A franchise that is still as relevant today as it was when it started off, Dragon Quest’s first game came out thirty years ago and spawned an entire genre. Since then, the series has produced one great game after another with amazing consistency (and it doesn’t look like it’s going to stop anytime soon). It’s next title, Dragon Quest XI, arrives in just a few short days, and it serves as a celebration of the franchise’s 30th anniversary.
Which is appropriate, because in the words of game director Yuji Hori – who is also one of the three creators of the series itself – Dragon Quest 11 is a culmination of the franchise’s entire 30 year history, and serves as both, a celebration of its achievements, as well as a new starting point for those who may not have dabbled in its experiences till now.
“Dragon Quest 11 is essentially a culmination of 30 years of the franchise,” Yuji Hori said while speaking with IGN. “Within the development staff we have certain people who were very young when the initial Dragon Quests were released. They were perhaps in elementary school when they first played Dragon Quest, or they may not even have been born back then. So various generations really came together to wholeheartedly put all their heart and soul into this work to bring it to life.”
And it really shows, to be completely honest. Dragon Quest XI has been getting excellent reviews from almost all across the internet- in my own review, I gave the game glowing praise, and awarded it a score of 9/10. You can read it here. But while audiences out of Japan are only just now getting to experience the game, Dragon Quest XI launched in its home nation a year ago, where critics and fans immediately fell in love with it. Hori briefly spoke about that as well.
“And also the fact that it has been well received [in Japan],” Hori said, “it made both the existing fans happy and bought new players to the franchise. And in that sense it really serves as a new starting point for Dragon Quest as well. That’s what I feel most proud of when it comes to Dragon Quest XI.”
Dragon Quest XI launches on PS4 and PC on September 4. A Nintendo Switch version of the game is also in the works, but a release date for that is as of yet unknown.