Dragon’s Dogma 2 Previews Are Glowing, Hype Train Departing Full Speed

Dragon’s Dogma 2 Previews Are Glowing, Hype Train Departing Full Speed

Dragon’s Dogma 2 launches this month, and a range of outlets dropped their preview impressions this morning. The general consensus for the follow up to Capcom’s 2012 RPG is that it presents an exciting world with satisfying, but also challenging combat. Despite this, some previewers expressed some reservations about whether the game truly addressed complaints about the depth of the original’s narrative and world. 

Despite some questions over whether the sheer amount of choice would remain engaging throughout the full course of Dragon’s Dogma 2, most outlets seem to think that the game is well on its way to becoming a breakout RPG for 2024. Our friends over at Kotaku US got to preview the title hands-on, with Tom Regan saying they were “keen to explore more of Dragon’s Dogma 2’s world.” In the preview, Regan said, “boasting a map four times the size of its predecessor, there seems to be a wealth of weird and wonderful secrets hidden across its unruly landscape. Based on my three monster-slaying hours, Dragon’s Dogma 2 is still an inherently oddball twist on the RPG, and probably isn’t for everyone. Yet thanks to a more accessible onboarding process and intuitive combat, without a Baldur’s Gate 3 or Tears of the Kingdom in the way, there’s every chance that Capcom’s fantasy outing could be the breakout RPG of 2024.”

Most previewers got to sink their teeth into a three hour chunk of Capcom’s upcoming RPG, while others got a shorter, 30-minute hands-off taste. As these were previews, as opposed to the full game, no reviews or scores were dished out. However, the previews paint an overall positive picture of what’s to come later this month.

Let’s take a look at what outlets thought of the Dragon’s Dogma 2 from here in Australia and around the world. Due to only a handful of local previews, we’ve put all impressions together for this one.

Dragon’s Dogma 2 Preview Impressions

Dragon's Dogma 2
Image: Capcom

PressStart’s James Berich got a hands-off preview and expressed some concerns about flat voice acting, some overpowered Vocations, and whether the game can stick the landing on presentation. Despite this, he said, “It’s a joy to see [Capcom] branching out from the typical Monster Hunter and Resident Evil offerings to offer something unique. It’s a sequel, but it’s a sequel to a game that’s barely been touched when it comes to the type of open-world experience it offers. And that’s why the prospect of Dragon’s Dogma II is so exciting – because the original game was so underrated and so special, and now, we’re about to live through all of that again.”

GamesHub praised the reactive world and more detailed quests, saying, “Will Dragon’s Dogma 2 live up to the lofty expectations of the die-hard fantasy RPG crowd? That remains to be seen. But did the preview live up to the expectations of this particular Arisen? For the most part, absolutely.”

TechRadar said, “Enemies hit extremely hard, nights are long and abyssal, and fast travel remains a precious luxury thanks to the return of highly limited Ferrystone items. Frustrations to some players these features may be, but it simply wouldn’t be Dragon’s Dogma without them.

IGN’s Mitchell Saltzman described an expansive world filled with choices, although questioned whether the amount of choice would remain compelling throughout the full playtime of the game. “I loved just about every moment I spent playing Dragon’s Dogma 2 during this preview window. It doubles down on everything I loved about the first game, makes some smart improvements to the way quests are handled and how you explore its giant world, and the little taste I got of the Vocations is a tantalising reminder of why Dragon’s Dogma is one of the best in the genre when it comes to delivering on the various power fantasies tied to the classic RPG archetypes. “

Sports Illustrated said, “While there wasn’t a big, new, game-changing system to set it apart from the first game over a decade ago, it speaks to Capcom’s innovation that it doesn’t seem to matter. With returning pawns, action-packed combat, tons of quests, and a world that surprises constantly, Dragon’s Dogma 2 is easily one of the year’s most exciting RPGs.”

TheGamer said, “Dragon’s Dogma 2 has made me laugh more than any game in recent memory. It perfectly understands the sort of person I am, and the untold slapstick horrors I can and will inflict on this virtual world. The fact it also boasts excellent combat mechanics alongside its vast open world allows this RPG sequel to once again feel like one of a kind. There are very few games like this, and after spending only a few hours with its brilliance, I can’t wait for dozens more. I want wyverns and cyclops to eat me up and spit me out so I can learn to conquer them on my own terms, even if the path is paved with the bodies of my dead allies and murdered deer.”

