Everything We Know About Dragon's Dogma 2

Everything We Know About Dragon's Dogma 2

By  Martin Heath - 16th Feb 2024

Bring Back Into Free -Dangan- by B'z!

Everything We Know About Dragon's Dogma 2

After eight years of waiting, we’re finally getting a sequel to the epic journey of hearts, Pawns, and dragons, Dragon’s Dogma! Set to release in late March, the latest entry promises new lands to explore, monsters to conquer, and people to meet. But Fanatical, I hear you say, how will I know what to expect and what is new? Well, fear not, reader, as we have compiled the prevalent points here for your perusing pleasure!

A Land of Dragons, Pawns, and Heart Thieves

Dragon’s Dogma 2 is set in a fantasy world of magic and monsters. Straying too far from the protected cities can be dangerous, and being caught outside at night is often a death sentence. While the populace survives with the aid of knights and adventurers, there is one surefire way to instil fear in all but the most courageous or stupid — the Dragon. Sign of the impending end of the world, this colossal beast is the stuff of legend until it is legend no more! When the Wyrm appears, if it runs upon a suitable mortal, the beast plucks out their heart and eats it. While normally fatal, this ritual binds the beast and the person. The newly created Arisen, as they are called, is now tasked with defeating the Dragon, lest the end-times befall!

While only those wishing a swift end would join the Arisen in their quest, thankfully, they are seldom by themselves! The Pawns, an otherworldly race of humanoids, are tasked with aiding any Arisen on their quest, with one tasked to act as your main companion. Armed with a slew of skills and wisdom, the Pawns are an irreplaceable part of the Arisen's journey.

A Tale of Two Kingdoms and Three People

A Tale of Two Kingdoms and Three People

In this land of beasts and bravery, you start off in the human kingdom of Vermund. This land houses a mighty fortified city, wherein the nobles and knights dwell, as well as the common people’s town, which sprawls around the castle. Vermund has always been ruled by an Arisen, though at the moment, the throne lies empty. The Queen Regent, Disa, is vying for the throne with the aid of another Arisen, though your arrival has put their validity in doubt. Vermund is the scene of many a conspiracy and plot to take the throne, so take heed of whom you trust and what seemingly simple quests you do!

In addition to the human population, yet another people live in the area devastated by the Dragon: the beastren. Living in the arid nation of Batthal, this leonine race makes their homes in the ancient ruins found in the Batthal canyons. Forged by the harsh conditions of their home, the beastren culture and beliefs differ from the humans of Vermund: Pawns are treated as a sign of misfortune, the Arisen is held in lesser regard, and the people worship the Lambent Flame in order to ward off the calamity of the Dragon. Battahl is ruled by empress Nadinia, who is also a focal point in their religion.

Finally, a third race calls the area home: the elves of Sacred Arbor. These remote people keeps to themselves and prefer not to interact with outsiders. Having their own language of Elven, communication with them has been a challenge. It is said, however, that some Pawns have learned this secret language!

It is between these two kingdoms and three races that the Arisen find themself. Will you lead the humans of Vermund, learn the ways of the beastren, or try and join the reclusive elves? The Dragon has set you on your path, but you yourself must choose where to step.

A Roster of Friends, Foes, and Frauds

Dragon’s Dogma 2 promises to offer a world alive with unique characters and memorable interactions! The Pawns that join you on your journey will learn and grow along with you, experiencing the many monsters and sights the world has to offer. They may even surprise you with tidbits of wisdom and information! In addition to them, the game has many key NPCs for you to get to know!

One of the first faces the Arisen sees after being attacked by the Dragon is Ulrika, the young leader of Melve. Having a strong sense of responsibility to her people, she takes her role seriously. After the attack, she nurses you to health and sets you on your journey. Another potential ally in your venture is the erstwhile captain of the palace guards, Brant. Having opposed the Queen Regent publicly, Brant was demoted. Concerned with doing what's best for Vermund, Brant may be an invaluable ally!

The Queen Regent herself, Disa, was the wife to the previous Sovran until their death. Taking control of the kingdom, she schemes to place her son, Sven, on the throne to extend her rule. Though she may seem haughty, her grace hides a keen intellect and disdainful persona. Her son, however, seems like a sincere young man with no hand in her mother’s machinations. Concerned with doing what is right, Sven goes through life with princely elegance. His good nature and boyish views often take a turn for naïveté, however.

