The cooperative mode of Dungeon Defenders II was shown off at this past weekend’s PAX East event, the sequel to Trendy Entertainment’s original Dungeon Defenders. Players take the role of one of their favorite defenders and team up with four other players to fend off and eventually crush the opposing five member team and destroy their base.
Similar to other popular Multiplayer Online Battle Arena games such as the ever-persistent League of Legends, DotA II and of course Heroes of Newerth, the cooperative mode for Dungeon Defenders offers competitive team play and hotkey based combat. DDII has taken an approach similar to Smite, a MOBA shown at last year’s PAX event. Both put the player in a locked 3rd person perspective and rely on skillshot (manually aimed) abilities.
I got a chance to sit down and play the game with Alex for a full match of the new game’s multiplayer mode and upon finishing, Alex and I agreed on a few things regarding our experiences. We both felt that the game was definitely in need of more character balancing. It seemed that the ranged caster type of heroes typically dominated the game, as their aimed abilities from afar simply outclassed the melee abilities, and those melee heroes had extreme difficulty getting in close to even attack. Ranged heroes do have their own issues as well, however, in the form of ability problems. An example would be the trap skill available to the Archer hero. The skill allows a poison trap to be laid, which one would assume should go off once stepped on by a hero. The problem with this skill, however, is that an enemy must stand on the trap for two full seconds for it to actually trigger.
The game does not include the traditional item system common in MOBA titles, using items to enhance and modulate hero damage, mana, health, etc. Instead the game allows 4 slots to be filled with potions, tomes, and elixirs that temporarily modulate hero stats and provide effects, such as teleportation, as a one-time-use consumable. This unique variation on a traditional MOBA plays like a sort of MOBA tutorial, ramping down the difficulty and barrier of entry to the genre.
With a little more TLC, I believe that Dungeon Defenders II can provide a challenging and rewarding MOBA cooperative experience, and I can’t wait to see the main campaign’s content. If the heroes in the multiplayer are all available to you in the single player, then Trendy Entertainment definitely has a lot of good things in store for Dungeon Defenders fans. Look for DDII later this year on PC and iOS.
[youtube id=”_ORJEUpcy90″ width=”600″ height=”350″]