Written by  :  Andrew Grasmeder (230)
Written on  :  Aug 04, 2000
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  3.2 Stars3.2 Stars3.2 Stars3.2 Stars3.2 Stars

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A trip down into the heart of evil

The Good

Some games have a pretty face with fancy graphics and all the latest 3D buzzwords, but when I am looking to have a relationship with a game, I generally look at one thing as most important, personality. Dungeon Keeper is literally bursting at the seams with personality. The game wallows in it's own evil with emphatic glee. You get to play the bad guy/girl for once and enjoy all of its guilty evil pleasures. Workers not going fast enough, give them a slap with your 'hand of evil.' Want to explore your filfty cavarens yourself, posess the body of one of your minions and go exploring in a first person view. A really cool feature of this is the fact that each species of minion has a different view point. By an imp and you are half the size of everyone. Be a Hellhound and see everything in black and white. Besides this personality and style, the game had decent graphics, nice sound and really fun game play.

The Bad

I would have liked a more open -ended gameplay mode. One that you could just build a foul dungeon and have to fight off the different heros that would attack you. The current levels are very much limited because most have a fixed supply of gold. Another issue is that the ability to pick up and drop your creatures any where, while very convient and good part of the game, limits fighting to dropping all of your minions at one spot and letting them have at it. Also the first person perspective while fun only has limited usage in the game.

The Bottom Line

Dungeon Keeper is SimCity in He*l with a lot of other genres thrown in. Think of Diablo, but being Diablo: laying out your dungeon, commanding your hoard of imps to dig out the rock to create a cesspool of evil, fighting the good pure knights that dare enter your domain, and taking control of the realm to bring about misery. It's all evil fun. Your minions have minds of there own though. You need to make your dungeon the penthouse of dastardly depravity and corruption to attract the horrid beasts. You can then drop them into different rooms to assign them task, but they leave to rest, and eat, or if they get bored or angry. Keeping your minions happy is a key element to the game. The only way you can make them do exactly what you want them to is to literally jump into there minds with the pocession spell.

Graphically the game was slightly behind the times even when it was released (due to a 3 year development time). In the normal isometric mode you can zoom and pan freely and the graphics though low resolution look ok (640X480 is the highest resolution). The sound is very good. The game runs fast on the reccommend system.

All in all, a highly reccommend game for those who want to be a bastard. Great fun.