With the surprise announcement of Dragon Quest Builders 2 coming to Xbox Game Pass on May 4, you may be wondering what all the fuss is about. Back in December, we had the absolutely fantastic Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age join the service, so this can't be as good, right? Surely it's just an uninspired knock off of the classic JRPG series? Wrong. So, so wrong. If anything, Dragon Quest Builders 2 is the series at its very best and most creative, and is a fantastic sequel to the original game.
Xbox fans have missed out on this spin-off series for a while, but not anymore. If you've never played it, you're in for a treat. Whether it's the addictive building mechanics, or the fluffy, enjoyable world design, the true spirit of Dragon Quest remains the heart and soul of the game - despite any influences it takes from other IPs. This is first and foremost a Dragon Quest experience at heart, and whether you love the series and haven't checked it out, or are a first timer interested to see what makes the franchise so great - here are five reasons you should check out Dragon Quest Builders 2 on Xbox Game Pass.
It's A Great Entry Point For Newcomers
With 11 mainline entries, it can be daunting to jump in. Realistically, you can jump in with any entry, but Dragon Quest Builders 2 operates so far away from the mainline series that it's a great starting point for anyone who wants to get a sense of the world. It's a lot easier than the JRPG entries, as it takes a real-time combat approach rather than turn-based. You can hack and slash your way through pretty much anything.
It also has a pretty engaging story, which really embodies the hope and heart the series is known for. It has a great cast of characters, varying worlds to explore, mixed with the perfect blend of Dragon Quest and Minecraft, making it a great place to hop in and try it out.
It's More Than Just A 'Minecraft Clone'
Looking at any image of the game, you'd be forgiven for think it's a Minecraft clone, but set in the Dragon Quest universe, it's so much more than that. Sure, there's building as the name suggests, but that's only one part of a larger experience. Unlike Minecraft, here you're pushed towards a narrative driven experience. You get the same amount of freedom, but there are always goals and objectives to complete.
Things start off slow. As you're introduced to new mechanics, you'll help the world's inhabitants on basic quests, but things quickly ramp up. A big threat looms, monsters will attack your settlement, and you'll have to travel to distant lands and fight ferocious bosses. It packs in all the excitement of a JRPG, but also perfectly balances those Minecraft influences. In some respects, it often feels like a more refined experience than Minecraft, giving you the right amount of direction and freedom in equal amounts.
You Can Get Creative
Even though there's a lengthy campaign to follow, you're never forced to go forward. If you want to focus on building up your world - go for it. If you want to go out and explore the world for secrets - that's your call. Dragon Quest Builders 2 packs an immense amount of freedom, never fully hand holding you through its world. With it being a 'builder', you'll be able to create some pretty impressive structures, and the game's community have already shown off some ludicrous builds we can only dream of creating. Just look at this compilation below to get a taste of what people have created.
With some gorgeous visuals, the environments really shine - possibly more so than they do in Minecraft. Items aren't strictly confined to being blocks, with plants, cushions, teddies, and a whole assortment of other luxuries to build. These allow for a more personal touch, and the loop of gaining materials to create your perfect structure is endlessly satisfying. There's the potential to lose yourself for hundreds of hours here, and we wouldn't blame you if you did.
It Has A Ton Of Content
With it being more story-driven than other building games, you may possibly think that its content is finite, as opposed to the never-ending nature of others. Don't worry, Dragon Quest Builders 2 packs in so much content you'll be busy for hours, even if you don't have a creative bone in your body and want to focus on the campaign. It's a lengthy affair just going from point A to B, but there's so much to do outside of main objectives that you'll be engaged for hours on end.
Play sessions can often delve into double digits, as you work on completing quests and fine tuning your structures. But there's also something called Tablet Targets, which provide additional objectives for you to complete. These can range from being fairly simple, to pretty extensive affairs, but the rewards see you reaping in Mini Medals. This currency can then be used to unlock new items, cosmetics, or building recipes. No matter what you're doing in the game, it always feels as though you're making progress, and that's one of its greatest strengths.
Photo Mode, Obviously
What game is complete these days without a photo mode? Of course, Dragon Quest Builders 2 has one. It would be a shame if those gorgeous structures you'd created, or elaborate enemies you had slain couldn't be captured for everyone to see. Early on you gain the ability to snapshot your adventures, with a wide range of options to help you edit the perfect picture - it's really great stuff.
But this would be nothing if you couldn't share them. Fear not, as Dragon Quest Builders 2 allows you to post these online and have other players provide feedback on your favourite snapshots. It builds a feeling of togetherness with the community, so your friends and even strangers can bask in some of the creative juices you've poured into the game.
There are honestly 500 reasons why you should play this game, but these are just the best of the bunch. It won't be long before you can finally see what the fuss is for yourself, when the game launches on Xbox Game Pass on May 4!
Will you be checking out Dragon Quest Builders 2? Let us know in the comments below.