Dragon’s Dogma is an action/RPG set in fantasy themed land called Gransys where a dragon comes and terrorizes your small fishing village and steals your heart. So you now set out to get it back, on the way you fight goblins, bandits, undead, griffins, ogres (not the Shrek kind), Cyclops, Chimeras, and many other mythical beasts. The gameplay is nice and simple where the controls are not overly complicated (no SSFIV combos needed).
Character development is also a plus as you get to choose from a variety of vocations (classes). Each vocation has its pros and cons with access to different weapons. If you favor ranged combat, the Strider, Assassin, Ranger and Magic Archer are there for your Robin Hood themed adventures, but if you prefer the adrenaline rush of jacking your opponent face to face feel free to choose a melee vocation such fighter, warrior, or Mystic knight. There are magic classes as well for those that favor the arcane arts.
Another element of DD that stands out is the Pawn system. You create and customize your Pawn (follower), and friends other gamers can “rent” them out for assistance in their adventures. When they’re done with your Pawn they can leave criticism and items for you. Another facet of the Pawn system that is nice is that your Pawn (or those that you hire) can actually help you figure out your quest’s objectives.
Pawns will say remarks on where to go or who you need to speak in order progress through the quest. Besides quest knowledge, they also acquire tactics on how to fight monsters that you encounter. For example, a mage might know that fire is a weakness to the undead, and cast Fire Affinity to your weapon so your weapons are more effective, or they might just use Offensive Fire spells during the encounter. This is actually one of the best facets of DD, and I found myself wanting to hire my friend’s pawns so that they could be of more use to my friends.
While Dragon’s Dogma is fun, it also has its cons. The story is lacking. The quests objectives become meaningless as you want to progress through the game looking to fight big monsters. With the quests sometimes being unfulfilling, you may find it annoying that you must walk everywhere in the game and that there really is no fast travel system in place. I know The Elder Scrolls Series has spoiled some of us, but there are items called Ferrystones that can port you to your destination of choice, but they’re rare.
Another disappointment to Dragon’s Dogma is the lack of a co-op mode. Fighting the bane of the world by yourself with 3 Pawns is fun, but it would be that much better if those Pawns were other players. Which kind of leads me into the next disappointment by Capcom: WHERE THE F%$* is my Monster Hunter?!? Dragon’s Dogma has been compared to Monster Hunter and some actually call it the Fantasy Monster Hunter. Those familiar with the series know how the mechanics, gameplay, and storylines of Monster Hunter all play together, and Dragon’s Dogma is just that switch the theme to Fantasy, replace Multiplayer and Melynes with the Pawn system, and bam you have a brother from another mother with the same publisher.
Dragon’s Dogma is a great single player game that many call a hybrid between Dark Souls and Skyrim, but I feel that the game hold its own. Even with the substance DD lacks, it is still a great game. With amazing gameplay, a Great Pawn system, and a character development that can leave you playing easily over 100 hours. Dragon’s Dogma is a definite must have for any Skyrim, Monster Hunter, Dark Souls fan out there.