Each player starts with a monster lord on their side of the field. Players roll dice to see if they can summon a monster of the level of dice used. If the player gets two summon crest on their roll, they can summon the monster equal to the dice level if used. In addition, players can build up crest, which has a number of uses from movement to attacking, defending or using abilities, which can be stored in a pool to a maximum of ten each.
The crests are as follow:
- Summon crest: Used for summoning a monster. If a player rolls two summon crest in the span of a single roll, they can summon a monster that is the same level as the dice used. Unlike other crests, excess summon crests don't get stored in the crest pool.
- Movement crest: Used for movement.
- Attack crest: Used for declaring attacks.
- Defense crest: Used for defending against attacks.
- Magic crest: Used for abilities when specified on the monster.
- Trap crest: Used for abilities when specified on the monster.
Monsters have an HP total, an ATK total and a DEF total. This works mostly like it does in the card game. A monster who manages to whittle down the HP total of the monster they're attacking destroys the monster. However, defense crests can be used to have the monster being attacked to defend. If the defending monsters defense is higher than the attacking monsters ATK, the difference is subtracted from the attacking monsters HP.
Monsters can also either be flying or tunnel. These monsters require twice the amount of movement crests in order to get around the board.
Upon summon, the player can choose from a multiple of dungeon tiles that they can rotate to fit into the arena. Monsters are locked into certain positions on the dungeon tiles though, so clever placement is key.
There are two ways to win; if the player is unable to summon any more monsters or if the opponents monster lord is attacked three times.
There are also two formats; traditional and advanced format.
In traditional format, both players select six monsters/item cards from a deck, with each player only getting one roll per turn.
In advanced format, the players have ten monsters/item cards to choose from their deck and can roll twice per turn, speeding up considerably. There is also a triple summon rule; if the player manages to roll three summon crests in one roll, they can summon a monster one level higher than the dice used.
Despite initial positive reception, the spin-off was doomed for a multiple of reasons. Firstly, the dungeon tiles themselves were rather flimsy and easy to tear by accident, in addition to being difficult to keep from sliding around on the game mat. Secondly, the monster figures were considerably more expensive than cards were. Lastly, the initial release was prone to "Blind Idiot" Translation, with several cards listing needed crest for abilities using the GBA symbols for certain crest, leading to a lot of Guide Dangit moments over which crest was needed for which ability.
Ultimately, the series was canceled after a few sets. Despite this, Dungeon Dice Monsters still retains a small but loyal fanbase who are rather bummed that series was canned so quickly, with many fan-made cards/monsters still being created for the game to today.
- "Blind Idiot" Translation: The initial release is an odd case; while most of the text itself translated over well with little Loop Hole Abuse involving Exact Words, the crest symbols needed for certain abilities ended up using the symbols from the GBA game. This caused a lot of confusion over what crest was needed for which ability, which is one of the factors in the games downfall.
- Zerg Rush: A very valid tactic is to use a bunch of level 1 monsters (the easiest to summon) to build a path quickly to the opponents monster lord and then attempt to summon a level 3/4 monster next to it for a quick kill.