Average User Score: 8.2Jul 17, 2013To Clarify: I speak as a player who got Dragon’s Dogma Dark Arisen and had not played the original
The Review: Excellent, this is one of theTo Clarify: I speak as a player who got Dragon’s Dogma Dark Arisen and had not played the original
The Review: Excellent, this is one of the better RPGs on the Xbox and was pardon my French, a damn good time. It’s a very interesting mix of Eastern and Western RPGs mechanics and concepts with the main big innovation being the pawn system. If you end up disliking this system, then you might as well give up. The demo is a clear example of what the game is and what the pawns are if you want to try that. The negatives? The chattering, I end up tuning out 99% of it except for a couple unintentionally funny lines, this can lead to annoyance, you have been warned. The AI, it’s not the worst ever, but it’s not great and needs improvement. There are plenty of times were the AI was not helpful at all but for the majority of the time they were passable (better than Skyrim’s companion system I will tell you that.) The positives? For one you have a traditional four member party system but, only have to micromanage two members: You and your main pawn, that’s definitely a time saver in the long run. The party system allows for very flexible party system. At set locations, players can recruit thousands of player customized pawns to add to their party and it works really well. Going up against a griffon? Better find a healing mage and an archer? Going into catacombs? Better make sure to hire a mage with holy magic. It’s a brilliant system to deal with problems that plagues other games such as Final Fantasy when you’re 20 hours in and come into a brick wall of difficulty when your party lacks proper ice weapons/magic.
Speaking of difficulty, this is definitely the Eastern RPG version of “hard.” In western terms, they don’t tell you Yup, it’s one of those games where you have pause the game to check the wiki. The game is around 40-60 hours with main quest and most of the sidequests. The beginning is tough fighting against bandits and bosses can prove a stumbling block at the beginning but then it evens out but the sidequests. There are a lot of you,” quest failed and you can’t ever do again this play through, annoying. There is one quest in particular where you escort a little girl and this is “technically” the easiest way to get a very rare item BUT, you would never know this unless you read about it and there is only one very specific way to get the item again but it costs a lot of money and if you don’t read up on how to get the item the second time, you are boned. In fact a lot of the clunkiness in the game comes from common Eastern RPG tropes. The frustration doesn’t stop in its Eastern roots through. When I say it has both roots in Western and Eastern RPGs, from the West they took combat, customization and “open world.” I put open world in quotations because the world is kinda small and pales in comparison to other more refined open worlds in the West. The developers in Capcom admit that the “Open World” is a bit of a foreign concept to them during development and it shows. The Open World also makes the lack of enemy variety more acute. There are goblins, then there are hobgoblins. There are harpies, then there are snow harpies, etc. It’s not bad…well, it could be much worse, it definitely needs improvement in the sequel.
Still there is some nice looking scenery and the world has a few interesting locations. The fact that the hometown doesn’t get atomized is a nice touch too. What’s annoying about this is fast travel is nonexistent at the beginning and you have to trudge back and forth between the same areas in the early game with most quests concentrated in one area and the lack of “ferrystones” and “portcrystals.” Ferrystones are a one use item to fast travel and portcrytals are portable fast travel markers. [Pro Tip: Put a Portcrystal by the spring, not only it has a decent location but also you can bottle spring water to heal you and your party] This is both annoying and unintuitive in comparison to games like the Elder Scroll series and other WRPGs where the player opens up a map, picks a location and teleports there. Yes, that’s more gamey then having an inworld reason to be able to teleport but I think more players will complain about this then in Skyrim, just saying. What makes this more acute is the cycle of night and day has a lot more meaning then one you can see perfectly fine and the other you can’t see (but this does happen) at night, enemies change and on a whole a lot meaner and if you aren’t familiar with the area you might get ambushed by a boss enemy this can be a panic driven “run away!!” with curses being made or a super tense battle which makes you feel like a badass if you win. Oh, right bosses. Definitely, a plus here. Each boss is massive in scale and has interesting strategies and weak points to exploit. It has a very monster hunter vibe of hunting down much bigger enemies for loot, exp, and quests. The combat here a lot of fun, the class system gives out a lot of cool abilities to break up the usual mash X (and never Y because strong attacks are and equipment to use. (Sadly, when leveling up, stat boosts are applied automatically based on the class) The “vocations” are broken down to three archtypes (a la Dragon’s Age) mage, fighter and strider (rouge) and an advance version of the archtypes and then hybrids which are a mix of archtypes. A big shout out goes to the hybrid classes which I’m tempted to say is the proper way to play or at least the most flexible.
Note: Hybrids are only available in Dark Arisen, which makes Dark Arisen worth it on that merit alone.
Finally, to note is the customization which is really good and allows for players to create some awesome and unique looks definitely on par with most other RPGs on the market in this. Plus you get to customize your main pawn to your liking too.
