Super Dungeon Maker Review

For those who want a different take on Super Mario Maker you can create 2D Zelda-like dungeons in Super Dungeon Maker. Check out our thoughts!

Published: May 3, 2023 9:00 AM /

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The basic dungeon editing mode in Super Dungeon Maker

Ever since the release of Super Mario Maker people have been clamoring for Nintendo to recreate this idea for other genre games, among those cries is for a way to create and share your own Zelda dungeons, which we got close to in Link's Awakening but still wasn't quite there. FIRECHICK has created the answer in the form of Super Dungeon Maker, but is the end result what we wanted all along?

In Super Dungeon Maker you play as a rooster armed with a sword ready to make their way through a dungeon. However, unlike a traditional 2D dungeon you don't just get to traverse a mix of dungeons in search of the Golden Egg, but there are also functions to craft a dungeon entirely from scratch for your or your friend's pleasure.

Super Dungeon Maker as a Player

Upon loading up the game for the first time you're thrown headfirst into a dungeon. For anyone familiar with The Legend of Zelda it immediately feels like home. Pick up pots to progress, slash some grass for extra hearts, and defeat enemies and puzzles before you reach a Golden Egg (The indication of a dungeon being completed.)

An ice dungeon in Super Dungeon Maker

This first dungeon does a great job of drawing you in with a free taste. You break pots, obtain items such as bombs and the ability to dodge roll, and progress through dungeon design that a fan of the genre would expect. There's a lot of teaching by showing, you'll obtain your bombs and then shortly after be met with a dead end and chipped blocks. There's a lot of intuitive design so that even if players weren't familiar with 2D dungeons they could infer "I should use what I just obtained to progress."

It is a simple dungeon, but it's effective in the same way that the first dungeon of a longer game holds some promise for what kind of designs you'll be able to experience later on in the game. I was a big fan of this approach to a tutorial, not because it was unintrusive, but with the number of 2D dungeon games I've played over the year everything that I saw in front of me just made sense and it didn't slow me down.

The online list of user-generated creations is where Super Dungeon Maker shines for a player. If you're not someone to want to create the levels yourself instead you can access a large list of uploaded maps, filter by genre, and be playing those creations in seconds. It was very reassuring to not only see a good number of user-generated levels had been created through the Early Access period but that those that were present were of a good quality. For a game whose lifeblood is the creators that craft and share their own dungeons users picking up Super Dungeon Maker will have a lot to draw inspiration from. Some creators had even started using a numbering sequence similar to Mario's 1-1 and 1-2 to start crafting their own multi-dungeon experiences.

A forest dungeon in Super Dungeon Maker

One of the best dungeons I've had a chance to play so far was Frozen Mansion. The dungeon was built as a large central chamber with different passageways poking out at every angle. Each doorway initially blocked by a different ability would ensure you always had a direction to continue in when you obtained a new ability. It was a creative way to use a non-linear environment and create a linear experience. The most impressive aspect of this dungeon was the sliding ice block challenge that required you to coordinate the position of four different ice blocks. I loved how the idea of a sliding block puzzle was adapted and expanded upon to create a more difficult challenge than "Start at the switch and go backward".

One of the aspects of 2D dungeons that I didn't realize I was missing when playing Super Dungeon Maker was the overall sense of progress. Each dungeon you enter with only your sword and no matter what you collect you discard it upon leaving. After completing a dungeon feeling knowledgable and all-powerful I did feel a bit robbed that suddenly I was back to three hearts and a sword.

Super Dungeon Maker as a Creator

The dungeon-creating portion of Super Dungeon Maker is very intuitive. When starting a new dungeon players are put into a small room with their entrance and a Golden Egg. From there you can toggle between editing the floor or placing items around it. You can select from four different themes; Desert, Grassy, Dungeon, and Snow to start building immediately! There is a tutorial that will cover creating rooms, placing items, and putting rewards inside other objects but there is also a lot you'll need to figure out yourself. 

The Dungeon Editor in Super Dungeon Maker

A lot of the common roadblocks are available in the game such as locked doors, blue and red alternating switches, and weighted pedestals. What blew me away was how well each of these elements was implemented. While a door could simply open as you kill enemies in a room you can also set up simple circuits. When Button 1 is pressed then Door 1 will open. There are 10 different channels that you can set for switches and doors allowing you to create complex puzzles in single rooms. It also allows you to create extra conditions for clearing a room such as multiple switches being triggered at once. The limitation of this is that you can't have a switch in one room trigger an event in a separate room, but for the flexibility the current system offers creators will be able to design all kinds of incredible puzzles.

It took a few hours for me to really start to get the hang of the controls but after that, I was flying. After creating my own small room dungeons I began experimenting with recreating dungeons from different Legend of Zelda games like A Link To The Past's Eastern Palace. Some immediate features I found that weren't possible in Super Dungeon Maker included having multiple heights in a single room, as well as the ability for a switch to be hidden underneath a pot.

A recreation of the Eastern Palace in Super Dungeon Maker

After making and completing your level you're then able to publish it. You can add a title and description to give a sense of story, tags so that people can find it easier, and even set a photo. You then must complete your level showing that it's possible before being uploaded (A great quality check). The tools are simple enough for anyone to get into, but there will be some creators taking this game to the next level. What the continued success of Super Dungeon Maker will rely on is what new features are added as well as how many power creators show up to create incredible dungeons for fans to explore.

Super Dungeon Maker | Final Thoughts

Super Dungeon Maker is launching with an incredible set of tools available not only for players but for creators. A player can jump into any number of rated worlds to explore 2D dungeons to their heart's content being offered to rate and move to the next dungeon on a whim. During my time I've already had a blast exploring others' levels and while I'm not much of a creator myself the time spent in the editor hasn't been frustrating at all which is a big compliment to the editor features.

Super Dungeon Maker was reviewed on Nintendo Switch with a copy provided by the publisher over the course of 7 hours - All screenshots were taken during the process of review

Review Summary

As a way to recreate 2d Zelda-like dungeons, Super Dungeon Maker is an excellent start. With not only a wide array of tools for creators to craft dungeons, but a solid backlog of available uploads, there's something for both sides of the coin. A lack of progression does sting a bit, but the quality of the dungeons does a lot to make up for it. (Review Policy)


  • Plenty of user generated content
  • Easy to learn building controls
  • Fast access to new dungeons


  • Lacks sense of progression

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| Senior Content Manager

Andrew has written Video Game and Entertainment news, reviews, and guides for 10+ years. As Senior Content Manager, he assists in creating and editing… More about Andrew