Is Dauntless, Worth Playing?
Dauntless has come a long way since its closed beta, and seeing the developers turn it from a “poor man’s Monster Hunter” into a viable competitor of the same is a testament to their passion and dedication.

The Lowdown.

Product Details
Genre: Action
Developer: Phoenix Labs, Iron Galaxy
Publisher: Epic Games
Price: Free
Release Date: 18 August 2017 (Alpha Launch)
Supported Modes:

Character Customisation.

Players are able to customise every aspect of their character’s appearance, with the character editor offering players an impressive array of sliders, including an oddly impressive selection of jaw sliders, for those who have always wanted the perfect jawline.

More importantly, the Dauntless character editor offers players a wide range of skin tones for both male and female character models, ensuring there is something for everyone, and it’s nice that the industry has finally begun to acknowledge that people of all races and genders player video game,s and not only white bald teenage males, as was often the case with online games in the early 2010s’.


Fashion is a big part of the Dauntless experience, with the developers hosting a weekly themed outfit contest that offers in-game rewards as prizes for the best outfits; while fashion wars are not for everyone, Guild Wars 2 has proven that fashion is its own endgame and it is nice to see another game fully embracing that philosophy.


Battle Pass Innovation.

While almost every popular multiplayer game has its own version of the battle pass formula, most battle passes have one thing in common: they expire after a set amount of time, requiring players to play frequently to unlock higher-tier rewards.

Dauntless strays from the traditional battle pass formula in several ways.

Multiple Hunt Passe.

Players can swap between purchased Hunt Passes freely at any time, allowing them to unlock content more leisurely.

Permanent Passes.

As of January 2022, purchasing a Hunt Pass unlocks it permanently, allowing players to return and finish it at any time.

Please note free Hunt Passes expire at the end of each season like normal, and rewards cannot be earned at a later date.

Legacy Hunt Passes.

As of March 2022, players can purchase previous battle passes, allowing new and lapsed players to unlock rewards from previous seasons.


Scaling Enemies.

Dauntless ensures that each Behemoth is adequately challenging by scaling its damage and defence rating based on how many players are currently fighting it, ensuring that every Behemoth battle is a challenging and rewarding experience that can be tackled solo or with a group of up to 4 players.


Dauntless Reforged feels rewarding by offering new players small, accomplishable milestones. Players feel they are making progress even when actual progress is slim to none; progressing further along the Slayer’s Path unlocks new items and abilities that affect moment-to-moment gameplay.

The desire to upgrade your slayer’s gear and tackle harder foes is reminiscent of progression raiding in World of Warcraft, and I feel Dauntless would appeal to those currently taking a break from World of Warcraft.

Escalations provide an additional tier of difficulty for those seeking more challenge and feel reminiscent of Guild Wars 2 Fractals.

The ability to learn from popular titles without ripping them off is part of the reason why Dauntless overcame its shambolic closed beta and was able to launch with strong player support and then go beyond that to release a series of updates, which have, for the most part, improved upon the game at every iteration.



Dauntless in Closed Beta was a laggy mess; most people I talk to from that era remember the performance woes more than anything else; Dauntless in 2022 is not perfect but offers performance close to that of major titles such as Fortnite Battle Royale and Overwatch.

Are there occasional performance issues? Of course, such is the fate of every live service game, but overall, Dauntless Reforged is an optimised game that works across a wide range of console and PC hardware.



Too few games utilise crafting to make best-in-slot gear obtainable by players, so it deserves special recognition when a game like Dauntless comes along.

In Dauntless, players must craft all the gear they will need for an expedition; unlike many MMO-lite, each gear item looks fantastic, from the lowest level sword to the highest tier legendary.

Upon defeating a Behemoth, players are rewarded with materials that allow them to craft thematic armour that shares elemental bonuses with the vanquished foe.

For example, defeating “frost” powered opponents will reward players with materials to craft powerful Boreus Armour that grants additional frost protection while being more suspectable to blaze (fire) damage.

