Test Your Luck in Dice Mage 2, a Pint-Sized RPG
Dice Mage 2 (Free) by Tapinator in collaboration with Boarding Party is a bite-size RPG that tests your luck. It's the sequel to the original Dice Mage that came out in 2015, and it's a worthy upgrade. If you like recent titles such as Cat Quest and Miracle Merchant, then you'll enjoy what Dice Mage 2 has to offer.
As I went through high school, I spent a lot of time on RPGs in my free time (you know, after homework). Back then, I didn't have to worry about jobs and other adult responsibilities, so I felt like I had all the time in the world for games. Thus, I poured hundreds of hours into whatever RPGs I could get my hands on at the time. Now that I'm older and have more things to worry about, I don't have as much time as I would like to put into every single RPG. So I appreciate ones that let me play in quick sessions. When the first Dice Mage came out, I was impressed with the quick battles and how it was a perfect pick-up-and-play game. Now that the sequel is out, I'm not disappointed.
App Feels Like
App Feels Like
Visually, Dice Mage 2 is gorgeous with a cute pixelated art style that's a nice homage to the 16-bit games of yesteryear. The pixel art style will always remain a classic, and all of the character sprites are as detailed as ever. Dice Mage 2 features pretty, lush environments as you make your way through different worlds, and the colors are bright and vibrant. All animations are smooth and fluid, with no lag on my iPhone 7. There's also an upbeat and quirky soundtrack that gets your adrenaline going, as well as fun sound effects in battle.
Dice Mage 2 has a pretty generic story that isn't too captivating. There's a mage who stumbles upon some tough looking monsters, and discovers that they're going to destroy the world. So of course it's up to him to stop them, through dice magic. But honestly, you don't play this game for story, you play it for the fun and exciting battles.
The game's split up into different worlds, which all have its own unique set of enemies and a large boss at the end. The worlds consist of floating rocks that hold an enemy sprite (engage in battle), gems (premium currency), or even item shops. To go to a rock, just tap on the one you want. Treasure is automatically collected when you get there, and you enter shops immediately, but this can only happen once, so make sure you're stocked up with gems!
Engaging in battle is done by tapping on a rock with an enemy on it. Battles are pretty easy and straightforward, so learning is a snap. In each fight, you have a row of dice at the bottom — these are what you roll for your attacks. Colored dice have spells and skills attached to them that activate when rolled. You get to pick two dice to roll on each turn, and you must roll higher than the enemy for it to be a successful attack. If you're not happy with your selection of dice, you can re-roll a new dice hand by spending some gems.
In each battle, you continue to roll dice until the enemy's HP whittles down to zero. If your health runs out, then you'll have to restart the world, or watch an ad to continue. When you're low on health, you should try to roll green health recovery die, or stop by a shop and spend some gems to refill hit points. Unfortunately there's no potion item that you can carry with you, so replenishing health is a scarcity.
If you're on a bad luck streak, then a gauge fills up in the bottom left. Once it's full, you can tap on it to activate your Super, which deals a good amount of damage to the enemy. But be careful — this can deal a ton of damage, but requires you to take plenty of damage too. High stakes, big rewards!
As you defeat enemies, you're rewarded with treasure chests. These may contain upgrades, like increase your attack power, give you some health, or even have equippable gear (armor, weapons, and spells). The random shops you find also sell gear, but they cost gems, so you'll have to save up and grind.
Along with regular battles, Dice Mage 2 has some mini-games that give you more opportunities for chests. These mini-games involve rolling die and having the total roll fall under the green bar on a scale. If your roll is in the green, you get a chest; if not, then you spend a gem to try again.
Roll the dice to battle various enemies with magical dice boosts included.
Dice Mage 2 is a perfect quick RPG to play when you have a few moments to spare. The graphics are endearing, the music and sounds are fun, and the controls are super intuitive. The battles are fun and fast, relying on a mix of luck and strategy to win. Once you get going, Dice Mage 2 becomes pretty hard to put down.
While there's more good than bad to Dice Mage 2, it's not perfect. I was a bit disappointed to see that there are no health potions, so replenishing HP is an arduous task. I also think that I should get more than one gem for some items, because they're already hard enough to come by. Having to restart the world just because you ran out of health is also annoying, as it forces you to watch an ad just to keep your place.
Despite the flaws, I'm finding Dice Mage 2 incredibly fun to play. I always love pixel art, so the graphics are delightful to see. The music and sound effects are also fun to hear, and the combination of luck and planning makes for a distinctive gameplay mechanic. I can see myself coming back to this one for a long time — it's perfect for short burst gaming sessions.
I recommend giving Dice Mage 2 a try if you're in need of a quick RPG. You can find Dice Mage 2 on the App Store as a universal download on your iPhone and iPad for free with in-app purchases.