Thursday, January 24

Dragon's Dogma

When I first saw trailers for this game I was completely hooked already, and I knew that I wanted to play it. The Pawns are what captivated me the most, because I love companions in games. The character customization is awesome as well. I'm a sucker for that, because I love all of the control the game gives players to create their own unique Arisen and Pawn. For my game, I created a young strider girl that resembles myself, and a male fighter main Pawn. At end game I finished at 146 hours, completed many vocations for both my Pawn (Mage at the end) and myself (Assassin at the end), finished almost all of the quests, and Ser Maximilian ended up being my romantic partner even though I didn't court him. The rich world was so vast, with so many possibilities to choose from that I had a lot fun playing it and the experience (I got some DLC too) lasted me for months. I'm not going to play new game plus anytime soon because I'm gamed out, but it will definitely be worth checking out in the future. That, and the expansion Dark Arisen looks cool too.


So here are my thoughts about the game:

Pros

- Gransys is huge! I couldn't have asked for a more beautiful sandbox to run around in. 

- There's a nice mix of characters in this game, including the default Pawns. Not everyone is perfect looking and that gave an authentic quality to the world that I truly appreciate.

- Quests are fun, but traditional, and it's definitely more about the wonderful open-world experience.

- The large creature battles are epic! They're so fun and beautifully animated. One feels the rush each time a creature attacks. I bested my first small drake in Devilfire Grove at level 45, and "The Dragon" at level 60. 

- I love that there's barely any music in the game. This really gave the world an eerie realistic quality. We're so use to having a full score that when it's not there it can be quite intriguing. 

- It's pitch black at night and that's awesome. With just the light of a small lantern, one ventures out into the wild world never knowing what lies in wait. This is so cool to me and very realistic. I've been out in the wildness at night before, and know that without a full moon it's just like that.

- The map system is great. I love uncovering small portions at a time. It's so much fun, and I never felt lost.

- My favorite place is the Witchwood. I remember how scared I was the first time I traveled there because I thought that it would be infested with big monsters, but it was quite the opposite. It's a tranquil place, filled with life and a single small hut in the back where my favorite character dwells.

- The ending's awesome. It's unexpected and a wonderful experience full of exciting moments. I like how one can choose the path they want to take. There are so many possibilities. 


Cons

- The loading screens in this game are by far the worst thing about it, and they're so long that they have a tendency to take one out of the experience.

- This game lags like mad too. It seems to be quite a problem with spells, if there are loads of characters and creatures onscreen at once, and even the menus. There's so much lag. 

- I wish that the Pawn's voice acting was a little more varied. Not only the lack of voice actors to play them, which is noticeable, but they kept saying the same lines of dialogue over and over. They really want me to know that "wolves hunt in packs", because they say it a million times.  

- My Pawns didn't help me gather materials too often, even if they're set to do so. They just stand there all derp derp and let me do most of the work. Then I'm over-cumbered, and have to spend time to disperse the collected items. It's pretty annoying.

- It would be nice to have a moon, and moon cycles. As far as I can tell there isn't one! That kinda surprised me for such a realistic game. 

- The Japanese Rush cover band, as I like to call them, playing at the start menu is a bit awkward. It seems that a lot of titles are doing this now, where they use rock or heavy metal music for fantasy games and it just doesn't work. Oh well, that's so minor, but is still funny. I did catch myself humming it a few times though. I blame the redundancy.


Overall I highly recommend Dragon's Dogma to anyone out there that loves fantasy and sandbox games. It definitely keeps one intrigued for quite awhile, and is worth the time sink.

Happy gaming,
~Claudia

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