Amplitude Studio’s second game of the Endless series comes Dungeon of the Endless. As the survivors of a prison spaceship, fight through randomly generated floors as you guide a energy crystal to the surface.Dungeon of the Endless is a 2D. Rogue-like, Strategy, Tower Defense Indie game as there also resource management elements sprinkled in. It is developed and Published by Amplitude Studios and is available on Steam since Oct 27, 2014. It is priced at $11.99 (€10.51) on Steam.
There is not much in the way of story in this game except for you are a survivor of a prisoner spaceship whose escape pod lands on a unknown planet. You have to escort a power crystal up to the surface, while fighting off monsters in different procedurally generated levels. You can learn more about characters as you are in the elevator between levels where they have a little dialogue with each other.
The controls are simple point and click to select and move your survivor around and to open new rooms. There are hotkeys for activating abilities or healing the survivors. There is even controller support. Even though the controls are simple there is a a lot of strategy that has to go into this game in order to win it.
The gameplay is a nice mix of various elements. First off you can select only two survivors per mode except for Armory Pod where you get all four and Refreezerator Pod where there is only one survivor. With all these different modes provide a difference in gameplay. Like you may start of with no research except for the food reproducer. A food reproducer is one of a couple of resource producers as there are four types of resources in the game.
First and most of important is the energy resource, dust, that every 25 or so dust you get a extra energy slot. This slot can be use to power adjacent room which provide the benefits of no monsters spawning in that room and you can build in that room. There is a flip side to dust as monsters get to the energy and attack it dust will be depleted and once it gets to zero you lose. Not to mention all your rooms will start powering down.
Second important resource is most likely food as it is used to heal your survivors in the middle of fighting monsters or even leveling up your survivors. As the survivors level up they get new abilities to help them survive this dungeon. As they level up they get passive abilities every once and while which provide benefits by being alone or even help a building give out more resource.
Third is Industry resource where it is to build buildings. As you go through the dungeon you will need to build some defenses to fight of the strong and numerous amount of enemies. The resource buildings and other very helpful buildings have a steady increase in price as you create more throughout the level, while the defensive turrets like the prisoner pod stay the same cost even though you make many of them.
Fourth but not least is the science resource this is for you to upgrade the already existing buildings you have and to get new ones through research. Research is an important element, because of otherwise you most likely die from the tougher enemies as you continue to the surface. Research involves you accumulating science resource then finding a research crystal that is scattered throughout the dungeon, and usually one per level. These research crystals has upgrades or even new building you can make for each of the rooms you have activated with power. The research crystals gives you a random selection of four researches to do. If you have enough science resource then you can research that building. Also all research takes three turns or doors to complete.
Each of these resources can be used as currency with vendors to get items that will help beef up your survivors. Some equipment can even give your survivors new passive abilities that they wouldn’t have other wise. You gain a small amount of resource each turn except for dust, which is found in random rooms and by killing monsters. This small amount of resource gain is not enough to survive this dungeon. A turn is determined by you opening a door and when the door opens the invasion turn starts where the monsters attack.
There is permadeath on these survivors and so once all of them die you lose. There is a progression in the game as you find new survivors in the dungeon after you beat the last level or you make it three levels with them they become available to choose when you go into the dungeon.
Escaping from a prison ship to land on a mysterious planet is a definite feel from the aesthetic of the game. With the graphics having a eerie desolate environment but teeming with possible enemies. The option menu for the graphics is very responsive to the computer only giving you options within your greatest resolution to the lower resolution, and you have three choices of pixel stretching. If you are not at a set resolution that is pixel perfect mode this is a simple way the developer did for everyone to view their game best way possible. There is a toggle for fullscreen, v-sync, and big screen user interface (I suggest leaving this on).
Brings the mystery and ambiance to the game world. Whether you are reading the silly conversations in the elevator or exploring one of the many floors of the dungeon. The music just seems to fit as part of the world and help immerse myself into the game, and care about the characters even more. In the starting menu the music that plays that is chims with an electric piano gives the feel you about to go on a adventure and not going to have your team be wipeout and not to revive them.
The game starts you off with easy, and if you're like me too easy. With these as the only difficulties for the game to customize the play a little bit. These allow you to reach that sense of not too difficult and skill to be achieve. The game will not break this flow except for when you have one of your beginning character or even one you recently pickup while in the dungeon just die. These on many of occasions made me just want to stop and restart the game. Also the characters have some dialogue in the elevator between levels. With some even having special dialogue with each other. Giving you a glimpse at their backgrounds and a sense that the party you created are coming together and trusting each other. To excel this even further helping the flow of the game some skills actually have a trust mechanic. Meaning that the character needs to travel through three floors with a character for that skill to be active on the characters.
Dungeon of the Endless is an excellent rogue-like game that has me wanting to play it more and more. Compared to other rogue-likes this one does not have the simple progression of unlocking characters and a simple same run over and over again. With it’s different modes it can keep fresh as it changes how the game will be played and the difficulty too.