Over the years we’ve seen countless mods and imitations of the original Doom. With mods ranging from Barney the Dinosaur being an NPC enemy to the face of John Carmack being imposed over every asset, the title has seen a lot of love. The one thing that is really missing from the experience is a version fit for the entire family, as the genre is typically pretty violent in general. Enter One More Dungeon.
The game is a new rogue lite (since every title needs a random aspect nowadays) that puts the player in randomized dungeons that play out like a first person version of Gauntlet. You will make your way through randomized dungeons, loot chests, collect potions and weaponry, as well as dispatch various enemies with a complete lack of gore or blood. Each of the game’s levels come with at least one enemy that must be dealt with in order to receive a relic that works as a key, opening the door to the next world. With no real story, narrative, or motivation in place, I found it hard to engross myself into world presented.
The game looks and plays much like Doom, with its hyper fast movement and overall design. While you won’t see many gateways into Hell, there are plenty of brick walls with mossy foliage replacing the blood and make up the mazelike structure of id’s powerhouse franchise. Many items look like they are carbon copies of the tables and treasures found in the original Wolfenstein. Adding to the subtle nods for the granddaddies of the FPS genre, there is a small pixelated face in the lower portion of the screen, which I thought was a nice touch, even though it looks nothing like BJ or Doom-guy.
The majority of the game’s assets look original if you’re concerned about it being a complete ripoff, although extremely basic. While I was able to make out the pixelated image that serves as rats, I found the mess that looks to be giant bugs to be a bit lacking and overly busy despite their vague details. Regardless of the enemy you are looking at, they all appear to be flat even though they are in a 3D environment. Don’t let their basic visuals fool you though, as the enemies will make a bee line straight for you if seen and will take huge chunks of your limited life away in single hits. This would be far more manageable if any of the enemies let out any sort of sound alerting you to their presence, such as the trademark grunt let out by the pinkie monster in Doom, but sadly, the game is void of any true sound effects, making the basic enemies way more deadly than they have any right to be.
The biggest thing that stood out to me was the incorporation of a large strip at the top of the screen that shows your inventory. Items will display there as you acquire them and allow you to cycle weapons or use potions on the fly. Sadly, outside of small text prompts that pop up when you pick up one of the items, you won’t really know what you are using or how exactly it will affect you until it’s used, with poison being one of the pick-ups – if you don’t pay attention, you’ll find yourself drinking this in error and taking a huge hit to your health. It keeps you on your toes, but makes for a painful life lesson early into the game.
One More Dungeon offers a fairly robust set of modifiers that can be unlocked by using your acquired gold, which carries across runs. These range from player buffs, reducing the size of the levels, or making the already difficult game that much more punishing. With the option to select two per run, they add some replay value and can make the game more manageable. I will admit I had to unlock both the buff to my own health as well as the option to reduce the size of the levels to make it past the second floor. Through determination and massive amounts of grinding, I was able to unlock some of the other easier mods, allowing me to make it to the fifth of ten floors as my current personal best.
The levels are randomly pulled from a pool of floors, not completely randomized rooms like other rogue lites, resulting in the already repetitious game getting stale that much quicker. The one bonus to this is that it is easy to remember where some of the secret rooms can be found, although their contents are still random.
If you have a youngster around that you feel the likes of Doom or Wolfenstein may be a bit too much, this would be a great Sesame Street alternative to the FPS genre, whereas more seasoned gamers will find One More Dungeon to be lacking overall.
7 out of 10
- Kid Friendly FPS Game
- Some Fun Nods to FPS Greats
- Inventory System
- Robust Mod Options
- Some Ugly Character Models
- Lack of Sound Effects
- Punishing Difficulty
- Repetitive Assets/Levels
One More Dungeon was developed by Stately Snail and published by Ratalaika Games. It launched on PC in 2015, PS4, Vita, and NS in 2017, and finally on X1 August 1st, 2018 for $7.99. The game was provided to us for review on X1. If you’d like to see more of One More Dungeon, check out the official site.
Here at GBG we use a rating method that you are more than likely familiar with – a scale of 1 to 10. For clarification, we intend on using the entire scale: 1-4 is something you should probably avoid paying for; 5-7 is something that is worth playing, but probably not at full price; 8-10 is a great title that you can feel confident about buying. If you have any questions or comments about how we rate a game, please let us know.