While Final Fantasy has experimented with wildly different combat systems and mechanics, Dragon Quest embraces the “if it ain’t broke” approach. For instance, the series has retained the same turn-based battles throughout its entire franchise. That is far from a complaint, though, as the simplicity of the series’ combat has always made it rather enjoyable. However, the true stars of everyone Dragon Quest game are the series’ epic stories, endearing characters, and earworm music tracks.
Currently, Dragon Quest sits at 11 mainline entries, only some of which are available on modern platforms. If you want to play Dragon Quest 11you have plenty of options, but if you would rather play Dragon Quest 7, you will have to break out either a PlayStation 2 or Nintendo 3DS. If you happen to be looking for a list of the best Dragon Quest games… well, we’ve got you covered.
The Tales Series
Most traditional JRPGs are turn-based adventures that force players to wait before they act, but the Tales series is one of those classic JRPG franchises that lets the action unfold in a glorious display of chaotic pixels and particle effects. Add in an anime aesthetic, and you have a formula for a memorable series still going strong to this day.
The Tales series is Bandai Namco’s signature JRPG franchise. Like Final Fantasyeach Tales game stars a unique cast of characters trying to save their worlds from the villain of the hour. Plots are almost always memorable, largely thanks to the contributions of well-rounded characters that are overflowing with personality. Even the villains shine in most Tales titles. Sure, most of them are unrepentant monsters who deserve a sword to the face, but at least you can sympathize with them from time to time.
For the most part, Tales games play similarly to one another. They are all action games at heart, but the series’ combat blueprint has evolved over time thanks to additions like the ability to fuse characters together. While earlier Tales entries are sadly hard to play in their intended forms, the latest titles are readily available on most consoles. Plus, you never know when Bandai Namco will surprise audiences with a port or remaster. If it happened for Tales of Symphonia and Tales of Vesperiamaybe it can happen for Tales of Xillia.
The Bravely Default Series
Two decades ago, Square Enix started experimenting with the established Final Fantasy formula and never really stopped finding ways to tweak the hallmarks of that series. Many gamers have asked Square to take Final Fantasy back to its turn-based roots with little success or acknowledgment. However, as a compromise, Square Enix has published other franchises that fill that niche.