Dragon Quest Builders 2 is the brand new sequel to the first ARPG world building game which brought together a lot of great concepts for a very unique and interesting experience. So what is Dragon Quest Builders 2 and who is this game for? Keep reading because we’ll answer all of that and more.
What Is: Dragon Quest Builders 2
The most simple and lazy way to describe Dragon Quest Builders 2 would be like this. Imagine you took Minecraft. And then you took any ARPG game, in this case, the Dragon Quest world is the one that’s focused upon. Add those two together, take the best of both those games and this game is literally what you get.
As the name suggests the game’s main focus is “Building”. You need to build up towns and settlements on the various islands that you can explore. The game gives you a slight pointer as to what you need to build which really helps you get started because its essentially like being told the basic ingredients for a recipe but the process and the plating are all up to you. It doesn’t hold your hand and force you to draw between the lines but instead, let’s you use your creativity to the best with the tools and canvas they provide. The building isn’t just a simple forced in mechanic or clone, it’s fully fleshed and an absolute delight. And thankfully unlike the previous game, you get to keep your items and resources after you finish an area which you can then use at your hub world.
Besides the building, you have the exploration and story RPG elements. There’s a story that starts off somewhat slow but eventually picks up near the end. The exploration is one of the highlights of the game and features some really beautiful and expansive locations that even with its cartoon-like art style will leave you in awe. You level up your character, your items and weapons like any other RPG games while taking quests from NPCs and progressing the story.
You also get a permanent companion who will accompany on your journey and who shares the same name as a major villain so there’s a story to be told there. Besides him, you have NPC companions who can join and do a decent job in assisting you in fights and don’t really feel like a burden. The game also supports multiplayer co-op which is great because it really adds an extra element of fun and interactivity to the game.
Where It Falls Short
Speaking of Combat, this is one area where the game is a bit lacking. It’s quite shallow with just light and heavy attacks, the latter of which tend to be useless because it takes way too long to charge and doesn’t deal enough damage. There’s no rolling or dodging or blocking so you rely on being quick enough to run around enemies to evade their attacks or to just eat them head-on.
The lack of these basic defensive maneuvers which were also absent in the prequel is not the only issue you’ll face when controlling your characters. The controls themselves are a bit intuitive and can feel clunky at times, especially since the button to switch the item you’re holding and the button to talk to an NPC are same which can lead to moments of frustration.
Overall though, the game delivers something that it can proudly call its own unique experience. An expansive world with lots to explore and build, characters to meet and the stories to be told. There are references and nods to the main series of games, there’s the distinct Akira Toriyama character design, and there’s an enjoyable experience to be had that is sadly marred down a bit by the repetitive and boring combat and the somewhat frustrating controls.
So finally, who is the game for? If you’ve ever wanted Minecraft to have some sort of hub world with missions to do and a storyline with cool things to do then this game is what you’re like for. If you have any interesting in JRPGS or games that focus on building and exploring then also this game will pique your interest and satiate the building need.
Score – 9/10
Dragon Quest Builders 2 is out now Worldwide for the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch.
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