Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 2
The latest Japanese RPG (J-RPG) Dragon Quest title is now
available on the Nintendo DS with Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 2 that
although has an extremely bad name, it's actually quite an entertaining experience on
this portable console. As this series is quite popular in Japanese
markets, Nintendo have ported the series to the West as players control
a monster scout who just like Ash from Pokemon has the
ability to capture and command monsters.
The story of Dragon
Quest Monsters: Joker 2 commences when your character stows away in
this Final Fantasy type flying machine in order to partake in one of
world's largest monster tournaments. However things don't always go
according to planned and this flying craft crashes on an uncharted
island in the middle of nowhere.
As a monster scout, your job is find the survivors and by
using your monster hunting skills, you need to capture these monsters and use them
for a force good rather than evil. However as you explore this
mysterious island laden with various types of monsters, you soon
uncover some ancient artefacts that may help you become the ultimate
monster scout. It's a fun story yet ultimately forgettable. Fortunately
the gameplay more than make up for ho-hum story.
The mechanics behind Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 2 is like your classic
DS RPG game which features turn-based combat, levelling, grinding, NPC's and to
some extent, if it ain't broke, don't fix it and this is what developers
did with this title. Although something a little more refreshing would
have made the game a little bit better, it's a sturdy title from start
The main hub for your character is the wrecked flying craft which allows
allows you to engage in basic shop mechanics and a place where you can
house monsters. Non-player characters must also be brought back to the
wreck once they have been rescued. From here you explore a variety of
sections of the island which are each filled with an assortment of monsters.
This is where your adventure starts and as you explore, you also discover
a variety of items and information regarding the monsters on this world. The
game also uses grinding mechanics which means you do need to engage in
quite a few fights to get those points to level up your characters...
err monsters. As opposed to standard J-RPG titles, your scout controls a
squad of monsters!
Combat is reminiscent of
traditional RPG titles which allows you to give your party members a
list of commands while they are fighting. Your party members are also
made up of monsters as opposed to a group of standard RPG archetype
characters which does make things a little unique. While you fight, you have three monsters available to you in
battles but you can have another three in reserve which is definitely
needed later on in the game. Just like classes, each of your monsters
has their pros and cons that also level up with the more experience
points that they are awarded.
Skill points can then be used to increase their statistics such as their
strength or new attacks etc. One cool aspect of the game is that you have a
wildcard in combat and when you do encounter a new monster, you have the
ability to scout the monsters as opposed to fighting it. The catch is
that your team must hit the enemy hard from the get go. If you do lose, the monster becomes more aggressive.
collecting monsters, your scout has the ability to combine two monsters
together to create a new monster. By doing this, you create more
powerful monsters and definitely gives you something to aim for while
you are completing quests and searching for survivors. Unfortunately
these new monsters are slower to level up than regular monsters. Overall
the gaming is challenging and will keep you busy for a considerable
amount of hours.
Graphically, Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 2 is a nice looking game on
the DS with detailed yet cartoony environments and some interesting
enemy animations. The stars are the monsters which do look quite cool,
especially the hybrids. It's quite a
colourful a world with the odd special effect thrown in for good
measures and still looks good on this dated console... compared to the
3DS that is. I really dug the soundtrack to this game that had a sense of
wonder, excitement and comedy. Sound effects are a little drab but
overall, the game comes together rather well.
In the end, Dragon Quest
Monsters: Joker 2 may not be the most original RPG available on the DS
but it provides some good old fashioned action that feels like Pokemon
meets RPG for monsters. I did enjoy the creation of new monsters which
opens up the game for another play or two. Best of all, there's plenty
to do in the game from exploring, fighting and trying to find new tomes littered
through this mysterious island.
Check it out if you're into J-RPG!
- Become the
world’s greatest Monster Scout in Dragon Quest
Monsters: Joker 2, a spinoff of the fan-favorite
DRAGON QUEST core series. Players scout and
collect monsters in order to build a team to
- When a player’s
party encounters other monsters in a battle,
they can try to recruit those monsters with
their scouting skills. A meter on the top screen
indicates the chance that players can scout a
monster. The higher the number, the higher the
chance the monster will join a player’s party.
- More than 300
different monsters are available to scout and
synthesize. By synthesizing two different
monsters, players can create new, more powerful
monsters. These monsters can be customized using
more than 240 skill trees. Some monsters return
from previous DRAGON QUEST games, while others
- In battles,
monsters level up to learn new skills and become
- Players can
battle their monster teams against one another
using a local wireless connection. Or, using a
broadband Internet connection, they can connect
to Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection to battle against
- The Wi-Fi World
Tournament lets players battle against other
monster teams around the world.
- The game
supports a variety of Tag Mode options that let
players connect and share data with others:
- Players who
connect via Tag Mode with owners of DRAGON QUEST
VI: Realms of Revelation or DRAGON QUEST IX:
Sentinels of the Starry Skies can scout monsters
from those games.
- Players who
connect via Tag Mode with other Dragon Quest
Monsters: Joker 2 players can battle against
them and have a chance to scout their monsters
without affecting their games.