Dragon’s Dogma 2 Reviews Are Calling It A Once-In-A-Generation RPG

Dragon’s Dogma 2 Reviews Are Calling It A Once-In-A-Generation RPG

The Dragon’s Dogma 2 embargo has dropped and reviews are flowing in, with some critics calling it a standout in the already-bloated RPG genre. Outlets are praising Capcom’s newest title for its emergent gameplay, massive open world, and enjoyable combat system, while others found the game struggled with frame rates and occasionally dull Pawn characters, amongst other minor setbacks. Some felt is that Dragon’s Dogma 2 doubles down on the original’s greatest strengths but misses the mark on remedying some of its longstanding weaknesses, while others were content to live around them.

Many reviewers describe almost slapstick comedy-level anecdotes of their time between Vermund and Battahl — from fighting trolls only to be set upon by a griffin, to both being run over by a speeding oxcart, and even launching NPCs off of cliffs inadvertently – and for all intents and purposes, it seems like writers are relishing in it.

On MetaCritic, Dragon’s Dogma 2 sits at a comfortable 87 for PS5, 90 for PC, and 88 for Xbox, leaving the title teetering between ‘Generally Favourable’ and ‘Universal Acclaim’. For a title that builds upon a predecessor that’s remembered for flat storytelling amongst some other pretty major issues (though nevertheless adored by its legion of dedicated fans), it looks like the new Dragon’s Dogma title has bucked the trend. 

The broad feeling is that Dragon’s Dogma 2 is leagues better than Dragon’s Dogma or Dark Arisen, and is more technically proficient than its predecessor in almost every way. While there’s plenty of scores filtering in (and a lot of unscored reviews-in-progress), it is worth noting that a number of outlets are holding off on publishing their takes, or have written RiP coverage thanks to what seems like a fairly short lead time on a very huge RPG. We’ll likely see many more reviews to come over the coming days and weeks as more critics get into the meat of it and form their full thoughts – Kotaku Australia included. Our review will go live once our reviewer has taken a good long crack it and formed some meaningful thoughts.

Let’s take a look at what the critics thought, from here in Australia and around the world. Given there’s only a handful of Aussies in the mix at this time, we’ve collated all outlets into one section.

Dragon’s Dogma 2 Reviews

Dragon's Dogma 2
Image: Capcom

Kotaku US (hey, we know them!) suggested every player will have a vastly different experience thanks to the expansiveness of the game, and said “Dragon’s Dogma 2 is a game unburdened by any influence save that of its own predecessor; it is, on every level, a supremely confident melding of ideas; it contains at least a little bit of everything I’ve ever loved about video games.” 

Variety scored it a 7/10, saying, “Dragon’s Dogma 2 feels stagnant in ways where I thought that I was playing a game from the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 era almost 15 years ago, not one from the current generation of consoles in 2024. Certain mechanics haven’t evolved from the first game and the graphics are sometimes disappointing. Still, the side quest structure and combat hold up after all this time. Dragon’s Dogma 2 simultaneously kept the strongest aspects of its predecessor while failing to remedy the shortcomings.”

IGN gave it an 8, saying, “More of a redo than a sequel, Dragon’s Dogma 2 is a strange and wonderful action-RPG that bolsters the original’s strengths without addressing its weaknesses.”

Press Start awarded the game a 9, and said, “Dragon’s Dogma II embodies the essence of what the original should have been. With its expansive open world teeming with dangerous but delightful encounters, enjoyable combat, and versatile vocations, it’s an enchanting experience from beginning to end.”

Eurogamer gave it a lofty 5 stars, saying, “A huge improvement over the original, and a captivating journey from beginning to end.”

Game Informer gave it a 9, and said, “Dragon’s Dogma 2 captures the spirit of the original without sanding down the edges of what made it excellent. Its insistence on player exploration and discovery, coupled with an ending I will think about for the rest of the year, makes Dragon’s Dogma 2 a standout game and a worthy successor.”

Dragon's Dogma 2
Image: Capcom

COGConnected scored it an 88, noting some bugs and complexity, but said, “Just like the original game, Dragon Dogma 2 demands that players meet it on its own terms. Trying to play it like other popular action RPGs will be frustrating and probably not much fun. The barrier to entry is not just skill, but embracing its mechanics. For those players willing to set aside their notions of how an RPG has to work, the rewards are rich, singular, and utterly immersive in ways that have rarely been seen in the genre.”

ScreenRant gave it 8/10, saying, “Clunkiness aside, Dragon’s Dogma 2 still manages to be a wonderful journey, and a true novelty among fantasy RPGs.”

Digital Spy gave it 4 stars, saying, “It walks a tightrope of intrigue that balances quirky systems, fun combat and obscure secrets with frustrating circumstances, weird world-building and curious design choices, and somehow manages to make it across, and if you embrace all it has to offer, you might too.”

Digital Trends gave it a slightly more lukewarm 3 and a half stars, and said, “Dragon’s Dogma 2 is an exhilarating, if occasionally frustrating, RPG full of dynamic player-driven moments.”

Push Square published an unscored review in progress, saying, “Dragon’s Dogma 2 is an absolute masterpiece in terms of offering a true sense of adventure. Fans of the first game shouldn’t even begin to hesitate; this is everything that Dragon’s Dogma wanted to be back in 2012, and it’s utterly glorious at its best. But even if you’re newly Arisen, this sequel stands alongside some of the greatest open world journeys in gaming — an unruly frame rate its only disappointing blemish.”

Rock, Paper, Shotgun gave an unscored review, saying, “”Finding a way” sums up Dragon’s Dogma 2 pretty nicely, I think. The game’s an anecdote generator, where all of its AI and combat and day-night-cycle systems coalesce into bouts of chaos that’ll test your improvisation skills but never your patience. And while it retains some of the original game’s aged quest design and open world repetition, they simply aren’t a problem at all, because the act of discovery is just so, so involved.”

GameSpot gave it a 9 and said, “Dragon’s Dogma 2 is an excellent sequel that builds upon the first game’s core concepts to create a thrilling open-world adventure.”

Dragon's Dogma 2
Image: Capcom

The Guardian gave it 4 stars, saying, “If this review feels chaotic, then that’s a fair reflection of the game. It is mad, fun, fantastical chaos and I honestly love it. Before I started writing this, I had left my Arisen and her endearingly incompetent pawn in an ancient battleground patrolled by a dragon. We blasted it with a couple of ballista bolts, and then it flew over and crushed the ballista with a claw, at which point I realised we were somewhat outgunned here and ran for some castle ruins to hide from the creature. This seemed like a good idea until skeletal warriors rose from the ground, and I realised the castle is extremely haunted. I don’t know how we’ll get out of this situation. But I do know it will be an adventure.”

So there you have it, folks. It looks like Dragon’s Dogma 2 is shaping up to be a top tier RPG, despite minor graphical issues and some complaints about complexity. It’s well and truly surpassed the original and seems primed for players to regale all sorts of chaotic, complex, and hilarious tales of adventure (and failure) for some time to come. The game is set to release March 22 – March 23 for us Aussies, check when that is for your neck of the woods here – so we’ll be sure to see plenty more reviews from critics and players alike as more people get their hands on it.

Will you be playing Dragon’s Dogma 2? Let us know in the comments.

Image: Capcom

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