Reader Review: Dragon Quest IX

Reader Review: Dragon Quest IX

Do you have what it takes to get a review published right here on Kotaku? Jenn does, as she plays the silent type.

Yes, that’s right, we’re publishing reader reviews here on Kotaku. This is your chance to deliver sensible game purchasing advice to the rest of the Kotaku community.

And thanks to the very kind chaps at Madman Entertainment, purveyor of all kinds of cool, indie and esoteric film, the best reader review we publish each month will win a prize pack containing ten of the latest Madman DVD releases.

This review was submitted by Jenn Christodoulou. If you’ve played Dragon Quest IX, or just want to ask Jenn more about it, leave your thoughts in the comments below.

Dragon Quest IX (DS)

Imagine a world where, even in tragedy, everybody is smiling. Imagine a world where everything happens because you make it, and yet you never say a word. Imagine a world where the fate of it relies solely on you collecting magical fyggs to appease a tree. If you can do this, you are imagining the happy little world in Dragon Quest IX, where you are the silent hero whose quest really does have a lot more to do with fyggs than it probably should.

Loved No Random Encounters: No more are we plagued by annoying battle music every three seconds, and no more do we have to worry about running into an enemy when all our characters are half-dead. Our enemies are now quite visible to us, and it’s up to us to fight, or run. The actual fighting system hasn’t changed at all, still employing a turn-based approach. Change is good, but too much change is frightening.

Character and Party Creation: For the first time in a Dragon Quest game, we get to do more than simply name our heroes – we get to create them! The options are limited, but I try to be grateful for the little things. Plus the armour and weapons you purchase from stores actually change the way your character looks, which means you now have the tough choice between being tough, or looking cool.

Hated Silent Characters: No matter what happens to your hero, nothing is enough to motivate them to speak, which makes it seem like the storyline would go on without you, even if you died. It’s really hard to believe I’m playing out my character’s story, when my character doesn’t have a say in it.

Seek the Church, my child: How about you seek me, you doofus with the funny hat? And how about you stop charging me money every time I wanna do something? What sort of a church IS this? Whenever you want to resurrect someone or rid party members of curses you must first find a church. And then you must pay the church ridiculous amounts of money before they’ll do what you ask (except to save. Thank the Almighty that’s still free). This has always annoyed me, simply because I resent paying anyone upwards of 1000 gold coins for them to bring a party member back to life.

Dragon Quest IX annoys me in some parts, and the storyline is just too weird and childish for me to care about, however I still found myself drawn in by the gameplay. I was so looking forward to exploring new areas and finding new items that most annoyances could be pushed aside. Dragon Quest took a risk trying so many new things at once, and I was pleasantly surprised by how well they worked. But now if you’ll excuse me, I just reached a new town that isn’t going to explore itself. That would just be weird.

Reviewed by: Jennifer Christodoulou

You can have your Reader Review published on Kotaku. Send your review to us at the usual address. Make sure it’s written in the same format as above and in under 500 words – yes, we’ve upped the word limit. We’ll publish the best ones we get and the best of the month will win a Madman DVD prize pack.


  • I think most churches in some point in history charged people for their services.

    “Forgive your sins? That will be $500 you bad bad man!”

    • I picked it up sunday lunchtime – and played it till about 10pm (with a few shortish breaks).
      If you like oldschool JRPGs it’s well worth picking up.

  • I think it would be stranger if there /wasn’t/ some sort of penalty/cost for letting a team member die.
    If you want God-like services, you’ve gotta pay God-like prices.

  • My son loves this game but it annoys me because every time I ask him to turn his DS off it takes him forever to find the church to save in. (or maybe he is just telling me that, I don’t know. But its still annoying! lol)

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