Dragon Quest IX Review and Discussion
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November 19th, 2010 (12:41 AM). Edited November 24th, 2010 by インフェルノの津波.
Okay...before I start this, I should note that this is my first review...so yeah.
Let's get started, shall we?
A spoiler draws near! Attack it?
Hi I'm Erik and welcome to my Dragon Quest IX Review. If you want to correct, please do so.
Storyline & Plot
Warning though, I will ruin your experience if you haven't played it before. Though i won't reveal too much.
...Okay, when you begin the game the first thing that pops up is a character creation sheet. After designing your character, you're thrust into the game.
Then you see a boy and dog playing, some random villagers, etc. the usual. Then you hear someone talking. Turns out he's Aquila, your teacher who's a Celestrian. Celestrians are a fancy way of saying angels in this game, except they also go by Guardians. You'll see statues of them (though not particularly accurate) in just about every town you go.
Anyway, he talks about not expecting you to be a Guardian of Angel Falls (town name), and then with his eagle-like vision he can see a girl and old man coming back from a walk, and then you see two slimes(basic enemies in this game, expect to see a lot), and a 'Cruelcumber', a spear holding, walking, cucumber-like enemy. It spots them, and it's obvious it wants to attack the two for no apparent reason.
Angel? Celestrain? Tien? Guardian? You guess is as good as mine. By the way that's Aquila.
Aquila tells you to defend your flock(village inhabitants), and flies off. You follow.
After flying over to the Cruelcumber and Slimes, a battle begins. You get options for your character, though not Aquila. You can flee, examine the enemy, miscellaneous, and Attack the enemy. Basically you just attack, and at the attack options you have Skills, Spells, and Items. You basically attack of course, you can't do anything else but that.
So after some epic camera switches in battles, which is pretty cool, such as panning to Aquila when he's attacking, or when the enemy is for example.
So you win, get some experience points(don't level up), and then the game switches back to the girl and her grandpa. She thanks you, the guardian of the town, and you get this blue-thing called Benevolence. It's apparently human gratitude. In a ball. Yeaaah.
Then you go to the Observatory, where fellow Celestrains live and where they're based at. Aquila will tell you that he'll talk to Apus Major, AKA the Head Honcho (supposedly 10's of thousands of years old) and walks off. Now you're free to control your character.
You go upstairs, and you can watch Aquila talk to Columba (another senior Celestrain) about you, and Corvus, who is apparently taboo to talk about. After listening to this you go talk to Apus Major. He's tells you to give your Benevolence to Yggdrasil.
You leave the observatory, walking up, up up until you see...
Celestrians worship a giant tree. I don't get it.
A big tree. Yes, apparently Celestrians worship a big AND magical tree. If you think this is weird, think again. But now I am finished. Anything beyond this point will probably ruin your experience.
So now I will continue. The plot line is very good, and very, very sad. Expect to cry, a lot in this game.
And the game is very long. Not to mention boss overload. You'll fight like 20 BEFORE the storyline is even finished. Though the game is kind, and balancing. The first four bosses are easy. But...the next 16 are not, unfortunately. Not to mention it takes a longass time to level up in the later game. And it hurts even more that they're in monster infested areas, you're caught off guard by it that you lose. And losing in this game is losing half of your gold. Ouch.
Though it may seem like not a bad loss, trust me, losing in the later game will make you scream. Especially if you're trying to buy expensive weapon upgrades.
As far as the ending goes, I haven't met it. I stopped there, because...let's just say the final dungeon is a pain.
But there are a few things that kills me as a player, and reviewer. When you're collecting the mystical fruit, some of those people's wishes (yes in this game magical fruit can grant wishes, though this is from the same guy who made DBZ) were honest and true, but they got messed up so horribly. In one of the fruit hunts you're fighting a freaking whale. That also happens to be the main girl of that storyline's father, who wanted to protect her. What. the. Hell.
And there are some points in the game where it seems weak. Two of the fruit hunt's storylines are just plain stupid. You have a queen, who's a complete witch (by that I mean almost making her city drought via many, many many baths), and they're either saying it's her father's fault for not paying more attention to her, or that she's just plain selfish. And then after taking care of the monster that was troubling her everything's fine. What is this I don't even
And at last, gameplay hours. I guarantee you'll play this game for 50 hours. The first part, not the post, the first part. After that, expect over 100 hours. This game is more addicting than Pokemon. Because there's so much to do!
The graphics may seem a bit blocky to those of you getting adjusted to DQVIII, but hey this is a DS title. This actually has some of the best graphics on the system.
