Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War Review
Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War box art
System: PSP Review Rating Legend
Dev: Global A Entertainment 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: UFO Interactive 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Dec. 9, 2008 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+ 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Though you can only venture into your subterranean creation once per day, you have total freedom to make adjustments and expand its depths - providing you have the proper building materials handy. Each day new creatures are attracted to your dungeon, depending on what kind of improvement you make. They tend to prefer specific styles of rooms located deep within the twisting mass of corridors, though you'll occasionally find them free-roaming. Many of the trips you'll take into the dark corridors will be to seek out these creatures and pummel the snot out of them with magic and weaponry. They'll often drop components that can be used for food, items to upgrade your gear, and handy weaponry that can be equipped or sold to fund your construction endeavors.

Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War screenshot

The combat aspect of Dungeon Maker II is very basic and straightforward; you'll grab weapons and execute button mashing attacks when enemies draw near or fire off handy magic spells. Controls for exploration and battle feel stiffer than they should, but it's still a functioning system. Instead of leveling-up through battle, you'll permanently boost your stats a little each day by consuming foods prepared with various ingredients and recipes you find in the game. Though it doesn't negate the necessity for grinding, it's a cool way to improve your character. A little further into the adventure you'll acquire a peculiar creature, called a Genji, that follows you around and transforms into different beasts to help you in battle. Unlike your own character, the Genji can be leveled up in battle and will learn new forms to change into over time based on the creatures you encounter.

Graphics are not Dungeon Maker II's strong points. The hub town is basically a colorful 2D backdrop with a small character icon that waddles from point-to-point. Static character portraits and the background elements found during dialogue are the nicest visual aspect. The 3D, third-person action found in the dungeon is about as visually compelling as one might expect a dark, gloomy dungeon would be. It's really quite drab and depressing. Luckily, the gameplay is addictive enough to balance it out.

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If you let it, Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War can be a habit-forming title. Gathering the necessary components and designing and tailoring dungeons is great fun, and running around slaying whatever decides to come live in them provides a whole different incentive to stick with it. While some areas of the game are hit-or-miss, the solid core gameplay is what will keep players coming back for more.

By Nathan Meunier
CCC Staff Contributor

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
3.0
Graphics
The visuals fall on the bland side.
3.3
Control
Navigating the dungeon and battling its denizens isn't as smooth as it should be, but the other controls are fine.
3.5
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The music and sound effects are adequate.
4.0
Play Value
Making a dungeon and collecting the resources needed to do so is addictive, and adventuring through your creation is just as entertaining.
3.8
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Action RPG/Simulation Hybrid: This title captures the unique and enjoyable mix of dungeon creation and monster slashing into one, creating a unique experience unlike anything else on the market.
  • Fast, Blistering Action with RPG Elements: All battles occur in real time, allowing continuous action that won't slow down the game. Choose from a variety of attack types (over 450 different weapons to choose from), including melee, ranged and magical, all of which have a different effect. Choosing the right combination of attacks for the right situation can either spell victory or defeat!
  • Dungeon Design: Carve out a dungeon and delve deeper into the ground using simple, intuitive controls. Strategically layout and improve your dungeon to lure monsters and vanquish them to earn valuable assets, such as spells, gold and treasure. With over 90 different parts to choose from, the only limit to your creation is your imagination.
  • Items, Missions and More: With over 700 items, 90 quests, 150 different monsters, countless spells and recipes, Dungeon Maker 2 is full of content and replay-ability.
  • Dungeon Exchange: Trade your customized dungeon with friends and show off your dungeon creation skills. Explore each other's dungeons and see what kind of monsters and treasures they have defeated and obtained. Anything you find in their dungeon can be brought back and used in your dungeon, giving this feature limitless potential!


  • Screenshots / Images
    Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War screenshot - click to enlarge Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War screenshot - click to enlarge Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War screenshot - click to enlarge Dungeon Maker II: The Hidden War screenshot - click to enlarge

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