Dragon’s Dogma looks like it could be a AAA RPG coming from developers Capcom. Releasing next week around the world, let’s try to see if we can get ourselves a bit more hyped for this game!
‘Hype’ is of course a dangerous thing, but I’ve never been one to hope a game fails to deliver. So, let’s get into Dragon’s Dogma. Coupled with the short demo, there are a few internet videos showcasing what the game provides, and I’ll be trying to make sense of it all.
So, Dragon’s Dogma will be an open-world action RPG set in a dark medievel-ish setting akin to classic D&D fantasy. From what little has been shown, it looks like all the fantasy tropes of might and magic will be featured in one form or another. There have been quite a few good RPGs in recent years in this vein, so Dragon’s Dogma will come under heavy scrutiny.
One highlighted element within Dragon’s Dogma is the day/night cycle in the game. Questing during the day presents its own challenges, however questing at night is even more perilous. Not only does nighttime hinder vision appropriately, enemies and monsters that come out to play tend to be more ferocious and deadly.
As an open-world game, there’s promise of various terrain and scenery to behold within the game. Hopefully that stays true in the final product, and not be a constant dungeon crawl for quests.
There are three base classes to start the game in: Strider, Fighter and Mage. As you progress through the game, you’ll unlock the ability to further strengthen your starting class, or to mix it up with a different role, creating a hybrid class. These are known as Advanced classes and there are six in total: Ranger, Warrior, Sorcerer, Assassin, Magick Archer and Mystic Knight.
As you can see, there is some level of customization on the players part but it looks like it will be restricted enough to provide individuality to these classes.
It is hard to judge the level of depth the combat will have through it’s demo. The demo was rather straight forward and short, and not all that hard. Combat wasn’t inherently hard to learn, but again, this was only a sample, so I won’t make sweeping judgments.
It is interesting to see the possibility of how the different abilities can help players out in non-combat ways though. For instance using fire magic or enchanted arrows can technically brighten up pathways for night travel (at the expense of stamina mind you).
A lot has also been mentioned about the ‘grab’ function within the game. It sounds weird personally for me to hear others talk about what looks like a simple mechanic. The player will be allowed to grab and throw things in the game, even other characters. While that sounds like crazy fun to be had in towns, in battle, you can also throw companions at enemies, or use the ‘grab’ function yourself to latch onto an enemy, stopping it from taking flight or to get a precise hit on a specific location. Sounds promising.
Speaking of companions, there is this ‘Pawn’ system in the game that allows you to basically mold the companions you take on your quests. You can take up to three additional companions at any time with you, but the additional spice to this system is that you can ‘lend’ your pawn to someone else through an online mechanic in the game. It’s an interesting concept, and we’ll have to see how it plays out in the full game. Best thing though for the hardcore nuts out there, I don’t believe you are required to take any companions with you. As such, you can enjoy traipsing through the night on your lonesome fighting various monstrosities.
Graphics & Audio:
A short touching on this subject, the graphics do look neat, but I wouldn’t expect mind-blowing graphics. It’s an unfortunate limitation of the hardware nowadays. Still, you can see effort was put into the graphics. In-game music is a little hard to comment on, but expect a good amount of voice acting to occur in the game. Even the ‘pawns’ provide some audio comments during combat.
If Dragon’s Dogma can provide solid gameplay with great graphics and a fun ‘pawn’ system, I think it can deliver. I’m not wholly sold on the ‘pawn’ system, on the first basis that I thought it would allow proper in-game multiplayer (it doesn’t…for now…DLC?) and because it seems like a cheap way to provide companions without personalities. But customization is a big thing for certain players, so being able to customize ‘pawns’ for other people (and yourself) might be a great aspect. Still, the game looks good, and if the battles stay true to being epic throughout the game, it will be a gem of a game.
Dragon’s Dogma will release on May 22nd for North America and May 25th for Europe on the PS3 and Xbox 360.
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