More Reviews
REVIEWS Dark Souls II: Crown of the Sunk Review
I was confident in my Dark Souls abilities. Then From Software released new Dark Souls II DLC.

The Swapper Review
One of 2013's best indie games swaps its way to Sony platforms.
More Previews
PREVIEWS Pillars of Eternity Preview
For Obsidian's crowdfunded love letter to Infinity Engine games like Icewind Dale and Baldur's Gate, I was impressed by its willingness to pull back the curtain and let me see the machinery behind it.
Release Dates
NEW RELEASES CounterSpy
Release date: 08/19/14

Tales of Xillia 2
Release date: 08/19/14

Plants Vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare
Release date: 08/19/14

Madden NFL 15
Release date: 08/26/14


LATEST FEATURES An Updating List of PlayStation 4 Updates We Want
Sony and Microsoft have been updating their consoles regularly, but we wanted to share our own ideas for updating the PS4 firmware.

An Updating List of Xbox One Updates We Want
Microsoft has launched Xbox One and done its best to follow Sony's lead and its even secured some exclusive software, but we want more.
MOST POPULAR FEATURES Picking Your Gender: 5 Industry Professionals Discuss Queer Identity in Gaming
Women from Naughty Dog, ArenaNet, Harmonix, and Gamespot unite to talk about what they want from games in terms of diversity.
 
Coming Soon

LEADERBOARD
Read More Member Blogs
FEATURED VOXPOP oneshotstop
Call of Duty will never be the same
By oneshotstop
Posted on 07/28/14
       We've all been there. Everyone remembers that mission. You and your partner are climbing up the mountains in the snow, striving to pull some slick clandestine operation about getting some intel on a bad guy, or something similar (because let's face...

Dungeons & Dragons Daggerdale Review

Nick_Tan By:
Nick_Tan
05/25/11
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE Action RPG 
PLAYERS 1- 4 
PUBLISHER Atari 
DEVELOPER Bedlam Games 
RELEASE DATE  
T What do these ratings mean?

I cast Magic Missile!


As I expressed earlier in my preview for Dungeons & Dragons: Daggerdale, I've always been surprised that there isn't a more high-profile aggressively marketed Dungeons & Dragons title on the console market when developers like BioWare and Bethesda owe much of their success to their D&D forefathers. I can easily imagine a short, succinct, easy-to-follow D&D tabletop campaign transformed into an action RPG similar to Baldur's Gate or Diablo, especially with the new D&D 4.0 rules that are partially inspired by the MMORPG. Maybe Wizards of the Coast felt it just wasn't worth the trouble all these years, since there are already so many incredible video game interpretations of their ruleset, but now is a time of change.

click to enlarge(Not so) shockingly, Daggerdale isn't too far from what I imagined: four archetypal heroes battling through dungeons full of skeletons and goblins and purging the land of whatever darkness that has befallen it. After selecting between the human fighter, dwarven cleric, halfling wizard, and elven rogue, you are charged with expunging Daggerdale of Rezlus, a conjurer and follower of the evil god Bane who has been building his strength and his Zhent army as he watches from his tower. Think Saruman, except Rezlus was never meant to be good and his skin is as ghoulishly pale as Quan Chi's.

Immediately after selecting your hero of choice, it becomes clear that this is indeed a D&D title with you checking feats, ability scores, and weapon specializations before ever sitting foot in the world. The four characters differ as you would expect of their class, from their attributes to their special skill: the wizard can teleport, the rogue can dodge, the cleric can heal (very useful), and the fighter has been given the shaft can block. From there, it's familiar territory for a third-person action RPG: destroying barrels for gold, killing goblins with swords, spells, and special abilities, saving helpless dwarves, opening chests, and drinking a probably unhealthy amount of health potions.

Combat in Daggerdale falls somewhere between Gauntlet Legends and Baldur's Gate, sometimes awkwardly so. Special techniques recharge blisteringly fast, so there comes a point when using the standard melee attack doesn't make sense, unless you're fighting with a weapon that has an extra fast attack speed. Characters also have an infinite number of throwing weapons or arrows; in the case of the fighter, it's a throwing axe with automatic knockback, otherwise known as spam. So if you're patient enough, you will win every one-on-one fight. It's a strategy that's almost necessary; getting flanked by a horde is never good and potions don't heal a lot.

click to enlargeThat said, playing Daggerdale in multiplayer, up to two locally or up to four online, is the best way to go and fills the void that multiplayer fantasy action RPGs have strangely left behind on the console. It's more difficult to employ the patient one-on-one ranged attack strategy with more than one person, but the benefit of having a party makes dungeon crawling swifter and easier, as long as you've got enough potions or at least one dwarven cleric (having four dwarven clerics simply owns all). 

Where the game falters, though, is in the lack of polish and production. The soundtrack is mind-numbingly boring, with drone-like loops that I quickly muted. None of the dialogue is voice-acted, which would have been tolerable if it wasn't accompanied by dwarven grunts and gurgles. The rewards for quests, which are usually basic fetch-all-this, escort-all-that, or kill-all-those missions, are paltry, and the respawn rate for enemies is high enough that backtracking usually means facing the same enemy groups twice. There are also a few all-around flaws here and there, like when the game sells an item you didn't select or being disoriented after a tutorial cut-scene.

But for a $15 downloadable title, Daggerdale is a fine example of why we need more multiplayer action RPGs and, really, more Dungeons & Dragons. Though it may not be a technical powerhouse or gain any marks for innovation, it's a decent, party-friendly adventure that lasts a good 12 hours for one playthrough and it will likely be patched within the first week (so stay away if you can't stand minor glitches). The only thing you might really miss is the sound of rolling dodecahedrons.
B Revolution report card
  • Dungeons & Dragons on the console
  • Enjoyable multiplayer mode
  • $15 is fair for the content
  • +/- Good but strict character building
  • Not that innovative
  • Some faulty presentation and polish
  • Too easy to spam
    Reviews by other members
    No member reviews for the game.

More from the Game Revolution Network




comments powered by Disqus

 


More information about Dungeons & Dragons Daggerdale
Also known as: D&D Daggerdale, Dungeons & Dragons Daggerdale


More On GameRevolution