Okay, I got it wrong. I have not yet finished Hand of the Heavenly Bride, nor was I near to doing so.
Well, actually, that might not quite be true. But I have been getting a little distracted on my way to what I can only assume is the final boss: first with grinding to get Bianca up to a similar level as my protagonist and their children, and subsequently with the subject of today’s article.
Many RPGs today concentrate primarily on their core mechanics, with their optional content involving those same mechanics: challenging combat, deep dungeons or hard-to-find items. But the Dragon Quest series, like Final Fantasy, is one that has always incorporated minigames into the mix, with their own completely separate ways of playing. And it’s that I’d like to talk about today.
Continue reading Delving into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #6
I haven’t had as much time as I’d like to play Dragon Quest recently, but I took the time to play some at lunchtime today, and it reminded me of some things I’d like to talk about.
What I’m going to talk about today relates to the series as a whole, but with the release of newest installment Dragon Quest XI looming at the time of writing, it’s particularly pertinent to mention these things, given some of the issues that have been brought up by recent reviews.
So let us ponder a core aspect of not just Dragon Quest, but of the type of RPG that Dragon Quest went on to inspire. Let us contemplate grinding!
Continue reading Delving into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #5
I think I’m nearing the end of Hand of the Heavenly Bride. It’s just a feeling I have.
As we’ve previously discussed, Dragon Quest is not generally a series for making a huge deal out of significant narrative moments, preferring to allow you to draw your own meaning from them rather than attempting to force you to feel a particular way through lengthy cutscenes.
This doesn’t make those significant moments any less meaningful or effective, however — it’s just a markedly different treatment of these events than you’d find in many other games.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #4
Exciting things have been happening in the world of Dragon Quest V, and I am thoroughly enraptured with this game.
I can’t remember the last RPG that managed to make one’s adventure feel so simultaneously personal and meaningful to the broader context in which the narrative unfolds. But Hand of the Heavenly Bride does a wonderful job at this — and now I’m into the game’s third (and, I believe, final) act, things are escalating considerably while still remaining tightly focused on the protagonist and his family.
Let’s take a closer look, then! Doubtless you’ve already figured out that spoilers likely abound in this series, but I’ll warn you once more just in case.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #3
I’m about ten hours deep into Hand of the Heavenly Bride at the time of writing… and it’s been a highly enjoyable adventure so far.
Last time, we talked a bit about how the prologue chapter of the game represents an interesting exploration of childhood and fatherhood.
Now that my adventure “proper” is well underway, I thought I’d start examining some of the interesting things this fifth installment in the series is doing.
Continue reading Delving into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #2
For one reason or another, fatherhood has always been a popular subject to explore through video games.
Interestingly, when fatherhood is presented in a positive light (as opposed to stories of, for example, abusive or absent fathers) it tends to be with the player in the role of said father, rather than the child. But there are plenty of interesting stories to be told about fatherhood from the child’s perspective, too.
Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride’s early hours explore this idea in some detail, making for an incredibly memorable prologue chapter that concludes with plenty of incentive to set off on an adventure.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Hand of the Heavenly Bride – #1
I’ve been making good progress through Dragon Quest: Chapters of the Chosen so far. I think I might be nearing the end of the game. Or at least the end of the main story.
So far I’ve been playing for about twenty hours or so, and the game has provided a pleasant amount of variety during that time. It hasn’t really got what I’d call especially complex at any point, but sometimes that can be refreshing; it allows you the freedom to enjoy what mechanics there are, and more importantly, the other aspects of the game such as its world design and characterisation.
Today I wanted to talk a little about Chapters of the Chosen’s more “traditional” aspects, and how they make it quite a refreshing experience when played from a modern perspective.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Chapters of the Chosen – #3
Dragon Quest is a great example of what I like to think of as a “comfy game”. That is, the kind of game you can pick up and play, and immediately feel like you’re welcome in its world.
There are certain series that do this very well. Gust’s Atelier games — particularly from the PS3 era onwards — are especially well-known for it, and my journey through Chapters of the Chosen on Nintendo DS is making me feel like Dragon Quest as a whole is very likely to be the same way.
As controversial as it might be to say these days, I feel a big part of the pleasant atmosphere the later English versions succeed in creating is down to the efforts of the localisation team and how they made some significant changes to how the original scripts were presented. So let’s take a look at that aspect today.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Chapters of the Chosen – #2
Welcome to the first installment of what will hopefully become a regular (though not necessarily scheduled) feature here on MoeGamer: Delving Into…
The aim of this column is to give me the opportunity to catch up on and write about games and series which perhaps aren’t entirely practical to fit in to the monthly Cover Game format — usually due to them being much too long or consisting of too many individual titles to squeeze into a single month… or, most likely, a combination of both.
I have a number of different series that fit into this category, including Dragon Quest, Yakuza, Trails in the Sky and Trails of Cold Steel, so as time goes on, I’ll be exploring each of these gradually — and offering some immediate, ongoing, personal thoughts about my experiences as I proceed through them rather than a single, “final thoughts” article. We begin today with the Nintendo DS version of Dragon Quest IV, aka Chapters of the Chosen.
Continue reading Delving Into Dragon Quest: Chapters of the Chosen