I’m not usually the one who chooses a Unicorn as my main when running into endless bad guys through a dark dungeon, but this is Dungeon League we’re talking about, where anything resembling the term ‘serious’ simply doesn’t exist.
Dungeon League takes the four player party game and turns thing up to crazy, by having you compete against or with each other in teams in a series of two minute battles, each one ranging in both objective and design each time. It’s all about randomisation, meaning any form of strategy is thrown out the window and all hell breaks loose, as each round mixes it up between standard deathmatch and capture the flag modes to unique games like Witches Eye, where the winning player or team is solely based on how long you can hold an artefact for.
Witches Eye is arguably my favourite mode. You’re there, chasing the competition, dodging whatever they throw at you. It’s incredibly hard to try and hold onto it for any longer than a few seconds, there’s no-where to hide, so you’re constantly moving which means obstacles and other enemy spawns will chase you around too. On the flip side to that, on one occasion three straight rounds went to overtime, meaning the last left alive would determine the winner. It’s those moments that really ramp up the tension, and you’ll find yourself shouting more than once in the process … like a true sports fan, of course.
Amongst all the pixel action, you’ll be able to upgrade your character with a rather simple RPG-lite system between rounds. Collecting coins and XP will allow you to purchase new equipment, powers or weapons in the hope it might give you the edge in the next round. Soon enough, you’ll be throwing fireballs, summoning demons and causing all sorts of havoc on the field.
Ultimately, the most fun isn’t just about winning. Once everyone has a whole set of powers at their disposal, the screen becomes a cavalcade of attacks, enemies and mad dashes up and back. You’ll die a lot, but you’ll be laughing about it considerably more than you’d think, it’s that kind of game. That’s where my Unicorn hero comes into play, the perfect representation of the wacky nature of Dungeon League amongst the skeletons and buffed up heroes, throwing out rainbows amongst the gloom. I might not always win, but I look damn good doing it!
Dungeon League is currently in early access on Steam. It’s definitely worth trying, though I suggest bringing three friends along if you really want to get the most out of it, and you can thank Sydney’s own Achebit and Surprise Attack for providing your next addiction, if it comes to that.