Wordle has spawned no shortage of Wordle-likes (it must be a genre by now) such as Absurdle (Wordle but it keeps changing its mind), Wheedle (Wordle but you can play more than once a day), and BRDL, which is about guessing the banding code of birds. Which is certainly niche.
Dungleon is a bit different because it has nothing to do with words. The premise is, you’re trying to guess what’s inside a dungeon. Instead of letters, your guess is made of little fantasy hero, monster, and treasure icons. Like Worldle there are five slots to fill with each guess and six tries before you lose. If an icon turns green it’s in the right spot, if it’s in the wrong spot it turns yellow, and if it’s not in the dungeon at all it turns red.
It seems like just a guessing game since you’re not forming a word, it is—at least at first. But there are a few rules, as well as some secret rules you only learn as you play it day after day. First, each dungeon will have at least one hero (they face right) and one monster (they face left). If the same icon appears more than once in the same puzzle (and here Dungleon is more forgiving than Wordle) you’ll see a little plus appear on the icon and know you should use it again.
Here’s where Dungleon’s long game comes in. Certain icons only appear along with others. Think of it like seeing a drow in a dungeon—it’s a pretty sure bet you’re also gonna see a drider somewhere in that dungeon, too. Or if you have a shiny new set of plate armor, you can bet you’ll run into a rust monster. Right?
Also, some icons only appear in a specific spot in the puzzle. These two rules are, I assume, meant to be learned over time. Like Wordle, you can only play once a day, but if you keep it up you’ll eventually recognize which icons appear with others, or notice that when a particular icon appears in the puzzle it’s always in the same place. That’s the idea, anyway.
And there are apparently more rules, secret rules, and if you figure them out it’ll make Dungleon less of a straight-up guessing game and more a legit puzzle. I’ve already come across a magic spell in one puzzle that helped me narrow down my guesses. Who knows what else might be hiding in future puzzles?
More importantly perhaps, solving Dungleon fills my heart meter and gives me little coins as treasure and seeing that happen makes me feel good. Wordle is fun but I don’t earn loot from it. Get with the program, Wordle. Gamers like loot.