Dokapon Journey Review

Audio Review?!?

Dokapon Journey Audio Review

Transcription is below:

The following is a review. All words spoken herein are the opinion of the reviewer, Jason Fanelli. Who, coincidentally, is the greatest game reviewer to ever live.


Dokapon Journey for the Nintendo DS is certainly interesting. There are so may different genres at work here, it’s hard to honestly nail one to it. It has elements of RPG, turn-based strategy, item collection, and board games. It’s like someone took Final Fantasy, Tactics Ogre, the Great Cave Adventure from Kirby Super Star, and Mario Party, smashed them together, then drew anime characters to create this. That’s not to say the game isn’t enjoyable, it just doesn’t seem to fit the way it should.

The gameplay is simple: pick a class, advance however many spaces you roll, fight monsters, get gold and items, bring them to the castle, rinse and repeat.  You’ll be competing against 2 or 3 AI-controlled players while doing this, most of whom aren’t very bright. They like to backtrack and walk in circles while you do what you’re supposed to do.

Unless you land on a specific mark, the end of every turn will be spent fighting a monster. The battles are one turn each, and if you don’t defeat it and aren’t defeated yourself, you have to stay in that spot until it’s your turn again, when you will continue to fight the same monster. I don’t understand why the game didn’t stay with the battle until someone won, and THEN move on to other turns. What? Does the monster have the intelligence to say, “It’s not our turn, let’s wait until the die comes back to us.”? No, he’s a monster! He wants to crush, kill, and destroy. Why tear me away from the battle before it’s over?

The RPG elements are in the experience system. Taken straight from Final Fantasy, each battle awards you experience points, and enough experience will level a player up. RPG at its finest. Unfortunately, there’s no variety. The experience system is very generic, which is a bit of a letdown. There is some customization in stat-building after leveling up, but that’s about it. I would have liked the board game aspect of the scenarios to impact the experience system more, like a spot where double experience could be had, so on and so forth.

The game looks and sounds great, however. The visuals are expertly drawn, right down to facial expressions and battle animations, and the music is perfect for the setting. The cheery music as players roll the die keeps the action light-hearted and the tone light.

There are unlockables, such as other stages, classes, items, etc., but like Mario Party before it, the board game aspect becomes stale, and the generic RPG elements are, well, generic, and the game suffers from both. Add to that the overabundance of anime influence, and this is a game that may turn gamers off.


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Author: Jason Fanelli View all posts by
Jason lives and breathes gaming. Legend tells that he taught himself to read using Wheel of Fortune Family Edition on the NES. He's been covering this industry for three years, all with the Node, and you can see his ugly mug once a week on Hot Off The Grill.

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