This game is a bit different than most you might find. This is a game about mining. The beauty of this game is that you can explore the whole mine, or you can just try to get the best ore you can. You have to mine to get the best ore, and you have to get the best ore to get to the next level.
As you may remember, we posted a review of Epic UnderMine not too long ago, and although we liked the game, we also cautioned that the title was still in Early Access and that it had a few issues that needed to be ironed out. Now, the game has been officially released and has been well received by gamers and critics alike, and with a new set of features and a graphics update, we just had to give this title another whirl to see how much has changed.
Taking inspiration from the likes of Super Mario Bros. and Mega Man, this game takes you down into the darkest depths of the earth to save the town of UnderMine. (This is where the game gets its name.) The game is a 2D platformer with graphics that were inspired by the retro games of the 1980s. You can choose to play as either a boy or girl, and you are tasked with collecting keys in order to unlock doors and progress deeper into the mine.Thorium’s UnderMinecame out in 2019, bringing its unusual brand of roguelike dungeon crawling to pc. Almost two years later,UnderMine has come out on Nintendo Switch, but the question is how it looks on a console that already has no shortage of quality Roguelikes. The answer is very good indeed. DeUnderMine doesn’t stand out, and with the level of polish and strong design present here, it doesn’t have to.
Magazine UnderMine: Hi Ho, Hi Ho, back to mine
UnderMine begins with a simple premise. You’re a farmer. This means doing what others tell you and not asking questions. At least, that’s what the almighty wizard thinks. From the beginning of the game, he calls you to his magical home and instructs you to travel to the mine (and beyond) to unravel the mysteries of the strange earthquakes that have occurred recently. He would, but… You know, he’s important and you’re a pawn. So you leave, unprepared and without any idea of what to do. When you die – and you will die, make no mistake – it’s over. As in the other Roguelikes, you lose a lot of your money and any artifacts you find along the way, but your special pawn is also dead. Another leaps to the ground, a new name and a new face in the endless procession of peasants marching to their doom that the wizard doesn’t even notice. UnderMine has a pervasive imagination that goes far beyond the comically heartless wizard. All sorts of strange characters can be found underground, from talking mushrooms desperately trying to revive their spores, to trapped shopkeepers who, because they have nothing else to do, open a shop anyway. Behind a locked church door. UnderMine has a larger story that you gradually discover as you progress, and Earthquakes is just the beginning. That’s why there are five different dungeon areas, brought to life with charming pixel art. And while the story as a whole isn’t bad, the visuals and the strange world that unfolds around you stand out far more than the story itself. Another unique feature of UnderMineis the design of the dungeon itself. UnderMineis a more accessible approach to completing roguelike dungeons than many others. Each dungeon area is relatively limited, meaning you don’t have to wander through dozens of rooms trying in vain to find an exit before dying in the game or not caring in real life. This eliminates a lot of the annoying restarts and makes it easier to get through a long UnderMine . The roguelike elements themselves also contribute. If you die, you lose all your special artifacts, but not all your gold. A diligent farmer (or several) will save enough money to spend on goods in the base, and if you make the effort to free the various merchants and blacksmiths you encounter, you can improve your farmers to increase their chances of survival. Improvements, such as. B. the durability of the bag, are a must, so you have more gold left when you die. There are also upgrades to your pickaxe, health, bombs – all pretty standard but useful. The same can be said for UnderMine’s gameplay and dungeon design in general, but this is proof that innovation and great gameplay don’t always go hand in hand. You’ve probably seen UnderMine elsewhere. The ultimate goal is to reach the lowest area and collect as much gold and other precious materials as possible along the way. Your counter has a canary, like any good miner, as well as a standard attack, a distance attack, and a bomb attack. There is a cave area, a dungeon area, and so on. Some enemies, such as bats, slimes and giant centipedes with suspiciously fierce rear ends, are straight out of Zelda and many other RPGs. Every room in the dungeon is full of traps, from pressure plates to something very similar to the blade traps used by enemies in Zelda, and it’s hard not to see it as some sort of copy. But the way UnderMine handles these things elevates him above failure. The action element is simple, but it’s just fun. UnderMine is also very honest, albeit brutal. Randomly generated rooms may be full of gold and healthy food, or a location may have a legion of monsters and a maze of pressure plates screaming D E A T H. UnderMine’s signature quirkiness is evident in the dungeon design and keeps things fresh. Slimy creatures called mergansers will steal your gold if you’re not fast enough (and make funny noises when you send them into the void). In some rooms, monsters too eager to hunt farm meat will fall into traps or pits while you stand in the corner and quietly wait for them to finish their destruction. Even in rooms where you have to fight for your life, you almost always have the means to get out alive. The simple combat system doesn’t require much training and, like Hollow Knight, no magic trick is responsible for your loss. You always understand what your mistake was and how to fix it next time. This is true even for boss fights, although almost all of the bosses and mini bosses do almost unbearable damage. Fortunately, there are many resources available along the way. Most floors have a shop that sells at least one food item, and gold can be exchanged for vouchers to upgrade certain inventory categories. Some artifacts give you an advantage in research, for example. For example, improving recovery effects or turning bombs into gold. Despite the randomness of layouts and rewards that is typical of the genre, UnderMine always encourages you to keep going or try again. There are a few bugs from time to time, but they don’t spoil the experience. Some product descriptions are rather vague. For example, it is said that you absorb gold. Do you literally pull it off the walls or do you just pull it towards you when it falls? Multiple layouts are also confusing. I had to Google what to do with certain statues or purple flames in the secret rooms, because there is absolutely no way to find out in-game without experimenting with already scarce resources. These are minor problems, but they are also a surprising oversight when predicting the gaming experience of a well-designed game. Another thing worth mentioning is the pixel art. It’s rare to find a game that can be called cozy, but UnderMine certainly falls into that category, thanks to its warm colors and nostalgic little pixels. If Stardew Valley was a dungeon crawler, it would look like UnderMine.
Magazine UnderMine: Baseline
- Challenging dungeons that reward long play sessions.
- A whimsical and fun presentation helps UnderMine stand out from other roguelikes.
- Good balance between complexity and accessibility
- Some obvious imitations in certain design areas
- Unclear article descriptions
- The bosses have too much health, given the limited combat options you have.
UnderMy likes working in existing mine shafts rather than drilling new ones, and it’s a more rewarding experience for him. It is a practical and rewarding dungeon crawler with a unique character and a lot of fun. If you’re looking for something fresh and innovative, you better look elsewhere. Be aware that if you don’t, you will lose a lot of time. [Note: Thorium provided a copy of Undermine used for this review].As an avid player of Minecraft, I’ve been looking forward to playing UnderMine for quite some time. The new Nintendo Switch version of the game was supposed to be released last year, but got delayed. Thankfully, the wait is over and I can finally dig into this game, which has been described as “like Minecraft, but without all the blocks!” While it is true that this game does not have the same 3D, block-based buildings that the PC and console versions of Minecraft have, the Switch version offers many of the same elements that fans of the original will love.. Read more about haven switch review and let us know what you think.
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