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About the product
- Gather, craft, and build the kingdom of your dreams to restore the ruined world of Alefgard
- As you build rooms and defenses, towns level up and residents grow stronger
- An open world adventure with real time battles against monsters and bosses
- Discover side quests, treasure chests, and building schematics during your travels
- Build to your hearts' content in Terra Incognita, the free-build mode
- Battle waves of monsters at the arena in Terra Gladiatoria
- Upload your creations online or download buildings made by other players
- Nintendo Switch version of the game Exclusive content: gather special materials with the Great Sabrecub to unlock retro customization options, including the Dragon Quest Game Pak
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From the manufacturer
Gather, craft, and build the kingdom of your dreams to restore the ruined world
As the legendary Builder, you’ll construct rooms, towns, and defenses while fighting monsters. In Terra Incognita, build freely, share creations online, battle in an arena, and access exclusive content to the Nintendo Switch version of the game!
You’re the only one in Alefgard who can rebuild and level up its ruined towns to attract new residents and raise their strength. But be wary: increasing a town’s level will also lure the Dragonlord’s monsters! So, join residents and fight back! When you defeat monsters and break blocks of the environment, you’ll earn materials for crafting items and building structures. Enjoy content exclusive to the Nintendo Switch version in Terra Incognita: ride a Great Sabrecub, slay foes for Pixel Blocks, and use them to build a Dragon Quest Game Pak so you can access more items for building! The land is yours to rebuild… The goddess Rubiss has spoken!
Discover side quests, treasure chests, and building schematics during your travels.
Nintendo Switch version of the game Exclusive content: gather special materials with the Great Sabrecub to unlock retro customization options, including the Dragon Quest Game Pak.
Copyright 2016-2018 Armor Project/Bird Studio/Square Enix All Rights Reserved.
Copyright Sugiyama Kobo.
Nintendo Switch is a trademark of Nintendo.
Gather, craft, and build the kingdom of your dreams to restore the ruined world of Alefgard! As the legendary Builder, you'll construct rooms, towns, and defenses while fighting monsters. In Terra Incognita, build freely, share creations online, battle in an arena, and access exclusive content to the Nintendo Switch version of the game! You're the only one in Alefgard who can rebuild and level up its ruined towns to attract new residents and raise their strength. But be wary: increasing a town's level will also lure the Dragonlord's monsters! So, join residents and fight back! When you defeat monsters and break blocks of the environment, you'll earn materials for crafting items and building structures. Enjoy content exclusive to the Nintendo Switch version in Terra Incognita: ride a Great Sabrecub, slay foes for Pixel Blocks, and use them to build a Dragon Quest Game Pak so you can access more items for building! The land is yours to rebuild... The goddess Rubiss has spoken!
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As far as the story and themes go, it tackles some surprisingly dark subjects for such a cute-looking game. But it's subtle about it, so the game is still appropriate for all ages.
Just a few things to keep in mind before playing: For the story mode, don't get too attached to the village or characters. You'll be moving on from one place to the next as you help rebuild the world, so it's sorta bittersweet.
However, there's a free-build mode where you can get as attached to your creations as you'd like. What puts this mode above Minecraft's creative mode is the fact that you still have to collect resources. Because you don't have unlimited resources handed to you, it still feels like a game and a challenge (though it is easier to collect resources in this mode).
It's important to know that I am not very good at battle in Zelda, and battles are not my favorite part of that game (though I did play all the way through, including all the temples). In Dragon Quest Builders, the battles are relatively lightweight, and to some extent you can control when they happen or not. (You are asked if you're ready, and you can say no and go enhance your fortifications or whatever first.) Right, and also when you die, you get reincarnated back at the base. If it's a major battle, you go back in time to before the battle started (without your having to have saved yourself). If it's a minor death, e.g., you were out exploring the world and neglected your health, you'll drop half(?) of your items on your death spot, wake up at home, and have to go back for your items if you want them.
This of course is also not as big or as beautiful as Zelda, but it's super cute. And I do find the minecraftian elements of just building things up entertaining at times.
I am only in "Chapter 2" so far, but I feel that the game elements and storyline unfolds well. Other characters give you quests that push you to particular places on the map, and make you build that slightly tedious thing, or go find that hard-to-find component you need to make something, and everything keeps moving you forward through the chapter, so far, without major annoyance. E.g., you can put off completing their tasks while you want and just go do some gratuitous landscaping or construction if you're in a mood for that. Sometimes, I just work on fortifying my city walls.
