Dragon Quest VI is not going to appeal to everyone. This is old school RPGing at it’s finest, and newer gamers might find themselves put off by that. Originally released for the Super Famicom, SquareEnix has done a great job in porting this game to the DS. Like the past two Dragon Quest remakes (IV & V), the graphics have received a major overhaul. Towns are modeled in 3D allowing you to rotate the camera while the world map is still presented in 2D. The monsters in battle have been animated and just seem to pulsate with life as they wait to attack. The character sprites also look larger than the previous installments.
Battle is handled in turn base fashion allowing you to pick out your character’s attacks and plan strategies. You never see your characters in battle but thanks to the DS’s dual screens you do get to see their portrait on the top screen. This game is also more generous in the amount of gold it hands out at the end of battles. In past Dragon Quest games, I’ve had to spend hours killing monsters to get enough gold to buy new equipment, so this is a welcome change. Another great perk is that your party of heroes comes together quickly. After only 4 hours of play I had already met two of my companions.
The story is your standard RPG fare: evil forces trying to take over the world, heroes with amnesia, and everything in between. One of the nice changes is that your group will be traveling between two worlds, The Real World and The Dream World. As you switch back and forth between the two worlds, it’s fun to see the subtle differences in the two and try and unravel the mysteries surrounding them. This game also brings back All Trades Abby allowing you to change vocations. You keep any skills learned when switching jobs, allowing you to customize and create a powerhouse of a party. There is also monster recruitment but this time it’s limited to Slimes and Lizzie the Lizard.
In the end, your enjoyment from this game will come from how much you appreciate it’s classic feel. Anyone who grew up playing Breath of Fire, Final Fantasy ( 6 and below) or Phantasy Star 1-4 will probably enjoy this game. Otherwise I recommend renting it first.
- Yuji Horri on Dragon Quest series, the weirdness of DQVI, why it took 15 years, missing jokes, Wii VERSIONS in the works, motion controls, 3DS possibilities and more (gonintendo.com)