Defend Your Crypt (Nintendo 3DS) Review

By Matteo Carlarino 06.08.2017

Review for Defend Your Crypt on Nintendo 3DS

Rookie spelunker, beware! This crypt isn't place for toying around. Even Lara Croft, Nathan Drake or Rick Dangerous would have one hell of a weekend trying to get out in one piece. Ratalaika Games brings up to the table a cocktail made of intricate dungeons, pixelated grave robbers and tons of treacherous traps. Does this seem juicy enough to sip yet another tower defense, and enjoy the millionth puzzle game to grace Nintendo 3DS' library during the past couple of years?

The whole narrative background of Defend Your Crypt is well summarised in the first three lines of its tutorial: 'Thieves are coming, they want to steal your precious treasures, and you have to avoid this by using the traps.' That's it, really. In the mummified shoes of a long dead Pharaoh, the player is called up to secure their resting place from hordes of uninvited guests by taking direct control of its archaic anti-theft devices.

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Skulls are the game's currency. They are needed to buy traps - whose cost is indicated by the locks that keep each trap idle, and varies according to their effectiveness - and the only way to acquire them is by killing thieves. Said kills come by tapping on the traps themselves via the 3DS' touch screen. What looks like a very mundane sequence of basic operations is indeed a fairly tight and challenging affair, thanks to one simple factor: timing.

Trigger the trap too early - or too late - and the thief will walk over it unscathed. On top of that, most traps need time to reset, while others can only be used once.

It becomes clear how critical skulls' management is in Defend Your Crypt. Thankfully, the maps aren't procedurally generated, but instead their designs are predetermined, as well as the traps' placement and the patterns of the enemies. Not only does this lead to learning from each and every mistake, and performing progressively better - until completing all 30 stages the game is made of - but it also works as a nice incentive to repeat each level over and over again, aiming for the perfect run.

Screenshot for Defend Your Crypt on Nintendo 3DS

Defend Your Crypt belongs to that category of videogames that is usually very fiddly to even describe, let alone judge. It doesn't take more than ten minutes to showcase the player all it has to offer, both in terms of its visual/aural packaging, and gameplay variety. Sure, the art style remains pleasant overall - transcending the overused 8-bit assets to embrace a slightly more elaborate 'early 16-bit' appeal - and the stages increase in size, from small to multiple screens big.

Also, scoring well in a level will help unlock a harder mode that kicks in stronger, faster enemies following different paths. In spite of all that, though, this is still a tiny little game, with a pretty barebones presentation and limited replayability.

Screenshot for Defend Your Crypt on Nintendo 3DS

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 6 out of 10


In a fair, yet plausible attempt to establish which kind of audience Defend Your Crypt seems targeted at - or more appropriate to recommend to - it's honestly quite difficult to go beyond those who want to try every single decent-to-good puzzle game available on their 3DS systems. The inherent simplicity of its core mechanics is at the same time a quality and a limit, and while it's perfect for short bursts - making the 3DS its ideal home - monotony lurks in the depths of this crypt during more prolonged play sessions.




Ratalaika Games





C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   


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