Dragon Quest I.II

released on Dec 18, 1993

Dragon Quest I.II is an enhanced remake of the first two Dragon Quest games.

It has few modifications to gameplay, but the interface and graphics have been enhanced to be on a par with the 1992 Dragon Quest V, and the games have been rebalanced to make them slightly easier.

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I liked dragon quest 1 because of it's simplicity such as seeing the evil castle from the very moment you start the adventure and 1v1 turn based combat 3.5/5
I hated dragon quest 2 because the game crashed when I tried waking up my stupid ass party member from a coma or something i dont remember then when i fixed the glitch a key item never appeared in my inventory so i just dropped the game 1/5

Best way to play these two by far. Shame they didn't just port these to switch lol

This game is awesome, one of my favorites in my collection, it's really great remakes of the first two dragon quest games, highly recommend!

A solid remake of the original classics. The first Dragon Quest is not that great, and can be finished in a handful of hours. The second Dragon Quest greatly expands on the first game and brings several improvements. The formula will be even more perfected however with the third game.

My favorite version of Dragon Quest I and II. I like it a lot as it updates these two games using the DQV engine (SFC). It also balances them a bit more. But I think it's mostly because I really like the feeling of playing a game from the good Super Nintendo :)
Anyway, I'd like to talk about these 2 games a bit more in depth, so this time I'll do a double review.
Dragon Quest
The birth of a franchise. In this game we only control one character in the whole adventure, which results in a rather simplistic and a bit boring combat being totally honest, however, the magic of the first Dragon Quest does not lie in its combat, but in its small great sense of adventure and in its attractive world.
We start the adventure with the mission to defeat the evil Dragonlord, and that is the only clear objective we are given at the beginning, as the game gives us the freedom to be the ones to explore and discover its world ourselves. The first time I played this game, something as simple and as ambiguous as that was just what I needed, and I'm not exaggerating. I came with the idea that RPGs were just about following a relatively linear story and learning complex systems that at some point had to get good and interesting, and that to me sounded like a pretty long process, and more so considering how slow RPGs are (ironically nowadays I think the opposite and I recognize that it was a very closed view, but not really wrong).
So playing this game I was quite intrigued and pleased to explore the world, without having a really clear and established path, having that freedom was really important, I loved getting lost in the world and knowing that if I lost in a battle it wasn't wasted time, because even though I didn't have all my money, at least the experience points I would always keep them.
Exploring the world, every time I encountered an NPC and he would tell me a hint or a tip, I remember to write it down in a notebook so I wouldn't forget it. I even drew some of the maps of the dungeons that were there because in this game the caves are somewhat confusing and have no light, and I really liked that, as it somehow increased the immersion and sense of adventure. Eventually I had to consult a guide as there are items that you get with clues that are very ambiguous, like the mark of erdrick. But still, I think what an average player can discover on their own is considerable, unlike games like Zelda 1 and 2 or Castlevania 2, where a guide is more necessary.
The music by Koichi Sugiyama is decent, but nothing out of the ordinary, I have to say that the battle theme doesn't appeal to me and it's something you'll hear very often. However, it was here that one of the most legendary and iconic themes in the world of video games was born and a personal favorite that whenever I listen to it transports me to a world full of fantasy and adventure.
The game that started it all, with a rather humble proposal even for its time, but which was a great success in the history of video games by simplifying the hitherto very complex RPG and being the first of its kind to be on a home console. I'm not exaggerating when I say that up to that time Famicom and NES games had barely any text and story within the game, but DQ was the first to offer such an amount of text and personality through it.
Dragon Quest II
Dragon Quest II is an open world RPG that was a giant step forward in terms of everything.
But well, let's start from the beginning. The story is still almost as simple as in the previous game, but at least in this game we already have an introductory cinematic that gives us more motivation to stop the villain, still, that and meeting the other heroes are the only major events that happen in the whole game, so don't expect much in that sense.
Once again, what captivates me and what I love about this game is its large world to explore and the sense of adventure that this generates for you. I really like how the world is so open from the start and you can go through a lot of it in any order you want once you get the ship. It really generates a great sense of adventure, and one aspect I really like is how each time you get a different key many previously inaccessible paths open up, often being rewarded when you revisit past locations. Although there are many things that you can discover on your own, there are a lot of other things that you get in very specific ways that with the ambiguous clues that the NPCs give you will not be enough to figure it out, so you will need a guide yes or yes.
The combat is actually interesting as we now have more than a single playable character; we have a warrior and 2 mages, which greatly improves the combat system compared to the previous DQ. However, another big flaw Dragon Quest II has is how frustrating it can feel because of how unbalanced it can be at times, as now enemies also come in groups and some have annoying attacks, and many times the groups are large, but the main reason is that only our hero can equip himself with good weaponry, while the two mages will have to make do with barely decent equipment, or the fact that getting items that recover MP is very difficult. Although to be honest, it's not as terrible as people paint it. I highly recommend withdrawing from the dungeons when you run out of MP or feel that you are not going to overcome it, I also recommend in combat to use more the "Defense" command and spells that alter status to make the battles more manageable, as I feel that only the final dungeons of the game are the difficult part of this and the ones that will require grinding.
The first DQ had nice tunes, I'd say barely decent, but this is where I think I fell in love with DQ music. Although the amount of songs is few, they complement the game very well, I especially like the village theme, the first overworld theme and the credits theme. The credits theme is without a doubt still to this day one of my favorite ending songs in video games.
This game already feels more like a proper JRPG, whereas the first DQ felt like a failed attempt at that as far as the combat system is concerned. The world is vastly larger and more entertaining to explore, the music is of outstanding quality, the combat is much more interesting, and the variety of monsters is vastly expanded. Although the difficulty and how ambiguous it can be are quite noticeable flaws, but I'm sure no one here plays NES games without a guide, so that's more a feature of all adventure games of the era rather than a flaw unique to DQII.
It's often looked down upon because people think that after the first DQ, the obvious and direct evolution would be a game like the first Final Fantasy or Dragon Quest III, but I think people forget that those two games are just Dragon Quest II, but refined, as the game that really cemented and laid most of the groundwork for all future titles in this series and even Final Fantasy, is this one.
Double Conclusion
The first time I played these games years ago, my interest in the franchise became very strong, and I'm glad I stayed there to have discovered DQ in full and see its evolution from its roots, I think it's something very worthwhile, or at least it did for me.
Yeah... they're pretty bad games nowadays, but still, to me they're great games, and classics.
Through the simplest and most primitive, the charm and simplicity of the first Dragon Quests (including 3) made me regain my interest towards RPGs, and that's something I'll always remember.

These Dragon Quest games are, ultimately, "cozy" games. It's true that these are basically takes on Wizardry and Ultima, but between Toriyama's cute visuals, Sugiyama's charming compositions, and Horii's simple (or "pure", as he's called it) design, we end up with perfect "bedtime" games to play on a handheld. Some may find it boring, but this is as chill and satisfying as adventure roleplaying gets. It's no wonder these games spawned a videogame dynasty.