It has been just short of a year since I originally reviewed Capcom’s Dragon’s Dogma. It was a pleasant surprise since I had seen the game at the E3 Expo in Los Angeles the year before, but was unable to really get a grip on what the game was about. Dragon’s Dogma is action RPG that falls somewhere between Oblivion or Skyrim, Demon’s Souls, and Shadow of the Colossus. Like the Elder Scrolls games, Dragon’s Dogma gives players an open world to explore, but random difficulty spikes can really put a wrench in your plans. Like an action-adventure game, your character can jump and climb obstacles and even monsters.
Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen, to explain it in old school gamer terminology, is basically Super Dragon’s Dogma. The release includes the original game with a handful of improvements and a pretty tough 15 hours of extra content in the new location. It is not as if the main game isn’t tough enough though, and Capcom recommends players reach at least level 50 before attempting the island. As I said last year, even regular travel is dangerous and auto-saves can be a ways apart. This new edition does offer some extra fast travel ability. Additionally, those who transfer their save game from the original get a huge travelling bonus.
As with Skyrim, the narrative in Dragon’s Dogma is pretty light. That is the price we currently pay for most open world games. This is evidenced most notably in the ending scenes of Dragon’s Dogma which lack more than a hint of context from your adventure. The lack of purpose is remedied somewhat in the new area of Bitterback Isle. Once you arrive, you’re given pretty good direction about your goal and there is a real story to unearth. Once you’ve done everything, the ending stops your adventure, but the game does offer a new game-plus option to let you redo things a little differently.
Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen is rated M (Mature) by the ESRB for Blood and Gore, Partial Nudity, Suggestive Themes, Violence. This game can also be found on: Xbox 360.