Each level of Space Dungeon consists of 36 rooms arranged in a six-by-six grid. Rooms are connected by open doorways of various sizes. One room in each level is the entrance, where the player begins, and another is the Collect Bonus room. Other rooms may or may not contain laser defenses, hostile aliens, or various bits of treasure. The goal in each level is to navigate using an automap to the room containing the "Collect Bonus" area, visiting as many rooms and collecting as much treasure as possible along the way.
The player's only weapon is a laser cannon, which fires a pulsing, solid beam in any of eight directions. Like Robotron: 2084 (1982), but preceding the release of that game, the controls for Space Dungeon are a pair of 8-directional joysticks: one for moving, one for shooting. Space Dungeon may have been the first twin-stick shooter.
Higher scores are awarded for exiting each level with more treasures. A 10,000-point bonus is awarded if the player visits every single room on the level, whether or not all treasures on the level have been collected. Since an extra ship is awarded to the player every 10,000 points, this, and the large point values of the treasures (especially the later ones) created an interesting tension between securing the treasures already collected or risking losing ships to acquire more. If the player's ship collides with an enemy or any of their spore shots before reaching the "Collect Bonus" cube, all collected treasure is dropped in the room where the ship was destroyed. This room is designated on the map by an X.
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Prom Stickers : SD
Main CPU : (2x) M6809 (@ 1.25 Mhz), Motorola M68705 (@ 1 Mhz)
Sound CPU : M6802 (@ 921.6 Khz)
Sound Chips : Discrete
Players : 2
Control : Double 8-way joysticks
Space Dungeon was released in February 1982.
If you pass level 99, you get to level 0 and it says 'You're a hero on level zero'.
When you reach 990,000 points, every time you shoot an enemy you get a free man. Be careful, your free men get knocked to 0 after 255.
A Space Dungeon unit appears in the 1983 movie 'Joysticks'.
Developer messages are hidden in the ROM chip sd19:
DESIGNED AND PROGRAMMED BY REXFORD AYERS BATTENBERG FOR TAITO AMERICA CORP
STOLEN FROM THE GOOD BUDDY'S AT TAITO BY AN UNAUTHORIZED DO BADDER
TIPS AND TRICKS
* A Boring Score-grabbing Cheat : Lock yourself in a room by closing all the doors. The thief will appear (To close a door, go through it then back immediately - it may take more than once). Warning : this is a sure, but very slow, way to build points.