(Update, 2/25: I'm on Chapter 3 now, and it's not as much fun. Resources are scarce, and I'm finding myself having to spend a lot of time grinding for medicines before moving along to the next goal. And it's actually unclear to me how I achieve my next goal. Everything else was "go here" and then the path was obvious. Haha, and I am past that tiresome start of Chapter 3. It's a long dead flat spot, annoying to get past. Here's hoping I don't run into anything like that again.)
(Update, 3/8: I'm at the final boss fight, and I'm not sure I'm good enough to do it. The battles got tougher as the game went on, and hey, I got better at fighting. But there's many waves of different stuff at the end, kind of like the finale at a 4th of July Fireworks. And it's kind of ugh and exhausting to me; not the same as earlier parts of the game. I'm putting it aside for a bit, and will come back. Looking back at the game, I feel like the game designers sort of lost steam as they went along through the chapters, and became less creative and less thoughtful with the later chapters, like maybe Chapters 3 and 4 were a bit rushed to completion.)
Oh, one annoying visual thing. The NPCs sometime say things that aren't explicitly a conversation with you; they're just saying stuff. These text bubbles are white text on white boxes... the white text is outlined in black. Why isn't it just black text on a white background? These are really hard to read. I was ignoring them in Chapter 1, so I didn't see all the minor quips from the characters, but you need to be able to read some of the text bubbles in Chapter 2 to advance the game.
Some other thoughts (including some ***minor SPOILERS***):
1. I have never played a Dragon Quest game before, but didn't have a hard time getting oriented to this. I think folks who've played Dragon Quest games will see familiar references to the past that are likely fun, perhaps akin to the Zelda series.
2. You can play as a boy or a girl character, which I greatly appreciate, and you can pick from among some different choices for hair, skin, and eye color. However, all of the NPCs in your town are caucasian. Also, there are a lot more male NPCs in the game than female, and their avocations follow stereotypical gender roles, e.g., the females doing more cooking and nursing and the males doing more leading/building/fighting. (Maybe this all gets reversed in Chapter 3, and I just need to give the game a chance. But I won't hold my breath.)
3. If I still had youngish kids (let's say elementary school aged), I can imagine playing this with them, although I imagine the kids might hand over the controller for some of the meaner monsters. (Hmm, and Chapter 3 is too much of a grind for kids, I think.)
4. There are definitely some dark themes in this game, including people who were your "friends" turning into monsters and then you have to kill them. This might be something to factor in when considering playing with kids.
5. In general, at nighttime, things get "scary". You can immediately fly home with a special feather. But your home base can get attacked at night by monsters, and the minor attacks like this can't be turned off or stopped... another thing to consider when thinking about your own young un's. (Although if you go to sleep early enough, you can avoid these! I don't usually go to sleep and make things in the "evening" hours. Maybe if you go to sleep, you're totally safe from these minor monster assaults. Hmmm.)
You can change your character visually, any time you load up the game. Tons of area to explore. Plenty of small side quests. Neat rooms to unlock, and the game sometimes only hints out how to get them. So far, every Chapter I've played has been a separate experience. The core of which is still collecting materials and building up the city for citizens, but everything around that can change. Truly an enjoyable experience. Completing the main game unlocks things terra incognita (a free build mode with no monsters murdering your city all the time) if you want to build up. Seems to have reasonable replayability since there are many ways to go about playing the game and multiple saves per switch account.
Really hope Dragon Quest Builders 2 has Local Multiplayer co-op. I'd love to play with my spouse.
Randomly generated open world crafting games are becoming tiresome for me these days, so I was happy to discover that DQB is more of an "open level" game than open world. There is plenty to explore, and it takes a long, long while before you feel like you've seen it all. The game's pacing is wonderful, introducing you to new content at a pace that never makes you feel as if you're having to grind to get to the good stuff.
I honestly wasn't even sure I'd like this game enough to finish it after trying the demo, but it's hooked me just as surely as Breath of the Wild did last year. It's become one of my favorites on the Switch, which is really saying something as the platform already has a ton of great games. Recommended!