Defend the dungeon against greedy adventurers!

Dungeon Defense is a promising game with ample swords-and-sorcery ambiance and an innovative take on the traditional tower-defense format.

Dungeon Defense is a promising game with ample swords-and-sorcery ambiance and an innovative take on the traditional tower-defense format. You have to protect a dangerous dungeon, commanding an evil army of skeletons as it fights off heroic (or maybe just greedy?) adventurer types. But the "towers" in this tower-defense game are your skeleton warriors, and the skeletons--being skeletons--they move.

The interface mimics many other tower-defense games: you pick from three skeleton types (light, heavy, and archer), you choose where you want to place them on certain locations on the map, and then you can sell, upgrade, and heal them. Each skeleton type can be upgraded twice, and they gain a special ability when you max them out: heavy skeletons can taunt heroes, drawing their attacks; archer skeletons do area damage with fire arrows; and light skeletons can backstab heroes facing away from them for double damage. These abilities make placement even trickier, since light and heavy skeletons will charge to engage incoming heroes, and heroes will run past fallen skeletons (as they lie on the ground quietly regenerating.

Fallen heroes leave behind their gold (an implicit lesson in dungeon economics), adding to your limited resources as you fend off 25 waves of incoming enemies. In each of the game's three maps, the heroes advance toward your personal boss monster--but unfortunately, your boss has limited fighting abilities, so you'll need to work hard to set up a good defense, and use gold to trigger its special abilities (for example, the evil king can either speed up your army or slow down the heroes).

Dungeon Defense is a solid value and fun to play as-is (and even just to watch, with its great sounds and Harryhausen-style graphics), but its limited maps, units, and enemies discourage repeat play. We can only hope that Dungeon Defense's best days are ahead of us, and that the developer will follow up further on such a promising start.

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