This is a period where some video games that have made history on the past generation are resurrected and re-proposed on the current generation. It so happens that even a Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen the same fate is fulfilled, after arriving on PC last year for the first time. The production of Capcom had a great charisma at the time, so much so that even today fans are clamoring for a sequel or at least, a western release of the massive-multiplayer-online spin-off that is currently confined to Japan, with the model by Free-To-Play. The version packaged on the current generation is precisely the Dark Arisen, which includes the homonymous Additional Content that at the time was released separately and then repurposed in a complete collection, which included the base game and the latter. Our thoughts go to those emotions we felt several years ago and with the hope that they can replicate we have thrown ourselves into this adventure.
The Red Dragon
We assume that the narrative has never been the focus of Capcom's production, but despite this the latter can be followed thanks to some very interesting traits. As you can already learn from the fantastic Dragon's Dogma logo, the story takes as its central point the Dragons, mysterious but bewitching creatures that at the same time can be filled with evil, leading the world into irremediable catastrophes. The game comes to life by putting us in the shoes of a young knight - who will be called Arisen during the dialogues - who tries to venture into a macabre cave in search of a crimson dragon. During this expedition he will find himself facing a creature that we commonly call Chimera. Once the obstinate creature has been defeated we will find ourselves in front of a gate, which once opened will show us how the years have passed within the game world, up to bringing us to the awakening of a Dragon precisely with a crimson color - like just described -.
At this point the game will begin to come alive, after the Dragon's attack on Gransys and therefore having already created our character, we will find ourselves fulfilling our destiny as Arisen in these unknown lands. Although the start is really strong and impactful, in the long run it will lose its bite, but despite this - as we have already said - it lets itself be followed until the end. So yes, the highlight of the production lies in the game mechanics, which set themselves the goal of being different from what the competition proposes. Starting from the character editor, we can say that it is just as we remembered it, full of customization elements and with a vastness of elements to choose from, which manages to make recent productions like Destiny 2 pale as well, which offer a fencing of creation of the truly poor and bare character. The choice of one of the game classes is important, especially because each has pros and cons, so a not indifferent "strategic" factor comes into play.
Techniques without limits
Combat remains one of the funniest things, this is due to the fact that there are different ways of approaching the enemies that hinder us. We will have the possibility to recruit new pawns - that is characters, but who are called within the world of Dragon's Dogma with that name - whether they have been created by other players online or are local. Once we have composed our party we can manage this as we like and like. For example: if we have a wizard on our team we can ask him to use a certain spell or enchantment using a quick command. The choice of companions is fundamental and important, especially when facing enemies of the size of a Griffin, which without the enchanter is almost impossible to kill, since we will have to aim at its feathered wings and make them catch fire and then jump on the back to deliver a critical hit .
The longevity of the game is very high, we are talking about a hundred hours that pass in complete tranquility accompanied by a really high difficulty, especially during the clashes with the night monsters that are really tedious even for those who are a veteran of Dragon's Dogma. As anticipated a few lines above, the game includes the Dark Arisen expansion that does nothing but enrich the offer of many other additional hours thanks to the setting of Nerabyss and its really difficult dungeon. The final boss of the additional content is no less difficult, but satisfying that once defeated leaves a feeling of total satisfaction.
The graphics sector navigates in waters that are not exactly calm, unfortunately the engine feels the weight of the years and the graphic cleanliness is not totally "excellent". Starting from the first hours it is possible to glimpse some really careless textures and left there as they were in the last generation. At least one point in favor of the generation change is present, the loads are much faster and less heavy, we also have a wide depth of field available and that manages to make us admire some truly bewitching visual glimpses.
The English dubbing remains of excellent workmanship, the whole cast manages to get into the part without getting out of tune. The initial narrative voice is the one we like best, it manages to create the right dark atmosphere that the Capcom production wants to create. Another praise certainly goes to the soundtrack, which as usual offers a main track that still puts goosebumps today, with an intrinsic piece of love and emotions.
The question now is only one: Dragon's Dogma: Is Dark Arisen still a valid offer today? The answer is absolutely yes! Especially if you are a fan of more complex role-playing games, where identification is on the first floor accompanied by a very satisfying challenge that pays off with unimaginable satisfaction. Unfortunately, the production is still penalized today by a graphics sector that is not exactly renewed, with really poorly maintained textures and arranged in a superficial way. Despite this flaw, the title still remains enjoyable and recommended today, especially because with the miserable price at which it is sold, a colossal production of the last generation is brought home.