Posted: August 1, 2014
Early Access Review
Dungeon Keeper fans: This is the game you've been waiting for.
I have been playing Dungeon Keeper 2 regularly since its release in 1999. There was literally nothing else like it. Nothing that blended strategy, simulation, humor, god-like abilities quite like it could. Over the years, I have wished for a game that was at least similar. Something that could tap into that magic a little bit.
I heard about War for the Overworld when my heart was breaking over the bullcrap EA pulled with the Dungeon Keeper mobile game (I don't own a cell phone, but if that game had been good, I would have probably bought one just for that, haha). Some dude mentioned it in the comments of an article about EA's latest mistake, and I flew over to Steam to find it (figuratively speaking, of course). I finally tried it today, and I have to say, I am surprisingly shocked as to how well they're pulling it off.
This game captures that DK essence. This game is made by people who are as obsessed with the masterpieces that are DK and DK2 as I am. The developers have put their hearts and souls into this game. This much is clear because everything that Dungeon Keeper did right, it's here. Everything you loved is here. Some things that were glitchy about DK2 or just inconvenient are upgraded and/or gone (building prisons while your minions are walking through the area will no longer accidentally imprison them, for one example). Obviously, the game is not DK. Types of minions and rooms have been changed, as is necessary, I suppose. I thought I might find this hard to come to terms with (after all, the Dark Angel from DK2 is one of my favorite video game characters of all time, hence why I have a portrait of one on the wall behind me), but it's really not bad at all. It's even refreshing, in a way. I was actually excited to see new character types to play with and master. The visuals are stunning. There are bits of humor here and there. And either the voice actor they got is doing a ridiculously fantastic job of mimicking the guy from DK2, or he IS the guy from DK2. Either way, props.
I very enthusiastically recommend this game, even in early access. Although the campaign is limited to a tutorial mission and one other mission now (plus four others, including a sandbox and a My Pet Dungeon because, well, YES!!!), the game is highly playable, and I can see myself getting at least 20 hours out of the state it is in now, but then again, I am a sucker for just messing around with a game and perfecting it. The average player will probably get 5-10 hours out of this or so in its early access state. But with active developers (just check the forums, if you want), you will be able to purchase an early access with the knowledge that your input does, in fact, count. If you like providing feedback on a game or being one of the first to play an awesome game, buy this. If you want to delve into this and play the whole campaign over the span of a few days, put this in your wishlist, because you'll have to wait a few months for that (early 2015 is the current estimated release date). Either way, you'll want to buy it, sooner or later. ;)