Review by dirtycup II
"Good, but not classic"
Well, well, well. It didn't take me long to realize that I have beaten all the NES Dragon Warrior games. Yes, indeed they are quite good, and the series surpasses Final Fantasy in my opinion. Now, since I don't own a Playstation, I couldn't play any of the new Dragon Warrior games coming out. I wasn't terribly exited when my little brother received Dragon Warrior Monsters as a gift, even though I was craving another Dragon Warrior title, because the game just didn't look too promising. After he got tired of it, I snatched it away and started my own file. I was a bit surprised, however, of the quality that ensued while playing. So, here we go....
They aren't bad, no, but they aren't excellent either. The visuals in Dragon Warrior Monsters are bright and can even be colorful, but also kind of simple. They aren't totally new and different, but they aren't classic either. The original Dragon Warrior games had a different visual feel, and I don't really like this game's graphic style as much. But still, the enemies are pretty well done.
Okay, this game has no real story. You are a kid, and if I remember right, your sister is captured and you must go and save her. To do this you must train monsters and beat the Starry Night Tournament, the hardest and highest ranking tournament out there. No saving the world, no hero feel to it. Aside from the absurdly simple plot, (which, however, doesn't even progress as you play through the game) there is really only one town in the whole game, so you only have a handful of people to converse with. Don't buy this game expecting a classic Dragon Warrior storyline.
Basic walking and talking kind of stuff. Not hard or complicated, but that's really a good thing. The only real complaint about the actual controls/menus was how long it took me to figure out how to save, because the command wasn't easy to find. The other complaint (which isn't really a control problem) is that there is only one save file. Yeah, thanks Enix.
Not really so strong. You go from portal to portal, fighting wild monsters and training your own. Occasionally a monster will ask to join you party after you have defeated them. You can only have three monsters at a time, so the monsters not in your immediate party go to the farm; the farm is a place where they can hang out and rest. Thankfully, Enix made it so that monsters resting in the farm still get some experience while you are off battling. Thank you!
The real downside is the lack of exploring. You don't find new towns or dungeons on your quest. Another problem is that there is really only one way to go; you enter an area, find the portal and warp to another area. You enter this new area, find another portal and warp to the next area, and so on. Once you come to the last area, you must solve some type of puzzle, then fight a boss. Often this boss joins you if you defeat him, which is pretty cool. After you have strong monsters and you think you are good enough, you get to go and fight in tournaments. If you beat three masters in a specific class, then you have the option to fight three tougher masters, and then three tougher monsters yet, and on and on until you face the final master.
Dragon Warrior Monsters has unique gameplay, but it doesn't have the classic feel, which is something I've grown to love. Basically there is no exploring, little interacting with people, no equipping new armor or weapons, no epic storyline, etc. You train and fight monsters then use their beefed up strength to win more battles. That's it.
If you have the urge to ''catch em' all'', and get every monster in the game to the maximum level, then this game will last you a very long time. But if you find leveling up to absurdly high levels tedious and pointless, then this game has little to offer you.
Buy or rent:
If you liked Pokemon, get this game. If you like games similar to Pokemon, get this game. If you like classic Dragon Warrior, consider this title, but don't expect it to be classic. Maybe rent it first. If you like Pokemon and Dragon Warrior, get this game now, because the monster catching is quite good, and you'll have fun recognizing the classic monsters. For the average gamer who is new to both Pokemon type games and Dragon Warrior, you still might look into this title.
Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 03/09/02, Updated 03/28/02
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