I’m a sucker for dungeon-crawlers. And in the case of Enchanted Cave, a real sucker.
Gamers often waffle over the price of games on the app store. We see a lot of, “Oh, I don’t know. The game is $1.99. I might not like it. I think I’d better wait until it’s on sale.”
To which we often reply, “It’s less than a cup of coffee. Skip your Starbucks today and support a game developer.”
And in the case of Enchanted Cave, I’d have been more satisfied had I bought that cup of coffee instead.
Enchanted Cave is an iPad dungeon crawler, giving you a view of the dungeon that is somehow smaller than an iPhone display. What awaits you in this cave is not enchantment, but boredom. The game lacks any semblance of strategy. Combat is completely automated. You move through the dungeon hitting bad things and picking up good things. Sometimes you find wings which allow you to teleport out of the dungeon to the shop. But when you do, you lose most of your good things, keeping only your artifacts and gold. There are no experience points and monsters do not drop gold, so it behooves you to avoid combat whenever you can. The controls are terrible — four arrow keys tucked into the lower-right corner of the screen. Your inventory and the game’s text are ridiculously small and difficult to make out, which is simply criminal given the size of the iPad’s display. The developers have tried so hard to cram literally EVERYTHING into a single screen that they’ve pretty much ruined any notion of user-friendliness or functional design.
“I love dungeon-crawlers,” I thought. “It can’t be that bad.” And yet it was.
To wit, Enchanted Cave is one of the most poorly executed and pointless dungeon-crawlers I’ve ever wasted my time with. Consider this review a public service announcement: do not buy this game.
Enchanted Cave is developed by Robots & Pencils, and retails for $2.99. Reviewed on an iPad.