Many have criticized the game's initial release as a rushed project, released before it was truly finished. Some have gone so far as to say the game is still in the beta development stage. These criticisms stem from the numerous bugs contained in the 1.0 release, most notably buttons on screen and in the tutorials which do not work. According to the creators, the bug issues are being addressed and are planned to be resolved in a series of patches. Even with the release of the final patch for Dungeon Lords, version 1.4, many features remain missing and gameplay still suffers from numerous bugs. With the virtual demise of developer Heuristic Park and the publisher DreamCatcher Games being acquired and refocused by JoWood Productions any and all further support and development for Dungeon Lords has been terminated.
Dungeon Lords: The Orb and the Oracle, the sequel to Dungeon Lords, was in development with expected release in Q4, 2009. It has since been put on hold indefinitely due to market research results and game engine instability. Later the game was cancelled and replaced with Dungeon Lords MMXII.
1.0 - May 4, 2005. Initial Release.
1.1 - May 13, 2005. Includes bugfixes, gameplay tweaks, and a few added features.
1.2 - May 22, 2005. Later German Release.
1.3 - June 29, 2005. More bugfixes, adds automap feature.
1.4 - February 2, 2006. Additional bugfixes, adds customizable characters.
1.5 - Large number of additional quests, NPCs, and a new character class. Extant areas were 'fleshed out', with more rooms, furniture, and treasure. Released separately as a Collector's Edition; there is no upgrade path from 1.4.
The great wizard Galdryn of the Meadows has been slain be a deadly conspiracy within the Circle of Mages. His chief ally, Lord Davenmor, now struggles to save his kingdom from the dark forces of the conspiracy and the onslaught of Lord Barrowgrim’s army of marauders. Lord Davenmor has promised his daughter’s hand in marriage to Lord Barrowgrim to quell the invasion, but her heart belongs to another and after learning of her father’s pledge, she has vanished. Sensing treachery, Lord Barrowgrim has sent his army once more to destroy Lord Davenmor and raze the kingdom. Thus begins Dungeon Lords, a tale of Love, Hate, Betrayal, Revenge, Honor, and Evil
Players create and customize a hero on a quest to save the world. Players fight monsters and explore dungeons to accomplish various quests. While in many ways, Dungeon Lords is a traditional RPG, there are several things that set it apart.
There are effectively seven races, with two of those having a male and female version. There are the traditional Human (male and female), Elf (male and female), and Dwarf, there are also the four demigoth races, the Thrall, Urgoth, Wylvan, and Zaur.
Players choose one of four basic classes to begin the game with, then can pick one more basic class later on. During the course of the game, two more powerful classes can be gained from the game's guilds, and finally after all of the others have been gained, one final far more powerful class is gained. Each class has its own skill selection and specialties, enabling hybrid characters with a wide range of options.
One of the main concepts behind the game is that the player can do just about anything. There are little to no class or skill limitations. To put simply, this means that magic users can use heavy equipment, or that fighters can wield a large amount of magic. However, some skills and abilities are limited to certain classes. Also, while any one can use equip any weapon or armor, or cast any spell, how well it works depends upon the players associated skill level.
While it is common for fantasy games to have multiple forms of magic, they are usually powered by the player's personal mana. In Dungeon Lords, each of the four schools of magic have their own separate power source. The number of charges is not limited to the player's abilities, but rather to the number of copies of a particular spell the player has.