Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age
PS4, PC, 3DS
Release Date:September 8, 2018
The latest entry in the long running competitor to Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is an RPG by Square Enix. The game was released in Japan in July 2017, with a western release to come to PS4, and Windows on September 4, 2018, and eventually on Nintendo Switch. There was a 3DS version of the game released in Japan, however as that version is not set to be localized, this wiki will focus on the PS4 version as a result of that.
Square Enix began working on Dragon Quest XI back in 2013, announced for 3DS, PS4 and what was then known only as NX. Each of the versions had different challenges and presentation styles they were going for, including the High Definition visuals powered by Unreal Engine 4 for PS4 and PC, the dual 3D and 2D perspectives of the 3DS version, and making use of the unique capabilities of NX.
The team played with the idea of a fully open world Dragon Quest title in early production, however they eventually went against it as it would make telling a story more difficult. In January 2016, the game was said to be nearing completion, with the intro section fully finished. It wouldn’t be until April 2017 that the game received a Japanese release date.
The titles launched in Japan on July 29, 2017, and on that same day the series founder Yuji Horii revealed that the game would be localized by sometime in 2018. Tweaks to the game, such as a first person camera and a hard mode were being added to the localized game. A Windows version of the game was announced, but unfortunately the 3DS version would remain in Japan only. The Nintendo Switch version will take longer to localize as well, with Square Enix citing “technical adjustments”. The launch date for the rest of the world would later be revealed as September 4, 2018.
Within two days of sales in Japan, Dragon Quest XI sold well over two million copies, most of which came from the 3DS version in the handheld driven country, and by November, the game had sold 3 million copies and received critical acclaim.
Within the world of Lotozetasia, the world seems to be at general peace, thanks to the efforts of the hero, Loto, generations before. The player takes on the role of an unnamed young man, who is growing uncomfortable with his simple life in Ishi Village. He wonders what could be waiting for him beyond the horizon. When he turns 16, the man learns of his destiny.
The player must rise to stand against the forces of darkness and the ‘Dark One’. He leaves his hometown with childhood friend Emma and goes on a journey to discover his role as the hero and finally travel the world. The hero will meet new friends, enemies and discover what fate has in store for him along the way.
Aside from the obvious visual fidelity that Dragon Quest XI can enjoy as a current generation game, it doesn’t stray too far from Dragon Quest games of old. Players move their party though a vast overworld, venturing through towns, fields and dungeons in order to proceed in the story. Interactions with NPCs to gather information, buy items and heal themselves is central to what the player can expect when exploring a town.
On the field or in a dungeon, random encounters can place the player into battle against monsters. Several classic monsters return from past entries such as Skeletons, Mummies, Shadows, Dragons, and the iconic Slimes. Battles are very box standard JRPG fair, with the player engaging the enemies in a turn based fashion. Use of magical attacks are dictated by the stats of a character, which can be leveled up through gaining experience, or altered with equipment. Winning can also see monsters drop items or gold, with which the player can purchase more items or equipment.
The player will pursue different objectives to advance the story through traveling through these dungeons, solving problems and growing in power, just like any classic JRPG has one do.
The main character that the player takes control of has no set name, but appears as a young man with long brown hair and a purple robe. As a mostly silent protagonist, he’s not much of a talker. Emma is the childhood friend of the Hero, having been born exactly the same day as the Hero and grew up very close to him. She’s a plain kind of girl, with a practical sense of style and a strong loyalty to her friends. She celebrates with Hero before he heads off on his journey, and eventually proves her worth in a battle.
Hero will meet the shifty thief, Erik early in his quest, when he’s busted out of prison by the spiky haired young man. He’s not really one to show his outward emotions due to his profession, but when it comes down to it, Erik is really a kind person. The two men will later meet Martina, a woman of tremendous power. While Martina does carry a naginata to battle with when needed, she usually just relies on her fists.
A young healer named Senya will also join the party. Though that small lyre she carries isn’t going to be of much use in a fight, her ability to cast healing magic helps keep the rest of her traveling companions going. An even younger girl named Veronica also joins, but unlike Senya’s passive healing, Veronica is adept at using magic to attack.
Row is an elderly gentleman with big bushy eyebrows and a just as impressive moustache. The older man looks rather large and past his prime, but when he has to defend himself, the claws he brings out can do a lot of really serious damage. Sylvia is a truly exuberant traveling performer with a flair for the dramatic and a lot of very useful skills with the use of different weapons such as whips, one-handed swords and knives.
The party stands against the Kingdom of Heliodor, led by King Carnelian. A wizened and proud man, his age doesn’t dull his legendary swordsman skills. He will imprision the hero near the start of the game. Homer and Hendrick are his right and left hands, performing duties as kingdom strategist and military general respectively.
Note: This wiki will be updated once we have more information about the game.