The combat hews closely to dungeon crawling standards, complete with light and heavy attacks, ultimate powers, and dodge rolls. Similarly, one can expect wave upon wave of baddies to descend upon the heroes at the standard clip. It’s when these two aspects collide that the game feels frustratingly thin. Both weapons and enemies interact with a quality verging on incorporeal, with only the slightest of indications that swings and shots have found purchase. In many instances when the onscreen action grew chaotic, I realized that, were I not glancing at my health bar, I would’ve had absolutely no clue that I was, as a matter of fact, taking damage. The game’s puzzle and platforming elements are comparably lightweight and, in some cases, offer almost insultingly little complexity. As an example, one of the game’s boss fights (itself a combative puzzle) revealed its mechanics in full within about thirty seconds and then repeated said mechanics ad nauseam over the course of a five to seven minute fight. Once finished, the elation my partners and I felt at simply being done with that experience was almost palpable.
Super Dungeon Bros attempts to inject some longevity into its veins by incorporating a few roguelike mechanics - namely, randomized level creation, seeded community runs, and a meta-currency. While it’s nearly impossible not to mention the terms roguelike and market saturation in the same breath, the inclusion of these aspects in and of itself certainly isn’t damning. What is, though, is the decision to build in the most base forms of the genre and seemingly call it a day. One of the core goals of the roguelike experience is to create a unique, but slightly familiar story each time the player embarks on a new adventure. Unfortunately, the level design iterates so slightly from one session to the next that each run tends to blend together into one extended, mediocre experience. Likewise, the concept of meta-currency is used as a way to incentivize repeated runs and provide tangible benefits for improvement over the course of play, but whether aesthetic or mechanical, Super Dungeon Bros’ rewards feel shallow and provide mild differences from the standard model.
It’s tough to write about Super Dungeon Bros, as much of the game seems to actively shy away from eliciting an opinion. Outside of some connectivity issues, none of its technical aspects are objectively bad, nor are its mechanics broken. Like many other games in the “indie” realm, though, it could’ve benefited from a serious desire to both deliver on its promises and attempt to differentiate itself from its hordes of compatriots. As it stands, Super Dungeon Bros remains almost powerfully in the middle of the pack. There are many worse ways to spend your time and money, but with so many other games in this space twisting formulas and driving their genres forward in unique, enjoyable ways, it’s tough to recommend the game for much more than a couple nights of a mildly inoffensive experience.
The Co-Op Experience: Teams of up to four players will control hard rocking warrior bros in ever-changing dungeons that combine rock and fantasy with dangerous foes, deadly obstacles, and hazardous puzzles. Cross-platform gameplay with Xbox One to Windows 10 and PlayStation 4 to PC
Co-Optimus game reviews focus on the cooperative experience of a game, our final score graphic represents this experience along with an average score for the game overall. For an explanation of our scores please check our Review Score Explanation Guide.