My wife and I both really like DQ. We think the UI is great. All the tech info provided (if you want it) in battle is fantastic. The constant double route to gear advancement–grind and buy it, or try harder levels to get the goodies–works out well. The story is solid and different, under a highly amusing exterior with cleverly written dialog. The character classes are well chosen, and introduced in a way that feels unforced. Customizations are good, and the battlefields provide a variety of interesting challenges. The fact that you can change experience and penalties only makes it that much more solid and user-friendly. We’re not people who enjoy tower defense games, but this really pleases us.
So we’ve only got really one criticism, and has to do with a specific battle (as far as we’ve gone, yet) in the story. Note, this is a spoiler, so if you haven’t played through, don’t read on…
It’s the enemy who appears that is literally unkillable. 1000-level armor, doesn’t take any damage, until one of my knights suddenly broke it; and when he started taking damage heavily, he vanished…only to teleport and reappear with 1000-level armor intact and full points restored. And then just as he’s about to reach your leader another enemy appears, who kills him with a 1 million damage shot lightning bolt.
We’re big fans of enemies in games abiding by the game rules. Find a boss who is 10th level? They should have the advantages of a 10th level character, along with any special item advantages. It all may be skewed one way to give things more personality–he/she may be strong but slow, a great ranged fighter but terrible at melee, etc–but they should fit solidly within expectations for the gameworld’s environment. When an enemy shows up who takes no damage from any attacks, you just know that it’s a setup for someone else to magically appear who will take them down with a single shot. I guessed as much, said it to my wife, and it happened. And that’s where we both have a bit of difficulty accepting: the invincible enemy shouldn’t be invincible, and the character capable of tossing off a 1 million damage bolt of lightning is over the top. Not to mention that you’d killed him once before, when he offered a reasonable challenge with all the spells you had (if you ignore the teleportation.)
So we’re only requesting that in the next game in the series (which we will be buying), the enemies stick to the same rules your characters do. Make them stronger because of extra levels, give them useful items, but don’t make them godlike, please. Even if it’s just the power of a god manifesting through them, or an item of super-kill, in our opinions, it feels cheesy. Thanks.