Friday, June 01, 2012

And now I'm (finally) going to play that copy of Dragon Quest that Darwin Yamamoto sent me

I doubt any of you remember this, but sometime last year--at least I think it was last year--I decided to play through Dragon Quest (actually, Dragon Warrior, the North American version of the game) for the first time since it was released back in 1989.

That playthrough didn't last long, mainly because I had no idea as to where I should go or what I should do. The last thing I remember doing involved wandering into a pitch-black cave and getting ambushed by a giant green dragon that slayed me in about two seconds.

Thanks Darwin Yamamoto's generosity--he bought me a copy of the Famicom version of Dragon Quest while visiting Japan recently, as detailed in this post--I've decided to give the game another try. Because I don't understand a word of Japanese and also because I don't want to recreate my last attempt at playing through this classic RPG, I recently picked up a copy of the strategy guide that Nintendo Power produced (and published) for this game shortly after its North American release.

The scan above is of said strategy guide's front cover, by the way. Because quite a few awesome (or at least interesting) illustrations can be found between its covers, I'm seriously considering featuring this Nintendo Power publication in a future edition of "Manual Stimulation," although I doubt I'll be able to include every single page.

12 comments:

Kamiwoo said...

You'll have fun, trust me! The Famicom version is just so... adorably awkward with its forever front-facing hero. Not to mention some of the townsperson sprites. I'm actually partway through a playthrough of it, myself!

Funny you should mention that strategy guide, I still have it! Some very interesting artwork indeed. I remember my mom reading parts of it to my then baby brother because he thought it looked cool... overhearing your mom read RPG stats out loud is a very awkward experience XD

Bryan Ochalla said...

Hey there, Kimimi!

I've never played the Famicom version, but I've read about it. In a way, I can't how archaic it sounds! I mean, the NES version could be considered archaic, too, but at least the hero changes directions, etc.

As for the strategy guide: I had it back in the day and remembered it fondly, which is why I decided to buy it again via eBay.

That's great to you remember it, too -- and remember that your mom read it to your kid brother. What an interesting thing to read to your child. I'd like to think I'd do the same if ever I have a kid :)

Alois Wittwer said...

My favourite game series :)

I wrote a thing about the first game actually, Bryan: http://aloiswittwer.blogspot.com.au/2012/03/taking-world-with-you-dragon-quest.html

Bryan Ochalla said...

Hello, Alois! Thanks for sending the link. I'll check it out shortly. Great hearing that this is your fave series, BTW. I've only played a few DQ games thus far, but already I can say that I find its world and characters completely charming :)

Alois Wittwer said...

The charm is the main reason I love it. It never went down the existentialism of Final Fantasy, it quietly refines and elaborates on the simple fairy tale fantasy with each game. It always has poignant mini narratives that feed into the whole. You rarely ever start each game with the intention of saving the world, it just sort of happens by accident as a result of you helping people.

It's just... wonderful. I can't state enough how important its hopeful stories are.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Thanks for further explaining why you love this series so much, Alois. I've heard other people say similar things about it in the past. I really do have to give more of the games a try. Maybe this playthrough of the original will spur me to play the rest in the run up to DQX?

Are you interested in that game, BTW? I know many long-time DQ fans are upset about it...

Alois Wittwer said...

If you're interested in playing them, and you don't have time to play them all (because who does? :p), Dragon Quest 5 is probably the best of the bunch. It's Dragon Quest at its most weighted and sentimental.

I'm awfully excited for Dragon Quest X! I'm confident it'll be as interesting as the rest of series.

Viewtiful_Justin said...

I wonder if I ever had this...I seem to recall getting a subscription of Nintendo Power when they were giving this away with a copy of the game, but I have no recollection of what lies between its covers. I would love to see a post dedicated to just that! It might ring a bell I never knew I had.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Alois: Would you recommend any particular version of DQ5? I guess there are only two options for me, right? The fan-translated version of the Super Fami-based original and the officially translated version of the recent-ish DS release?

I'd probably prefer to play the Super Fami version, honestly, but I'm not sure how good the fan trans is.

Anyway, other than that, I'm glad to hear you're excited about DQX. So am I! I feel like almost no one else is, though, and that makes me sad for some reason...

Bryan Ochalla said...

Justin: I have a feel you DID have this, but I guess we won't know until I publish a post dedicated to it. I'll do that soon, by the way -- don't you worry!

Alois Wittwer said...

I haven't played the Super Famicom version but the DS version is beautiful. If you can read Japanese, the PS2 remake is stunning.

But the DS one is really good. Solid translation and more stuff added!

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, yeah, I've seen videos of the Japanese PS2 remake, Alois, and I agree it looks really nice. Sadly, I can't read Japanese. So, I guess it'll be the DS version for me!