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Adventurer Manager Review

Adventurer Manager Review

Adventurer Manager Review

Adventurer Manager has style and there is a lot to love about the game, but there simply wasn’t enough variation to keep me interested.


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Adventurer Manager is a PC/Mac game developed by Vigilant Addiction Studios. It was made available on Dec. 4th on Steam after a successful Steam Greenlight campaign; and I wanted to love it, I really did. The game is billed as a sim-RPG with pixel graphics and a goofy sense of humor which all sound right up my alley. But after over 10 hours of brutal grinding, juggling quests, and watching adventurers rest, I had to hang up my sword and shield. Adventurer Manager is not for me.

It should be noted that this review was completed without having finished the game. There is a ton of content packed into Adventurer Manager, and I was only able to dive into the first 12 or so hours. I feel that 12 hours is an appropriate amount of time for me to render my opinion on the game, but there may be things in the later part of the game that I didn’t get to. With that warning in place, let’s talk positives.

Pretty Pixels and Lovely Loot

Despite my hesitations there’s still a lot to love in Adventurer Manager. The aforementioned pixel graphics are nicely done and really sell the feel of the game as a hardcore but goofy adventure game. Small details like equipping a unique coat and watching it actually appear on my tiny pixel heroes goes a long way in giving Adventurer Manager a distinct visual personality. Other touches add even more personality; dwarf heroes are simply squashed human sprites, giants are blown up sprites, and halflings are, naturally, shrunken sprites. To some it may seem lazy, but it comes off more as the developer having fun than a lack of effort. The monster designs are generally excellent with a wide roster of rats, armor knights, and more standing in the way of your adventurers as they quest to reclaim your throne. The overworld looks great, the towns look well-crafted, and the adventurers look mighty, especially when equipped with unique gear.

The loot is another big positive. Loot is everywhere in this game. Loot drops when monsters are killed, when chests are found, when quests are cleared, and when adventurers are tickled. We’ll cover the tickling a little later, so for now, let’s focus on the loot. As in Diablo and Borderlands, loot is arranged by color; grey is common, green is uncommon, yellow is rare, and so on. Loot varies from weapons and armor to crafting materials. Some loot, dubbed unique gear, will change the look of the heroes and grant them additional benefits.

As in many games, the kill-loot-repeat gameplay is in full force in Adventurer Manager. While it doesn’t work as well as it does for, say, Diablo, the loot mechanic is still engaging, and finding powerful loot is a wonderful incentive to explore and fight. That said, the loot varies in quality. In the level 3-6 dungeons, I received loot that ranged from level 1 loot to level 46 loot. Seeing as my adventurers were level 7, there was a strange lack of appropriate loot for my levels. I also left the dungeons with my loot bag full to bursting. You can only carry 50 items at once, which is extremely limiting considering you can easily earn over 25 items in a single dungeon run. I had to sell loot at the shop after every single adventure and this became very tedious. The loot mechanic and system is enjoyable, I just wish there were fewer hoops to jump through in order to find level-appropriate loot.

Dungeon Runs and Runs and Runs

My main gripe with Adventurer Manager lies in how repetitive the game can be. If there is anything that I struggle with in games, it’s monotony. I tend to get bored if I do the same thing over and over again. It’s why I quit World of Warcraft after 2 weeks. It’s why Destiny now lies on my shelf. And ultimately, it’s why I struggled to enjoy Adventurer Manager.

There are various ways for characters to power-up. They can study in the university, unlock skills by leveling up and craft new gear out of raw materials. But all of these activities take place between quests. When a quest is underway players fight the same enemies over and over. When the quest is finished, the tired heroes need to rest. Resting requires the passage of time, which only occurs by fast-forwarding time, which increases the threat of monster invasion; or by running quests. So the most efficient way to play Adventurer Manager is to run a dungeon, then run the dungeon with a different party in order to give the first party time to rest, then run another dungeon with the first party in order to give the second party time to rest. It’s a cycle that forces players to run dungeons for extended periods of time. Oftentimes the same dungeon is run multiple times with little to no change between each run. It is gameplay at its most basic, and its most tedious.

Let Me Explain

After a brief tutorial explaining the main gameplay mechanics, I ventured into the Level 1 Cave, clobbered the monsters, leveled my heroes to level 3, and was given the next story quest. The next quest was in the Level 3-6 Crypt, so I had to level myself up before tackling it. It was at this point that I began alternating heroes. One party of four would go on an auto-quest, one party would venture into the Cave again, and two parties would rest. This way, I could keep a simple gameplay loop going and theoretically keep adventuring forever. Otherwise, I would have had to wait for my adventurers to rest up after each adventure. But after a couple hours of this style of leveling, I had gotten my main party to level 6. So I prepared to challenge the Crypt. However, the game warned me that with my current party, tackling the dungeon would be suicide, so I left to train. I ran the level 1 dungeon multiple times, with multiple parties. When I hit level 7, I tried the Crypt again. It’s suicide, the game said. But I ignored it and pressed on anyways.

