Crypt of the Serpent King is a first-person dungeon crawler where you take control of a hero tasked to navigate through a seven-level dungeon in order to banish the evil Serpent King. You start the adventure with a very weak weapon and low stats that you can upgrade by collecting gold and XP from enemies found on each and every floor of the dungeon. Spending gold in fancy new weapons and XP on raising your stats is the only sense of progression that you’ll get from the game as little else really changes as you progress through the game. Although the very core gameplay is perfectly fine everything else is extremely basic and formulaic.
As previously mentioned, you go through each of the seven dungeon floors and the way to get to the next is to find a given number of keys in order to fight a boss. The issue here is that despite every floor looking differently from one another they all feel the same in terms of the level design. Corridors and rooms feel exactly the same with a different coat of paint, even the key rooms all follow the exact same pattern of being in a square room guarded by a deadly hazard of some sort that you need to avoid. This not only applies to the level layout but also to the enemies found on each floor There’s a staggering one, yes, one enemy type per floor and you fight roughly 10-20 enemies as you make your way to the boss room, meaning that this shortcoming becomes a real issue quite fast. The boss themselves are fine, I actually like their designs although I wish you had to apply different strategies in order to take them down instead of fighting them as if they were regular enemies.
The game as a whole really is very simple, from the gameplay down to the visuals and sound design which are quite serviceable given this is a budget indie game. Taking down the Serpent King should take most players roughly an hour but trophy hunters will spend a bit more in order to obtain the full trophy list which contains a platinum.
Despite the fact that the game costs about as much as a cup of coffee there isn’t a whole lot to Crypt of the Serpent King. Unless you’re a trophy hunter or insanely curious to see what’s wrong with the game first hand you’re better off saving your money for something else. Yes, this is an incredibly cheap dungeon crawler and it functions correctly but it does the bare minimum to stand out as well. Sadly the solid, yet basic, RPG foundation of Crypt of the Serpent King is nowhere near enough to make it stand out.
SGR SCORE: 4/10