|System: DS||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: ArtePiazza||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Square Enix||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Feb. 17, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
The graphics in Dragon Quest V are definitely reflective of the source material, but small upgrades have been made to the character sprites (which look a fair bit more detailed) as well as the different environments and backgrounds. One thing about the graphics in this remake that is somewhat disappointing is the lack of animated cutscenes. Although they weren't in either of the Japanese original releases, some bonus animation (a la the Chrono Trigger remake) might have been nice, and would have served as a great incentive for those who played an imported version of the original game.
The audio in Dragon Quest V is also very impressive. The score remains the same, but certain songs have been re-recorded and sound great on the DS. One song in particular, the Dragon Quest V theme, has been re-recorded and orchestrated by the Tokyo Metropolitan Symphony Orchestra, and it is absolutely beautiful to listen to. Although there are no real sound effects or voiceovers, the sound is pitch-perfect as it is.
Control in Dragon Quest V is extremely organic and uses the DS's D-pad and face buttons to move around and select items from the in-game menus. Because the combat is exclusively menu-based, the control here recalls plenty of old school RPG titles, and veterans of the genre will take to the control immediately.
Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride has certainly been a long time coming. Almost 20 years after the original release in Japan, Dragon Quest V has finally made its North American debut, and I couldn't be happier with it. The game is definitely a must-buy for the serious RPG fan, as it has all the ingredients of a truly great RPG: an epic storyline and a solid yet unique battle system. Although it has been ported to the DS, Dragon Quest V is one of the biggest RPGs of all time, and it is certainly an adventure worth taking, even if it has taken more than a decade to be released!
Amanda L. Kondolojy
CCC Staff Contributor