Dragon Quest XI Is Full Of Quality Of Life Adjustments

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As Dragon Quest games grow and evolve, we see different gameplay mechanics brought in to make the experience more comfortable for players. Strides forward are made to make it easier for people to build characters, grind in the field, avoid enemies, get quality equipment, and survive. Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is one of the installments that makes big improvements. Little things can make adventuring more appealing.


Perhaps the most basic quality of life change is the way Dragon Quest XI lets you deal with enemies in the field and even avoid them, if you do not want to deal with a few random battles. There is the basic means of launching a possible early attack, which has you striking with the sword to trigger a fight. After reaching the desert region, you will get access to a crossbow that allows you to provoke an enemy from afar, allowing you to draw a specific foe to you. When all that gets to be too much trouble, you can always dash to avoid foes or use a bell in the field to summon a horse with a much faster gallop. It really can make traversing the sometimes large spaces between towns or dungeons easier. (Though, you can rely on Zoom once you have acquired the spell and visited towns.)


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The camps are another fantastic element. In the field, you might find a campfire. Stopping by it allows you to rest, changing the time of day and restoring characters’ status. The campground also allows you to sometimes buy items from a shopkeeper, which can be helpful if you are running out of healing items or a Chimera’s Wing. There is a goddess statue, so you could save or handle important affairs away from town. These tend to be strategically places, so they often appear in the exact midpoint between important spots. Dragon Quest XI even takes the time to place some ahead of bosses.


The Fun-size Forge can also act as a quality of life device. There are lots of little crafting components you can find while exploring Dragon Quest XI’s world. Sometimes, a monster might drop one after a fight. You can sometimes even buy them from merchants at camps, where the forge actually is! Recipes are easily acquired from bookcases, treasure chests, and conversations with some NPCs. If you make your own equipment with this fun little activity with puzzle elements, you can get items that are better and cheaper than the actual equipment sold in shops. Using Perfectionist Pearls acquired from forging or found in chests lets you improve the quality of things you have made or bought. I liked that it could be a way to avoid those little incremental upgrades at stores, where you could find yourself spending a large amount of gold (for you at the time) to get a piece of equipment that only increases your stats by around five or ten points.


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Another quality of life element I like a lot is the ability to easily assign and reassign skill points. As I mentioned when I talked about we can still personalize characters to adjust their roles, I mentioned that every church or goddess statue offers a respec option. These places to stop and take a moment are everywhere. It means you can play around with builds to see what works best with you, without having to worry about being penalized or locked into a certain skillset. Also, since multiple characters share certain weapons, you can have a stockpile of equipment for when you swap. The hero uses greatswords and swords. Erik uses swords and knives. Sylvando uses swords, knives, and whips. Veronika uses whips and heavy wands. Rab uses the same sort of heavy wands as Veronica and claws as Jade. Jade uses claws and spears. Serena uses light wands and spears. The overlap lets you play around.


Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is a game that has elements that can be quite convenient. Getting around the world is rather easy, especially since you have better control when it comes to avoiding or engaging enemies. Camps let you take a pause during the spaces where there would normally be no place to take a break. Crafting lets you get better equipment with a little extra effort, so you can save your cash for the important things. Even getting characters just right is easy with the respec options. It is a game that can really work with you.


Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age will come to the PlayStation 4 and PC in North America and Europe on September 4, 2018. It is immediately available on the Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation 4 in Japan.

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Jenni Lada
Jenni is Editor-in-Chief at Siliconera and has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, Cheat Code Central, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.