Dragon's Dogma 2 Review | PlayStation 5

Dragon's Dogma 2 is an action RPG with a heavy emphasis on combat that is both thrilling and entertaining.

By Rayan, Posted 20 Mar 2024

Not every game needs an introduction. More than a decade ago, Capcom released Dragon's Dogma, which pretty much shook the RPG genre for its intricate gameplay and captivating storyline. With its adaptability and variety, the game's combat was among the greatest real-time RPGs of that generation.

On its 10th anniversary in 2022, Capcom announced a sequel to Dragon's Dogma with the game's director, Hideaki Itsuno, reflecting on the experiences and inspirations that shaped the original game. Since then, the anticipation has grown more intense, and Dragon's Dogma 2 has been one of the titles that practically every role-playing game (RPG) fan has been looking forward to the most. And without a doubt, Capcom delivered what the fans wanted.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, Romance

There it is, the Dogma within us again. Similar to the original Dragon's Dogma, the story of Dragon's Dogma 2 centers on the Arisen and their magically determined mission to kill the dragon. It doesn't seem complicated, does it? Immersed in the world of Vermund and Battahl, you, the Arisen, find yourself torn between their respective kingdoms' principles and interests. Both sides are involved in a war for control of the crown, but one sees the Arisen and his pawns as a disaster waiting to happen. But both of them regard the dragon with suspicion, and that is, of course, where you enter the picture.

The world of Dragon's Dogma 2 is similar to the previous one but significantly distinct from it. There are two distinct nations in this world: Battahl, home of the beastren people, and Vermund, home of the human race. The lush, green landscape of Vermund, a realm under the control of the Arisen, serves as your starting point. However, at this time, Queen Regent Disa of Vermont is endorsing a fake Arisen—not you.

There's controversy over politics reminiscent of Game of Thrones in Dragon's Dogma 2, in addition to the usual plot of a dragon snatching your heart. There are, of course, unique issues with Battahl. Tucked up in a deep canyon full of old ruins, the state of Battahl may appear charming, but the breathtaking environment conceals something darker. In any case, they aren't kowtowing to some pretend Arisen. Rather, they adhere to Empress Nadinia's reign and pray to the Lambent Flame to avert disaster.

With an improved character creation system and additional customization alternatives, Dragon's Dogma 2 is just as complex as the original. Along with the photogrammetry technology, Arisen has incredibly lifelike character images, complete with nine different basic bodies, two sorts of bodies for each race, and over a hundred scans of actual human faces. Because it supports both complex image-based creation and more basic modification options, this maker is great for a wide variety of players.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, Character Creation, Sexy Female Character

The game has two playable races: humans, who are at the center of Vermund's political turmoil, and the new beast race, which has its own story and resembles cats. Because of narrative limitations, the only use for our elf characters is as pawns, although we do have them. But if you want to play as an elf, you can make your Arisen elf ears and give them a half-elf expression. Personalization options include sliders for your physical type, hairstyle, makeup, and more, taking cues from games like Elden Ring and Fallout 3 and the original game.

Given that the original was already great with its distinctive customization, this system's intricacy outshines it in enormous terms, which is a tremendous compliment. Dragon's Dogma 2 allows you to personalize your appearance in a wide variety of ways, including your body, teeth, hair, colors, and sheen. It is a well-thought-out strategy that caters to your varied tastes about your Arisen and main pawn. In case you didn't know, Pawns are these unique AI allies who appear in the rift; they provide personality, humor, and a competitive aspect to the game.

Despite being a single-player role-playing game, these pawns aid you greatly in Dragon's Dogma 2 by providing important information, storylines, and assistance. You, the Arisen, can create one primary pawn and enlist two more via the pawn network or by meeting them on your journey to different areas. This opens the door for you to potentially enlist other players' pawns as allies. Additionally, you can enlist the help of your friends' pawns, which guarantees a broad array of experiences.

