Minecraft is known for being a friend­ly sur­vival craft­ing game and it’s been around for the bet­ter part of a decade with plen­ty of updates. There’s also sev­er­al spin offs each offer­ing a new game­play expe­ri­ence. Tell­Tale’s Minecraft: Sto­ry mode focused on sto­ry telling, while Minecraft Earth lets play­ers build and explore in the real world using AR. Minecraft Dun­geons takes the fran­chise into the dun­geon crawl­ing, RPG genre, but with­out all the typ­i­cal gloom and doom. 

Before you start your adven­ture you must choose your char­ac­ter. There are no char­ac­ter class­es so choose whichev­er one you like, because all your abil­i­ties are tied to your gear. As you lev­el up you’ll find pow­er­ful gear that allows you to defeat stronger mobs and com­plete dun­geons on hard­er dif­fi­cul­ties. Loot is boun­ti­ful, and is very sim­ple to understand.

Each piece of armor and each weapon has a ran­dom set of enchant­ments that you choose from that add abil­i­ties to your char­ac­ter. Your abil­i­ties are tied to your gear and you’re free to swap out weapons and armor at any time. This allows you to exper­i­ment with the many dif­fer­ent enchant­ments that’s attached to dropped loot.

Minecraft Dungeons Review - Family Friendly Dungeon Crawling

The plot of Minecraft Dun­geons is as sim­ple as the rest of the game — an evil dude known as the “Illager” has sum­moned a bunch of min­ions to ter­ror­ize vil­lagers and destroy their towns. You and your gang of adven­tur­ers must fight through the hoards of ene­mies and boss­es along the way, to final­ly defeat Illager and return order to the world. 

The sto­ry is eas­i­ly com­plet­ed in a few hours, with the meat of the Minecraft Dun­geons expe­ri­ence being the loot. Gear is obtained by defeat­ing mobs, boss­es and can be found in chests hid­den through­out each lev­el. Loot chest, emer­alds and secret rooms are hid­den on each lev­el giv­ing you plen­ty to search for as you bat­tle lots and lots of famil­iar Minecraft mobs. You can also trade gems to the black­smith and trav­el­ing mer­chant at your camp for ran­dom gear. Each lev­el is ran­dom­ly gen­er­at­ed so you’ll nev­er play the same lev­el twice. 

Minecraft Dungeons Review - Family Friendly Dungeon Crawling

The one object you don’t have to look for is health potions. They are unlim­it­ed but, heal wise­ly, as they have a fair­ly long cooldown peri­od between each use. While play­ing on a team, if a team­mate has fall­en, they can be revived eas­i­ly. But do so quick­ly, because after 30 sec­onds an ene­my referred to sim­ply as “night”, will start caus­ing dam­age to the sur­viv­ing play­ers until they die or the downed play­er is revived. If the whole squad dies, you con­sume a team life and respawn. There’s only a few team lives for each lev­el and if you run out you’re then returned to your camp and must start the dun­geon over. After you com­plete the sto­ry you will be able to play through dun­geons on high­er dif­fi­cul­ties with extra ene­mies that are stronger. There’s also more ene­my types and of course, extra pow­er­ful gear too.

Minecraft Dun­geons is a great crawl­ing expe­ri­ence, and has the game­play of Dia­blo while keep­ing it light and humor­ous like is expect­ed from Minecraft. The game is very sim­ple and might be a lit­tle too sim­ple for some dun­geon crawl­ing fans. How­ev­er, the game­play is more than sat­is­fy­ing to keep you play­ing for quite a while. Cost­ing only $20 it’s priced well for what the game offers.

Minecraft Dungeons is available now for the PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and Switch