overall thoughts: great game, lots of fun, just wanted to play it manically all free time/night and now that it's finished i'm still thinking about it and wanted to share my thoughts. however, it was also frustrating at times and i have some thoughts on what would make it even better.
what i loved:
-extremely well put together; it resurrected dungeon master the right way imo. i.e. modern graphics and improved a few things, but kept the basics of the dungeon crawler the same.
-no bugs during my play and ran smoothly.
-the strategic nature of combat, use of movement and space. (people who complain that it's unrealistic should wait for someone to invent the holosuite from star trek).
-Toorum mode, really well designed to give the game extra replay value
-some of the timed/reaction intensive puzzles pissed me off. in particular, the one on level 6 involving taking steps really fast, in the right order and pushing buttons and at the end of level 7 involving blocking light balls. i had to cheat on those two; first with an autohotkey script to automate the steps and button presses, and with a cheat engine on the second one to slow it down slightly.
-feeling the need to check all the walls and still missing the occasional hidden button - i understand that's the nature of the beast for this type of game and I wouldn't want the game makers to remove that element, but it was still frustrating. just to add, i don't mind searching for hidden buttons when there some hint, or locked door, or suspicious space on the map, but i felt like i had to do it for all the dungeon walls.
felt was bad design, maybe unintended:
-strength rather than dexterity (accuracy) determines missile weapon damage.
things i'd like to see added/improved in future games of this nature to make combat even more strategic and interesting:
-teamwork skills; for example, let users strike (or perform a pre-specified action) with both front line characters or the whole team (with certain level of teamwork skill) at press of a user selected hotkey (e.g. middle mouse button or 4th or 5th mouse button for those who have them).
-shortcuts (hotkeys) for mages to perform their main attack spell (or any user specified spell, but only one) if they gain a certain skill level to reflect their improved skill at casting the spell quickly. (could also work for fighters and rogues for their respective attacks but for them it's less important obviously).
-ability or skill perk to auto pick up at least one pre-specified item not in hand. for example, non-enchanted arrows; this could be skill perk or just something rogues can do.
-ability or skill perk to quick-switch items in one of both hands to second pre-specified item. for example, it would be great if you could switch from bombs to shield by middle clicking the shield hand and it would make your gear setup more important.
-ability or skill perk to quick drink a potion with a hotkey or by long-pressing the characters avatar, for example.
-smarter enemies; don't get me wrong, i had my hands full with the dumb ones, but i suppose certain higher level monsters should be able to ambush you, flank you or rush you in numbers, and so on, at least at higher difficulty level.
-more convenient way to mixing potions.
-more spells, better magic. for example, dazzle/confuse to temporarily disorient enemies, speed/strength/accuracy spells to temporarily improve those abilities for all team members, shield spell to shield from melee damage, cloak to add some evasion for all team members, rage to increase attack for all, enchant rocks and throwing weapons the same way you can enchant arrows, enchant blades/maces (for certain number of hits) the same way, maybe detect life/dead through walls/doors, paralyze (like frostbolt but only the temp freeze effect), mass area spells that effect either all free squares around the team or 3x3 or 2x2 area of where the spell lands, a paranoia spell to turn weaker enemies against other mobs, fear spell to make weaker mobs temporarily run away (so you can deal with the tougher ones), perhaps conjuration spells to conjure thralls to fight for you (think of skyrim) or a decoy that some enemies will attack, teleport spell to move your team to some random free nearby square (to escape when surrounded or cornered) or maybe some other type of fast transport spell that works to escape mobs but not jump pits, healing/curing spells, ...
features that might be nice, but not sure if they are necessary or would somehow ruin the retro dungeon crawler game type:
-just one or two more races and classes, not too much of a good thing or it'll make things complicated, and in case you can only have 4 team members, so maybe elves and rangers.
-NPC's to interact with, maybe to trade with or do side quests for - could improve the story.
okay, that's what's been on my mind, so basically i think Grimrock is a great game but I'd like to see the timed/reaction based puzzles toned down a bit, greater team strategy or team attack options/skills, and more convenience to spell casting/potions.