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Deadly Rooms of Death Underdogs Hot

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Written by Underdogs     March 21, 2009    
 
8.5 (4)
0   2   0   0   2
Also Known As:
D.R.O.D.
Top Dog
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IPX
TCIP
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PBEM
SHS
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A fantastic but unfortunately very rare shareware puzzler, Deadly Rooms of Death consists of hundreds of rooms of insanely difficult puzzles. The idea is simple: you control a man with a sword that can point in 8 directions. On any turn you can either move the man or rotate the sword. You have as long as you want to plan each action, but it had better be good... your enemies move when you do! This puzzler has many kinds of enemies, and you will need to understand each one's personality intimately to even dream of making it to the final battle with the 'Neather.

Definitely my favourite "pure" puzzle game, DROD features countless brilliantly designed, extremely challenging puzzles. As a bonus, there's the visceral pleasure of slashing through whole armies of evil creatures singlehandedly. If you're a hardcore puzzle fan and you're getting bored of easy stuff like quantum physics, you must try this game!

Note: the download was removed at the request of game author Erik Hermansen. If you want to try it, download the much prettier - and free - remake called DROD: Architects' Edition on this site coded by Mr. Hermansen himself :)

.min

User reviews

Average user rating from: 4 user(s)

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8.5  (4)
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4.0
expat Reviewed by expat April 13, 2012
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (98)
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In my opinion, the combination of puzzle gameplay and story imperatives make the DROD game series one of the most fun, long-lasting series that I have supported. The official holds are not only challenging to play but also show both attention to detail and polish.

I could gush on and on about the fiendish puzzles and the features of the game, but I'll merely mention here the strong extensibility and additional content generated by the community. There are hundreds of user-created level sets available, with plenty of new ideas, which are all free to download. The level editor is functional and intuitive enough to produce pretty much anything you have an idea of and the will to implement. The architectural community is supportive of new level sets and it is not hard to find beta-testers or become one.

Getting to the main point, the DROD series has a strong story to it introduced in the many canon holds, but is reused and touched upon in fanon greatly. Deadly Rooms of Death takes place in a fictional world known as the Eighth, a somewhat more realistic version of the standard medieval fantasy setting. There are monsters and castles and dungeons and all that, but every object works together with others and serves a specific purpose, as reflective of their implementation as puzzle elements. Oremites eat metal, or specifically swords. Fegundos are essentially phoenixes that can create explosions and can rise from the dead. Even the spherical orb fixtures that shoot lightning will only control doors or toggle lights.

Without spoiling any of the surprise, most plots, canon or fanon, involve smitemasters delving into a dungeon, but doing a lot more than just killing monsters for contract work - the standard excuse plot for any storyless levels. The easiest plots to set up are attempts to foil conspiracies and gather information, which mirror the canon holds so far, but even simple plots like escaping the underground or finding objects or rescuing people can be especially well pulled off with the later games' NPC systems, atmospheric effects, and the attentive level design which can be found everywhere.

While the game takes place in a set of rooms, some of which might have puzzles and others of which might serve to give information, it is possible to produce a story the same way all the other ways work - providing enough information to give the player motivation, showcasing conflict, and giving the player ways to observe and overcome it in a satisfying manner. The implementation is all up to the architect, and his creativity and work ethic will go a long way towards creating a high-quality experience.

Overall, it's possible to find enjoyment in this game as either an architect or a player, and if figuring out lynchpins and solving involved puzzles is your cup of tea, then you should probably play it. Stories and context will go a long way towards improving the experience - in what other puzzle games can you apprehend criminals, stop invasions, resist mind control, or create essentially any story you want?
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10.0
Leylite Reviewed by Leylite October 05, 2009
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (1)

A strong puzzle game and world creator.

In my opinion, the combination of puzzle gameplay and story imperatives make the DROD game series one of the most fun, long-lasting series that I have supported. The official holds are not only challenging to play but also show both attention to detail and polish.

I could gush on and on about the fiendish puzzles and the features of the game, but I'll merely mention here the strong extensibility and additional content generated by the community. There are hundreds of user-created level sets available, with plenty of new ideas, which are all free to download. The level editor is functional and intuitive enough to produce pretty much anything you have an idea of and the will to implement. The architectural community is supportive of new level sets and it is not hard to find beta-testers or become one.

Getting to the main point, the DROD series has a strong story to it introduced in the many canon holds, but is reused and touched upon in fanon greatly. Deadly Rooms of Death takes place in a fictional world known as the Eighth, a somewhat more realistic version of the standard medieval fantasy setting. There are monsters and castles and dungeons and all that, but every object works together with others and serves a specific purpose, as reflective of their implementation as puzzle elements. Oremites eat metal, or specifically swords. Fegundos are essentially phoenixes that can create explosions and can rise from the dead. Even the spherical orb fixtures that shoot lightning will only control doors or toggle lights.

Without spoiling any of the surprise, most plots, canon or fanon, involve smitemasters delving into a dungeon, but doing a lot more than just killing monsters for contract work - the standard excuse plot for any storyless levels. The easiest plots to set up are attempts to foil conspiracies and gather information, which mirror the canon holds so far, but even simple plots like escaping the underground or finding objects or rescuing people can be especially well pulled off with the later games' NPC systems, atmospheric effects, and the attentive level design which can be found everywhere.

While the game takes place in a set of rooms, some of which might have puzzles and others of which might serve to give information, it is possible to produce a story the same way all the other ways work - providing enough information to give the player motivation, showcasing conflict, and giving the player ways to observe and overcome it in a satisfying manner. The implementation is all up to the architect, and his creativity and work ethic will go a long way towards creating a high-quality experience.

Overall, it's possible to find enjoyment in this game as either an architect or a player, and if figuring out lynchpins and solving involved puzzles is your cup of tea, then you should probably play it. Stories and context will go a long way towards improving the experience - in what other puzzle games can you apprehend criminals, stop invasions, resist mind control, or create essentially any story you want?

Was this review helpful to you? 
If you've been driving the indie circuit for a while, you've probably come across Deadly Rooms of Death, most likely because of the solid support of earlier versions of this site.

This is easily the worst version of the game ever released, so I'll make it clear that I'm reviewing what the game has become through its many updates rather than this entirely useless piece of software. This version is no longer sold and lacked most of the features and gameplay devices in later games, although its levels are still solid, widely played and compatible with all newer versions.

DROD is, on one very basic level, a typical dungeon crawler. As Beethro Budkin you descend through 25 floors of a dungeon with the goal of killing each monster on each floor. It does, however, differ from the norm on one very important factor: it's a puzzle game.

Though occasionally you will see levels that focus purely on combat (which are generally frowned upon by the game's expansive and dedicated level-building community), which is done in an almost chess-like turn based fashion, most rooms revolve around solving a complex puzzle to get your sword into each monster. After you move, every other element in the room moves (which takes less than a second, though there is a designated movement order that is important to learn), meaning you have much time to think as possible. In a turn you can move in one of 8 directions, rotate your sword 45 degrees or do nothing.

The engine allows for a great variety of puzzles, and is complex enough that they are always challenging enough to chew on for a good while. Puzzles involve everything from trying to step on each trapdoor in order to trigger a door from dropping while combatting enemies every step of the way to leading a snake around the level, manipulating it to kill what you alone can't.

The best part about DROD is the level editor. It's very easy to use, user-made levels are abundant and creating complex puzzles is a lot of fun. I remember in the first sequel, Journey to Rooted Hold, there was an advertisement screen that reasoned through mathematics that the game was larger than Canada taking user-made levels into account. Back then the level editor was two years old, now it's been six and the choices have grown exponentially. You can play any user-made hold with the demos, and the best of the levels made in the editor (which are easy to find due to a comprehensive ranking system) are just as good as the best of the official content.

Since DROD's release in 1997, the license was sold back to its owner, the game was released freeware and then open source, a level editor was made, two sequels were made, Beethro got a voice actor and then got another one, a spin-off was released and hundreds of levels were built with the editor. It started as a neat little puzzle game, and now it has grown into a true masterpiece, and is inarguably one of the greatest games ever made.
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10.0
Snacko Reviewed by Snacko July 09, 2009
Top 100 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (2)

The genesis of the greatest puzzle game of all time.

If you've been driving the indie circuit for a while, you've probably come across Deadly Rooms of Death, most likely because of the solid support of earlier versions of this site.

This is easily the worst version of the game ever released, so I'll make it clear that I'm reviewing what the game has become through its many updates rather than this entirely useless piece of software. This version is no longer sold and lacked most of the features and gameplay devices in later games, although its levels are still solid, widely played and compatible with all newer versions.

DROD is, on one very basic level, a typical dungeon crawler. As Beethro Budkin you descend through 25 floors of a dungeon with the goal of killing each monster on each floor. It does, however, differ from the norm on one very important factor: it's a puzzle game.

Though occasionally you will see levels that focus purely on combat (which are generally frowned upon by the game's expansive and dedicated level-building community), which is done in an almost chess-like turn based fashion, most rooms revolve around solving a complex puzzle to get your sword into each monster. After you move, every other element in the room moves (which takes less than a second, though there is a designated movement order that is important to learn), meaning you have much time to think as possible. In a turn you can move in one of 8 directions, rotate your sword 45 degrees or do nothing.

The engine allows for a great variety of puzzles, and is complex enough that they are always challenging enough to chew on for a good while. Puzzles involve everything from trying to step on each trapdoor in order to trigger a door from dropping while combatting enemies every step of the way to leading a snake around the level, manipulating it to kill what you alone can't.

The best part about DROD is the level editor. It's very easy to use, user-made levels are abundant and creating complex puzzles is a lot of fun. I remember in the first sequel, Journey to Rooted Hold, there was an advertisement screen that reasoned through mathematics that the game was larger than Canada taking user-made levels into account. Back then the level editor was two years old, now it's been six and the choices have grown exponentially. You can play any user-made hold with the demos, and the best of the levels made in the editor (which are easy to find due to a comprehensive ranking system) are just as good as the best of the official content.

Since DROD's release in 1997, the license was sold back to its owner, the game was released freeware and then open source, a level editor was made, two sequels were made, Beethro got a voice actor and then got another one, a spin-off was released and hundreds of levels were built with the editor. It started as a neat little puzzle game, and now it has grown into a true masterpiece, and is inarguably one of the greatest games ever made.

Was this review helpful to you? 
DROD has grown mightily since I found it on this site years ago. What is described here is a very old version of the game. There is the revamped (with a level-editor!) Architect's Edition, the improved Journey to Rooted Hold version, and the greatly vast The City Beneath edition. All editions have demo versions which are free to download. All demo versions can create levels, and play user-made level sets. The only reason you'd need to pay is if you want to play the official canon levels.

I've been playing this series for something like a decade, and I've rarely gotten tired of it. It is a combination of strategy and puzzle that is quite hard to describe in summary form. You are a guy with a Really Big Sword (TM) whose goal is to kill all of the monsters in a room (typically). Each monster has its own movement pattern. Here's the strategy--you move, then the monsters react. Your motion forces theirs, ultimately to their doom (or yours).

There are something like 60 unique elements in the current version. The game is Turing complete, and there is a scripting system that allows you to create monsters with their own movement patterns.

If you're looking for a puzzle game that will actually challenge you--not just to push blocks on spaces--this is likely your best bet. You can find the current versions at caravelgames.com. You'll be glad you did.
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10.0
zex20913 Reviewed by zex20913 March 24, 2009
Top 100 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (3)

My best game ever.

DROD has grown mightily since I found it on this site years ago. What is described here is a very old version of the game. There is the revamped (with a level-editor!) Architect's Edition, the improved Journey to Rooted Hold version, and the greatly vast The City Beneath edition. All editions have demo versions which are free to download. All demo versions can create levels, and play user-made level sets. The only reason you'd need to pay is if you want to play the official canon levels.

I've been playing this series for something like a decade, and I've rarely gotten tired of it. It is a combination of strategy and puzzle that is quite hard to describe in summary form. You are a guy with a Really Big Sword (TM) whose goal is to kill all of the monsters in a room (typically). Each monster has its own movement pattern. Here's the strategy--you move, then the monsters react. Your motion forces theirs, ultimately to their doom (or yours).

There are something like 60 unique elements in the current version. The game is Turing complete, and there is a scripting system that allows you to create monsters with their own movement patterns.

If you're looking for a puzzle game that will actually challenge you--not just to push blocks on spaces--this is likely your best bet. You can find the current versions at caravelgames.com. You'll be glad you did.

Was this review helpful to you? 
 
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