A fantastic and innovative title that revolutionized the DQ franchise.
Before realizing that the game offered so much though, I was first impressed by the wonderful visuals. As the game began, I noticed that the wonderfully designed 3D world was filled with equally well designed, albeit 2D sprites. Such cross dimensional design was not new to me, as I've played other similarly designed Dragon Quest titles, and though such design may sound odd, rest assured that the dimensions flow seamlessly.
Continuing to appreciate the great graphics from the start of the game, the epic adventures of the game begin quite early as well. Starting the game as a young boy, some of the first exploits carried out may seem trivial, but end up as important plot points later on. The same can be said for characters encountered, and lands visited. The game takes place over many years, and even several generations, allowing for players to quickly feel an emotional attachment as they watch the world and characters grow and change around them.
While moving through years spend completing the main quest, players will also encounter opportunities to explore beyond the beaten path, reaping unique rewards and encountering interesting characters. As in previous Dragon Quest games, the easiest ways to get distracted are looting dungeons, leveling, and collecting mini-medals. Dragon Quest V though, also offers monster recruitment and T'n'T boards as forms of alternate entertainment, as well as ways to greatly strengthen their party.
Despite the great extra content and other great features of Dragon Quest V though, the game isn't without it's flaws. In addition to the game lacking side-quests nearly entirely, the monster recruitment system also adds frustration. Despite the fact that there are 80 monsters to recruit, some have horrible recruiting odds, with no way to increase the chance of adding them to the party. This leads to hours of grueling recruitment, often to no avail.
Despite the few flaws though, Dragon Quest V is a fantastic game that brought several new things to the franchise, and immersed the players in a multi-generational world. Such things are hard to find in RPG's and certainly should not be passed up in the wonderful game that is Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride.