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Boyfriend Dungeon on PC
As a huge fan of games like Mass Effect and Dragon Age, I’ve always been a sucker for a game that can combine relationships and combat to make for an action-packed experience. That is exactly why I was so excited for Boyfriend Dungeon to release.
As the title dictates, Boyfriend Dungeon revolves around having players build up relationships (Romantic or Platonic) with numerous characters while also traversing dangerous dungeons, which are called Dunjs. The catch is that in this world, people have the ability to turn into weapons themselves, thus allowing you to wield and date your weapons.
While it sounds like a strange concept, making people into weapons is rather brilliant, as it allows your character more time to build your relationship while also adding in a bit of action. The more you fight with weapons in the game, the stronger you each grow, unlocking new abilities along the way. In order to actually experience and develop these bonds, though, your character has to meet people.
As Boyfriend Dungeon starts, your character is introduced to a number of eligible singles, each of which contains their own unique personalities that are often reflected in their weapon form. A simple example of this is how Pocket the cat takes the form of Brass Knuckles that are like claws. Thanks to this, there are a number of different weapon variations that specialize in everything from long-ranged attacks to chain damage that incentivizes trying out new characters.
The nice thing is that the game encourages you to swap out these weapons, regardless of which character you may be dating. For example, just because I was interested in pursuing Valeria romantically, it doesn’t mean that I needed to use her specifically when clearing out Dunjs.
Sure, you’re able to level up your relationships and unlock new dates if you use specific characters in the Dunj, but the game also has gifts that you can buy using money you earn in them to increase that stat as well. As such, I usually ended up switching out weapons to try them out whenever I unlocked new characters.
It became pretty clear to me rather quickly which ones were more powerful than the others, as I tended to rely on Seven and Pocket for most of my combat needs. Unfortunately, there isn’t really too much to the fighting in Boyfriend Dungeon since the game only has two different areas with only a handful of levels in each.
This wouldn’t necessarily be an issue if battles were challenging, but Boyfriend Dungeon becomes super easy once your relationship status with a lot of the weapons increases. I barely took any damage once I got Seven to level 4, as the combination of his range, chained lightning, and area of effect was too much for enemies, even bosses. Due to this, it only took a couple of hours before I was able to clear out both the Verona Mall and La Rosa Dunjs.
As the game was marketed more as a dating sim, I didn’t really have too big of an issue with combat being a bit more relaxed, if I’m honest. I really wanted to focus on getting to know which character I vibed with most. Thankfully, Boyfriend Dungeon has some solid choices.
Valeria, Seven, Rowan, Issac, and Sawyer all had lovable and interesting character traits, each boasting their own unique stories alongside them. Whether it was Seven trying to figure out what to do with his career or Issac coping with his megalomaniac of a father, there was something fun about just about every character in Boyfriend Dungeon.
With that said, I did have issues with how the game approached certain things in regards to its characters and relationships. The biggest one revolved around wanting to just be friends with a lot of the romance options.
While Boyfriend Dungeon states that you can play the entire game platonically, that doesn’t stop it from feeling like its characters are forcing themselves upon you. One character, in particular, Sunder, was really annoying, as he just comes off as an overall sleezebag.
Due to his personality, I decided that I didn’t want to have anything to do with romancing him but was cool with still going on “dates” to uncover his story and see what he was about. Despite going about things platonically, Sunder would still always hit on me, regardless of how many times I said no.
Eventually, this leads to a conversation where you get across to him that no means no, but the lead-up to the situation is frustrating. Even though I never wanted to pursue things with him, there were many situations where I was only given options that still gave the slightest idea that I might want to give him a chance. It felt like I was backed into a corner with Sunder up until a certain point, and I didn’t like it.
Even characters like Seven and Isaac felt a little too lovey-dovey with my character after letting them know that I just wanted to be friends, so I wasn’t a huge fan of who the platonic side of things was written. Easily the worst bit of the game, though, was that the entire plot hinged around you talking to a character that was a stalker.
From the jump, Eric’s character comes off as a creepy nice guy, as he over-texts, gaslights, and even insults people close to you. Due to this, I simply ignored him and went on other dates. Unfortunately, it is impossible to just go about like he doesn’t exist. Instead, Boyfriend Dungeon requires you to respond to his texts to progress the narrative.
Sure, you can at least be rude to him with the responses, but it seemed like a mistake to make the entire main storyline progression center around a character that no one was going to want to interact with. Not to mention he only really becomes a problem to some of your friends after his creation literally tries to kill you.
In reality, there should have been an option to tell him to go away the moment he calls your cousin Jesse a loser. Instead, you have to put up with this nice guy throughout the entire game. Maybe that is a lesson in how dating is filled with these types of people, but it isn’t something I expected or wanted in Boyfriend Dungeon.
When all is said and done, I was pretty satisfied with my overall experience with Boyfriend Dungeon when the end of the summer rolled. The writing was solid, and I ended up caring about a lot of the relationships that were formed. It is just a shame that the somewhat lacking combat and issues with a couple of the characters and situations arise that end up bogging the game down a bit.
Reviewer: Andrew McMahon | Copy provided by Publisher.
- Solid characters, backstories, and relationships.
- Integrating relationship levels and scenes into combat.
- Plenty of weapon variation.
- Only two Dunjs and a handful of levels makes for very little combat.
- Platonic friendships don’t feel platonic in parts.
- Having a stalker play a large role in the story.
August 11, 2021
Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, PC