Nadinia is the leader of Battahl and acts as the High Priestess of the Lambent Flame. Taking on the role at a young age, Nadinia earned the trust of her people with her desire for peace and prosperity for the land. Standing by her side, more often than not, is Menella, the leader of the guard. Fiercely loyal to Nadinia, she strives to treat her people equally, regardless of race. While the Empress herself may not be able to converse with the Arisen freely, Menella may be another matter.

Though the elves are considered haughty and reluctant to open communications, there are always some exceptions, such as Glyndwr. A young elf fascinated by human tools and even able to converse in the language, Glyndwr may be the key to gaining access to the remote race. His sister, Doireann, has also been influenced by her brother's passions and is more welcoming to strangers than others of her ilk.

Sword, Spear, Spell or Strike from afar!

Sword, Spear, Spell or Strike from afar!

In Dragon’s Dogma 2, the Arisen and their Pawn can use a variety of weapons and skills utilising one of many Vocations. These Vocations may be focused on one aspect, such as melee, ranger, or magical combat, or they can mix these aspects together to form unique styles of play!

Starting off with the “simpler” Vocations, there are the Fighter, Archer, Thief, and Mage options, each representing a good starting point for each type of combat respectively. The Fighter, as may be surmised from the name, focuses on melee combat. Armed with their trusty sword and shield, these combatants can deal out punishment while also keeping themselves and their allies safe. If ranged combat is more comfortable for you, the Archer excels at taking on enemies from afar. Target enemy weak points or take out pesky fliers to support your allies and time your shots perfectly to create valuable openings.

The Thief, on the other hand, is a speedy damage-dealer who thrives on mobility. Keep your foes occupied while your allies take them out, or exploit an opening to clamber onto an unexpecting beast! With quick feet also come quick fingers, as the Thief also lives up to its name by being able to pilfer the pockets of enemies and NPCs alike. Finally, the staff-wielding Mage wields magicks to strike down foes and aid allies! Enchant your weapons with flame, conjure lightning, or take the risk and cast a spell with a long incantation; the Mage requires quick thinking and strategic planning.

If you enjoy the thrill of battle but would rather make offence your defence, the Warrior is for you! Wielding gigantic instruments of pain, this Vocation focuses on putting as much oomph into their attacks as possible. While one of the most powerful out of the Vocations, they also require the patience and skill to pull off those massive strikes! The Sorcerer, on the other hand, is to Magick what the Warrior is to Melee. Being specialised entirely in various forms of deadly magick, the Sorcerer can change the tide of any battle and reduce most hoards to ashes. However, powerful spells require lengthy incantations, making them vulnerable to attack. Plan well, and the results will be stunning!

In addition to these six Vocations, Arisen are able to specialise in Vocations that mix and match the different combat styles. For example, the Magick Archer uses the long-distance combat of the Archer but adds a drop of the Mage and Sorcerer by using special magickal arrows. Create a storm of arrows or lock on to your target; the Magick Archer is a force to be reckoned with.

Fusing the martial prowess of the Fighter and Warrior, while utilising the magical skills of the Mage and Sorcerer, the Mystic Spearhand Vocation is effective at almost any range. Utilising a unique weapon called a Duospear, the Mystic Spearhand is able to pull off acrobatic moves while also channelling magickal strikes! Blink around the field, throw your foes at each other, and paralyse your foes.

The final two Vocation, accessible only to the Arisen, are the Trickster and Wayfarer. Though not a similar fusion of Vocations as the others, the Trickster has tricks of its very own with the use of illusions. Using the Vocation's unique weapon, the Censer, you can deceive enemies, conjure creatures, and even boost your Pawns beyond their natural limits! The Wayfarer, on the other hand, is a much different beast, as it can use all of the different weapons! The ultimate expression of versatility, this Vocation can react to any situation with the perfect set of abilities and weapons. Need some range? Equip a staff or bow and rain down punishment! Need to move fast? Equip some daggers and zip around the field!

Unlocking a Vocation and taking it to the utmost limit are two different things, though, and to achieve the latter, you need to find someone to train you. Learning on the job can take you only so far, after all! Found in the land of Dragons Dogma 2 are absolute masters of their field, called Meisters. These dedicated practitioners have honed their Vocation to a perfect edge, and if you want to achieve the same, you will have to find them and gain their tutelage. If you are lucky, they may even show you a few moves!

