Mod of the Week: Monstrous Megapack, for Dungeons of Dredmor
Gaslamp Games recently delayed the release of Clockwork Empires by a few months, but perhaps we can kill the time with another romp through their 2011 roguelike, Dungeons of Dredmor. With the random level generation and robust character customization, every game of Dredmor already feels different, but that's no reason not to add hundreds more differences. The recently updated Monstrous Megapack adds over a hundred items and artifacts, scores of new rooms and dungeon features, plus several new breeds of baddies, boogies, and bosses.
It's been a while since I've played Dungeon of Dredmor, which is to say, it's been a while since I yelled a very bad word at my monitor and shut the game down and uninstalled it and sat there with my face in my hands. I know. I know. It's a roguelike. You simply can't get too attached to your character in a roguelike. I've told other people the same thing, often through the clenched teeth of a frozen smile.
And yet, I do, I always do. There will be a run of good luck and a string of successes and my build will seem perfect and I'll fall completely in love with my character and then BAM. Something will go wrong and I'll lose everything in one fell swoop and I'll angrily vow never to play again, a vow that will last for at least a week or so.
Luckily, it doesn't take much for me to forget my last run, and Dungeons of Dredmor is so charming I quickly get over my old grudges, especially with so much new stuff added from the Monstrous Megapack. Every trip to the store seems to reveal a new item or two (there are over a hundred), many of them serving not just as weapons but pop-culture references. There's the Solo Blaster, a wand that looks like Han Solo's pistol, the Pokey Ball, a Pokemon-inspired throwable orb that produces a friendly flunky to fight for you, and a Tome called The Guide that can cast a "Mostly Harmless" spell to block the critical hits of your enemies.
In addition to finding new weapons, armor, and other items, it doesn't take long for Monstrous Megapack's monstrous monsters to begin appearing. The first new creature I ran into was a Skull Golem, which makes sense: the scariest bone, after all, is the skull, so why not make an entire monster out of them? He (they?) even has the ability to pluck a skull from his body and fling it at you. I also ran into a few Goops, which are blobby creatures that leave a damaging trail of slime as they slither about.
You can run into Goops anywhere, but there's a very special room with four differently-colored Goops you might find that seems... reminiscent of another game. Speaking of special rooms, there are lots to discover, depending on which level of the dungeon you're on.
Bathrooms, bunk beds, and other logical amenities may now appear on every floor (look, monsters have to go potty too). Theme rooms, like the one based on Raiders of the Lost Ark (featuring a not-so-successful Indy) and one containing a devious computer-based puzzle, may appear on different levels as well. There's also a new chamber called a Stink Garden, which has a number of mushrooms to pick but is also littered with, well, a rather fragrant series of traps.
There are also tons of new decorations and other aesthetic additions, like dozens of wizard portraits lining the walls, new curtains, tapestries, fountains and statues, and other changes that spruce up the ever-changing yet familiar corridors and chambers of the Dungeons of Dredmor. The new art, monsters, and items blend pretty well with the original look of the game, meaning you'll probably notice these changes but they won't seem jarringly out of place or distracting.
With so many new things to discover, you won't be able to see all, or even most of the additions every time you play, making the Monstrous Megapack a gift that keeps on giving, game after game, until you eventually say a very bad word at your monitor and shut the game down and uninstall it and sit there with your face in my hand.
Like I just did. I'm never playing this game again. I swear. Not for at least a week or so.
Installation: You can subscribe here on Steam Workshop, or download the .zip file here. Please note: since the added content is generated randomly I didn't get to experience it all first-hand, so a few screenshots in this write-up are taken from the modder's page.