Dragon Quest (ドラゴンクエスト) is a series of role-playing video games made by Square Enix (originally Enix Corp.) for a variety of video game platforms. It is the all-time best-selling video game series in Japan, and enjoys decent popularity elsewhere as well. The series was referred to outside Japan as Dragon Warrior prior to the release of Dragon Quest VIII due to a trademark issue in the United States.
Each game in the main series of games it titled with the name "Dragon Quest" followed by a Roman numeral. Since 1986, which marked the release of the original Dragon Quest, Dragon Quest has so far featured eleven games within the main series, as well as several spin-off games. It has also featured two animated productions.
Dragon Quest is often compared with the Final Fantasy series, created by SquareSoft. Although the Dragon Quest series started before Final Fantasy, it continues to lag behind in the number of games within the main series (eleven Dragon Quest titles versus fifteen Final Fantasy titles). The two competed for more or less the same market until the companies' merger in 2003, at which point Dragon Quest began to take a backseat to the more universally popular Final Fantasy.
Every Dragon Quest game is told primarily through the eyes of a Hero named by the player, usually a prophesied "Chosen One" or a similar concept that requires him to rise against a new evil. Often, this evil is a Dragonlord or some kind of demon, but invariably wishes to take over the world and enslave or destroy humanity. Unlike other games in the genre, which have since the turn of the century begun to take on more of a science fiction slant, Dragon Quest tends to lean more towards traditional fantasy, with medieval technology and trappings. With certain exceptions, most games take place in a world distinct from every other; there is next to no direct continuity between instalments , with each game taking place in a world envisioned from the ground up ad hoc.
However, Dragon Quest I-III and IV-VI can be considered related through their storytelling. II is a direct sequel to the original game, while III is a prequel that effectively makes a trilogy; IV, V, and VI each feature the Zenithia castle as an important plot element, and so fans have come to call them the "Zenithia Trilogy." However, Yuji Horii has stated that this second group was never intended to be related.
Magic is frequently an important element, as both an in-battle ability of player-controlled characters and the cause of various world-shaking events.
As a pioneer in the RPG realm, Dragon Quest games have a reputation for being "bread and butter" representatives of the genre. The player advances through the game by carrying out predetermined actions directly related to the progression of the plot, such as collecting a key item or defeating a particular antagonist. Usually, one of his first orders of business is to gather a party of like-minded warriors to join him on his quest. As the party traverses the landscape and various dungeons, they will be forced to fight (or, if they choose, flee from) enemies based on a "random encounter" system. Later in the game, the party often acquires improved transportation that may allow them to avoid such skirmishes. Battles are turn-based; the player delivers combat instructions each turn from an in-battle menu system. Some games feature AI that sees all party members but the Hero character responding to situations based on various factors at hand, sometimes including general orders such as "Attack ferociously" or "Go all-out with magic."
Defeating enemy characters yields experience points (EXP). When a certain number of EXP has been accumulated, the character levels up and becomes stronger, improving in a number of areas represented by statistical values that affect their performance on the battlefield. This system means that if a player finds any part of a Dragon Quest game too difficult, he can simply fight against weaker enemies until he becomes strong enough to have an easier time of it.
Dragon Quest is, overall, a fairly lighthearted and humorous series that was likely not intended to be taken too seriously.
The Dragon Quest series is primarily the work of three men: Yuji Horii is the scenario writer and lead designer; Akira Toriyama is the character designer, bringing in a style reminiscent of his manga works; and Koichi Sugiyama handles the music production.
List of games
This table shows the original platform in bold. Release dates are for the original release only; see the individual game articles for other release dates.
