Deathtrap Dungeon article by Al Giovetti


By Al Giovetti
Genre: third person 3D action game
Release: November 1996
Developer: Eidos
Lead Artist:
Programmer: Richard Halliwell
Producer: Ian Livingstone
Publisher: Eidos
Website: www.eidosinteractive .com
Requirements:Windows 95, 2X CD ROM

Deathtrap Dungeon


In 1982, Ian Livingstone created a hit with his Fighting Fantasy books published by Penguin. Penguin was understandably skeptical about the books doing well, but they produced 59 sequels for 60 books in all and sold 14 million copies.

Deathtrap Dungeon represents Ian Livingstones effort to bring the Fighting Fantasy books to the PC. Ian Livinstone had retired from Games Workshop, but he decided to return to give this conversion a shot.

Company Line

Deathtrap Dungeon is Eidos’ incredible new 3D action adventure epic based on the multi-million selling Fighting Fantasy books by Ian Livingstone.

Two principles have been held close during the development of Deathtrap Dungeon: Fun and simplicity are both paramount. The combat system is fast, furious and easy to use. The levels are modelled in full 3D, creating an atmospheric dungeon full of a host of cunningly designed traps, orcs, zombies, skeletal warriors, huge dragons, giant spiders, warriors, priestesses, necromancers and mummies!

At last stunning graphics and an awesome atmosphere are in tandem with enthralling and compelling gameplay. This game sacrifices nothing in order to give the ultimate gaming and visual experience both as a single player or over a network.

The player’s fluidly animated character can be viewed from any angle by an "intelligent camera" system as he meets his doom or fights for his life. Plunging down pits or being devoured by dragons the action will be captured automatically from the most dramatic and visual angle.

From the interface to the depths of the games dungeon inspired gameplay, the control methodology is intuitive and responsive. There are no impediments to the gamer’s involvement. They are in Deathtrap Dungeon.

With 3D animation by Glassworks and video compression by Eidos Deathtrap Dungeon is state of the art in every respect. This is a product with an impeccable pedigree and will be the industry benchmark.

To create the game Ian Livingstone enlisted the services of renowned games guru Richard Halliwell, author of Games Workshop’s hugely successful Warhammer and Space Hulk games, to lead the programming team. Richard has spent his time implementing devilish and devious puzzles into the most intricate dungeon designs ever seen in a game along with Jamie Thompson ex-Games Workshop and former editor of White Dwarf magazine.

Deathtrap Dungeon represents sheer class through and through: From game design to game play, from presentation to implementation, this is the ultimate 3D dungeon experience.

The result is a combination of fast moving action, challenging hazards and bloodletting arcade combat. The ultimate dungeon has been built.

Game Play

The game engine will be very similar to the one used to such great success in Tomb Raider. This time you will get to play and watch a buxom babe as with the first but also a buff male warrior character. The same jumping, climbing, and acrobatic moves in the first game will be preserved in the next game to use this acrobatic 3D game engine type.

The third person perspective three-dimensional action game is composed of 6 tortuous levels. The levels are populated by over 55 types of characters, including dragons (see the picture of the three headed one -Ed.), orcs, mummies, and zombies.

The combat system featuring sword fighting, spell casting, blunderbusses (shotgun?) and close quarters combat. You will fight with swords, missile-weapons, muskets, hammers, spells, and bare hands.

Dungeon design in the dungeon includes deviously designed traps including covered pits, hidden corridors, false floors, arrow traps, and moving spikes.



The lighting system lends to the dungeon atmosphere with a fully dynamic system. The art is complete with doric colums, fountains, and gorgons. Some levels will use Victorian trappings for increased darkness of mood. The levels have texture mappin, full polygonal enemies, dynamic light sourcing,


The frame rates are between 16 and 20 frames per second on a low end Pentium with standard VGA.

Voice Actors

Music Score

Sound Effects


Compare to

Multi-player Features

There is four player network play and two player modem play options.

Cheats, Hints, Walkthrough


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Editors, Next Generation, volume 3, number 4, issue 28, April, 1997, pg. 94 - 95.
Steve Bauman, Computer Games, issue 78, May, 1997, pg. 34.

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