Throughout the course of time, wise men have constantly asked this question, “How do we make a great game even better?” Well, the answer to that is, Minecraft Dungeons. Minecraft is the best-selling video game in history. Since its release in 2011, Minecraft has sold over 200 million copies worldwide, with an average of 126 million players every month. Developed by Mojang studios, the Minecraft game grew so popular that the company was bought by Microsoft in 2014 for US$2.5 billion.
Minecraft has become massively popular with players because of its virtually infinite gameplay. There are no specific goals to accomplish within the game, however, players receive advancements for completing achievements. Set in an open world, players have to build structures, harvest food, fight against mobs to survive and explore the vast expanse to unearth hidden treasures.
With its seemingly endless possibilities, you could scratch your head to think about how this game could be improved. Granted, over the years there have been updates and “latest versions” of the game, but Minecraft maintained a similar gameplay formula. Together with Minecraft mods, players were still flocking to the game and it has remained as popular as ever. So, what makes Minecraft Dungeons so different, and is it any good?
What is Minecraft Dungeons?
Officially released on 26 May 2020, Minecraft Dungeons is a “dungeon-crawler” styled video game. If you don’t know what that is, imagine the Role-Playing Game (RPG) Diablo, but with blocks. Minecraft Dungeons is a hack-and-slash type game where your character needs to accomplish specific missions in order to proceed to the next stage. Similarly to Diablo, you begin your adventure at level one and you have to fight your way through hoards of mobs to reach the end of the stage. Completing each stage allows you to continue to the next stage and obviously, as you progress, the levels become more difficult.
Minecraft Dungeons is an action RPG that allows up to four players to play together. Designed on Unreal Engine 4 platform, it delivers stunning graphics despite its traditional “blockiness”. The gameplay emphasizes more on character development, finding hidden loot or treasures and combat. A huge surprise for players familiar to the Minecraft franchise will be the lack of building required in the game. Shocking, right, but we’ll discuss that later.
Which platforms are Minecraft Dungeons available on?
Do not worry. For years, there have been games released that were exclusive to specific platforms. Play Station 4’s God of War, Halo 5 for Xbox One and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe on Nintendo Switch are just a few games that come to mind. Not all of us have the luxury of owning multiple gaming platforms. But thankfully, Mojang and Microsoft decided to make Minecraft Dungeons available for everyone.
Is Minecraft Dungeons played in story mode?
Yes. Unlike the game from the main Minecraft franchise, Minecraft Dungeons has a story that you follow. Like Diablo, where you need to rid the world of an evil being that wants to destroy everything, this is the same. In the story of Minecraft Dungeons, you play the hero who takes on the “Arch-Illager”, who has sworn to take revenge on all the people who wronged him. The villain, who was a normal person at the beginning, found the “Orb of Dominance” which gave him great powers. But as we all know, with great power comes great responsibility. Unfortunately for our villain, he became corrupt with power and decided to punish the world for rejecting him.
You are the knight in shining armor who has come to defeat the dark lord and liberate the people from his tyranny. As you play through the story, you will gain more experience, find better weapons and armor, and level up your skills in order to defeat the “Arch-Illager”. The story is straight-forward enough to understand, and you need to successfully clear each level to get closer to your goal. There is no need for you to build anything, harvest, and food or mine for resources. Simply grab your sword and slash your way through the mobs to get to the end.
Wait, what? There is no building required?
No. None at all. I know this might seem very difficult to fathom, but unlike the original Minecraft game, there is no building necessary in Minecraft Dungeons. In the original, you play in an open world where you need to construct buildings, mine resources, and gather food to survive. In Minecraft Dungeons, you just need to kill the mobs to survive.
Minecraft Dungeons is a pure action-adventure RPG that focuses more on the character and the mission than building things. It is a far cry from what hardcore Minecraft fans are used too but it is a welcomed change. Instead of building the world around you, concentrate on building your character into a powerful hero that will be able to defeat the “Arch-Illager”.
Again, I’m going to draw similarities to the RPG Diablo. In Diablo, before you begin your quest, you have to select a specific character. You can choose to be a Crusader, Necromancer, Witch Doctor, Barbarian, Monk, Demon Hunter or Wizard. These are the different classes of heroes that you can choose from, and each class offers different skills and attributes.
