Dragon’s Dogma Impressions

Action News TGS 2011 Capcom RPG Playstation 3 Xbox 360

Capcom’s presentation for Dragon’s Dogma at Tokyo Game Show 2011 answered a lot of questions a few of us out there needed to know about the game.  From what I saw at E3 this year, there wasn’t much information revealed and I personally walked away even after playing the demo scratching my head thinking to myself really what type of game Dragon’s Dogma really was. The presentation went into great detail on how Dragon’s Dogmas pawn system works (Pawns are the NPC that accompany you on your quest throughout the game) and a whole lot more information on game-play, character creation, combat,and a few other interesting things. I can honestly say that Capcom have really invested a huge amount of time and effort into this game and fans of action RPG’s should sit up and take notice as Dragon’s Dogma is certainly a game that will rival a few of the big RPG titles that are due out for release later this year.

The presentation started off with the player leaving the town for the first time and joining up with their first pawn. The main character used in the presentation was a Sorcerer class, a quick rundown and explanation was provided on the character classes, for example – when selecting the casting class (in this instance the magic users) you start off as a  Mage which of course is quite weak and as you progress and level up your skills evolve and develop turning you into a sorcerer making you more powerful where you can better heal your party and can cast much more deadlier spells in combat. The same was explained briefly about the melee class; for example, the warrior is the more powerful upgrade to the standard fighter class you start out with.

Within the game there are special locations called rifts. Once you enter them you can check out some of the different pawns in the game, you can gain access to this world using something called a rift stone. In the rift you can look at other pawns even those belonging to your friends and if you want you can add their pawns to your party.  There will also be many pawns scattered throughout the game, they will appear in many different ways/locations, some will be made available by other players uploading them to the servers and some of them will be created by Capcom. Capcom advised that they have already created over 200,000 pawns to choose from.  You will have the option of taking a total of 3 pawns with you on your adventure. Capcom explained that the pawns can be easily distinguishable just by looking at their clothing and weapons, making it easy to select and give out commands to your team whilst in battle.

For people out there that wanted to know about quests and dialog in the game, you can rest assured that you can talk to any of the NPC in the game. There’s quite a lot of RPG elements that will keep you busy for hours, also a nice little piece of news that I was very happy with was that all NPC (Non Player Characters) in the game all talk and will have their own voice overs.  Also lots of npc’s (those with green colors next to their names) will be able to give out quests and side quests that result in making your character stronger but reward you with money, weapons and special items.  As with other RPG games, you can undertake multiple quests at the same time and complete them in any order you like.

Where ever you go in the game you can use specific items called markers these markers will allow you to move and travel between locations quickly and easily.  It’s like using a warp or portal to get one one spot to another.  In the presentation Capcom stressed that using these markers is highly recommended as walking from one section of world to another can take quite a long time (over 15-30 mins if you decided to leg it) so taking the markers is a wise choice. You can can activate markers by using a ferry stone.

The presentation brielfy touched on a battle with a heavily armoured and clumsy looking Cyclops.  Using the sorcerer with the aid of her two other pawns (both fighters) they systematically took down the colossus and eventually made it fall off a cliff to its death which was quite impressive.  When using a spell caster you don’t have magic mana points, instead you use stamina to cast spells. The longer you chant a spell (by holding the button down) the stronger it will be when cast.  By doing this you can run out of stamina quickly when casting stronger spells leaving you open for attack.  It would be wise to have a warrior protect your magic user/sorcerer when they cast powerful spells, even after they cast them as well because they can become fatigued and unable to move, put their hands on their hips breathing heavy trying to catch their breath and regain their stamina.

Capcom also ran through the character customization menu when creating new characters or pawns.  The menu system for creating new character is quite detailed, one thing that impressed me was the ability to give your character a different color for each eye.  Of course the standard run of the mill RPG character customization settings are here such as body, height, weight, skin color.  Then there is something new I’ve not seen before called character stance and posture, here you can pick a specific posture / pose that your character will inherit and use in the game making them look powerful and dominating or placid and submissive.  You will also have scaring and makeup as well, along with tattoo’s to add to your character. All of these little extras you pick will be reflected and shown on your character in game while you’re playing.

We also discovered while in the presentation that there will be options for online purchases.  But Capcom didn’t go into any specifics on this, so stay tuned for more info on that down the track.

Dragon’s Dogma is shaping up to be quite an impressive Action RPG, I’d certainly be looking into this in more detail if your fan of that genre, stay tuned for more info on the game in the weeks and months ahead.

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