Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Dragon's Dogma Review

Dragon's Dogma is a fun sword and sorcery tale you can get lost in for a while. An open world with hack and slash game play for the newcomer to the series or reminder to the avid player of game like it.

But, first look out from the sky! A dragon's being born and no less fully formed, no embryo or early form for him, if it's a him. Now he's eating my heart while speaking Latin or something? Well, that sucks!


Oh, sorry 'bout that. You know when your heart gets swallowed by a giant dragon you kind of usually die, but I'm cool. Okay, waking up and (blam)

(A person magically appears before me)

Okay, are you here to kill me? Oh, no your a magical being called a Pawn that isn't really human that will aid me on my quest because I'm the Arisen?

Gotcha, okay let's go on quest that makes me hero.

That's what Dragon's Dogma is in an nutshell. Your hearts stolen, you're the chosen one and now you got to save the world.

Customization is where you'll start with your newly awakened hero. I like the customization, you can change your character quite a bit. You can do the same thing for your Pawn. What's a Pawn? Well, once a pawn on time ... just kidding. It seems you being the Arisen (prophesied hero) let's you summon beings without souls that do your bidding. They look human, but they ain't human. They have the vocations or powers of mage, swordsman or archer, which you can also be. In a sense, it's a way to have a party/team that you see in other type quests/rpg games.

You can have two Pawns in your party, which I enjoy as I like having all three major types on my team. I'm a swordsman, my Pawn is a archer and I always pick a Mage to cast spells.

On the subject of Pawns, I like the idea of being able to try other peoples Pawns. You see you can enter this market for Pawns in like an ethereal dream state, which are created by all the other players playing the game and use their Pawn. I do believe your Pawn can be used by anyone at anytime once it's created even while your using it. You get this Pokemon like system of sharing your battle friends. You level them up and the seem to retain that level as long as you keep them. Pawns you get to pick also are always near your level. I'm  sure some reviewer will equate the process of trading and using pawns to a slave trade or prostitution, but to me it's more like Pokemon trades.

So now that you have your Pawn you'll explore Gransys. I explored and wandered the wilderness and fought all sorts of goblins, beasts and cut throats. It is rather fun to plunge a sword into them. I use a skewer attack. You earn experience points by killing whatever gets in your way. Be careful, I was having some fun and killed some villagers and was immediately sent to the dungeon in the big city.

When giant monsters are about or just common crooks, one move is quite nice. You can grab onto and up or simply grab enemies. You can work your way up a big monster to slay it or you can hold back a human enemy while your team mate hurts them, like stabbing them or a fire blast to the face.

 One part, just outright annoyed me. You can take a picture in game at any time and send it to Facebook. I thought that was great, but then I realized I had to put in my Xbox live account name every time I wanted to post. Why even include this function then? Why can't the game save my user name. No one wants to stop game play for that long it should be a quick and easy move to do or don't even include it.

This game has a very generic look and it doesn't seem to have very memorable places or themes. For something so expansive, I would have like something with more depth. Other than that climbing/grab option I didn't see the game pulling off anything new. I also hated a lot of the accents of the NPC's, they seemed to pick the worst stereotypical actors possible.

 For classic dungeon and dragon game play like games this is is a perfect balance of the genre. The team made of pawns works well, the world has a million quests and there's plenty of barrels to break.

This game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.