My thoughts about the gameplay
Here are a couple of things that keep going through my mind while I'm playing the game:
- Sword guys usually block sword hits from the front. And with a couple of exceptions, they're always facing you so you end up hitting 2/3 times just pushing them away a bit rather than doing damage and killing.
When entering a new room, I often find myself surrounded by multiple sword guys with very little room to work with. Not being able to damage one, let alone kill one, before I get closed in from the other sides can be aggravating and feels unfair.
- When your sidekick chest is dazed/stunned, it starts blocking your path as well. In an often hectic situation where you are frantically watching all enemies, traps and projectiles, this is often a contributing factor to your doom. It's near impossible to babysit your chest if you're barely surviving yourself. This as well, tends to feel unfair.
- I remember in my very first playthrough I read and saw something about 10 golden keys. After that I've never ever seen them appear again and I simply get a couple of free tokens after every escape. I feel this is a missed opportunity.
- The champion mode is 'unlocked' every single time I escape. Even if I escape with champion mode on, it still notifies me it's unlocked again. I really don't need to be reminded of this after the 10th playthrough.
- Is it possible to beat every single boss on hard mode without losing a heart and without any upgrades?
Personally I have the impression it isn't. Even with the speed upgrade, I get outrun by the zombie chest for example (despite knowing its chess-like horse movement pattern), or the floating head+projectiles combo.
I get the feeling that because of this, the game tends to be luck related, your win is dependant on the drops you might or might not get, rather than your own personal capabilities.
If I compare this game to say Binding of Isaac of the same genre, if I died there I would always be sure it was my own fault and I could improve myself. When I die in Diehard Dungeon I'm more like "Well, that was an impossible situation. Unlucky."
- Not a gameplay note per se, but it's been said that leaving chests and hearts behind increases your score. Giving you points for leaving hearts behind because you don't need them, is rewarding you for good performance.
Though the concept of leaving chests behind is a very double sided one. Obtaining loot and upgrades is half the fun of the game. And may in fact be necessary to complete the dungeon. Now no matter if you choose to leave it or take it, you feel like you're missing out on something. Potential points or potential upgrades. There's no clear goal to work to.
Now that I've written this load off my shoulders I can rest at ease :)
Oh and please don't get the impression I'm hating on the game, I'm actually enjoying it a lot.