It’s been around 4 months since I’ve had a good sit down with Dungeons 3, a game I enjoyed quite a bit during its initial release. Since then, Dungeons 3 has seen several updates to balance, localisation and AI, improving an already solid game. With the recent release of their newest DLC Once Upon A Time, the game offers even more story content, maps and final Boss.
Starting off with the usual discussion between Thalya and the Narrator, we are told of our quick trip to Fairyland, full of the old Grimm tales, heroes and disgusting niceness. Our new objective… well really it’s a repeat of previous ones, is to eradicate all that is good alongside solidifying our evil domain over the lands. To do this, we need to kill the Good Fairy.
Working our way through 3 maps, we will need to build up new underground lairs, stop supplies of magical potions and make use of dynamite sheep… incoming (say that in a Worms voice). After dealing with the 3 maps, the 3rd map itself will have us face off against the Good Witch in generic boss style, with some interesting attacks and buffs. Though it ends similarly to other bosses in the main campaign, rather easily handled by the time you approach it.
With this new campaign, you will run about 6 hours of playtime, though sadly unlike the main campaign these maps lack any additional objectives. Merely do the main task and you’re done, with only hellish difficulty being on offer to run a 2nd time for an added challenge. The story itself is just “fine”, with less to remember than the main campaign, as all we had for a voiced enemy was the Good Fairy.
There weren’t any major changes to the game itself with the DLC, but rather with all the updates to this point. AI now works a bit smarter with healing, pathing is better and general difficulty has risen. The few additions in the DLC is that of the magical potions that drop from the supply mules and certain enemies, giving your minions a temporary boost to one of their stats. The explosive sheep were also a fun addition, as they are used for straight-up damage, but are only really for the 1 map.
While it might have been a previous update, or the DLC itself, I did find a few glitches with the graphics. There were several times where my floor textures turned completely black, rubies missing off the infinite gold veins and wall tiles not loading correctly. While these can normally be ignored, it happened every map and way too often, sometimes even breaking my control over the rooms. Alongside the graphical glitches, the game still fails to loop music, even going as far as breaking all sound and musical effects until I pause the game.
The difficulty in the DLC was top notch, a wide stride from the easier main campaign maps. Heroes came at short intervals with their tiers and levels reaching up higher and higher. I had to plan a lot more during the maps, even going so far as digging mazes for the heroes to buy myself extra time. It did feel a bit too difficult and frustrating in the beginning minutes as if the DLC expects you to have played the entire game prior to moving onto it.
Overall, Once Upon a Time gets an 8/10, the gameplay was great with new additions to the mechanics, the difficulty also improved alongside the new mechanics. Glitches did deter from some of the entertainment, but with the comedy making a solid return it is hard to not let it slide. Sadly units and buildings didn’t see any new changes or additions, having the strategy and gameplay staying too similar to the main campaign.