Satirical MMOs FTW

· by Steve · Read in about 2 min · (363 Words)

I’d had a bit of a trying week, fairly fragmented and with the irritation of running the nvidia instrumented drivers that, in combination with the use of PerfHUD 5, brought me more blue screens and hard system locks than I’ve experienced in a fair while. Great tool though, in between the reboots & inevitable disk consistency checks. So, I was feeling like a bit of R&R for a couple of hours, and for a laugh I tried Dungeon Runners.

Now, I’ve steered clear of MMOs before for fear of becoming a sad shell of a man who lives by proxy, but I’d heard this one doesn’t take itself too seriously so I figured it couldn’t hurt. Plus it’s free anyway provided you don’t want to get serious (which I don’t) so it seemed like a good way to unwind. Whilst at its heart it’s really just a regular grind-em-up, tick all the quest boxes and playing very much like Diablo, the kind of affair that I can generally take or leave, it has one very redeeming feature - humour.

DR basically takes the piss out of other fantasy MMOs, and it does it pretty well. I only played it for a short while but I was regularly chuckling, from the ludicrously named items (e.g. ‘Cardboard Staff of the Irreverent Beaver’, or ‘Baby Seal Skin Brigadine’), to the character names (e.g. ‘Lothar of the Mound People’ or ‘Tellis the Sellout’), and some place names (such as the ‘Horrific Dungeon of Legend (Death Penalty Enforced)’). They even have an NPC that sounds exactly like Gonzo, and one of my quests is to audit a particular region to make sure the monsters have their papers in order. It’s this that kept me playing when the underlying mechanics were basically lots of repetetive slashery & collecting - at least it was fun to see what popped up next.

I’m not going to become a member or likely play very often, and ‘serious’ MMO players will undoubtedly find it too simplistic. But as a fun game that knows how to poke fun at its own genre in the tradition of Bored of the Rings, it’s worth a look.