- Dragon Quest Heroes -World Tree’s Woe and The Blight Below (PS4): As a fan of anything Dragon Quest (I almost bought the little blue slime stuffed pillow..true story), I couldn’t resist this title on the Pre-Owned rack at Gamestop. I plunked $24.99 of my hard-earned cash on the counter, rejected the employee’s awkward attempt at upselling and sped home, eager to start a new Dragon Quest adventure. If I may veer off the beaten path for a minute..is it me or is the Gamestop upsell crap a little annoying? Do you remember when the upsell just consisted of “Do you want to insure your disc for an extra $2.00?” Now it’s “Do you want to insure your disc? Picking up any controllers today? Placing any Pre-Orders today?” I always bite back my sarcastic response of, “Oh yeah!!! I completely forgot about a controller! Because they are so godamn cheap and clearly an impulse item! A Pre-Order! Yes! Let me plop down cash on a game that isn’t even out yet y’know just in case there is a looting incident and the 127 copies you will have in stock sell out! Oh and I get some silly-ass t-shirt and free downloadable content that will be available for free anyways on the next printing of the game? Well sign me up!!”
Ahem. What am I writing about? Ah yes, Dragon Quest Heroes. To my surprise this isn’t a traditional DQ (Yeah, us people in the “know” call it DQ..hmm…why do I want ice cream now?…), no, this game is more like Dynasty Warriors. You form a party of 4 warriors and basically tear through hundreds and hundreds of monsters. It’s like a beat ‘m up mixed with an RPG and sprinkled with a small bit of strategy..a very small bit. The story is that, unlike the traditional DQ game, humans peacefully coexist with monsters. That is until some Count Chocula lookalike, no wait, I can do better, The Count from Sesame Street lookalike shows up and casts a spell driving all of the monsters crazy (yes, I am proud of of that Sesame Street reference) causing them to attack humans. This is just the tip of the iceberg as far as his plan goes as he wants to destroy the humans, destroy The World Tree, release darkness upon the world, and essentially just be a bad egg. Along the course of your quest, you meet up with fellow heroes from different dimensions and they join your cause. FYI, Aurora is the stronger of the two starting characters and as for the rest of your party Bianca, Terry and Yangus are beasts. Most people who have played this game seem to agree with me. Okay so that’s the story so how about the gameplay? Well it’s fun, you mindlessly bash the snot out of monsters using weapons you find, buy, or craft. You level up as you would in any RPG and as your level increases you are granted skill points which can be used to boost your attack, defense, intelligence, and can also be used to unlock your characters’ special abilities and spells. Sounds pretty neat, right? Well, yes it is, for awhile..then the levels get repetitive. Basically there a few different types of levels; you guard on object (I.e a gate, a person, or a World Tree root) from the hordes of monsters, a boss level, or a level where you have to destroy all the monsters on the map. Yes, the levels themselves are aesthetically different but the core mechanic stays the same and tends to turn this game into a bit of a bore. I have about 30 hrs into it, and I just don’t see myself playing it too much longer. Don’t get me wrong, in small spurts this game is pretty fun, but anything longer than an hour at a time and you’ll find yourself yawning too.