Even though I usually enjoy word games, I didn’t really touch crosswords. Maybe because there weren’t any points to score, or perhaps because it is just a single player thing. What was the end goal, besides filling out all of the squares? It just didn’t suit me. However, with Crossword Dungeon, I think it’s changing my mind.
Players can choose between three hero classes: Barbarian, Ranger, and Scoundrel. Each class will have their own unique traits that can help you in the game. Barbarians hit hard in melee attacks, Rangers can attack from a distance, and Scoundrels can avoid hits with their stealthiness. Personally, from my experience in playing the game, the classes don’t change the game that much.
You will start out in a “dungeon,” which is basically a crossword. The question and direction will show up underneath the map, and it is your job to answer it correctly. You can see how many hit points and experience you have right underneath the question. In order to attack the enemies, which attack you too, you will have to choose the correct letter from the eight available letter tiles. Some of these will also have special abilities, such as health potions, stealth, and more. Make sure to use them to your advantage if you can, because they really help out.
Correctly answering the questions will nab you some experience points. Once you fill up the bar, your character will level up, and you can choose from three different attributes to add a point into. These will increase your characters skill, so they can do more damage, make more critical hits, have more hit points, and more. You also move to the next dungeon level once you fill out all available squares in the current level.
The quest ends once you lose all of your health points. When this happens, you will have to start a new quest with another character. This makes sense, because the game is first and foremost a crossword puzzle, with RPG elements added to it. The point is to see how far you can make it through the dungeon before you die.
If you are curious about how good you are, you can view your Hall of Fame. This screen will reveal the characters you have used, and the deepest dungeon level and highest character level you have reached.
I love the pixelated look to it, and the music, because it definitely adds to the RPG layer of the game. Controls are simple as well, since you just tap on the squares to move.
While the game itself is fun, there have been some minor inaccuracies with some of the answers to clues. Also, if you play enough, the clues may start to get repetitive. I would like to see more randomly generated hints, because it seems the beginning is full of the same ones.
However, this game is still pretty great because it’s an interesting mix of two completely separate game types that you would have never thought of putting together. Kudos to the developer for trying something that hasn’t been done before.
Still needs a bit of polish, but I still recommend checking this game out, especially if you are a fan of either crosswords or RPGs. Grab it in the App Store for $1.99 for your iPhone.