Guild of Dungeoneering: First Impressions

god_topI didn’t know what to expect from Guild of Dungeoneering, made by Irish indie developer Gambrinous. Still, when I loaded up the game and was greeted by an art style that looked like it was drawn with a No. 2 pencil, I was hopeful. This was clearly a game that didn’t take itself that seriously, and it looked like it would be funny, if nothing else. I was right, but I highly underestimated the title.

Ouch.

Ouch.

After starting my game, I was given a quick tutorial. In Dungeoneering, you’re an industrious so-and-so who has started their own guild of adventurers for profit and glory. However, you aren’t interested in felling giant spiders and goblins. No, your role is more entrepreneurial, which means you hire others to do your dirty work. You send chumps into dungeons reaping the rewards as you further expand your guild. Eventually, you start to gain perks, like more dungeoneers to choose from and various exploration benefits, such as increased damage or health.

But the dungeon gameplay is where Guild of Dungeoneering really shines. Unlike most dungeon-themed titles, it’s essentially a card game. Your selected Dungeoneer is placed in a room with up to four possible exits. In your hand are a random selection of rooms, monsters and loot. You can place up to three cards in one turn. Once that turn is over, the Dungeoneer will move by their own accord. Your job is to “lure” them to where you want them to go by way of monsters and loot. Entering a dungeon will begin a quest such as “kill x number of monsters” or “collect x number of treasure chests,” and you have to entice the Dungeoneer on their way with your various carrots.

Reminds me of having too much vindaloo.

Reminds me of having too much vindaloo.

Combat is fairly similar in the meta game. Your dungeoneer receives a handful of cards, and you choose which one to use each turn. You’re shown what card the enemy is about to use against you, so it’s not a guessing game. After battle, your little warrior will be given a choice of wearable equipment. The loot ranges from cups of tea and wooden boards to fancier things, like swords. It’s very tongue-in-cheek and Monty Python-ish.

Alas my poor Anuss was buried.

Alas my poor Anuss was buried.

When your dungeon crawling lackey eventually dies, worry not — you’ll be given another randomly-generated one to take his or her place, and you’ll still get a modicum of gold.

My first experiences with Guild of Dungeoneering were more than positive. If you’re like me and you like DM-ing a guild of warriors and enjoy the comedic stylings Gambrinous has on offer here, it’s definitely worth picking up.