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Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age, the latest video game in the popular Square Enix series, has recently launched in Japan with fans queuing around the block to get their hands on the latest Japanese role-playing phenomenon. One of the best-selling video games of all time – with only Final Fantasy been more financially successful than it in Square Enix’s range – Dragon Quest XI will receive its worldwide release in September.
Selling three million copies in Japan within six months of release, the game will debut internationally on PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Windows before getting a Nintendo Switch version at a later date. Continuing the gameplay of previous entries in the series, Dragon Quest XI will see players explore a fantasy world through a 16-year-old would-be hero who is tasked with saving the world by fighting an array of monsters.
If Square Enix had given as much localisation support to Dragon Quest as Final Fantasy, you would arguably see the game rivalling its highly reputed JRPG rival on a worldwide scale. However, it isn’t surprising the 11th instalment of the game is getting a well-marketed Western release given the popularity of recent editions and the success of Final Fantasy 15 and Persona 5 overseas.
The Dragon Quest series of video games, better known in the United States as Dragon Warrior until 2005, first emerged in the 1980s as a role-playing console video game and has enjoyed numerous versions since then. An influential series, its various instalments have played a significant role in the development of role-playing console games, establishing features including variations of gameplay for different formats such as handheld devices and smartphones.
Dragon Quest XI will feature the recognisable turn-based combat of previous games with added interest through being able to customise your character, develop skills and acquire new weapons as experience points boost your progression through the game. You’ll also get the chance to play optional quests which add to the adventure. Taking inspiration from role-playing video game Wizardry for the development of its combat system for first person battles, Dragon Quest has similarly incorporated contemporary pop culture to keeps things fresh like acknowledging the growth of casinos such as the Swedish www.bertil.com. Roulette and baccarat, both available on this online operator, formed optional side games in Dragon Quest VIII as part of a casino setting. But Dragon Quest has also inspired its own trends. Every release is celebrated in Japan, video game shops devote dedicated spaces to its merchandise, and a restaurant – Luida’s Bar – which was set up to celebrate Dragon Quest IX has now enjoyed a decade in business.
And the game’s phenomenal success also saw a change of tact in release day thinking as a result of children historically truanting from school to play the game. Dragon Quest XI was subsequently released on a Saturday after the game’s makers felt guilty about creating the nationwide epidemic. It’s proof, however, of Dragon Quest’s significant cultural relevance in its native country. That love for the game is growing in the West. It’s little wonder its latest instalment is hotly anticipated.