Snack World: Dungeon Scouts - Gold it has been my obsession throughout the past month. Not only did I play it: I loved it to the point of suffering from not being able to share it with someone. Given its purely multiplayer nature, which makes it more fun in the company, it was difficult to have to accept to face its bizarre missions alone. But now the cloistered period is over: the game is coming to the shops. My current task therefore remains to convince you of its validity, so as to create a small army of allied warriors to play with online. It should be easy: it is a Level-5 title, which alone guarantees a certain quality, but in a phase in which there are many worthy games available, it is not obvious to focus on a little little known gem like this. It is on the "little known" that we can work.
Considering that the title chosen for the west is Snack World: Dungeon Explorers - Gold (and I don't deny having to copy and paste every time), it is not surprising that the game is a dungeon crawler. The foundations of the gameplay consist in wandering through procedurally generated labyrinths, each time therefore different and full of enemies and treasures. The medium dungeon consists of at least three floors, characterized by large rooms and narrow corridors in which to advance, full of monsters that attack us on sight and with a final boss. To reach the next floor it is necessary to find the door, but almost always we are also forced to obtain the key, or to press various mechanical switches that can open it. This forces us to explore more than we would normally do: it is almost mandatory to discover a good part of the map to be able to continue, and avoiding the enemies is not always a good idea, since there is a risk of having them accumulated and of pulling behind an authentic procession of threatening beasts. In itself, all this creates a series of repetitive situations: corridor, room, enemies, key, door, corridor, room. Snack World, however, has several aces up its sleeve that allow you to add pepper to the adventure.
The first spice added to the Snack World: Dungeon Explorers - Gold gameplay is the interaction with the little monsters, which are called Snacks. The Snacks present are really many, characterized by a dot, varying from huge horrible Shakespearean orcs to adorable fencing kittens. They are all dubbed and repeat two or three slogans, which in most cases are insane. How not to report an egg monster that screams desperately "I'm cracking!" when we hammer it? Once you have defeated an enemy a certain number of times, you have access to a short minigame where you can photograph it to add it to the team. This activity is superfluous: it is almost impossible to fail in taking it. Obviously though I did it, in the catches for me more exciting with cute little monsters; in that case it is necessary to earn his respect again by fighting him other times. Once you have registered a snack, you can join the party, which can host three allies at a time, and it is important to create a well-balanced team, choosing the various possible roles, such as support, attack or defense. Other monsters can instead be put in your pocket: in that case you can summon them during a battle, and directly take control of them. I didn't find it a useful mechanism, since it's much easier to control our character than a huge creeping robo or a fluttering fairy, especially if you rarely use it and are impractical with its attacks. The Snacks in the team instead saved my skin over and over again: they can resurrect a knocked out ally, heal us in excited moments or empower us. They are also automatically resurrected when you reach the dungeon boss, which is a bonus.
The second seasoning that the game uses in handfuls is the variety of items and equipment. First of all, the weapons, which in the game are called Jare: there are swords, small swords, broadsword, daggers, axes, bows, wands and whoever has more can put more. Each Jara has different characteristics, since each single object can host peculiar and more or less rare enhancements. So you can put your hand on a sbrilluccicoso bow that launches little hearts and is effective against the fairies, but also on the same arch enhanced to bring down the orcs and that shoots poison. Pairing the perfect weapon and enemy is fundamental: the game automatically suggests the right tool in front of each monster, for which there is a continuous swap of equipment, which is performed with a single button. Obviously during a mission we can only choose among the Jare that we have chosen to equip before leaving, therefore a good planning is essential. Their rarity is highly variable, ranging from common to very rare and legendary. Since to empower a Jara you need to have an identical one to sacrifice, you find yourself improving only the most common ones and ultimately using them more. The "fortification" system is in fact essential to ensure that we have equipment up to par, and it is also possible to enhance tonics and potions to amplify the effect.
