Moonlighter is a little bit Action RPG, a little bit Rogue-like, and a small bit Shop/Town Management in a combination that works delightfully, yet sometimes frustratingly, well. The game centers around Will, a young shopkeeper fascinated by the Dungeon and its Gates. Each of the Dungeon’s four Gates brings an adventurer into a randomized labyrinth filled with all sorts of valuable items and deadly enemies. The mysterious 5th Gate has yet to be unlocked.
Moonlighter takes place during day and night cycles. During the day, Will sells the goods he finds in the Dungeon at night. Certain items will be in more demand than others, and prices in which customers are willing to pay for those items always fluctuates. As Will’s profits grow, so can his shop and the surrounding town. A blacksmith, alchemist, and other shops can be purchased to supply Will’s daring expeditions into the Dungeon come dark.
At night Will takes to the mysterious Dungeon trying to find items to sell, as well as materials to craft and enchant his equipment. Each time he enters the Dungeon, it’s different, and each of the four Gates will eventually yield keys to open the 5th Gate, which Will’s father died trying to research. These dungeon stages are severe, and Will will die many, many times while working his way up the power/skill ladder. Sometimes it can be a bit frustrating when you first start, but after a bit of a grind, things fall into place and become a bit smoother.
Moonlighter’s fast action gameplay combined with its sim-style day cycles, amazingly detailed pixel art, and excellent soundtrack make it a game that’s not to miss. There’s a little something for everyone here, though the difficulty curve is a bit sharp to begin. It’s available on Steam, Humble Bundle, GOG, the XBox One, PS4, and Switch, so if you’ve got a modern way to game, you can get the game.
A Steam key for Moonlighter was provided free for review by 11-bit Studios
Media personality Rob Kalajian has been a staple in the board game world for many years. As a former writer for Purple Pawn and the owner of A Pawn’s Perspective, Rob focuses on board game reviews, events, and news. A self-proclaimed geek, Rob loves all things toys and games and even helps raise his four kids in his spare time.
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