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Crypt of the NecroDancer Review

By BwwDtt | 14 July 2020
Average: 6.6 (7 votes)

Crypt of the NecroDancer is a rhythm RPG action-adventure developed by Brace Yourself Games.

  • Amazing soundtrack
  • Hardcore and immersive gameplay
  • Diverse locations and enemies
  • Great variety of playable heroes

Crypt of the NecroDancer Gameplay

Crypt of the NecroDancer is a classic dungeon crawler in which every move must be made in tune with the background music. In this roguelike, you dance around the battlefield with your enemies. The step-by-step combat system is reduced to milliseconds, and you only have a fraction of a second to think about each move. If you skip the beat, you will lose all obtained bonuses and also let your enemies complete an attack. However, it's possible to learn all combat patterns of the enemies and easily avoid their strikes.

The dungeons in Crypt of the Necrodancer are hardcore, and you'll find dragons, minotaurs, powerful bosses and other mythic beasts. The secret rooms on locations can hide both priceless troves and deadly traps. You can also find friendly creatures, for example, the merchants. The areas are also divided into different terrain zones that change the movement speed. For example, the hero ties up in a swamp, slides on the ice, and can't stand longer than one move on hot coals. It's also possible to use special tools to dig through walls and don't go where the maze leads you. It also allows to save an extra turn and avoid the enemy attack.

The difficulty level is regulated not only by the number of monsters but also by the genre of music. The music style varies from slow and easy dance rhythms to hardcore speed metal.

As well as in other roguelikes, in Crypt of the NecroDancer, you collect equipment during the process. The weapons vary by damage and area of destruction; for example, long-ranged tools allow to push enemies away and avoid the direct blows. Armour increases your survivability; shoes help with various traps and terrain features; shovels and picks are used to cut the way where you want; hats and rings give a wide range of bonuses.

In addition to the equipment, there are consumable items such as food or bombs. The throwable weapons can blow up walls, enemies and spells; other consumables are used to improve stats. The feature of throwable items is that they can be cast again after you've killed the specific number of enemies. Combinations of the same four arrows activate items and magic. If you find this uncomfortable, you can assign a separate button for each of these combinations.

Each floor differs with a new melody, and the player always has to adjust to a new rhythm. You need to find and defeat the mini-boss living somewhere on the floor to reach the next level. It should be done while the music sounds; as soon as the song comes to an end, the hero automatically moves further, and if you failed to defeat the mini-boss, the next floor would be filled with dangerous enemies. You can change the theme of any stage and dance to your favourite tracks if you want. It gives you extra time if you choose the long and slow songs.

Crypt of the NecroDancer Characters

Crypt of the NecroDancer has a wide range of characters with gameplay styles dramatically different from each other. For example, Bard can ignore the beat of the music and walk whenever they want. Playing for the Monk, on the other hand, is much harder: they get items in stores for free, but dies as soon as picks up the gold, so it's vital to understand where it is best to deal with enemies and what will be the way to retreat from the deadly loot.

Cadence — a young hero who starts the journey in the Crypt to find her lost father.
Melody — a Candence's mother. She can use Golden Lute as her only weapon, and you must always move on the battlefield.
Aria — Cadence's grandmother. She had deficient health, and you must be careful playing as Aria.
Nocturna — a Vampire character from DLC. Nocturna can transform into a bat after lethal damage.
Choral — has the same mechanics as Cadence. This character is played by Player 2 in the coop.
Dorian — Cadence's father. Dorian has cursed boots of leaping, which makes his movement pattern unique.
Eli — Cadence's uncle, who lost his arm long ago. However, he can still defend himself with bombs.
Monk — A warrior monk who can't collect gold and dies if you touch coins. This character can get one item from the shop for free.
Dove — a pacifist character who refuses to harm other creatures. Dove uses the flower as a weapon, which distracts the enemies.
Bolt — an athlete who moves at double tempo.
Bard — a minstrel who has come to the Crypt in search of the Golden Lute. This character could move out of beat and continue exploring the location even if the song stopped playing.
Coda — a hardcore character which combines the restrictions of Aria, Monk, and Bolt.
Diamond — a dancer who can move diagonally with combinations of buttons. Diamond cannot throw and reload weapons, use footwear, spells, or packs.
Mary — a shepherd, followed by a lamb. If the lamb dies, this character starts to receive damage every beat.
Tempo — a monster who is cursed to kill other creatures to stay alive. All attacks of the Tempo deals infinite damage, but you have to kill enemies to survive.
Reaper — the carrier of souls to the underworld.

Crypt of the NecroDancer Enemies

Monsters in Crypt of the Necrodancer differ in movement pattern, attack strategy, and the level of damage they deal.

Some monsters are twice the size of their regular brethren, their damage and HP doubles. These are lords, and if you kill them, you get a valuable loot. The gold thrown by the bosses depends on the area where you killed the monster.

Usually, monsters appear in their prescribed zones, but when playing for some heroes, they can change their location. It doesn't restrict the possibility of weak monsters appearing again from the beginning in later Zones. Also, you can find unused monsters in the level editor and place them as you like.

Crypt of the Necrodancer Mods

Just like in most of the indie games, a significant part of the endgame content in Crypt of the NecroDancer is occupied by various modifications and experiments with them. First of all, the developers allow players to try themselves as creators of the game with the help of the map editor. After passing the game, you can create your unique dungeon, set up your favourite music and complete a new challenge yourself, or share it with friends.

The more complicated and exciting method to get new impressions is to install a modification or create it yourself. Most of the fan modifications are reskin for the characters, replacements of the bosses and remixes of the original game soundtracks. The easiest way to find mods is to visit the Steam Workshop of Crypt of the NecroDancer. Moreover, the team of the NecroDancer selected their favourite mods and gathered a long list of must-haves, which can be found on the official page of the game in Steam.

Crypt of the Necrodancer Multiplayer

Unfortunately, Crypt of the NecroDancer does not support online cooperative modes. Due to the fact that all gameplay mechanics are based on the beat and timings, it wouldn't be possible to correctly synchronize players, which will make the game entirely unplayable. However, it's possible to compete with other players online with the help of the leaderboards.

If you still want to share the game with a friend, you have an opportunity to run a shared split-screen coop. One of the disadvantages of this method is that both players must be in the same room, which makes it impossible to find opponents quickly. In any case, it's worth it: the Crypt of the NecroDancer shared mode is even more addictive and hardcore than the single-player version.

Crypt of the NecroDancer System Requirements

Minimum Requirements

  • Memory: 1000 MB RAM
  • Graphics Card: 512MB VRAM
  • CPU: 2GHz
  • File Size: 1600 MB
  • OS: Windows XP, service pack 3