VGC suggested the game already feels like “another Capcom hit,” saying, “We left our time with Dragon’s Dogma 2 absolutely desperate to play the full game. The world is full of life. It’s both an intentionally, and emergently hilarious game, and the range of combat abilities feels vast. We didn’t get a great sense of the state of the world and the overarching story, but when it’s this fun to play we’re ready to jump straight back in when the game releases later this month”

Dragon's Dogma 2
Image: Capcom

ScreenRant called the world “truly alive,” saying, “From scaling giant rock monsters to throwing lizards into one another, this preview really showcased a wide array of enemies and the many ways players can choose to fight them based on vocation and party. The game’s advanced classes really provide a lot of room for fun combos and experimentation, and the three hours spent with it was barely enough time to explore what the world has to offer. With nearly endless freedom in a world that’s truly alive, Dragon’s Dogma 2 will have a lot for players to explore when it releases later this month.”

PCGamesN said, “If I had so many memorable, invigorating experiences in such a short time, I can only imagine what else is possible in the full RPG, especially when you add in the multiple permutations of quests and fail states that the series is known for. This is shaping up to be the most exciting open-world game in years, and I cannot wait to play the full thing once the Dragon’s Dogma 2 release date rolls around later this month.”

Dexerto noted the overall technical improvements in comparison to the first title, saying, “While still an enjoyable game with great combat, much of the first Dragon’s Dogma feels dated. That makes sense, because it came out 12 years ago. I can’t really speak to the story or pacing based on my preview, but what I did experience makes me optimistic that Dragon’s Dogma 2 will be the evolution fans of the original have been waiting for – and perhaps what finally brings Dragon’s Dogma into the mainstream of fantasy action RPGs.”

Polygon called it a challenging, but funny fantasy, and said, “Although I spent most of my three hours with Dragon’s Dogma 2 either lost or dying (or both), I fully see the appeal. Dragon’s Dogma 2 boasts the sort of emergent, tell-your-friends-about-it-later gameplay that you simply can’t script. You learn your mistakes the hard way: getting lost and dying over and over again. The real clincher, for me at least, is that every death in Dragon’s Dogma 2 is consistently really funny, thanks mostly to a throwback-style ragdoll physics system…I’ve learned to watch the skies; the eagles won’t get me next time. But something else no doubt will, and I’m excited to find out what.

SiliconEra said, “Overall, my experience with Dragon’s Dogma 2 has been pretty positive thus far. The map is sprawling and the world feels very much alive, with enemies roaming the outskirts of villagers and the few quests I did get to undertake were fun and felt significant even in a much smaller scale. The new Vocation is an interesting addition, even if I may not play it when I get my hands on the full release of the game. Dragon’s Dogma 2 seems to be a larger version of what the first game was, and that isn’t bad at all.”

Dragon's Dogma 2
Image: Capcom

EuroGamer suggested that based on interviews and their own preview that the game may well be a literal Isekai, saying, “what’s clear from my time in the preview is Itsuno-san has doubled down on the vision he had for the original game, only choosing to improve or change that which came about as a result of the limitations placed on him before. If my theory is correct, the desire to Isekai the player into the world of Dragon’s Dogma may have been inspired by Itsuno-san’s own desire to do things right if he was given a second chance, because in many ways Dragon’s Dogma 2 doesn’t feel like a sequel – it feels, at least so far, like the perfect version of Dragon’s Dogma we were meant to experience the first time around.”

GameInformer said, “Perhaps unsurprisingly, after three hours of hands-on time, Dragon’s Dogma 2 feels just like the first game. And that’s great, even if it means players new to the series will likely go through the struggles I did in Dragon’s Dogma more than a decade ago.”

So there you have it, folks. Most previewers seem to be on the same page about the game faithfully taking what worked from the original Dragon’s Dogma and improving on what didn’t. Despite some concerns about whether they’ve nailed it, previews paint a picture of a much more expansive world than the first, with crunchy, difficult combat and beautiful visuals. Dragon’s Dogma 2 releases on March 22 – we’ll be keeping our eyes out for reviews when they drop to see if critics feel it lives up to the suggestions of becoming one of the top RPGs of the year on launch.

Image: Capcom

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