Dragon Quest Heroes II Review

Video Games

Dragon Quest Heroes II Review

5 Aug , 2017  

Written by Jon Scarr

Dragon Quest Heroes II is vast improvement over the 2015 original. This game brings back the charming characters, engaging music and deep role-playing mechanics that we all love about the Dragon Quest franchise and much more. Read more in our Dragon Quest Heroes II review.

With more customization options than ever before, deeper gameplay, a diverse selection of skills, an online mode, and more weapons and accessories to choose from—fans couldn’t ask for anything more in a sequel.
Can you successfully lead a band of heroes in a quest to default evil and save a war-torn world?

An epic battle with some familiar faces

The story takes place in a peaceful land of seven kingdoms, where you begin the game by choosing to play as either a male or female character. One day, without provocation, your kingdom is attacked and you find yourselves in the midst of a war.

As you try to figure out the reasoning of the attacks and who is behind it all, you’ll travel across an open world spanning seven kingdoms. Along this journey, you will encounter a variety of familiar faces from numerous Dragon Quest games, including some of my personal favourites such as Angelo from Dragon Quest VIII and Carver from Dragon Quest VI.

An open world to explore

Dragon Quest Heroes II makes a fundamental change to its gameplay from its predecessor. While it still mixes the hack-and-slash combat from Dynasty Warriors franchise with the monsters, characters, and lore from the Dragon Quest series, the way in which you explore the world around you is now very much the same way as a traditional Dragon Quest game.

You can visit towns, get into random monster encounters, discover treasure boxes and special ingredients, and initiate battle stages. However, there are certain areas that require you progress through the story before accessing them. It’s easy to see that Dragon Quest Heroes 2 offers a far more seamless sense of world building over its predecessor in virtually every single way.

Additionally, as you make your way though the game, there are Invitation Stones, which allow you to warp to previously visited locations, that you can unlock. These make traveling through out the world faster and more efficient.

Fast-paced customizable combat

One of the biggest changes in Dragon Quest Heroes II has to do with changing your character’s class. You choose between a large number of different combat styles and classes including Warrior, Martial Artist, Mage, Gladiator, and Sage. However, each class starts out at level 1, so if you want to switch roles you’ll need to get a lot of experience before being able to get on with the main narrative again.

I didn’t find this too bothersome as the game’s combat is so entertaining, and I found that regardless of which class I selected, I was able to quickly gain the needed experience. There are many different side quests for you to do, which allows for you to try out the different classes and see which one works best for you.

You can learn random weapon skills by visiting the weapons merchant, which are dependant on your proficiency with each particular weapon type. Weapons and outfits only provide aesthetic changes, but you can enhance accessories to change your character’s stats.

Fresh new gameplay

The first Dragon Heroes game offered a fairly limited gameplay experience. Most of the time you would find yourself at a certain point on the map where you would have to protect it from a massive invasion of enemies coming from all directions. Although you could collect and summon monsters to aide you in battle, eventually by the end of the game, gameplay became repetitive.

However, with Dragon Quest Heroes 2, gameplay is fresh and new. When you are pulled into battles, they now have surprise twists, traps, ambushes, and special conditions to deal with. Furthermore, there are plenty of role-playing opportunities, with many missions featuring combat only at the end or after talking to series of characters.

Bright colourful graphics

The Dragon Quest series of games has always been known for its bright and colourful graphics. Dragon Quest Heroes 2 follows in those same footsteps, and with the help of Akira Toriyama from the Dragon Ball series, he does an excellent job from the opening chapters.

Furthermore, the game’s character’s are colourful, silly, and are a perfect combination of both weird and cute designs. During battle it’s a colour explosion as the enemies start to fill up the screen, its really quite pretty to look at. Although the game doesn’t quite go into as much character depth as I would have liked, there is plenty of banter back and forth between the characters that gives each one a distinct personality.

The character’s voices are superbly voiced and the cast of heroes is full of diverse accents, all bursting with personality. It’s this voice acting that makes cut scenes more entertainingly and enjoyable.

Online multiplayer

The single player experience involves controlling a party of four heroes, which you can swap between any of the characters at will. While the AI controlling the other three characters gets the job done, it’s much more fun when you jump online.

Similar to that of Dark Souls, you can play with other players who have already completed the current mission. Playing online with others is far better experience over the single player experience and helps immensely when tackling the game’s missions. While the teamwork may not be as complex as you might find in Monster Hunter or Dark Souls games, there definitely is a sense of camaraderie with your team as you play.

Alternatively, Dragon Quest Heroes II features a series of multiplayer stages in Space-Time Labyrinth dungeon where various enemies appear. This mode is unlocked by finding labyrinth map pieces scattered throughout the main story.

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Tips and Tricks

Here are a few tips and tricks to help you along your way in Dragon Quest Heroes II.

  • Remember to visit the Martial Master in the inn in Accordia every few levels you gain to unlock new skills and abilities. Additionally, you can also visit a monster in that inn who will copy your current weapon’s look and apply it to every future weapon you equip. This is great if you like the particular style of a weapon you have and want to keep it, while still gaining the stats of a better one.
  • When faced with a lot of enemies in battle, press circle to activate your high-tension mode. The gauge is filled up through giving and receiving damage. This mode will give you unlimited MP for skills for a short period of time. It’s a great way to clear the battlefield.
  • When not fully charged for high-tension mode, you can hold down the circle button to charge up and then hold it down again to heal yourself in the middle of battle.
  • It’s best to change one of the character’s classes to a Mage, the added range will be a tremendous help in battle.
  • Mawkeepers are a specific enemy that can summon endless waves of enemies. Make them your primary target whenever scouring the field to stop the respawn of monsters. Sometimes the game will discourage from attacking and suggest you protect your party members. Disregard this as you will be able to protect your party members far more efficiently with this enemy gone.

Final Thoughts

Dragon Quest Heroes II is a vast improvement over the first game. It is one of the most accessible and enjoyable games Omega Force has produced, and offers an exhilarating experience for Dragon Quest and Dynasty Warrior fans.

Dragon Quest Heroes II is a perfect blend of hack and slash action with role playing elements that is filled with characters with unique abilities and is fun to play both by yourself and online with others.

Game Details

Platform: PlayStation 4

Developer: Omega Force

Publisher: Square Enix

Genre: Action role-playing, hack and slash

Modes: Single-player, multiplayer

ESRB Rating: T (Teen)

Final Score: 85/100

 

 

About the Author: Jon Scarr

Based in Toronto, Jon is a proud Canadian who loves all things gaming. He is a veteran of the video game and tech industry who has been in love with technology and gaming for over 20 years. Come say hi and join the conversation with Jon on Twitter.

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