What is DROD? Edit
Levels are divided into rooms: tiled grid on which the player moves. Each turn he can either move to an adjacent tile, rotate (thereby turning his sword) or simply wait in place. Various monsters, obstacles, doors, bombs, pressure plates, trapdoors and other elements, each of which acts in a completely deterministic and predictable way, can often be found elsewhere in a room. The goal of each room is to smite every monster without getting stuck.
Puzzles in DROD have no memory – if the player leaves a room unconquered, it will revert to its original state upon his return.
At its simplest, DROD is about killing monsters with one's sword, and many puzzles are based around just that. However, the range and flexibility of the elements available in DROD allows architects to create puzzles of enormous complexity. The player may find himself having to manipulate the movement of monsters, navigate mazes, find ways to kill monsters while unarmed, solve combinatorics problems, work out how to keep monsters alive, drop trapdoors in certain patterns, move platforms around, or cut fuses to influence the timings of bomb explosions.
DROD, in-effect, acts as a Turing machine on which it is possible to implement innumerable puzzles.
In 2000, Erik was given permission to release the game as open source. With help of several people, Caravel DROD (or DROD 1.5) was invented, and released in October 2002. It had a number of additional features, such as checkpoints and the Restore function.
In October 2003, DROD: Architect's Edition (DROD 1.6) was released. It was functionally identical to Caravel DROD, but had a level editor, with which people could create their own holds to share with the community.
On April Fools 2005, Journey to Rooted Hold (DROD 2.0) was released. It received a graphical overhaul, contained many new elements and monsters, and had a whole new hold packaged with it, with 25 levels. It was the first DROD game to be a shareware. Sometime later, King Dugan's Dungeon 2.0 was released in stand-alone format. It was basically a port of the Smitemaster's Selection remake of the original hold, which contained voice acting and new content.
Exactly two years after the release of Journey to Rooted Hold, The City Beneath (DROD 3.0) was released. Similarly to Journey to Rooted Hold, the new engine contained new elements, monsters, scripting abilities, story, and a new hold to showcase it all.
In September 2008, DROD RPG was released, revealing an entirely new style of tactical puzzles based around managing resources. Its shipped hold, Tendry's Tale, focuses instead on the story of the Stalwart Tendry Dimpalm and his adventure throughout the Beneath.
Continuing with the April Fools tradition, in 2012, Gunthro and the Epic Blunder (DROD 4.0) was released as a prequel to the series. The story highlighted Beethro's grandfather Gunthro Budkin and his attempt to stop a war between two nations Rasarus and Tueno. Once again, the new engine brought with it many new features and a new hold to show it all off.
In June 2014, The Second Sky (DROD 5.0) was released, finally concluding Beethro's grand adventure. The new engine brought with it a wide variety of new elements, monsters, and scripting abilities.
The primary story of DROD takes place on the Eighth, and follows Beethro Budkin for the most part, although other characters such as Gunthro Budkin and Tendry Dimpalm have starred in their own storylines.