These classes have specific attributes that result in your skill type. This also means that certain weapons cannot be used by other characters. For example, a Crusader who typically uses a sword and shield, cannot use a Wizard’s magic staff or a Demon Hunter’s crossbow. These class-specific characters allow for different gameplay styles. If you happen to complete the game using a Necromancer, you can start a new game with a Barbarian, and even though you’re playing the same game, learning a new set of skills and using new weapons make it fun.
Here is the big difference between those games and Minecraft Dungeons. In this new iteration, Minecraft Dungeons does not offer different classes of heroes for you to choose from. You are free to design your character in any way you see fit, unlike the typical Minecraft where you require Minecraft skins to elevate your characters. Your character build can vary depending on your situation and how you feel like playing.
In the early game, maybe you want to play safe as you’re gaining experience and leveling up your character. You would then start with items that offer heavier armor properties. As you level up, you might switch to equipment that offers more magical attributes and agility to move faster. If you want to be stealthy, you can switch to ranged weapons like bows and arrows to attack from a distance. It’s really up to you, to do what you want with your character.
What are the Mobs in Minecraft Dungeons?
What good would an action RPG be if it didn’t have any enemies? There will be mobs, I guarantee that. Maybe more mobs that you could handle. Many of the common mobs you find in the Minecraft game can be seen here. Mobs such as Skeletons, Zombies, Creepers, and many more have found their way into the dungeons and will stop at nothing to kill you.
In addition to the basic mobs, there will be a few new evil characters introduced in Minecraft Dungeons that will no doubt entertain you. First, there is the Wraith which causes the ground around you to be on fire. Second, you will meet a Necromancer type character that can bring dead mobs back to life. And lastly, according to the developers at Mojang, there might even be an Ender Dragon that we might have to contest with. Things are really starting to heat up in the Minecraft Dungeons game.
What about the Loots?
“It’s all about Benjamins baby“, goes the chorus in a popular Hip-Hop track, and that is true in the game as well. It may not be about finding money, but loot boxes are scattered all over the map, and on different levels and stages. The higher you go in the game, the better the loot boxes become. You will be able to search and find special and rare weapons, armor, and other essential items in the game that will contribute to your skills and weapons.
Special items will also allow you to enhance your weapons to make them more powerful. Loot boxes are vital in Minecraft Dungeons and it will be prudent to search for as many of them as possible, because you never know what you can find.
Minecraft Dungeons is AWESOME!
Now that we have all the information we need about the all-new Minecraft Dungeons game, here is why it’s AWESOME! Minecraft, as a standalone game, is fantastic. We all love our little block friends that explore the ever-expanding world that we built. We’ve merged that with a run-and-gun type RPG, with amazing graphics and without the need to harvest of mine to survive, and we have a winner.
Minecraft Dungeons might not have the complex building elements, the vast open world to roam, or the creative portions to build the unimaginable. But what it may lack in that aspect, it gives you non-stop action that lets you concentrate on character development. It’s like the Minecraft Comes Alive mod but in an RPG action game.
Let’s be honest, when the game was first unveiled in 2019, there were many people who were skeptical. But since its launch last month, I promise you that all those skeptics are now converts. Minecraft Dungeons is an AWESOME game!
The Future of Minecraft Dungeons
Minecraft Dungeons has only been out for a couple of weeks and it is already a mega-hit. The switch to an RPG style game has won over fans. Once again Mojang and Microsoft have hit it out of the ballpark with this game and it looks like the future is very bright for Minecraft Dungeons. So bright in fact that 2 new Downloadable Content (DLC) has already been scheduled with Minecraft Dungeons: Jungle Awakens being touted for release as early as July 2020.
Minecraft, on the whole, has been on the upward trend, and Minecraft Dungeons has just given it another boost. With this latest game and the scheduled DLCs to come, it looks like Minecraft will continue to be the best-selling video game in history. If you haven’t already got your copy of Minecraft Dungeons, what are you waiting for? Get it now!