Theoretically, the gameplay mechanism doesn't vary much from the original. You travel mostly on foot around different locations and slay monsters, which are either part of the main storyline or side quests. You, as Arisen, also control what your pawns do. There are two command panels, one for directing the pawns with buttons Go!, Help, Wait, To me, and the other for combat that can be customized based on your vocations. These commands for combat can be changed based on your preference once you upgrade your character.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, Vocations

You can also change the combat actions for the mani pawn but can't change it for the other two pawns. There's another panel for attacks that shows up when you press L1, giving you eight attack or defense options in combat. Apart from what you decide, your pawns will attack all the monsters as they feel appropriate. You can direct them with specific commands with the other command panel, such as stopping them from attacking or supporting you when struggling.

But unlike most other RPGs, you don't hold an extensive inventory. It feels as if the inventory has been designed for a single venture. It does feel realistic since you pretty much empty your inventory when attacking a giant monster, and then you need to refill it for the next one. Sometimes, you won't have anything left in your inventory to aid yourself or the pawns and come back again to slay that particular monster. The best part is that the monster's health won't regenerate when you come back to it again. You'll start exactly from where you left off to refill your inventory.

Though you can craft items during the combat, which pauses the game, then again, it may not be sufficient when you're trying to slay a dragon or a giant griffin. Since Arisen can't swim or go into the water for some reason, so you won't have to see any sea monsters under the water. One of the best features is that you can pick up your pawns when they fall during battle if you can't heal them in that spot. You can bring them to a safe area and heal them to revive them. If you're feeling from a battle and you have a pawn who fell during the combat, another of your pawns will pick him/her up and run alongside you, giving the gameplay a very realistic feeling.

Pawns now have the ability to demonstrate their individuality, develop their characters over time, and acquire information through quests, which can lead to exciting interactions. You will be involved in the process of hiring pawns to advance your journey with various abilities and expertise regarding the quest throughout the game. Therefore, you can customize your primary pawn to their interests and gameplay style by utilizing vocations, preferences, and abilities. My Arisen, for instance, is a Warrior, and I have a Maze as the main pawn supporting me. In addition, I have an Archer and a Thief join me at some point in the future to make sure that I have a nice combination of different types of players on my team.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, Griffin, Boss Fight

Dragon's Dogma 2 offers you a wide variety of vocations from which to select. If you so desire, you will get the chance to test out each of them with their Arisen. When you create a character, you get to pick one of four initial occupations for your Arisen and main pawn: Thief, Archer, Mage, or Fighter. There are occupations that are considered advanced, such as sorcerer and warrior. However, it's important to remember that advanced does not imply better than commencing. For instance, in Mystic Spearhand, the roles of Magic Archer and Trickster are akin to hybrid occupations.

The four starting vocations are the only ones available at the beginning of the game; the remaining six advanced and hybrid vocations can be unlocked by locating and obtaining the consent of vocation masters. Along with the rank and attributes of your Arisen and main pawn, vocations are like classes. Your vocation ranks will also be leveled up. As you progress through the ranks, you will be able to activate new vocation abilities that you can buy with points. These attributes include abilities with weapons, basic abilities, and enhancements. However, you can only have limited skills and active augments at any moment.

Each vocation relies heavily on its weapon skills, whether you are playing as a Warrior or a Mage. For example, as a warrior, you can unleash lethal two-handed strikes, and as an archer, you can shoot different types of arrows. Aside from one exception, your vocation determines the weapons you can wield. Therefore, you shouldn't expect to wield a sword when playing as an Archer. Your more fundamental core abilities are associated with the kinds of weapons you can wield. Your light and heavy attacks, a quick step dodge move for thieves, levitation for mages and sorcerers, a kick for archers, and tackles for warriors, among other moves.

