Rune Raiders Review
- What starts off looking like an incredibly basic game becomes more complex with each passing level.
- Nice variation on character classes (teamwork needed).
- The money to buy heroes seems unnecessary in place of just a selection screen.
- A little bare on visual flair.
An interesting and simple to play strategy game based around dungeon crawling with a band of adventurers and securing all that immaculate treasure.
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The title of Rune Raiders is misleading. You're not raiding runes. You're not even raiding ruins. This is a dungeon crawler... well kinda. Think of a grid based table top game like Hero Quest, and then put that into videogame form, except there are no dice roles, you control the entire party, and some of the banter between your group members is quite humorous.
The comparison to table top dungeon crawlers was made due to your party members and all the enemies being represented by what seem to be cardboard squares. Pressing the up button will move the entire party up a row, and this is essentially a turn. After moving, either up as a group, or repositioning a single character, the enemies will either move or attack, and team members such as the cleric will heal anybody who needs it. Combat is entirely based on positioning and is automatic. If your character can attack an enemy in range or vice versa, that will happen at the end of a turn. Wizards, rogues, and rangers can shoot projectiles a couple squares away, while fighters need to be up close and personal. Some enemies like the minotaur that you encounter quite early, can kill in a single hit so once again, positioning is the key to victory.
As you wander around enemies will drop gold, and there will be treasure to collect as well. Gold is used to hire your six heroes at the start of each mission, but you never seem to be at want for money so perhaps a selection screen would have worked better. Gold also revives a party member if they happen to die during a level (for the small fee of two hundred gold pieces no less). Some enemies will also drop an upgrade arrow that allows you to make one of your team stronger (essentially leveling them up by choosing from four perks). Each class has six possible upgrades so by the end your favorite characters should be pretty beefy indeed.
Rune Raiders is very simple to play and quite fun for how rudimentary it seems at first. Soon enough you'll be experimenting with optimal class layouts and adjusting on the fly depending on what type of e enemy you're facing. This would be a good purchase for those wanting an introduction to the strategy genre or a new spin on the dungeon crawler.