Dragon Quest Swords: The Masked Queen and Tower of Mirrors - Wii
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- The ¿big three,¿ comprised of series creator Yuji Horii, legendary manga artist Akira Toriyama and renowned composer Koichi Sugiyama, teams up once again to create an unforgettable gaming experience.
- Famous game music composer Manami Matsumae teams up with Koichi Sugiyama to deliver a powerful soundtrack.
- Wii Remote-driven battles are simple to control, but boast a variety of styles. Available actions range from a wide array of sword techniques to casting magic to blocking enemy attacks with your shield.
- A colorful assortment of unique monsters familiar to DRAGON QUEST fans and vivid battle scenes make for the most realistic battle experience yet!
- Combine materials to create stronger swords and learn special abilities.
- Platform: Nintendo Wii
- ESRB Rating: Teen
- Media: Video Game
- Item Quantity: 1
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Five years have passed since the defeat of the Deathbringer, and the kingdom of Avalonia joyously celebrates what seems to be an everlasting era of peace. However, a closer look reveals that things are amiss. Calamity arises within the kingdom, as unfamiliar and powerful monsters invade the outskirts of the town. With the Deathbringer gone, what explanation is there for the onset of these monsters? And what of the queen, who has come to hide her face behind a strange mask? Make your way through the perilous journey, solve the baffling mysteries and return order to Avalonia.
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The accurate sword and shield controls add a lot of strategy and fun to the experience, but again, you need to reset your expectations. You can't simply flail your arms around and expect the Wii to read your motions. You have to hold your wrist fairly steady and slash in a controlled motion as prescribed by the game. The result is a game that almost always reads your motions accurately. The only thing I'm having trouble mastering is the thrust/stab motion.
If you are expecting to hear Dragon Quest music performed and recorded from a real orchestra like in Dragon Quest VIII, you may be taken aback by the fact that the Swords soundtrack is in the MIDI format. The compositions are beautiful, but the quality is a step down from what we got on Playstation 2.
People are saying that this game is too short. I hear some folks saying it can be completed in 4 hours. These people probably didn't play through the levels more than once and try to improve their score. They probably didn't explore all the branching paths and see everything there is to see. It took me 9 hours to beat the main game, and after you beat the quest NEW branching paths open up in each of the 8 levels, so there is some exploring to be done after the credits roll.
Overall, DQS is getting a bad rap because people's expectations are set too high. That's not to say I think the game is worth the full $50, however. If I were you I'd wait for a price drop or rent it, and then you'll be able to feel like you're getting your money's worth.
First off let me set this up by saying, I am a long time Dragon Quest fan, since the early days of Dragon Warrior. The attraction to these games for me has always been that they are always a great and expansive adventure that is more like an interactive novel than a game really. Add to that a strong cast of characters/monsters, high quality music, and a fun strategy/battle system, and great replay ability, and the mind-numbing ways to customize your character, it makes it a no-brainer why these games have enjoyed such a strong and loyal fan base since the days of the NES.
Enter the latest installment of the franchise, "DQ Swords: The Masked Queen and the Tower of Mirrors."
- **** Waaaaay Too short. And no replay ability. ****
- No real exploration or leveling abilities. Unless you return to town before completing any set mission multiple times (Think Rail-game, forward facing only).
- Hate the 3D First Person view you are forced to move around in. Movement is rather limited (i.e. no "strafing"), so you actually have to completely stop moving to turn left or right, otherwise you just make giant circles. Not to mention just "looking around" really takes a bit of effort and time.
- Battles can be a bit of a challenge since it's all real-time and enemies just start swarming and attacking you like crazy before you even realize you're in a fight, leaving you to swing the wii-mote like crazy while trying to "focus" your attacks somewhere on the screen in between blocking, and hope that your shield hasn't already disintegrated from the last battle and can find its target.
- Master Strokes are a little overly animated maybe? Sure takes a while to finally get down to executing the moves after all the jazz-and-snazz cinemas are said and done.
- Love the story line, though it did need to be longer which would've allowed a little more depth.
- Absolutely wonderful graphics, especially on such a low-res system like the Wii.
- Great voice acting. (I always enjoyed the person who voiced Angus' character in DQVIII, and I think he must've done some acting in this latest version as well for the "shop owner" character?).
- Simplistic and fun to interact with. (I especially like seeing the slimes getting sliced in half with my sword swings, somewhat rewarding, or a swath of enemies taken out with a single horizontal slice).
- High quality character animations and musical score.
- Death-blows on the last bosses are a definite plus, I do get a kick out of executing the "Master Stroke" as the "death-blow". Though I believe you can use any old swing to do the trick. Maybe more of a Mortal Kombat-ish fatality would have been more appropriate for something labeled as a "Death-blow".
Overall the game was a very enjoyable one, I just hope this isn't supposed to be the actual real "next" installment in the franchise as it can't even hold a candle to the vastness, enjoyability, and replay-ability of the last release (DQ VIII) or any predecessors. However it is a great tide-you-over game until the next "real" DQ release. Not to mention it's just plain fun that you can pick up and play anytime, which is really what I think the goal was for SquareEnix in this DQ release. If it is, they've succeeded admirably, if not, well...more homework and research is needed.
If you don't have a lot of money, then I'd suggest renting or waiting for the price to fall. Otherwise, expect this one to see most of its life on your game shelf after all is said and done. Like was said before, once you finish it, you probably won't play it again. Though while you're playing it, you're in for an enjoyable experience. Just don't expect 80+ hours of DQ exploring and level hacking. It's maybe more of a weekend warrior type game.
But I do recommend this game! I have enjoyed it just the same!
I remember playing the original Dragon Warrior back on the NES and it's amazing that this series has lasted so long. All the familiar characters are there from drakees to wyverns to golems, and of course slimes.
The game allows you to use your Wii remote as your sword and shield, using slashing and stabbing motions to fight all the monsters of Avalonia. It takes about 1 day to get your aim down, but once you learn to use the targeting feature, it's easy.
All in all, I spent about 40 hours beating the first version of the game (there's a 2nd version you can play after you defeat Xiphos) which made this game a great value in my opinion.
Can't wait for the next installment in this series!