Dungeon Defenders 2 as the title suggests is a dungeon defense game, but as those familiar with DD1 already know it’s mixed with many rpg elements. Now although I don’t think this game is in any way perfect, it is a pretty damn good time sink and can be enjoyable if played with friends, so I’ll start off with a quick run down of gameplay and then start on some pros and cons.
As you may already have guessed this is a multiplayer game and you may have up to 4 players on your team with each player controlling 1 of 4 classes, the squire, monk, apprentice, and huntress. Each class has its own towers to build, for example the apprentice and squire both have shields that prevent enemies from going through until it’s been destroyed, while the huntress and monk do not, they instead focus on dps and support respectively.
The point of each round is to prevent monsters from reaching and destroying the marked objective(s). The round starts off with the game providing mana to each person on the map. The mana is divided equally by the amount of people you have in your party, if you wanted to solo you would get around 900 mana but as you play with more people it divides evenly between your party. You use this mana to start building your set up for the initial wave, once finished you start the flow of monsters and you will be free to run around the map assisting any lanes that are having trouble with auto attacks and skills. After the first wave is complete you are once again given some mana to repair and/or upgrade your towers before you start again, once you finish the second wave it becomes a rinse and repeat process.
The main point of these waves once you finish campaign mode and are max level is for better loot, yes you’re character will need to be fully equipped to handle harder modes everything from weapons to armor and even pets are needed. There are different rarities as in every rpg, common uncommon rare epic and legendary, although they are given different names in game you’ll easily be able to tell one from the other.
Now for some pros and cons
The game is actually extremely flexible in terms of solo play and Co-op, any person can have up to 4 characters, with cash you can buy more slots personally I didn’t/wouldn’t, and you are free to switch in between them all while in your building phase, so if you take the time to level all the different classes you will also be able to use any of their building however you want.
The matchmaking system has been done fairly well, I’ve only had problems finding a party when the servers were having difficulties, which is to be expected keeping in mind this game is still in early access, otherwise it’s very user friendly, you just walk up to the “War Table” and you can pick between specific maps you want to do or just hit random and you’ll find something.
I’m actually not sure how much of a pro this is, because it’s still early access and it’s too early to tell if this is going to be changed or not, but for now, there are costumes in the game that you CAN if you want buy for real cash, BUT the way this is handled is done well, you can get any of these costumes through in game tokens that are not any real problem. You need to get 9 tokens to receive 1 key, you use this key on the box of your choice and have a 100% chance of getting a style from that box, you may have to try a few times but eventually you’ll get what you wanted.
This game is at the moment pretty casual, leveling to cap (50) doesn’t take very long at all especially considering for every level 50 you have you gain 35% more exp on other characters. The maps ranging from easy-hard are all in reality all fairly easy ,unless you go to nightmare modes 1-4 this is extremely casual and laid back. Although you’ll find a lot of people asking for a ramp up in difficulty I find this to be a very positive factor, it enables the people who wanted a casual game to relax while at the same time provides the “hardcore” crowd some really difficult levels in nightmare 4 and trust me when I say it IS difficult.
Finally the graphics are actually very nice, even if very cartoon like when you actually get into the level take a look around at the map itself. It’s surprisingly well done at first, I wasn’t even a huge fan, but it grows on you.
The big one for me so far is itemization, It’s terrible. extremely arbitrary to acquire the items necessary to take on the harder difficulties. To be successful at the higher difficulties you would need to kill the mother of all bosses to get loot, that’s fine, but the difficult part is finding items with stats that aren’t just plain weird. This game seems to to have no limits on what kind of stat combination will be on any given item, and although that could be done in a way where it’s fun, it isn’t. So most of the time you’ll be finding items that should be better than what you have but ultimately will give terrible stat combinations and you’ll just be forced to trash them or use them as fodder for upgrades. This problem is most prominent with weapons, monk for example has a weapon effect called “Purge evil” that is a pretty essential part of many builds, but the chances of getting this effect on a weapon that also has the 3-4 other stats you need aren’t very high.
Then we have the party kick system, usually this isn’t much of a problem but, you can kick anyone you want in your party but that doesn’t mean they won’t be back in less than 30 seconds. Unless your party is set to private anyone you kick has the chance of joining up once again especially if your room is the only one with space for more players during their queue. This leads to a large amount of trolling.
This is a very small con but I know for a fact a lot of people hate this, unskippable cutscenes, please PLEASE get rid of these. It’s never fun to be playing a map and then have your fun interrupted by a cut scene of the boss flying in, fine one time is ok to let you know that >THIS IS A BOSS< but every time you play the map? No thanks.
This next one boggles the mind, this game is free early access on steam, but on ps4 paid early access. I know this isn’t exactly a con for the game itself but…why?
Finally we have the amount of maps out, I think we can all agree if a game is done very well it will have variation, but that’s something this game lacks. The maps you can play on are very limited, there are only the campaign maps and 2 extra halloween event maps that were added that’s a total of 15 maps along with some game modes that only allow play on 5-6 of them. This wouldn’t be as bad if you weren’t basically forced to do these maps in campaign but sadly you are. Meaning from start to finish you’ll be playing on the same maps over and over again, this includes other modes of the game as even they are based on maps that were originally from campaign mode, and this leads to a pretty quick burnout of the game. I’m sure more maps will be added at some point in the future but as of now it’s not looking like it’s going to be anytime soon.
Overall I think that this game is actually very easy to get into, I say this as a person who when invited to play with some friends thought that this game would be absolutely terrible. But at the same time I suggest not spending too much time on it for the simple fact that you WILL get burned out very quickly, in short bursts this game is fun and engaging, long term it get very stale and repetitive it tries to spice your gaming up with monthly and daily quests but that just makes it all the more tedious, the one piece of advice I could give a completely new player is to pick a class that you would have fun leveling with, I didn’t and I regretted it all the way until I started a new character!
Article written by: Rovshan Aliyev