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Dungeon Master (DOS)

81
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.9
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Ali Jakamy (8)
Written on  :  Aug 09, 2005
Platform  :  DOS
Rating  :  4.17 Stars4.17 Stars4.17 Stars4.17 Stars4.17 Stars
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Summary

The game that got me into the RPG realm

The Good

Back into 1990, i had a PC and an MSX and played only Action/Platform games on it. I didn't pay much attention to adventure games, and never even knew or considered playing an RPG game.

In fact, I liked action and didn't even think that games can be of other categories than action or reflexion/puzzle games. One day in 1990, my uncle who had a 286 at that time, gave me a copy of a game with the name 'Dungeon' handwritten on top of an old 3in1/2 diskette.

I put it on the disk-drive and run the game by typing Dm.bat. It took some time to load from the floppy disk, i don't remember playing the game directly from the hard-disk. After a few seconds there comes a sound like the passing of an F16 with the FTL logo showing in yellow on the screen. Then comes a door, a black door with a button nearby. The colour of the door, and the fact that it was located on a mountain, drew my imagination that something malefic and fearsome has to be lying behind it. I just wanted to open it and face the mystery behind it.

Once opened, a long corridor was lying in front me, i couldn't exploring the area. I found the keyboards controls easy, i used the keys for directions and the mouse for action. The first thing colorful i found was some kind of portraits on the walls, so i clicked on them, to find that there is a room for a party of 4. In all the games I played, I was always playing as one player, now in this one i found myself playing (managing)four!, i noticed that they get hungry with time, that was new to me, I had to find food for them (I recall that food was a stressing problem, I had some members die of hunger!). There were many things to take care of, this was entirely new to me, among the many quests was the stressing quest for food!. After forming my party I took stairs to go one level down, every time i saw a down stair it was with mixed with fear and anxiety that i did get down. Shit! a mummy!, the death sound it had terrified me. I took a dagger and throw on him three times like a mad man to kill him and save my beautiful party. I couldn't resist going down and deep the dungeon, the mix of exploration, fighting, magic, monsters, treasures, puzzles, party experience increase, management of players (food, sleeping, light) and the dark atmosphere hooked me unto the game like no other before. There were wall inscriptions that i still remember even now more that 15 years after playing the game.

I played it day and night, non stop for about 4 months, only to be stuck in front of the end game Monster (I didn't knew at that time that it was the end game monster). I didn't knew how to defeat it. I desperately tried to find some solution, but at that time, there was no Internet, and in my country there was no magazine with a hint or solution on how to finish game. Stuck in despair, I abandoned the game, lost my "dungeon" disk, and played other games, in hope that one day I could find the solution to my 'Dungeon' game. I remember that every time I got into a library, I tried to find computer/games books, in hope to find one talking about this 'Dungeon' game, in vain.

One day in 1992, I came across a small book with the title "Best 100 games", looking if there was my 'Dungeon' game in it, i was surprised to find it, it was the first time i read about 'Dungeon'. I was very happy to know that the author considered it to be a great game!, that was also my opinion, I was happy to know that I played a great game!. Reading the page about 'Dungeon', I found that probably the monster I found was the last one, and that to defeat it I had to use the Firestaff and a magic cage.

I drop the book to its place and run to see my uncle, hoping that hes still had the 'dungeon' disk. Finding me exited about getting the game, he asked me proudly if i liked his disk, very much i responded. He searched for it in midst of thousand of disks, and Thanks heaven he found it!. I took it again to my PC and began from scratch, with a new party, ready to rock through the game.

Then after 4 months of playing non stop, I found myself in front of the evil final boss with the Firestaff in hand. This time I knew how to use it, setting a cage around the Lord of Chaos (his bad name) i caught him in it badly. Being stuck in the magic cage I used the Firestaff spell to get the hell out of him. At last, I finished 'Dungeon'!, It was a great moment for me, I showed the ending to two of my brothers that were following my adventure through the game.

I regret one thing, i didn't show the ending to one of my brothers, because of something i don't remember, we were young and played the silly game: show me your game endings, i'll show mine or similar kind of things.

One day, after finishing the game my uncle told me if 'Dungeon' was a good game, even tough he'll never play it, he liked to hear that his games are good, I replied "sure! but the game name is not 'Dungeon' but 'DUNGEON MASTER'!".

Even now, i think that Dungeon Master comes to my mind every day or so!, and as one of my brothers calls it this game 'DDDDDUNGEON MASTER' is a GREAT game.

The Bad

Nothing at the time. Now, it is a little bit outdated. It's sad to recognize that a game can be outdated, unlike books. I think that 'Dungeon Master' needs only graphics/animations enhancements to be up to the modern games standards.

The Bottom Line

Try to play, even if the graphics may rebuke you, at least go past the second stair. If you can't stand the graphics then play 'Lands of lore' or 'Gothic II', those may compensate not playing 'Dungeon Master'.