The story? Ha! This is definitely not a tightly focused character development on the lines of JRPGs (probably for the better given the state JRPGs are right now) Basically, after a prologue/tutorial: Game start. Boom! Dragon. Dragon eats your heart. Oh, no! But, you live! Now go get it back! Basically, the story past the fluff, common in WRPGs, is just that: kill the dragon and get your heart back. Not a spellbounding emotional journey but it works. Till the end game which has a nice twist and the “post game” which I won’t spoil it, it’s definitely interesting. [The game rises back up to hard again towards the end and post-game so be prepared and wary. [Double innuendo intentional]] Again, the game is around 40-60-ish hours depending on how much you do and your pace.
The main gimmick of the DLC, Dark Arisen is an end-game content dungeon where the player takes on bosses and get handled yous” like it was the game’s day job. And “meh.” It adds content, it really didn’t excite me really. Other than the new items and “HD graphics” pack, I point above to hybrid vocation as the main reason to get the rerelease version.
There are minor things: characters take longer than the world to load so they pop in a lot, food rots. I mean really? Seriously? That’s just annoying. Holding a bumper to use a bow instead of just clicking it once to switch between, the music is forgettable and the voice acting is silted. But overall I can almost wholeheartedly recommend Dragon’s Dogma to the right mindset. With an interesting pawn system, excellent combat and boss battles, great amount of content, and a new experience. Yeah, this games gets my approval. There are a lot of things that needs to be done with the planned sequel but if they fix a lot of the problems I listed above then they have a real masterpiece possible.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.0Dec 7, 2012This would of been a lot better as Turn Based Strategy. The presentation seems to cater towards TBS. The game has wierd controls and the wholeThis would of been a lot better as Turn Based Strategy. The presentation seems to cater towards TBS. The game has wierd controls and the whole ruse appeal falls apart as the startegies end up being just "gather up all your units and attack." It's not the worst RTS ever but it's just not good either.… Expand
Average User Score: 7.1Dec 7, 2012Having played around 60 hours of Minecraft on the PC and been with Minecraft since 1.6. I was surprised to see that Xbox Minecraft started onHaving played around 60 hours of Minecraft on the PC and been with Minecraft since 1.6. I was surprised to see that Xbox Minecraft started on 1.6. Getting a couple of my friends on Minecraft and we had a blast. Minecraft is definitely a game for friends. From a mountain home, to a huge wooden fort, to a giant boat, and lava chaos. Minecraft mulitplayer shines on Xbox. The server system is excellent and players can spawn in and out with ease, this is multiplayer done well. The maps are small which is annoying, I'm just waiting for the update with bigger maps (I hope) Playing alone on a small map with much of the content missing, is really inferior. Might as well play singleplayer minecraft on the PC. THe game currently is updated to 1.8, still missing the Dragon boss battle and a bit more. But it's getting there, the game has faded in popularity with my friends with the season of big releases which is a shame because Minecraft is a very well put together game. Definitely worth the price.… Expand
Average User Score: 4.6Dec 7, 2012Ah, Black Ops II. For some one of the greatest Call of Duty ever and for others a pile of crap (a lot more).
I played every Call of DutyAh, Black Ops II. For some one of the greatest Call of Duty ever and for others a pile of crap (a lot more).
I played every Call of Duty since Finest Hour and played like maybe 80 hours of Black Ops 2 altogether. Does this make me qualified? idk, well anyways le'ts split the review up a bit, into three sections, singeplayer, multiplayer, and zombies. First, Singleplayer, I have never seen such terrible railroading, disastrous plot holes, and sloppy writing on this scale for Call of Duty. Don… Expand
Average User Score: 6.9Dec 7, 2012I rented this game at my local grocery store and only got to play this game for like 6 hours. 2 singleplayer in forever alone world and 4 inI rented this game at my local grocery store and only got to play this game for like 6 hours. 2 singleplayer in forever alone world and 4 in multiplayer with friends. My biases here? I fell out with Halo after Halo 2 and never got interested in it again till Halo Reach. So I'm missing Halo 3 and ODST. So when the story started I was rather confused so I had to wiki the story. The thing is even after two hours, the story still seemed a bit unexplained and the designers at 343 assumed that you know and accept everything that happened before Halo 4. Honestly, they could of weaved the narrative better and had a better 5 minute introduction (see Extra Creditz) Alright, that doesn't bug me that much because the game is smooth and controls extremely well. But that this point the combat of Halo has not evolved very much. I swear if there was more time and budget for it, Halo 1 could of had the same armor abilities as this Halo. This game actually is pretty boring playing alone, if I had time for co-op, I assume that I would of had a better time. The multiplayer? I had a lot of fun with. During my first match, when I got my first airdropped rocket launcher my first thought was, this was a hell of a lot like Call of Duty. After I got that feeling I couldn't shake it off, it didn't help there was custom classes, leveling, and unlock tokens. Interestly, Black Ops 2 and Halo 4 were developing at similar times. Were designers at 343 and Treyarch sharing ideas? Not to say this is a bad idea, taking what good design choices from other games and putting it in yours to improve the experience is a good idea. Overall, I don't feel Halo 4 improved much on the template of Halo. I'm probably going to get this during the holiday season, but there was always the feeling of slight disappointment while playing Halo 4. Still you did a relatively good job, 343. Halo 5 should be able to make some improvements...hopefully… Expand