DungeonTop is a deck building roguelite combination game that has an interesting combat set-up while making great use of the genre. Unlock more heroes and cards to use in your runs by cashing in treasures while making your way through the dangerous dungeon and clashing with its inhabitants. With its dark fantasy setting, the gameplay encourages you to complete multiple runs and gives you lots of options on how to complete them.

Gameplay

The core gameplay of DungeonTop is the combat, where you place cards to help your hero card defeat the enemy hero and their minions. There are three heroes to choose from: a warrior, mage, and rogue, with each having their own strengths and weaknesses which are emphasised by their spells. After choosing your hero, you have the option of choosing one of three factions of minions which specialise in different mechanics, from buffing minion stats, to a spell focus, and making use of a resource to power up your minions in different ways.

As you complete each battle, an offer to expand your deck becomes available with a selection of cards to choose from. The balance here comes from the fact that the more cards you choose, the harder it is to draw the stronger and the more valuable cards available to you, therefore the question is whether you take some of those rarer cards and dilute your deck or skip the choice entirely. Another factor to consider is when treasures are offered as these cards are worth currency when cashed in, which can then be used to expand the cards that are available to be found in a run or unlock two extra heroes.

Enjoying our DungeonTop Switch review so far? Don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more Nintendo Switch content. Also, please consider supporting us on Patreon so that we can continue to do what we love doing.

There are also random encounters in the dungeon that will vary from spaces to rest and recover, upgrading your cards, removing an unwanted card from your deck or a battle encounter. These are fun ways to shake up a run, refine your strategy and make an attempt to reach the depths of the dungeon. After you complete a run, a harder difficulty is unlocked with different restrictions that end up giving the game extra longevity.

World / Level Design

The levels in DungeonTop are set up with a standard design of corridors and square dungeon rooms. As you delve deeper into the dungeon, each floor becomes more unstable, eventually reaching its peak as you reach the lowest levels and lava is present. The design of each level is relatively simple but this helps emphasise the exploration, showing its clear inspiration taken from tabletop games.

Story / Personality

A steel curse previously destroyed all the world’s steel which left the population defenseless and now three years later, black iron gates randomly appeared in each major city, resulting in monster hordes which killed many. A dungeon lays behind these gates and your task as the hero is to reach the bottom and save the world. Unfortunately, a lot of the game's story is shown at the very beginning with small updates as you reach additional levels of the dungeon, which left me wanting to know more. I did discover that with this game being part of the Spellsword series, there was another game called Demontide to learn more lore of the series, as well as through the Spellsword website, but this requires a lot more effort and is outside of the game itself.

Graphics / Art Direction

DungeonTop has an art design that fits the dark fantasy genre; it fits well with its slightly more gruesome and desperate tone. All the character and monster profiles shown in the cards are clean and the game has a wide representation of monster variety, becoming more detailed the further into the dungeon you go. It has a distinctive art style that captures a strong feel for the game’s tone and with each of the cards feeling unique, I was definitely pleased with the direction they took here. The only missed opportunity I could determine was that the upgraded cards are the exact same and don’t have any changes to them visually.

Music / Sound Design

The music is nothing groundbreaking, going with a soundtrack you would expect in similar games of the genre, however why fix something that isn’t broken. The music gets more exciting with an epic feeling during combat and the ambience of the dungeon outside of combat is a nice track to listen to. I have to give props to the sound effects of when cards do actions or when your hero moves around in the dungeon. Every attack in combat carries weight that is emphasised by the added sounds and the footsteps that play when moving in the dungeon adds an extra layer of enjoyment.

Click here to read our review of The Hong Kong Massacre

Final Score: 84%

DungeonTop is a game that you can play while in transit that makes use of the touch screen and will always feel fresh whenever you have a run due to the nature of the genre. While there is a downside that comes in the form of a basic story, the sound design team really went above and beyond when setting up the theme and giving actions impact. Overall, it’s a fun take on the deck building genre with a dark fantasy setting that will keep you coming back for more runs.

Thank you for checking out our DungeonTop Switch review, thank you to Wiretap Media for providing the review code and thank you to our $5 and up Patreon Backers for their ongoing support: