Review: Runestone Keeper-Stabs me, melts me, and refuses to let me have skills….but I go back for more…

Welcome to Drisonia! I’m Arlack, your host. I have for you a review of Runestone Keeper.

At its heart it is a dungeon crawler, but not an action game. Time stands still until you do something, then a turn goes by. The game space is a flat board with tiles. All but a few tiles are hidden from your sight. You click on the tile to reveal it. When you do so something happens, a trap, a monster, a select an answer quest or other things. Each click makes a turn go by. This is important as some buffs, debuffs and abilities last for a set amount of turns. You do battle simply by clicking on an enemy. You and the monsters have shields (sometimes), health, and an attack score. The “round” takes place in a fraction of a second. You damage the enemy, the enemy damages you. Abilities and effects are taken into account and you get the results. Not as a screen, it simply changes the numbers on the screen. A trap simply harms you in some way. There is also gold to be had, and equipment. Weapons, armor. You even level up! However it is a rogue like and when you die, you lose everything except your gold. You can use this to unlock upgrades, heroes, items for your next run, the favor of a god you have found previously and such. The deeper you go,the more you defeat, and loads of other things, add to a score. Based on this score you get gold at the end. It reminds me of Rogue Legacy, in that you go through a dungeon, and come out with only gold, and buy upgrades to make it further.

There are difficulties, 3 that I saw in my short time. Each making the game harder, but also giving you more points. I played on the hardest….cause why not? hehe The difficulty and subsequent rewards can be increased with runes, items you pick up in the dungeon. Such as “Monsters do not drop mana, score multiplier x4” So you can push yourself even further if you choose.

Graphics are not outstanding. Rather pixelated and very static. The monsters are simply a face on a square. And you are just a stat sheet on the right side of the screen. Nothing moves on its own. The only movement you get is when an effect happens, a level up, a trap animation, damage explosions and such. Nothing spectacular. But, I am a gamer who appreciates gameplay over graphics any day. Minecraft anyone? *laugh*

The sound was not spectacular. The music felt too repetitive and almost unwanted noise. WHEN I go back to play, I will mute it, and play my own, ignoring the game sounds completely. Sound effects are also minimal. Coins making an annoying ding when you click them, a sword smack sound, a single heart throb when you pick one up. I won’t mark it down much for this. Honestly, the sound is not important. You can gather all the information you need with your eyes, so you are easily able to ignore it in favor or something of your own.

As for story….what story? *laugh* If there was one, I missed it, and it was not important, just a reason for the parts to be there.

Now, I did say the gameplay was simplistic, but that does not mean the game is without depth. The exploration of the squares, the hazards and rewards found there is a draw. It is a challenge to overcome, to find the best loot, make the right choice of leaving that ogre alive with just a hair of health, so you survive the level. I was drawn to the game, and very much enjoyed my time there. I will most definitely go back and play now and again. It is a good fit for those small stretches of time when I can’t play a heartier game.

I give this game a thumbs up. As a rogue like there is plenty of replayability here. And though the “Art” is not great, it is sufficient and not horrid. The gameplay makes up for that lacking aspect. For sure pick this one up. I would recommend you check out a video review for this one, to make sure you know exactly what you are getting into. If you did not click on the above link for mine, you might want to now. Or check out a let’s play. (I have an episode here. :-P)

As always I hope my dominating intellect has rendered you hopeless in resisting this game. <.<

Arlack out!


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