Dragon's Dogma Demo Impressions

I had not heard of Dragon's Dogma until it was announced that the full game would include early access to the Resident Evil 6 demo. Being a fan of the RE series, my interest was peaked, and I awaited a demo to be released so I could play the upcoming RPG. The demo includes two separate quests for players to try out: The Prologue Quest and the Countryside Quest.

The Prologue Quest description claimed that I was to "face the dragon or die by its hand" and that it was time to "bring this cycle to an end". I started playing and was surprised to see that no story or even a cutscene was given to inform me of what was happening, making me question, what was the cycle the main menu mentioned? All I knew was I was in a dungeon-like area accompanied by a follower. I started to proceed down the one-way path in front of me and was met by a fire-breathing dragon. I thought I was to fight the beast, but my follower led me away into a cavern. I continued along, fighting a few goblins and other creatures, until I met up with other humans my follower described as "survivors". Upon joining them, I fought a Chimera. After vanquishing the mythical beast, the quest ended.

The Countryside Quest was much more simple. I found myself in, what else, the countryside and was thrust into a battle with a Griffin. I fell the beast; roll credits.

Overall, the quests left much to be desired. I was shocked at the lack of story and did not understand why the dragon was mentioned in the Prologue Quest, even though it didn't have much of any presence in the gameplay. The game looked up to par with current-gen standards, but was nothing to brag about, and the mini map was fixed rather than rotational. Most glaring was the game's inability to teach the player. In the Griffin battle, I was firing arrows at the beast but was not informed that I could ground the creature by aiming for its wings until the fight was nearly over. The screen was also very cluttered, as the useless dialogue spewed by the NPCs took up much of the real estate of the left side of the screen.

The early access is definitely not worth the purchase of Dragon's Dogma.

With the promise of the Resident Evil 6 demo, I had high hopes for this game and wanted an excuse to purchase it. If this demo is any indication of how awful the finished game will be, I will be severely disappointed that I ever considered buying it. Needless to say, I will be waiting for the Xbox Live Marketplace release of the RE6 demo.

Josh Kowbel's picture

I can almost guarantee the pack-in Resident Evil 6 demo will be the one shown at E3. Disappointment doesn't begin to describe the poor visuals and controls of Dragon's Dogma. Honestly, it looks like a poor man's Dark Souls. I hope GameFly sends me a copy. I can save $15 on my purchase, and I feel that price is more justified than full retail.

John Tarr's picture

Everything you wrote is 100% accurate. I can't believe that in today's day and age companies are still selling shitty games by packaging them with demos for extremely well known titles. The controls felt incredibly sluggish, and they did an extremely poor job explaining the fairly complex control scheme.

I made a video of the demo for those interested:

Razzler's picture

Looks like a good start to the year has been wasted by Capcom, which is a shame since I really enjoyed RE: Revelations on my 3DS (the story seemed to go around in circles for a good portion of the game, but it was never dull and had plenty of replay value thanks to Raid mode and unlockable outfits and bonuses for the campaign). Then again this is the same company that feels it is ok to charge us for unlock codes for content that is already on the game disc and continuously exploit the fighting game demographic.

I think I heard about this game around E3 last year, then it went completely off the radar and only now resurfaces. I didn't really care all that much of what I did see, generic fantasy action game was what I got out of it and judging from your impressions, it's not very good as a final product. The demo looks ridiculously short even in comparison to a typical demo, which should make you worry for the length of the retail release, especially if the fights are that easy.