The Att ic’s a D ungeon?! let’s crawl.
If the classic RPG Dungeon Master had been inspired by The Trap Door rather than Dungeons & Dragons, I like to think it would resemble the delightfully colorful, refreshingly silly The Attic’s a Dungeon?!. It’s a first-person dungeon-crawler in which a party of characters moves around a large, vibrant dungeon, turn-by-turn. Your ultimate goal is to locate a lost treasure, something you’ll achieve by first collecting four parchments, and then finding the appropriate spot in which to use the scraps of paper. This is harder said than done, given that TAaD?! shares one of the flaws of early dungeoncrawlers: It’s all too easy to lose your way in the samey environments. There’s no minimap, while the enemy respawn rate is slightly too high—so grab some graph paper if you intend to tackle this in earnest.
There are some lovely touches that help to mask the occasional frustration, though. I adore the crudely hewn clay portraits and roving enemies, particularly the monsters that really do look like they’ve escaped from the set of The Trap Door. The items, too, are a constant delight, with traditional pickups such as healing potions or body armor having been done away with in favor of sticking plasters or ridiculous fake moustaches.
Especially in its opening moments, this is a game with surprises around every bend, either with a chuckleworthy new monster design, or the discovery of a bizarre object you’re not quite sure what to do with. There’s a playful inventiveness—not to mention a color palette—here that feels like a gulp of fresh air in a genre known for its grimy sewers and slimy dungeons.
There are so many fights that they get a tiring after a while.
Everything in the maze is out to get you.