DROD: The City Beneath Trailer

By: Derek Yu

On: May 12th, 2008

Erik Hermansen at Caravel Games wrote to let me know that they’ve released a trailer for Deadly Rooms of Death: The City Beneath. True, this game is about a year old, but it’s never too late to try out this rather brilliant, and overlooked, series of turn-based puzzle games. And DROD fans consider The City Beneath to be the best of the lot (and suitable for beginners).

I love the game’s really odd visual design and sense of humor. Definitely very unique!

  • Pyabo

    Haven’t played this version, but the original is one of the most interesting and challenging puzzle games I’ve ever played. Highly recommended.

  • bateleur

    King Dugan’s Dungeon was (and is) an excellent game. But I must admit I still haven’t bought The City Beneath and probably won’t because there’s already been so much DROD stuff I’m a bit DRODded out.

  • muku

    Played the freeeware version quite extensively for a while and loved it. Ingenious, slap-your-head-against-your-forehead-shouting-“Why didn’t I think of that before!”-style puzzle design.
    Well, that’s until that tar stuff appeared. That just frustrated the hell out of me, and that’s about when I stopped.
    But still, probably the best puzzle game I’ve ever played.

  • muku

    Umm, head -> hand.

  • drodlooker

    er, is there a free version? like a complete free game? im a bit unfamiliar with drod.

  • drodlooker

    or only trail versions?

  • Willum

    Looks interesting, but I do hate it when people claim there games are “the greatest [genre] game ever”. C’mon, have some modesty.

  • Zmann

    @Willum: I don’t think you understand. DROD is really the greatest puzzle game of all time. Like, there’s no competition even, really.

  • Chris

    For the person asking about a free (non-trial) game, do a search for “DROD Architects’ Edition”. I believe it is open source.

    Not the newest, shiniest version, but complete and free. It’s great. And really hard, but it has a good auto-save system.

  • Chris

    Found it. It’s not really linked form the main Caravel Games page. Got to the community site at:


    Downloads -> DROD: Architects’ Edition

  • http://www.distractionware.com Terry

    If you like puzzle games, it doesn’t get much better than this. About time they posted a trailer!

  • Moose

    The open source issue is a bit more complex than that – ALL of the DROD game engines are open source. The City Beneath has two parts, DROD engine v3.0 and The City Beneath adventure data, and the adventure data is all you’re paying for. You can download TCB and never register it and you still have the full DROD engine, full access to the editor, etc – although you don’t have all the graphics sets because they’re part of the adventure.

  • Nillo

    Yeah. The DROD series is fantastic, and a must-try for anyone who’s interested in puzzle games. Also, they’ve got a very friendly and thoughtful community where you can talk about all kinds of stuff.

    Back when Architect’s Edition was the New Thing, I played DROD quite a lot. Even though puzzles aren’t really my genre, I found that the dungeon exploration was a satisfying experience, not to mention trying things out in the level editor that came with it. Anyway, at some point I was distracted by other games, and I never really got into it again. I tried the demos for JtRH and TCB, and they’re cool, but I never bothered to pay for the whole thing. I think it lost some of its charm to me when it went commercial.

  • Pyabo

    The level that stopped me from completing Dugan’s Dungeon was the giant maze… so unnecessary. :|

  • Karzon

    Pyabo: I found a walkthrough for that, but what stopped me was the “step on every square once” trapdoor level a bit later. :|

    Everyone: Don’t forget about Wonderquest, which is free:

  • Zmann

    @Pyabo: Psh, the giant maze wasn’t even hard. And that’s only half-way through the game!

  • http://www.distractionware.com Terry

    Not to mention totally skipable :)

  • http://www.blueskied.com Karl

    The greatest puzzle game? Yes,i think so. At least i don’t know a better one.
    @Pyabo: Hated that damned maze,too. Took screenshots of all rooms to solve it,what a dull and tedious work. It’s skipable? Got to investigate in that.
    I think the old free version has no save points,so it must be a damned nightmare to play. Glad i bought King D.D.,the commercial makeover.

  • Chris

    The free one I played (Architects’ Edition) has tons of save points. Very nicely implemented.

  • failrate

    Architect’s Edition is available on SourceForge, http://sourceforge.net/projects/drod/

  • Pyabo

    How do you skip the giant maze level? I seem to recall a warp zone or something, but it skipped way ahead?

  • http://gnomeslair.blogspot.com/ gnome

    Haven’t played this version, but if it indeed turns out to be the best in DROD yet.. oh, dear… bye, bye, life…

  • http://www.distractionware.com Terry

    There’s a warp zone (in level 8, I *think*), that lets you skip to any level up to level 16, so you can finish the game but come back and do those ones later if you want. I eventually mastered the game, actually – the secret ending is pretty cool :)

  • mjau

    I’m pretty sure there’s a warp room in level 12 too, that just skips past the maze (level 13) to level 14.

    Also, the original DROD from 1997 (Webfoot) didn’t have checkpoints, but all Caravel versions have them. They can be turned off in the settings if you’re feeling machocistic though =]

  • Zmann

    All the newer versions of DROD have an undo button. And while it make the game less frusterating, it’s also had the side-effect of making me a worse player.

  • Jatopian

    The subsequent improvements in the interface – see-through tarstuff, spawn clocks, undo key, &c. have removed the bad kind of frustration of the original, leaving you with only the good challenging kind.

  • Dont

    Played King Dugan’s Dungeon and Journey to the Rooted Hold. Great games but I think I’m done looking at those graphics. For newcomers I would recommend just buying the latest game. They have so many quality expansions that there is more content than you will ever need.