Augments are passive boosts that can improve your character's abilities, such as their maximum health, stamina, climbing speed, or recovery time. Augments' adaptability is their best feature as they work with any vocation. So, aside from simply enjoying yourself, there is a compelling reason to level up multiple vocations and acquire more augments. For instance, if you have any classes that are more fragile, you can consider using the Fighter's ultimate health boost augment.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, Beastren Pawn, Sexy Female Character

In Dragon's Dogma 2, you will enter a meticulously rendered and engrossing fantasy realm where creatures, characters, and settings come to life through the most advanced physics, AI, and graphics. The human kingdom of Vermund is characterized by verdant scenery, a walled city with a large town. And a separate region, Sacred Arbor, where the elven people call home. The elves are an isolated people who have developed their own distinct language. Unless your pawn knows Elvish, you might have trouble communicating with them.

Under the leadership of Empress Nadinia, the people of Battahl—a nation with a distinct civilization characterized by feline-like traits and ancient ruins nestled in rugged canyons—sail in their warship, the Lambent Flame, rather than the Arisen. In all the cities you visit, there are inns that you can visit to rest and customize your vacations. You can talk to any NPC or even sit there to pass your time or hire a room to rest, which fully restores you and all your pawns healthfully.

Plus, this parallel universe of Dragon's Dogma 2 is completely different from the original, so naturally, it has its fresh cast of folks populating it. While some may not play directly as the original cast members from the previous game, others could serve as stand-ins. Once again, Dragon's Dogma features an ensemble that is rich in diversity. There are a lot of ways in which each character helps the story progress. One of the most notable characters is Ulrika, the youthful leader of Melve, who rescues Arisen from the clutches of the dragon.

Another character is Wilhelmina, the mysterious proprietress of the Rose Chateau. Other characters include the charitable Battahl commander Nadinia, the upright and trustworthy palace guard captain Brandt, the cunning queen Disa, and the royal beast and guard Menella. Also present are Glyndwr, an affable and shy elf interested in human weaponry; Doireann, Glyndwr's sister; and Sven, a noble and honest contender for the position of consul ruler.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, Game of Throne, Masquerade

Plenty of other characters are in the game, and each has a small or large role depending on your choices when interacting with them. Naturally, Dragon's Dogma 2 brings back the old romance system, with each main character giving compelling narratives. The trajectory of their relationship is entirely up to you, and your decisions determine the love paths available to them, establishing a precedent for the game's romance system. Everyone in the game, including Ulrika, Doireann, Wilhelmina, and everyone else, is considered a main character.

Due to the game's enormous plot, I haven't played it long enough to experience romance with other characters yet. However, there are indications that I may eventually reach that stage. Hopefully, I'll soon be able to figure out which romantic paths to go with specific characters. Capcom has greatly enhanced the NPC system, allowing players to see complex connections, independent actions, and possible conflicts stemming from Arisen.

The NPCs in Dragon's Dogma 2 elevate the game to a new level. I've never played a game where NPCs felt so alive and realistic. Like in the original, even minor NPCs can develop romantic feelings for you depending on how you engage with them. Now that there are over a thousand NPCs, each with their own backstory and set of goals, you have to face the fact that NPCs die. And the NPC deaths in the game are permanent, decisions have far more consequences, and you'll be considerably more watchful of certain NPCs.

Due to the common occurrence of NPC deaths in this fantasy world, you feel the need to either defend your favorite individuals in battles or resort to the extreme action of picking them up and literally running away with them. When a non-player character dies, their body is transported to the city's morgue. You have limited time to use a Wakestone to bring them back to life. But if that NPC isn't brought back in time, s/he will be buried for good, which will have long-lasting consequences. Keep an eye out for your love interest or other NPCs you're developing strong feelings for; even if they die, you can always revive them. Just make sure to act swiftly in any case.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, NPC, Sexy Female NPC

An abundance of side quests in Dragon's Dogma 2 allows you complete freedom to choose the path of your adventure, in addition to the main story's plot. While carrying out quests, you might develop a strong affinity with particular NPCs by speaking with them. The world of Dragon's Dogma 2 is home to many residents who come from a wide range of backgrounds. These inhabitants, from soldiers to travelers, go about their everyday lives, each inspired by their own distinct feelings and objectives. Nearby NPCs will approach you while you explore the landscape and ask for help with quests to further develop your story. And pawns will lead the way towards an objective if they know what you're up to.