Weapons crafted with these reagents will offer additional frost damage vs Blaze targets while being less effective vs frost bosses.

This system encourages passive farming and creates a diverse inventory of weapon and armour sets to tackle different challenges.


Big Changes.

While always maintaining a spark of greatness, Dauntless in 2018 was far from the impressive specimen it is today; mired by terrible optimisation, a predatory monetisation system, excessive dependence on lootboxes, and lack of actual content, Dauntless seemed destined to be little more than the “Poor Man’s Monster Hunter”.

Our 2018 review discussed how Phoenix Labs would have to change substantially and relatively quickly if they hoped to compete on more level ground with the industry leader.

That progress at times has been slow, and the final piece of the puzzle did not go live until  December 2020, which saw Dauntless transition into a semi-open-world experience, with a larger emphasis on exploration and chaining together multiple hunts at a single location because of these changes and those that come after it the feeling of adventure and community has never been stronger. Dauntless continues to enjoy record levels of engagement.

Dauntless Reforged has elevated Dauntless from an arena brawler to a lite mmorpg, and this change allows for not only larger and more engaging battles, with players often banding together to earn even greater rewards.

This party-free grouping system has worked well for major titles such as Guild Wars 2, and I am glad to see Phoenix Labs incorporate it into Dauntless’s core gameplay loop.

Dauntless FAQ

Dauntless is a action video game developed by Phoenix Labs, Iron Galaxy and published by Epic Games, it was released on 18 August 2017 (Alpha Launch) and it is Free-2-Play.

Platform Availability.

Dauntless is available on the following platforms: Nintendo Switch, PC, Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.

Are The Developers Active?

Phoenix Labs has always been very transparent with the community through good times and bad, and as a result, it’s very easy to see what the developers are working on and what content we can expect in the near future.

While things may have been quiet for much of 2023, in August 2023, Phoenix Labs announced work was well underway on a massive content update scheduled for summer 2024, which would improve and innovate on almost every aspect of the game, serving almost as a second relaunch, which I fell for a life service title such as Dauntless is a great way to ensure longevity, with titles such as Fortnite reinventing itself every 12-18 months.

How Many People Play Dauntless?

As of April 2024, around 2,600,000 people play Dauntless on a fairly regular basis.

How Active Is The Dauntless Playerbase?

Dauntless is very active, meaning that very short matchmaking times and even instant matchmaking are possible in populated regions, while less popular regions enjoy stable but less instantaneous matchmaking.

Is Cross-Platform Multiplayer Supported?

Dauntless supports:

  • Cross-Platform Multiplayer.
  • Cross-Platform Parties.
  • Cross-Generational Multiplayer.
  • Cross-Generational Parties.
  • Cross-Platform Progression.

Is There Group Finding/Matchmaking Support?

Dauntless offers the following matchmaking options:

  • Solo Matchmaking
  • Group Matchmaking

Are There In-Game Microtransactions?

The Dauntless in-game store sells:

  • Cosmetic Items.
  • Cosmetic Item Bundles.
  • Premium Currency Bundles.
  • Premium Battlepass.
  • Starter Packs.
  • Pay for Convenience Items.

What Peripherals Are Supported?

The following peripherals are officially supported:

  • Console - Controller.
  • PC - Controller.
  • PC - Mouse and Keyboard.

Is There Any Mature Content?

Dauntless is rated PEGI 12+ and contains the following:

  • Gore
  • Violence

Final Verdict.

Dauntless Reforged is an enjoyable game that appeals to a wide demographic.

As a longtime MMORPG fan, I felt right at home with the MMO-lite mechanics, and I feel it would serve as a great introduction to the genre for those who have previously “kept to themselves” and avoided multiplayer titles.

Is Dauntless Worth Playing In 2024?

Honest Video Game Reviews has given "Dauntless" a rating of 9/10, indicating that it is near perfect and suffers only minor flaws, and the average gamer will enjoy it immensely.

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