Dragons Dogma:Dark Arisen adds some new improved content to Dragons Dogma, it also has an Island for you to run around!
When you upload it you are given six pieces of bonus armor (that are completely useless!), 100 000 rift crystals and best of all the
Eternal ferry stone. You can use this Ferry stone as many times as you god damn want! There are also some new difficulties, easy and hard. Easy difficulty is good if your really struggling with DD, you take less damage and your stamina consumption is reduced. Hard difficulty is actually quite a let down. It just does the opposite to easy difficulty! It would have been nice if it made the enemies able to take more damage but instead you just take more damage and your stamina goes down quicker! This stops being a problem when you are an extremely high level, because you will have killed most enemies before the even notice you, even most of the bosses! There is also "speed run mode" when you have to complete the game as fast as possible. You can also change the dialogue from English to Japanese, but why the hell would you want to do that?
There are also some new notice board missions, most are just harder versions of the original notice board quest, for example on the original there was a quest where you had to kill 20 Dire wolves, on this expansion pack there is a quest where you kill 30 Dire Wolves.
Dragons Dogma: Dark Arisen includes the original DD, you can import your character and continue where you left off. But if you go to Cassardis and head down to the docks you will run into a woman named Olra. She takes you to an island named Bitter black Island. I wont say anything about the story except that it is not as good as the original DD (and people said that story was clumsily strung together). At first it's not to bad, couple of easy enemies, but then the difficulty JUMPS! I think that you should be at least level 70 to 100 before you attempt this game, depending on how confident you are. There are lots of new enemies, such as Gore cyclopes, Greater Goblins, Goblin Shamans, Sirens, and a type of Minotaur called an Eliminator to name but just a few. You also have encounters with Death, the Grim reaper, this guy can kill you and your pawns in just one hit, regardless of your level. You fight these enemies as you go lower and lower into the ground. Most of these rooms are torture chambers and the walls floor and ceiling are covered in crimson gore, it can be quite sickening. You will start to notice that some rooms are the same as rooms higher up, but slightly changed, if you have a list of games with repetitive environments add this game to the list.
Actually some of the enemies just look like harder versions of the enemies from the original.
you will also meet a man called Barroch who live in this hell hole I've been describing. He can offer you wares to buy, you can rest in his den, he can help you learn new skills, and he can enhance your weapons and armor, and if you give him weapons or armor that has been dragon forged, he can improve the still further! Olra can also provide you with services. She can do everything Barroch can do except enhance. Instead she can purify any cursed items you pick up. There are all sorts of new weapons and armor in Bitter black Island. There are even rings that can improve your skills.
One of the biggest problems with Dark Arisen is that it is unfairly difficult. The Island has three levels. At first you will feel like your only chipping away at the surface of the game (because its so difficult your stuck in the first two rooms of the Island, unable to go further) and deep down in the bowels of this gorgeous hell hole are treasures and wonders that you cannot imagine. You will become frustrated at how your always running through the same rooms, unable to progress through the game. The best thing you can do is what I did, don't rush! Eventually you will conquer the Island, and what happens when you do, all the enemies are replaced with even harder enemies. This game is probably best for hardcore fans of Dragons dogma.
Some people wont like the changes in Dragons Dogmas genre from open world to dungeon crawler, but I sure as hell did. And that's the only word I can use to describe this island, hell. If you have the stomach then get prepared to grab death by the throat and throttle it to death.