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  • I know a lot of people never got a chance to play this game, but I strongly suggest playing it if you ever get the chance. Most people nowadays probably wouldn't waste time with NES stuff, let alone NES rpgs, but trust me this one is worth it. Basically the game consists of 5 total chapters. Chapters 1-4 are noticeably smaller, but they do a great job at setting the scene for the 5th and last chapter.

    I don't want to give too much away about the game since I really do not want to include spoilers, but I want to stress what an incredible job they did in making the game. I urge you to look past the limited graphics and play it if you are an avid rpg fan. Play it similar to the way that a die hard movie watcher today would watch Casablanca or Citizen Kane (if you get my drift).

    A lot of people will pass this game over in order to play the very first final fantasy on the original nes. To be honest, though the first FF was really good, I really enjoyed this one better and find it much more fun in replay value. Anyways, if you ever get the chance check it out. I know we probably shouldn't plug emulator/roms, but look into them if you are having trouble finding an original copy of the game (or even an original nes).
  • (www.plasticpals.com) Originally released on the NES back in 1990, it's 18 years later and Dragon Quest IV: Chapters of the Chosen has found a new home on the Nintendo DS. How does it stack up to other RPGs and what is new?

    Dragon Quest 4's storyline is split up into 5 chapters. The first 4 chapters introduce the heroes in the game as the evil spreads throughout the land. These chapters are great as they develop the secondary characters in different areas of the world map, so that you really get a good sense of what is going on around the world. They vary in length, but probably won't take more than 10 hours to complete in total.

    The 5th chapter is about 20 hours long and unites the heroes from the earlier chapters. The goal is to collect 4 legendary pieces of Zenithian armour before you take on the source of evil that threatens to destroy everything you've worked for.

    Unlike in other RPGs, speaking to townspeople is very important. Often, you will be unable to progress if you don't speak to the right person at the right time. Speaking of time, the game has a day-night cycle and people say different things depending on if it is day or night. And after any major event takes place, the townspeople will have something new to say and will often hint at what to do or where to go next. All of this talking is made entertaining by the great translation and the unique accents of each area. Once you get into it, the game flows very naturally.

    The battle system is straight-forward turn-based RPG stuff. The encounter rate is high but not too annoying, and the battles themselves are over fairly quickly. At first it may seem slow, but once you have multiple party members (which can fight intelligently on their own) the battles go by much faster than other RPGs.

    I found both of these aspects to be very enjoyable. The game is made even better by allowing characters to acquire experience points even if they are not in the active party, and you can save anywhere you want if you have to turn it off. The dungeons aren't overly long, so you can play it in bite-sized chunks.

    This is a no-frills RPG, meaning there are no CG / anime cinematics and the graphics are fairly basic. The monster sprites in battle feature excellent animation that really brings them to life. Each monster has several animations for various attacks, spell casting, calling for help, etc, and they are all very smooth, quick, and fun to watch. There are also some pretty cool 3d spell effects.

    While the enemy sprites are easily the best part of the game's presentation, the 3D environments are quite nice too. They're a bit simple, but they're colourful and easy to navigate since they spread across both screens. They have a nice, hand-made look to them.

    Besides making good use of both the upper and lower screens, there isn't much in the way of DS features. However, you can eventually use the DS's online functionality to connect with other players and form your own town. It's a side quest and I'm not sure what you get for doing it, but basically, you send out a custom towns-person that can attract other players' townspeople to your village. The main problem is that this mode requires you to put your DS in sleep mode for hours at a time, hoping to have chance encounters with others, so it's a feature that I didn't use much.

    Dragon Quest IV is a very fun RPG that should last you at least around 30 hours. While I was interested in playing it since I haven't played many games in the series, I wasn't expecting to enjoy it as much as I did. It's super addictive if you can get into it, which I imagine is easier if you have grown up playing retro games. Having said that, this is an excellent RPG that you SHOULD buy if you own a DS.
  • The Dragon Quest series is probably the first Console role-playing series to become successful in both Japan and the United States. There were four titles for this series on the NES, I - IV. I can without a doubt say that IV is the greatest RPG to come out in 1990 along with Final Fantasy III (Which didn't get an international release until 2006).

    I bought the DS version in Europe under the title "Dragon Quest: Chapters of the Chosen" and I honestly had no idea that this was the fourth game in the series until I did a little research. This could just as well have been the first game for all I knew back then. So I popped it into my DS and I was amazed. This game was everything an old-school RPG fan like me needed.

    The game has your basic Dragon Quest game-play and didn't allow the use of the touch screen at all but oh well. The story was simple, bad guy wants to destroy world by conquering some evil hellish demon from the underworld and you have to go stop him. The game is in five chapters, in the first one you're controlling the knight Ragnar McRyan. In the second one you're controlling the Tomboyish Princess Alina. The third one takes you through the tale of the weapons merchant Torneko Taloon. In the fourth one you're playing the Dancer Maya and her twin sister, the fortune teller Meena. In the fifth chapter however you finally get to take control of our hero which is called... well he doesn't have a name, you get to name him yourself, oh and he's a silent protagonist so don't expect any talking from him. While your playing as the hero you go look for the heroes of the past chapters to unite with them and go save the world.

    The music was composed by Koichi Sugiyama, the composer of every Dragon Quest game, and I can really praise him for all his hard work.

    To sum up, it was almost perfect. Too bad not many of today's people will play it, them wanting nothing but their fancy graphics and all. But I highly recommend this game for any old-school gamer wanting something that can remind him of the good old times.

    Final score - 9/10