“Something stirs in the darkness. A hot earthy smell wafts up from the dank depths. Nails scratch against limestone, dripping water echoes off cavern walls, ancient chains rattle in stagnant air…. What lies in the eerie depths below?” This quote is what greets you as you log onto the Dungeon Runners website.
Dungeon Runners is a free to download and free to play game brought to you from the folks at NCSoft. This game follows a pretty standard template for fantasy games. There aren’t a lot of choices for characters. Players are limited to Fighter, Mage and Ranger. As a bonus, no healing class, allowing players to focus on cutting a path of carnage through the denizens of Dungeon Runners. There are a number of solo play options available, or group up with fellow adventures for some of the harder dungeons. Dungeon Runners “match making” system is a great way for players to find a group. With the lack of healing class there is no need to try and put together a well balanced group. The more folks you have grouped they quicker nasties die, and let’s face it, that’s what gaming all about.
I can’t say that the graphics in Dungeon Runners are very impressive, what do you really expect from a free game? Although I have to say that the graphics are simple, clean, and well thought out. Character customization is very limited, although once you begin to obtain items and armor your character really comes into their own. Items really give your character a unique look. The graphics have a kind of nostalgic feel to them. They remind me of some of the older fantasy console graphics. I also really enjoyed the screen shots during loading phases; some of the sketches are truly impressive.
As with the graphics, the sound within the game isn’t overwhelming. It does however work well for the game. The sound effects in the game are well done, lots of fun noises popping out from the mobs.
www.dungeonrunners.com is great straight forward website. There are no navigation issues, everything can be found along the menu bar to the left. They really have done a great job there, with outstanding quick start guides, and explanations of skills and abilities.
The players I’ve come across in Dungeon Runners have all been friendly and easy going. It’s a smaller knit group of folks, but if you hit site’s forums for a bit I think you’d be pleased with what you come across.
One of my favorite aspects of this game is the more recent ability to view your character outside of game. Using code found on the website players can view any character they choose.
As with any game, I suppose you could role-play in Dungeon Runners, but why bother? Since all of the classes are damage dealers, the only question you need to ask yourself is, “Do you want to damage close, far, or with pretty lights?” The game can play fairly quickly so building that role-playing persona may not be worth it, but to let me stand in the way of all you aspiring thespians.
The folks here know how to have a good time. Dungeon Runners is filled with tons of humorous anecdotes (got out my thesaurus for that word). You can log in for a quick 15 minute run and still feel like you have accomplished something. For you more serious gamers, there are a number of lengthier dungeons for you to take on. Many of the items found throughout the game are reflections and commentary on a variety of pop and gaming icons. Do yourself a favor and read everything you come across in Dungeon Runners, there is humor everywhere in this game. The loading screens have some “useful” information. Sure it’s insane information, but useful nonetheless, just in case you find yourself in that type of situation. I know many gamers like to skip some of the paragraphs of text that come along with accepting quests, but these really are worth reading. I found myself laughing out loud on more than one occasion.
I am running the game with Windows Vista Ultimate on a Dual Core E6750 @2.66, Dual ATI Radeon HD 3850, 2 Gig Corsair RAM and cable modem. The game ran extremely smooth. I had no issues loading or logging into the game. Additionally the game allows you to select which server you would like to log on to. The server populations are shown at the log in screen.
In order to keep the game free there are advertisements along the top border of Dungeon Runners, when I first started playing they were a minor distraction. A few hours into the game, I didn’t even notice them.
Free to download and play, it doesn’t really get too much of a better value than that. Although as with many other free games there is the potential for upgrading to a membership. Straight from the Dungeon Runner’s Website when you purchase a membership for US$4.99 per month you are granted:
Access to the highest quality in-game items*
Log-in queue priority
Free yourself from ads
In closing, you won’t regret downloading Dungeon Runners. The download time isn’t too bad, and let’s face it the cost is right. It’s worth mentioning again that this game is one of the most fun I’ve played. Simple, to the point, and with tons of humor laced throughout the game.
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