Social media has its good and bad sides. Good: the ability to communicate with anyone, at any time, about anything. Bad: the ability to communicate with anyone, at any time, about anything when you should be doing something else. Good: Intelligent use of the hashtag. Bad: … well, you get the idea.
Hashtag Dungeon is a different kind of social beast. Its aim is to use Twitter itself as a sharing tool for newly created levels. Of course, it helps that it mimics the best elements of The Binding of Isaac’s dungeon styles … itself influenced by the classic Legend of Zelda franchise. Dangerous traps, crazy monsters, hidden rooms with keys in them. There’s probably a fair few of those.
There’s six classes of character to fight as, each with their own unique little quirks and you’re going to need your wits about you to survive long enough. Thing is, it’s not the dungeon crawling that will get you talking. Don’t get me wrong, big Zelda fan here, so I know I’ll enjoy the experience as a game. But it’s the dungeon building mechanic itself that has me intrigued.
Here’s how it works. The team at Hitpoint Games added an in-game dungeon creator, simple enough for anyone to use and incredibly easy to share. The procedurally generated dungeons are then created through the many levels shared on Twitter. Every enemy, trap and treasure can be a devil to find and beat in a normal game, but here you can challenge yourself to a brand new area every time you load it up and share the experience of beating it with the twitter … what’s the word for twitter users? Twitterers? Tweeters? Twits? Close enough.
Hashtag Dungeon originally came about during a third year dissertation at The University of Lincoln, where team members Sean Oxspring and Kieran Hicks founded and began their game development journey. That little experiment, something the Hitpoint team love to do, turned into a long term project, a Steam Greenlight entrant and now a fully fledged release. Quite the journey, and if the game takes off (let’s be honest, every game we write about here on PN2, we hope they take off) the journey will carry on for a while yet.
The concept is impressive. Tweets about new levels easily double as mini advertising campaigns, the curious are happy to click on an intriguing link to find out what the larger picture is. The fact that it leads to a cool action RPG? Finally, a tweet worth reading.
Hashtag Dungeon is available now on Steam. If by chance you do play it, which you definitely should, hit us up @playniceplaynow with your own creations.