Midway through the dungeon, I ran into armor knights which are monsters that resist physical attacks. Lacking a powerful mage, I was forced to withdraw once again. I then spent another half hour running the level 1 dungeon twice in order to level up my mages. Afterwards, I tackled the Crypt again, but this time decked out with a powerful mage and level 8 heroes. Finally, I beat the Zombie Lord and reclaimed the Kingsblade. I returned to town and turned in the quest, getting showered with loot for my efforts. The next story quest was given, and I saw that it was in a level 7-9 dungeon, the Ruined Keep. My heroes were level 8 which meant more level grinding was in my future.

It was at this point that I began to lose interest in Adventurer Manager. The gameplay is solid, the art style is fun, but the pacing is built around leveling and loot grinding which does not make for a fun game to play: It felt more like work than adventuring. But I guess that was sort of the point. The player isn’t an adventurer. The player is a prince, managing other more capable heroes into completing quests in order to return to power. It’s a cool idea in concept, but it leaves a lot to be desired in execution.

Strange People in a Weird World

Adventurer Manager may not be the most engaging game I’ve ever played, but the humor is wonderful. The game loves to riff on pop culture and fantasy tropes. The game opens with a Star Wars style text scroll which pokes fun at itself and its source material. One of the story quests involves saving the lost elf Odnalro Broom, a goofy nod to the Lord of the Rings actor Orlando Bloom. Other moments of humor come from the Auto Adventures, which feature randomized quest descriptions. With random quest goals and random quest requirements, the Auto Adventure often produces a myriad of silly quests. The quests are simple ‘find x cow butts’ or ‘kill x hats’, but the descriptions are worth a read.

Other moments of odd humor come in dungeons. Occasionally, an event will occur and a text box will appear. One of the ones I saw said, “Your party is beautiful. What do you do?” I was given the option to either ignore them or nibble them. Nibbling them inexplicably netted me 25 gold, and I proceeded on my way. Other times, monsters attacked me because I laughed at a stinky adventurer. There isn’t much substance to these events but they offer a fun alternative to the normal fantasy events found in most games.


While it’s hard to deny that Adventurer Manager has style, there simply wasn’t enough variation to keep me interested. Running the same dungeons multiple times was draining and I found myself losing interest after the 5th Cave run in two hours. I ran the Crypt less than the Cave, but I know the layout, monster types, monster weaknesses, and treasure locations already, making each dive into the Crypt a rote follow-the-path chore instead of the action-packed adventure it should be. Fans of MMOs and dungeon crawlers may feel differently but I feel they too may find their patience tested. If Adventure Manager manages to fix its pacing and bumps up the rate of leveling there will be a lot to love in this pixellated world, but for now, there is simply too much repetition to keep me interested.


Grade: C-
Great sense of humor
+ Pixellated art style
+ Loot, loot, loot
 Incredibly tedious dungeon crawling
– Slow leveling
– Wildly varying loot levels



MINIMUM Windows:
OS: WinXP or later
Processor: 1.8GHz
Memory: 512 MB RAM
Graphics: Direct3D/OpenGL compatible card with at least 128MB
DirectX: Version 9.0c
Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
Sound Card: 2d sound compatible card

OS: OS X 10.5 or later
Processor: 1.8GHz
Memory: 512 MB RAM
Graphics: Direct3D/OpenGL compatible card with at least 128MB
Hard Drive: 150 MB available space
Sound Card: 2d sound compatible card


Kyle Brown

Kyle Brown

Kyle enjoys all things games. From video games to pen and paper games, his interests span the mecca of gaming. When he isn't playing games, he can often be found making them. Kyle is currently in the Game Development specialization at Michigan State University, and he hopes to turn it into a career in the games industry. Â Kyle's favorite adventure games are The Walking Dead Season 1, Danganronpa, Zero Escape: Virtue's Last Reward, Tales from the Borderlands, and Machinarium. His gaming interests aren't focused exclusively on adventure games, however. Some of his favorite non-adventure games are Final Fantasy VI, VII, and XII, Mass Effect, Dark Souls, Shadow of the Colossus, The Last of Us, and The Unfinished Swan. Â When not gaming, Kyle loves to watch movies and read in his spare time. His favorite movie is currently not known, as he cannot pick from his growing list of favorites. His favorite book is Ender's Game, with Ready Player One as a close second. Kyle is currently trying to bring back the word 'radical', and his friends wish that he would stop.

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