Unfortunately, the game has no fast-travel system or map-based transit, so traveling from one region to another isn't as easy as you might think. You can either walk or employ the new oxcart-based fast-travel system; however, both alternatives need expensive resources, including Ferrystone. This method, reminiscent of Skyrim's wagons, adds another layer of difficulty when unexpected encounters like goblins or griffins attacking the wagon occur. The open world exploration is more dynamic in this, although the frequent attacks might sometimes be frustrating.

A dynamic day-night cycle is also introduced in Dragon's Dogma 2, which presents difficulties such as night bringing profound darkness and making travel impossible without a light source. However, you can now engage with your pawns and build up campsites at night to reduce weariness. The gameplay is enhanced by incorporating real-time time passing, which impacts encounters with unpredictable situations and surroundings that can be destroyed. Another realistic feature is the ability to prepare meat over the campfire.

Raw goods, such as fish or meat in your inventory, are resilient when cooking. Failure to cook or utilize them within the specified time will cause them to spoil, which might negatively affect your health if taken. In addition to using them as messengers, pawns can be sent to other areas to collect supplies or carry heavy objects. If there are any goods to be found, they will even let you know and ask for your permission to search for them. There is a limit to how many things you can carry, including your character and the pawns. Having too much weight on your back will slow you down.

Dragon's Dogma 2, Review, PS5, Gameplay, Screenshots, Arisen, Pawns

Dragon's Dogma 2's visuals are top-notch in every way. The surroundings, weather effects, texture, reflections, and character models are top-notch. Even the enemy variations are satisfactory. I encounter over twenty different types of enemies, such as Goblin, Saurian, Ogre, Wolves, Undead, Drake, Werewolves, Dragons, Griffin, etc., each with a distinct look and attack type. There is no loading screen, no matter which area you visit. I've personally never experienced such seamless loading.

Moreover, unlike any medieval-themed game, Dragon's Dogma 2 is far livelier and more vivid. While the game's visuals are impressive, they wouldn't amount to much without the voice acting and stunning soundtrack. While Arisen isn't voice-acted, the rest of the characters' voice-acting feels very realistic, and every character's role is expertly performed, propelling the narrative more in-depth. The music effortlessly shifts from gentle melodies to opera, all to suit the scene or location you find yourself in.

Dragon's Dogma 2 is an absolute must-have for any and all RPG fans out there. Even for those who haven't played the original game, this sequel won't hold them back by anything. It's a massive game, and the main story alone will take more than 50 hours to finish, let alone the side quests, exploration, upgrades, and more enjoyable stuff like that, which will extend the gameplay to more than 100 hours. Anyone trying to explore every corner of the game can expect to spend over 300 hours easily.


Dragon's Dogma 2 is simply an unending, beautiful, open-world fantasy RPG, possibly one of this generation's most dynamic and extensive open-world RPGs. It's jam-packed with side quests and dynamic events, and the game's many locations provide ample opportunity for exploration and discovery of the new lore. If you are looking for a high-adrenaline, gratifying action role-playing game with a concentration on the battle, Dragon's Dogma 2 is just what you are looking for.

Azfar Rayan (@AzfarRayan)
Senior Editor, NoobFeed

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General Information

Platform(s): PC, PS5, XBSX
Publisher(s): Capcom, Capcom U.S.A., Inc.
Developer(s): Capcom
Genres: Role-Playing
Themes: Open world, Action, Fighting, Shooter, Nonlinear
Release Date: 2024-03-22

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