If you’re happy and you know it, crawl the dungeon!
Happy Dungeons is the newest game from Toylogic, and a semi-sequel to Happy Wars. You play as a person who falls off an island, onto a different island, before being left to protect the princess. You’ll need to fight off goblins as you cut your way through the forest, until you meet the Boss Goblin who thoroughly Goomba stomps you and takes the princess away. You are recruited into the Order of the White Dragon, and must do all the side quests that any reasonable hero would ignore.
You help a shopkeeper clean his basement, whilst also helping a baker get his German cookies back from the goblins. These are done in a very linear dungeon crawl that is tedious, but the constant engagement and active play style is enough to block said tedium out. You can play as one of three classes: Warrior, Mage, or Cleric.
Initially, I opted for playing as the warrior, but you aren’t prevented from swapping to another class before the start of the next dungeon crawl. Your level persists and you unlock new skills in a linear style that reminds me very much of Diablo. Each class has a specific weapon and armor for their tasks and will only be allowed to equip respective gear.
The gear you choose has levels, and the rarer the gear the more levels it can have. The nice part to this system is the ability to spend old junk to level up your new junk, or just decimate some poor goblins to get your tools up to snuff. This goes for armor pieces as well, and will lead to your character getting stronger before your next level up.
One of the few kinks in Happy Dungeons is the reliance on Premium Currency for buying things from the Jewel shop. This can lead to a heavy upset in multiplayer gear from a newbie buying the Warrior Veteran Pack and wiping the floor with the tiny corpses of goblins.
The game does offer an alternative currency for their Happy Cards, a random loot draw much like Fallout: Shelter Lunchboxes. You can buy one, five, or ten cards at a time, each with their respective price, and the game will open them immediately afterwards. This can be a little annoying, for the Premium Currency version of the packs guarantees an Epic Item for each card pack, whilst the Lite version will rarely bless you with Rare loot.
This isn’t a big gripe, for the loot drops more frequently than candy from a destroyed Pinata, but it is a little annoying in the way of getting Epic items.
Seeing as Happy Dungeons is in Game Preview format, it also currently has issues with a slightly long loading time at the start. Thankfully, every loading time afterwards is smooth as butter, and rightfully so. The game looks great and runs great.
All-in-all, it is wonderful right now. Once further rough edges are sanded down, something which time in Preview will no doubt cover, the game will surely shine as a new dungeon crawler that doesn’t leave its swords at home.
We will of course bring you a full review once the developers at Toylogic have decided its time for Happy Dungeons to break out of Preview.
Thanks to Xbox for providing the code.