Minecraft Dungeon is a spinoff of Minecraft. I’ve only played Minecraft for about 20 minutes before I got bored and quit so I can’t really comment on what that game does well because it’s not for me. Dungeon Crawlers, however, are for me and I’ve played them all. So how does Minecraft Dungeons stack up to the likes of Diablo III, Grim Dawn, etc? Here’s what I think of it!
Fans Of Minecraft Should Love This:
If you’re one of those hardcore Minecraft fans you’ll probably love this game because it’s more Minecraft for you to enjoy and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that. If you’re someone that’s not a fan of Minecraft and you’re thinking about buying this game because it reminds you of Diablo don’t do it. You can play Path of Exile and Diablo III on Xbox One and both of those games are so much better than this. You can even play Warhammer 40k Inquisitor and be better off and I have a love/hate relationship with that game. This game isn’t better than any of those. If you’re on PC you have many more choices available to you. You don’t need this game. If you’re on Xbox Game Pass then go ahead and try it since it’s part of your subscription service. Just don’t buy it.
Minecraft Dungeons is basically Minecraft x Diablo. It just doesn’t have the polish or fun that series of games do, but this developer isn’t known for making games like this so I’m willing to cut them some slack here, but the gameplay here is as bare-boned and average as it gets in this genre. You’ve got your basic attacks, a ranged attack, and different items that you can use in the place of spells. The problem is that only a tiny amount of items that I found was actually useful to me and they were basically magic spells. There are no skill points to put into a spell tree or anything interesting like that. There are no character classes or even a passive skill tree to make your character stronger. Everything scales with your gear level and that’s a system that I’ve always hated in games.
If you want to do good damage to enemies on higher difficulties equip that item with a higher gear score and you’re good to go. Whether you like the item or not doesn’t matter. Just use it. That’s how I felt while playing this game. After you complete the main story (if it can even be called that) you’ll unlock Adventure Mode. It’s also as bare-bones as it gets. In Diablo III, Adventure Mode is a place where you can accept bounties, take on rifts and greater rifts, or explore some of the new areas that were added to it over time. I know it’s not fair to compare a game that just launched to a game that’s seen its share of ups and downs, but I’m doing it anyway.
Adventure Mode in Minecraft Dungeons is basically a new game plus for those of you that want to go through this very short game again and again. I completed this game in two sittings. I played for about an hour and a half my first sitting and powered through the rest of the game in my second. By the end of the game, I just wanted it to be over.
I wouldn’t call the soundtrack in this game horrible, but it’s not very memorable either. Even now off of a fresh playthrough of the game I can’t recall a single song that played in the background. What little voice acting there is in the game is alright and the sound effects are about what you expect from this genre of games. Nothing wowed me here.
I honestly stopped paying attention to the story in this game after the opening cinematic cutscene. The developers obviously didn’t put any love into the story so why should waste my time paying attention to it. You’ve basically gotta stop some big bad guy with your hero and every stage you enter gives you the bare minimum of information. You fight through a handful of stages plus some secret unlockable ones and that’s about it. There’s nothing special here and it makes me appreciate games like Diablo III and Wolcen because at least the developers tried to tell a decent story and have interesting lore surrounding everything. In this game, it’s just boring.
It’s Really Buggy In Local Co-op:
Playing this game in local co-op nearly broke me. If I wasn’t being spawned into a wall or behind the fog I was floating in mid-air helpless to help my wife. This game needs some serious patching.
I’m not a fan of the way this game looks. Keep in mind that I’m not a Minecraft fan. I never cared for the blocky graphics and I hate the character models in this game. The game ran fine about 70% of the time. The various different bugs & glitches we encountered really tested our patience and made me want to quit on multiple occasions. Especially since this game punishes you for playing with a partner anyway.
Loot & Customization
Every great dungeon crawler has great loot that you want to grind for. This game does not. Even if it did none of the items that I collected looked cool to me. I hate that everything is blocky as hell and none of the different armor sets I found were cool. Even the unique stuff was bad. There’s also not enough loot in the game. I can go through an entire stage and not find anything for me. It actually happened to me twice. I had to buy my gear just to keep up with my wife. A game like this should have us swimming in loot. Even if it’s not good loot I would at least feel like my time was being rewarded with something.
After we beat the boss of the game my wife was the one that got all the loot drops even though I did 90% of the damage to the boss. This needs a serious rework. What’s the point of playing multiplayer when you don’t get anything for all your hard work?
Minecraft Dungeons did nothing for me. It's a mediocre dungeon crawler with bad boss fights, bad loot, average gameplay, a below-average story, and really bad customization. Fans of Minecraft may like this, but for hardcore fans of this genre, I would recommend looking somewhere else for your fix because you won't get it here.