Game Reviews

Dicey Dungeons review - "Roguelike dice-rolling fun at the mercy of Lady Luck"

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Dicey Dungeons review - "Roguelike dice-rolling fun at the mercy of Lady Luck"

Lady Luck is often portrayed as a benevolent force that may or may not favour you when push comes to shove, but in Dicey Dungeons, she is the embodiment of pure evil. After all, could there possibly be anything more sinister than abducting innocents and turning them into dice as pawns in a twisted game of chance?

While you might be pleading with the RNG gods to have pity on you in gacha games, this roguelike title from Terry Cavanagh will have you grovelling at Lady Luck's feet in a different way. But is it all worth it?

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The thing about Lady Luck's cruelty is that she's trapped six unwitting characters in her sick game show that sentences them to a neverending dice-rolling fate. All these are presented in such a fun and fab manner though, glossing over the horrific premise with lighthearted banter and cheeky interview sessions. The so-called "game show" is bright and flashy, and the contestants themselves seem all-too-cheery despite their impending demise.

The charming artwork by Marlowe Dobbe and the funky soundtrack by Chipzel make each procedurally generated floor a delight to go through, as even the enemies themselves are pretty quirky and totally unique. They have a habit of throwing you one-liners too, which actually made me feel a little guilty each time I defeated them in combat.


And the combat here really is extremely exhilarating. True to its genre, Dicey Dungeons thrusts you into random levels with a host of nodes you can choose from, but the beauty here is that each floor is relatively short compared to other games in the genre. The quickfire nature of each battle and floor encourages you to power through, whether you're itching to duke it out with enemies to score coins and experience points or you're eyeing that tasty apple to restore all your lost health.

Nodes may also contain shops where you can spend your hard-earned coins, or upgrade stops where you can boost your cards and equipment. The tutorial is quick and simple, and the game doesn't hold your hand when it comes to the different skills each of the six characters can do.

There's a sense of exploration as you do your best to figure out what buttons do on your own, which never feels frustrating - on the contrary, these little discoveries and "eureka" moments feel especially empowering when you're down to the last HP and your Limit Break turns the tide in a single action.


For this particular mobile launch, I paid special attention to the Reunion DLC, which brings back all six characters for a "reunion special" (because why not). I played through each of them in the basic game first, which made going through the Reunion DLC even more exhilarating. I particularly appreciated how the game takes time to show you the hilarious things the six contestants have been up to since we saw them last - the Thief, for instance, has been making some extra dough as an agent earning commission from the other contestants.

These little tidbits don't exactly affect the gameplay, but I've always been one to appreciate the narrative of games first before the actual gameplay, and Dicey Dungeons delivers perfectly in both aspects. The Reunion DLC also switches things up with the characters you think you know, as the mechanics of each character have been tweaked a little bit to spice things up for players. The Robot, for example, now has to deal with coins as opposed to dice, which adds a completely different layer of strategy to how you think about the game you thought you knew.

To be honest, I was trying to look for something to nitpick about this game, but I can't for the life of me find anything to gripe about. It's just that good. Losing because of one wrong move or miscalculation actually made me want to keep trying again and again, and each victory felt as satisfying as the last. Enemies always feel fresh, and strategies you wield may be effective for one round but may be completely useless the next.

Overall, Dicey Dungeons deserves a spot on the limited real estate of your phone's storage. It offers hours and hours of engaging gameplay that never feels repetitive - and once you've experienced slashing through a scoop of slime that's smiling at you atop an ice cream cone, there's no going back.

Dicey Dungeons review - "Roguelike dice-rolling fun at the mercy of Lady Luck"

Dicey Dungeons is a vibrant roguelike dice-rolling game with deceptively simple mechanics - the deeper you go through the floors, the more you learn about the underlying complexity of each character. It scratches that roguelike itch perfectly for fans of the genre, so much so that even non-fans might just become new converts after playing through the game.
Catherine Dellosa
Catherine Dellosa
Catherine plays video games for a living and writes because she’s in love with words. Her Young Adult contemporary novel, For The Win: The Not-So-Epic Quest Of A Non-Playable Character, is her third book published by Penguin Random House SEA - a poignant love letter to gamer geeks, mythological creatures, teenage heartbreak, and everything in between. She one day hopes to soar the skies as a superhero, but for now, she strongly believes in saving lives through her works in fiction. Check out her books at, or follow her on FB/IG/Twitter at @thenoobwife.