|Dragon Quest||Famicom/NES, MSX, PC-98, Super Famicom, mobile phones, Wii, Android, iOS, Nintendo 3DS PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch||27 May 1986|
|Dragon Quest II||Famicom/NES, MSX, MSX2, Super Famicom, mobile phones, Android, iOS, Wii, Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch||26 Jan 1987|
|Dragon Quest III||Famicom/NES, Super Famicom, Game Boy Color, mobile phones, Wii, Android, iOS, Nintendo Switch||10 Feb 1988|
|Dragon Quest IV||Famicom/NES, PlayStation, Nintendo DS, Android, iOS||11 Feb 1990|
|Dragon Quest V||Super Famicom, PlayStation 2, Nintendo DS, Android, iOS||27 Sep 1992|
|Dragon Quest VI||Super Famicom, Nintendo DS, Android, iOS||9 Dec 1995|
|Dragon Quest VII||Playstation, Nintendo 3DS, Android, iOS||26 Aug 2000|
|Dragon Quest VIII||Playstation 2, Android, iOS, Nintendo 3DS||27 Nov 2004|
|Dragon Quest IX||Nintendo DS||11 Jul 2009|
|Dragon Quest X||Wii, Wii U, Windows, Android, iOS, Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch||2 Aug 2012|
|Dragon Quest XI||Nintendo 3DS, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch||29 Jul 2017|
|Dragon Quest Monsters||Game Boy Color||25 Sep 1998|
|Dragon Quest Monsters 2||Game Boy Color||9 Mar 2001|
|Dragon Quest Monsters: Caravan Heart||Game Boy Advance||29 Mar 2003|
|Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker||Nintendo DS||28 Dec 2006|
|Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 2||Nintendo DS||28 Apr 2010|
|Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 2 Professional||Nintendo DS||31 Mar 2011|
|Dragon Quest Monsters: Super Light||Android, iOS||23 Jan 2014|
|Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 3||Nintendo 3DS||24 Mar 2016|
|Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker 3 Professional||Nintendo 3DS||9 Feb 2017|
Mystery Dungeon series
|Torneko's Great Adventure||Super Famicom||19 Sep 1993|
|Torneko: The Last Hope||Playstation, Game Boy Advance||15 Sep 1999|
|Torneko's Great Adventure 3||PlayStation 2, Game Boy Advance||31 Oct 2002|
|Young Yangus and the Mysterious Dungeon||PlayStation 2||20 Apr 2006|
Slime Morimori series
|Slime Morimori Dragon Quest||Game Boy Advance||14 Nov 2003|
|Rocket Slime||Nintendo DS||1 Dec 2005|
|Slime Morimori Dragon Quest 3||Nintendo 3DS||2 Nov 2011|
|Dragon Quest Builders||PS3, PS4, PSV, Nintendo Switch||25 Jan 2016|
|Dragon Quest Builders 2||Nintendo Switch, PS4||20 Dec 2018|
|Dragon Quest Heroes||PS3, PS4||26 Feb 2015|
|Dragon Quest Heroes II||PS3, PS4, Vita||27 May 2016|
Monster Battle Road series
|Dragon Quest: Monster Battle Road||Arcade||21 Jun 2007|
|Dragon Quest: Monster Battle Road II||Arcade||3 Dec 2008|
|Dragon Quest: Monster Battle Road II Legend||Arcade||15 Jan 2010|
|Dragon Quest: Monster Battle Scanner||Arcade||23 Jun 2016|
|Dragon Quest: Scan Battlers||Arcade||20 Jul 2017|
Other Dragon Quest games
|Kenshin Dragon Quest||Dedicated hardware||19 Sep 2003|
|Dragon Quest Swords||Wii||12 Jul 2007|
|Dragon Quest Wars||Nintendo DSi||24 Jun 2009|
|Dragon Quest: Monster Parade||Web broswers, mobile devices||2 Sep 2013|
|Theatrhythm Dragon Quest||Nintendo 3DS||26 Mar 2015|
|Dragon Quest of the Stars||Android, iOS||15 Oct 2015|
|Dragon Quest Rivals||Android, iOS, web browsers, Nintendo Switch||2 Nov 2017|
|Dragon Quest Walk||iOS, Android||12 Sep 2019|
|Dragon Quest I·II||Super Famicom, Game Boy Color||18 Dec 1993|
|Dragon Quest Monsters 1·2||PlayStation||30 May 2002|
|Dragon Quest 25th Anniversary Collection||Wii||15 Sep 2011|
|Dragon Quest Heroes I·II||Nintendo Switch||3 Mar 2017|
|v · e · dDragon Quest series|
|Mystery Dungeon series|
|Slime Morimori series|
|Monster Battle Road series|
|Fortune Street series|
|Other Dragon Quest games|