Oh, Dragon Quest. Forget whatever urban legends you might have heard about Dragon Quest‘s dominance over the video game world in Japan. Gone are the days when that glorious anthem can be heard from a random speaker in downtown Osaka. Dragon Quest IX might have been a huge success for Japan, but since its heyday came to a close, other series have risen to the plate in recent years attempting to steal its thunder; most notably Monster Hunter and its brand of simple and portable online role playing.
But now the most “Japanese” video game series of them all is back to remind people who’s in charge. Square Enix has released an 11 minute video of their upcoming guaranteed smash hit Dragon Quest X for the Nintendo Wii. A solid grasp of the Japanese language might help, but its not too difficult to work out what the game is all about.
Sticking to a working formula, Dragon Quest X doesn’t stray too far from the free online role-playing introduced to the series in Dragon Quest IX, only now it will be available on a console rather than a portable. Other large differences include five additional races to create a customizable hero from, each race specializing in different abilities in battle. The trailer also covers the introduction of the story, combat, mini-games, and a house building side quest.
Despite all the new ideas, Dragon Quest never seems to be affected by its refusal to age, and Dragon Quest X is no exception. The series continues to recycle monster designs, lift sound effects straight from the 8-bit games, and reuse that criminally charming Akira Toriyama artwork over and over again. These are staples of the series though, and without them, its simply not Dragon Quest.
The game is due for release two months from now in August in Japan, and a Wii-U version will be announced shortly after. There’s been no mention of an American release yet, but the series has seen consistent releases in The States over the years.