Dungeon Defenders Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC
Dungeon Defenders Box Art
System: PS3, PC, Xbox 360
Dev: Trendy Entertainment
Pub: Trendy Entertainment
Release: October 18, 2011
Players: 1-4
Screen Resolution: 480p-1080p Alcohol Reference, Animated Blood, Fantasy Violence

The graphics, which run on Unreal, aren't groundbreaking, but they're highly polished and feature an interesting, almost cel-shaded look. The music is great, and there's a lot of voice acting, most of which is decent. And while story is mediocre—all the adults in the community leave in search of adventure, and then the children accidentally release the evil "Old Ones" from the "Eternia Crystal" in which they were trapped—not much time is spent on it.

I have only a few complaints, mostly about the controls. With a console controller, some of the menus are a disaster to navigate, requiring you to push seemingly random buttons to select various options. (If you have a choice, you might want to go with the PC version so you can navigate with a mouse.) Also, while you can rotate the camera around your character horizontally, the only control you have over its vertical alignment is to choose from several zoom levels. I frequently felt like I couldn't get the right view of the action. The auto-targeting system is also a bit wonky; when enemies are clustered together (as they frequently are, considering how many of them you face), it's hard to hit the one you want to. Further, whenever you use a feature for the first time, a character explains what it is; if you have subtitles turned on, the text overlaps with too much of the screen, which also interferes with your ability to navigate the menus.

Dungeon Defenders Screenshot

Again, these are just quibbles—you can assign hotkeys to the features you need during battle, and none of the problems actually stop Dungeon Defenders from being a great game—but they really should have been fixed before release.

One other note for people who own multiple platforms: The PC version ships with the gameplay code and source content, so it's fully moddable. Only time will tell if this game will inspire a mod community worth participating in, but custom levels could be a lot of fun.

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A few imperfections aside, developer Trendy Entertainment hit the nail on the head with Dungeon Defenders: It's unique, deep, addictive, and cheap. If you have $15 to spare and enjoy RPGs, tower defense, and a good challenge, there's no reason whatsoever to pass it up.

By Robert VerBruggen
CCC Contributing Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.8
Graphics
It's nothing groundbreaking, but it has a colorful, almost cel-shaded look.
3.0
Control
Navigating menus is a pain, the camera controls are wonky, and it's hard to target the enemy you're trying to.
4.1
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
Plenty of voice acting and great music.
4.6
Play Value
This is a huge game for a downloadable title, and it's highly replayable.
4.3
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend below for a final score breakdown.
Review Rating Legend
0.1 - 1.9 = Avoid 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 3.5 - 3.9 = Good 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair 4.0 - 4.4 = Great 5.0 = The Best

Game Features:

  • Create your own hero from one of four distinct classes to summon towers and traps and fight back hordes of enemies.
  • Customize and level your hero by defeating enemies, looting equipment, and upgrading your gear and pets.
  • Take your character through multiple difficulty modes and challenge/survival missions to earn more experience and even better treasure.
  • To top it off, you can do all of this with up to four friends locally or online.

  • Screenshots / Images
    Dungeon Defenders Screenshot - click to enlarge Dungeon Defenders Screenshot - click to enlarge Dungeon Defenders Screenshot - click to enlarge Dungeon Defenders Screenshot - click to enlarge Dungeon Defenders Screenshot - click to enlarge

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