Unlike Monk and Apprentice, Squires cannot use magic or ranged attacks.
Apprentice: Deadly Striker towers, fireball tower, lightning tower, magic blockades and (forgot the name, adding it later lol ). After Squire, the Apprentice class is the second most versatile in the game in my opinion, with towers that can stop aerial attacks and elemental cannons to counter elemental resistance, plus their magic powers they can be really powerful if you level it properly, beware of Mana Bomb!
Now, don’t think you can choose the most powerful class and beat the game alone, you cant. The game promotes and is aimed for co-op, having the right combination of classes is what will get in your hands the sweet victory and the godly loot.. Oh, the godly loot!
Having communication and team work is important to beat a stage, and of course the game. This is not a game to solo or to play kamikaze, strategy is a key factor and if you lack of it.. well, you have a lot to learn youngling!
I did mention the loot, well let me tell you, there are amazing amounts of armors and weapons. Either by buying them in the tavern or by having them drop during a stage, there are different kinds of quality ranging from cursed to godly items and if you can get your hands on a complete set, you will earn special bonuses.
That is not all, every weapon can be upgraded, so if you get a good weapon with a few negative bonuses you can invest to upgrade the weapon to either remove them or to increase the positive bonuses.
Just like gears and weapons you can obtain pets, which can also be upgraded for even more stats, attack power or defense. Pixies, Dragons, Guardians, Angels and more.
Boss fights, what can i say, but epic and creative? At the same time you fight the boss, you also fight a last wave of monsters, it can be pretty intense, imagine repairing, upgrading and rebuilding while you fight a giant mecha, a demon lord or a giant dragon? The boss fights deserve a lot of praise, original and challenging.
As a prize for your efforts you can obtain weapons, armors or even pets by defeating bosses and by completing challenges, with harder difficulty better the rewards.
The Tavern: This is your very personal lobby, here you can buy/sell pets, weapons and all the loot you don’t want. Also you can reset your stats and reassign points, get an extra level and change your character name, for a certain price of course, and it wont be cheap.
Also you are not limited to 4 slots, you can have 5, 8 or more characters (but only 4 classes) but in my opinion with the reset stats option, you don’t need more than one of the same class.
Although each class has his advantages and disatvantages clearly not all the classes have equal chances to solo or duo a level like the squire class do. Their mechanical defenses are perfect for monsters with an element resistant like electricity or fire, something Huntress and Monks dont have.
Certainly each class is different and there are ways to compensate but is a bit unfair how a squire can grind and stand still without doing much on certain stages to get better gears unlike the other 3. Taking in mind you will end up creating all 4 classes this may not be much of an issue right?
Dungeon Defenders is not bug free, this can be noticed when you jump near walls, a corner or near your own defenses. It’s easy to get stuck and this is bad when you are trying to reach the safety when attacked by tons of monsters.
Trendy Entertainment is not offering cross platform for this version of the game, unlike Steam, Playstaion 3 (coming soon) and mobile devices. This of course is not to blame the developers but Microsoft.. alas.
Argh why guys… why, no avatar awards or gamer pictures for Xbox 360… Steam users got Team Fortress and Portal exclusives, please throw us a bone!
We have great news for you all, the developers are already working on DLC for the XBLA version of the game, meaning the craziness and insane fun will get better. This will include new stages for campaign, pvp challenges and more.
Like the tavern? Well start messing around with the camera angles and start searching all the easter eggs! tip: Troll Face. There is also a very special surprise waiting for you in the tavern once you finish the game, sorry no.. no spoilers!
There is so much to say about the game, doesn’t only look good but has great gameplay and replay value. Good music, a fantastic campaign, lots of challenges and unlockables. Without a doubt we can say this is the best tower defense game that has seen the light in a long time, the best and only way to enjoy a title like this is with friends, and this is the strong point of Dungeon Defenders, multiplayer at its best.
If you love the genre and don’t mind grinding while you kill hordes of monster this is a title you must not miss, or if you are new and curious about tower defense games, Dungeon Defenders will hook you and make you a fan of tower defense. Do yourself a favor and please, buy this game!
Available for Xbox LIVE Arcade for 1200 Microsoft Points, on PlayStation Network and Steam for $14.99
We give the game a 9 out of 10!