A Face to Remember

As in many RPGs, you can tailor your Arisen to fit the character you wish to play, be it a rotund and jolly Warrior, a Mage who could bench press mountains, or a gangly Thief. Using photogrammetry technology, the character creator strives to give you the tools to adjust minute details or simply select from a set of pre-generated options, resulting in photo-realistic characters either way!

The same creator is used for both your Arisen and the main Pawn that follows you on your journey. Though it may sound similar to the system of its predecessor, this time around, you can choose to be more than just a human! Both you and your Pawn can be either human or beastren, giving many more options for customisation and looks. It is unknown at this time if starting off as an elf is possible, though running into Elven Pawns is possible!

Beastly Creatures and Fearful Nights

Beastly Creatures and Fearful Nights

So, we know where we are, who we are, what we can do, and where we can go. So how about who we can fight? The original Dragon’s Dogma prided itself in having many different beasts, ranging from the diminutive Goblin to the fearsome Gryphon to take on and vanquish. Each beasty required different elements and strategies to gain victory, with varying weaknesses and weak points to exploit along with unique behaviours, such as Ogres going wild upon smelling a representative of a certain sex. Dragon’s Dogma 2 continues this tradition by bringing back some familiar (and graphically improved) faces and adding a cornucopia of new monsters into the mix!

To give a few examples, the Chopper is a new variation of Goblin that thrives in their environment, using their innate speed and cunning to construct traps and ambush careless adventurers. Another master of disguise is the Rattler, a mountain-dwelling, lizard-like beast that has a hard outer shell. When rolled up, these creatures look like giant boulders until they suddenly start rolling toward you at high speed! A well-placed strike will luckily send the beast back and onto its back, revealing its vulnerable stomach!

Another new danger local to the land is the fierce and ferocious Minotaur! These bipedal and bull-headed (literally) warriors swing their battleaxes with immense strength while also being able to close in stunningly fast with a charge. If you meet one outside, beware, or you may find yourself flying back home the hard way! As a final example, we have the Dullahan; these armoured knights roam the land, cradling their heads in their arms. Wreathed in purple flame, these creatures are absolutely deadly with their sword, so approach with caution. And if you come across one in the dark, run, and pray.

Speaking of night, Dragon’s Dogma 2 features a day-and-night cycle. As you journey the land, you will see the sun’s light slowly fade and darkness gather, as well as your own fatigue growing. Finding oneself outside of the city in the dead of night can be deadly, as the only light available is what you yourself bring! Finding your way becomes hard, and the ever-hungry beasts of the land may become bolder with their new cover of night, not to mention the creatures only seen during the witching hours! Thankfully, you are not the only traveller to cross the land, with many campsites to find and use for rest, safety, and chatting with your companions.

The Nitty-Gritty

So there we have the land and its inhabitants, dangers, and lore. But what about what's going on under the hood? The original entry was built on Capcom’s MT Framework engine, used in other titles such as Monster Hunter World and Mega Man 11. Dragon’s Dogma 2, however, will be running the newer RE Engine of Resident Evil Village and Devil May Cry 5 fame, meaning we can expect more detailed models as well as anti-aliasing and volumetric lighting features. The RE Engine also features the aforementioned photogrammetry technology to create higher-quality assets! Capcom has also mentioned the use of artificial intelligence in the game, though the extent and specific use is less clear. The behaviour of the Pawns, for example, is one possible avenue for its use to make them feel more alive.

The system requirements for the game are as follows:

The minimum build needs a CPU equivalent to an Intel Core 15 10600/ AMD Ryzen 5 3500 and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 / AMD Radeon RX 5500 XT with 8GB VRAM GPU or equivalent. With the minimum requirements you can expect performance of 1980p/30fps level, though there may be a drop in FPS in more intense scenes.

The recommended set suggests a CPU of Intel Core i7-10700 / AMD Ryzen 5 3600X level or better and a GPU equivalent to an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 / AMD Radeon RX 6700. With the recommended build you should see performance up to 2160i/30fps, though some drop in FPS may happen in more intense scenes.

Regardless of the requirement level, 16 GB RAM is needed, as well as Direct X 12 and a broadband internet connection. If you want to enjoy ray tracing, remember that an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2080 Ti or AMD Radeon RX 6800 or better is required!

Eternal Return

And there you have it, everything we know of the Arisen and their upcoming adventure! There are, however, still a few months left before Dragon’s Dogma 2 at the time of writing, so some new information may be released beforehand, so remember to check back here for updates!

Dragon’s Dogma 2 will be released on 22nd March for the PlayStation 5, Xbox series X|S and PC via Steam.

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