The same opulent variety is available for clothes, and there are also several brands with different styles. The first hours of the game were depressing for the fashion victim in me: uniforms and armor were truly horrible. Continuing you have access to a much wider range, and above all you can manufacture clothes having the models to follow, and recovering the necessary materials. Each dress, hat and accessory offers several more or less unusual enhancements, and it can also be enhanced and dyed in a different color. I have to warn you: you will see really extreme looks. They range from styles to Lady Gaga to fisherman outfits at the Eur pond. And all of this is absolutely fantastic. Fashion plays a fundamental role in Snack World: Explorers of Dungeon - Gold, because by wearing the trend suit of the day, you have a bonus luck. And heaven knows how important it is to be lucky!
The good fortune in Snack World: Explorers of Dungeon - Gold allows you to get rare items from the treasure chests, which is the maximum motivation that drives you to play for hours and hours. Chests are life. Chests are the real purpose of our existence. Let's forget about trivial missions to save lives: the juice of everything is clearly procuring treasures. There are different types of trunks: simple, rare, with legs that run away, with a sort of roulette on top. Finding an unusual and uncommon Jara gives incredible satisfaction, and some particular quests even promise "miracle" rewards to entice the player. In addition to the chests that can be found in the dungeons, we receive final prizes based on the results of the mission: we gradually become experts in behaving in order to receive as many chests as possible at the end of an adventure. If it were necessary to have more prizes, I would also play blindfolded and singing the French national anthem: so much is the desire to accumulate rare objects and materials that pervades playing this title.
The last type of sauce that comes plenty poured on the game, is the humor humor. Snack World: Dungeon Scouts - Gold is chock full of puns and jokes, many of them sexually oriented. Some characters have been specially created to act as agent provocateur: Princess Melonia does nothing but behave like an adorable dead cat, and meows phrases like "Let's do it again" or "One time is not enough" when you open a treasure and wants to offer you an encore. Other NPCs also do their best in trying to shock us, and the result is simply adorable. Then there are all the word games with the names of the Snacks and the characters, as well as boss fight against monsters decidedly ... inappropriate. Or again, an enemy who appears if you linger too long in a dungeon plan, and who punishes you by mowing you with malice but apologizing in despair at the same time. All decidedly absurd and over the top. It is a significant added value: the gift of a good free laugh.
As I mentioned earlier, multiplayer is the icing on the cake in Snack World: Dungeon Scouts - Gold. The game allows you to exchange snacks and jares with friends, which allows you to maybe get useful items for manufacturing or upgrading our equipment. You can also participate in multiplayer side missions, bringing up to three friends with you. I do not deny that I would have preferred to be able to carry out the whole adventure in this way, but the optional quests are numerous, and above all more difficult, therefore they lend themselves well to this use. Although the difficulty of the main story is not high, it rears up in specific missions that require some collaboration to be completed. In multiplayer, chests are available for all players, but the rewards vary from person to person, also considering the individual adventurer's luck value. I was able to test the online with another player during the review, and everything went smoothly: I didn't see a single slowdown. It is obviously to be checked whether the situation changes with more people participating in the game session.
As a side dish to the mechanics described, a very pleasant soundtrack is served, on many occasions sung and in Italian, as Level-5 has already accustomed us to in its other titles. It was a much appreciated surprise. On a technical level, the title, which I tried mainly in portable mode, runs smoothly without large drops in frame rates. The colorful style is very clear, and allows you to orient yourself quite well even in excited fights, in which numerous characters are present on the screen. This partially compensates for the semi-fixed camera, which allows you to rotate the view but not 360 °, and this in some environments causes the appearance of annoying blind spots.
Snack World: Explorers of Dungeon - Gold is an extremely fun and well-kept game, which compensates for the basic repetitiveness typical of dungeon crawlers by adding a mountain of more or less common sense content. Those who enjoy Level-5 games will certainly like it. Or dungeon crawlers in general. Or play with friends. Or collect tons of rare and scattered weapons. Or enslave bizarre monsters with even more abstruse names. Basically: give him a chance and he will thank you.