Review: Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen (NS)


Control the Arisen On The Go

A lot of games are making its way into Nintendo’s home console-portable hybrid system and Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen is no exception. Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen originally released on PS3 and Xbox 360 in April 2013, a year later than the vanilla version, then on PC on January 2016 and PS4 and Xbox One in October 2017. The Dark Arisen brought technical improvements and additional content, which critics praised when the game originally released.

I wasn’t really following much about the game until I read an article about Capcom doing a collaboration with Berserk, bringing Guts and Griffith costumes based on the Berserk Golden Age Arc film series into the game. As a Berserk fan, that really caught my interest.  Also, the more I followed the game, the more I realized that the game could pass as a Berserk game, too. Although Capcom doesn’t have much history with the RPG genre aside from a few titles, including Monster Hunter and Breath of Fire, I was still confident about this one.

Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen
 (Nintendo Switch [reviewed])

Developer: Capcom
Publisher Capcom
Released: April 23rd 2019
MSRP: $29.99

Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen isn’t really the first game ported to the Nintendo Switch by Capcom. There are the Resident Evil Revelation games, Okami HD, the Mega Man Legacy Collection games, etc. There’s also the Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney HD collection, originally released on the 3DS, if you want to count that. Nevertheless, all ports that area available on other platforms but now you can take them on the go, which is what I love about the Switch.

Right off the bat, you start off as Savan, who was the last Arisen to slay The Dragon before the main character. You will control Savan during the Prologue story who is always accompanied with his Main Pawn, Salde. Pawns (also known as Myrmidons) are denizens of the Rift; lacking emotion and a true will of their own, they follow the Arisen, one who has been chosen by The Dragon. After finishing the Prologue, you will be able to make your Arisen. You can also have and customize up to three Pawns. While you can’t control pawns, you can give them instructions.

I’m in love with the game’s combat, which Hideaki Itsuno directed. Itsuno is known for his work in the Devil May Cry series. While they are two different games, Devil May Cry being a fast-paced hack and slash, and Dragon’s Dogma being an fast paced RPG, his talents still translated very well, giving us a very enjoyable combat system. You could compare it to Monster Hunter a bit, except Dragon’s Dogma is a much faster game. You can perform weak and strong attacks, weak attacks and other abilities that are mapped to the L and R buttons while pressing any of the face buttons.

The game performs well on the Nintendo Switch, running at 1080p and 60 frames per second when playing the game docked. While the game doesn’t run at 60 frames per second in portable mode as expected, the game runs pretty well and only seems to encounter hiccups when there was a lot of effects on screen. It’s definitely above 25 frames per second and seems to stay at a solid 30 frames per second at most times.  

Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen is a game I never get tired of playing every now and then. I beat it twice when it came out on PS3 and I beat it twice when it came out on PC. If the PS4 version came out before the PC version, I would have gotten it then, but there wasn’t really a point of getting it. However, now that I can play this on the go and at a better pace, I am definitely looking forward to beating it a third time. The game is a great port all around, both portable and docked. If you haven’t had the chance to play the game then I recommend to definitely pick it up.

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Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen reviewed by Christian Chiok



Impressive effort with a few noticeable problems holding it back. Won't astound everyone, but is worth your time and cash.
How we score:  The Japanator reviews guide


Christian Chiok
Christian ChiokContributor   gamer profile

Christian has been a gamer since his early childhood. He's a big fan of the King of Fighters and the Metal Slug series. Additionally, Christian enjoys cooking, listening to music, watching anime ... more + disclosures



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