An example of this would be in creating your own character, and equitable armor as well. Also take into account that you and your party can move and battle with this armor pretty well.
Character creation looks like this
Also monsters in this game look kinda good too. But some designs are just plain funny.
A Chimera. I'm scared of this thing.
Aww cute isn't it? Sorry to burst your bubble, but Teeny Sanguini become Manguini. And they drink blood!
A human/tiger/bat/horse hybrid. What has science done?!
And I personally I love the drawn cutscenes, though you only experience very few. But it's worth it.
In case you don't know what they look like, this is kinda it:
Sorry, can't tell you what this scene is.
But there's also the account of 2D and 3D sprites. It gets annoying, fast. For example, there are cutscenes in the game where you're 3D and they're 2D. It looks awkward, and a bit stupid.
This game may exceed some in soloing, but multi-player...not nearly enough.
You see, in Japan this game was designed FOR Japan. The chances you'll meet some one Wi-Fi is 70%, in urban areas.
In America, everywhere else, 15%. Why? Dragon Quest may be popular, but compared to Halo, Call of Duty and Pokemon this game fails in comparison. You'll barely meet anyone in Wi-Fi, though it may not seem like a big loss you'll want it post-game, because you'll want to take on the Legacy Bosses.
If you're lucky enough to have, be thankful. If you have Wi-Fi, you fight with friends, take on bosses together, join other players in their adventures, buy items at a special shop, etc. But that is only local Wi-Fi, so don't be expecting to fight with somebody who lives in Spain.
Dungeons & Monsters
Dungeons, or fields in this game are insanely huge. At first you won't explore a lot, but with the introduction of Alchemy later on you'll explore more. Also, monsters start getting annoying to the point you just wait for them to move out of the way of disappear, because you're so weak you can't even challenge them.
Not to mention that the monsters start becoming bosses in themselves, really. Some of them are complicated to take down, for example a 'Wight Priest' killed my entire team with one spell. Thwack.
And it hurts a bit much that they give away not a lot of experience. It's tough leveling up in this game.
But there's a good thing about enemies though. They are are metal slime enemies, monsters that give away so much experience that you level up instantly. That is, if you can beat them. They tend to run away if you're too strong, but this can easily be solved.
It may be cute, but it holds more experience than almost anything else in this game.
I love how in this game you can do everything with your stylus, or not use your stylus at all. Buttons or Stylus, your choice. But it's kind of a pain having to tap an option twice with the stylus, but whatever.
But what concerns me in the battle controls. While battling in the later game, you'll notice that monster's HP will rise rise rise, and it'll get harder to KO them. Which is why you'll find yourself buying a lot of equipment. And equipment in this game can rise up to 22000 or more. And monsters drop around 500 gold.
And when attacking multiple monsters, you'll sometimes end up atacking the wrong monster. With no specific reason. Uh-huh...
Dragon Quest IX is a game that needs to be thought of buying. It has it's flaws, but with so much good in the game some can be overlooked. But some cannot flaws, unfortunately cannot. Like unexpected boss fights on low HP, or when an enemy spawns when you're walking.
But in any case, my experience with Dragon Quest IX was good, and I reccomend anyone to play it.
The Storyline: 9.5/10
This game's storyline will hook you and in and after you're finished you'll be begging for more once you finish the game...and trust me you will get more.
The Graphics: 8/10
Though this can be overlooked, it's kinda stupid with your 3D-self among 2D townies. But hey, this is a Handheld we're talking about.
The Wi-FI: 7/10
The mediocre part of this game, at least in the Americas or regions outside of Japan. But if you have it, use it. It can get pretty fun fighting with your pals, like when fighting the final boss of the post game.
The Dungeons: 7/10
I give it a C-score because these things are hella long, and they get annoying quick. You'll sometimes skip items because of monsters, and not to mention poison areas, magma areas...
The Music: 9/10
The music is soothing and relaxing, but I think it would have been better if I didn't hear the same theme for 8 FREAKING TIMES ALREADY. Also dungeon music? The same. Everywhere.
The Controls: 8.5/10
It will be noted that sometimes you attack the wrong monster, and sometimes it's not you fault.
The End Result: 8.5/10. This game should be looked into, whether you're a Pokemon or Kingdom Hearts fan, or just a RPG lover. This RPG must be played.
So that concludes this review. Thanks for reading.
So...did you like it? Think i can do better? Want more pictures? Want me to be more witty?
Also discuss DQIX!
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