Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen – Review
Follow Genre: Adventure, RPG
Developer: CAPCOM
Publisher: CAPCOM
Platform: 360, PS3

Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen – Review

Site Score
Good: Atmosphere, Impressive monsters
Bad: Owners of the original one, will have to pay a lot in comparison to new players.
User Score
(5 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.0/10 (5 votes cast)

Dragon’s Dogma hit the shelves nearly a year ago and was a great start for a new CAPCOM franchise. Recently Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen was released and offers you the original game plus a hefty expansion for the dungeon crawlers amongst us.


Introductory remarks:

Seeing this edition of Dragon’s Dogma also includes the original game, it would be quite weird to review the first part of the game once again. If you’re new to the Dragon’s Dogma universe or you were doubting when the original one came out, you should check out our review of the original game, by clicking here. (Or if you simply want to refresh your memory.) If you already own the original game or know enough about it, we’ll provide you with an explanation of the expansion below.

For those who already own the original Dragon’s Dogma, purchasing this ‘expansion’ will give you a few bonuses for you to use in the original campaign. You will receive 100 000 rift crystals, a ferrystone with unlimited usage and a few sets of special gear. Most of these are quite simple bonuses, but still a welcome gesture.


As in the original Dragon’s Dogma, the game will still revolve around you, the Arisen. The one who leads the pawns and the only one who can defeat the dragon that holds Gransys in its tight grip. This time you will be trading in the bright and colorful Gransys for a set of dark dungeons and labyrinths underneath Bitterblack Island.

Sadly unlike the original game the plot is a lot thinner and it feels like you’re simply going to clear up some dungeons as the chosen one. You will collect bits and pieces of information about what is brooding on the island through the few NPC’s scattered on the surface. You will be the first one to venture deep in the dungeons of Bitterblack Island and make it back, alive. (Hopefully)

Dark_Arisen 2


Since the release of the original game, not much has changed when it comes to the overall appearance of the game. The Dark Arisen expansion adds an extra dark touch to the game’s atmosphere. A theme that’s fitting for the title and the surroundings of Bitterblack Island.

The few new creatures are as impressing as its predecessors and will make you want to explore the game to its fullest. Sadly, the game also didn’t change how the characters interact with you, and they still look as if they are wooden puppets. Then again this might just be me – being too impressed with the monsters that the NPC’s look a tad less smooth.


Sound wise, it might come to you as a surprise: The game didn’t really make any changes. Again we are offered fully spoken dialogues, that feel as if they were voiced by a decent cast. The environmental sounds breathe the right atmosphere and will surely get you in the mood to crawl through the labyrinths of the game. No real comments here.

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Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen will focus itself around your 4 man party, that includes your main character, your customized pawn and 2 summoned pawns. You will only be able to control your own character directly. You will be able to equip yourself and your own pawn against the darkness that awaits you, but you can still share healing items and other consumables with the pawns you summoned to aid you on your quest. These will in turn aid you in combat and with tips if they know bits and pieces of the environment as well.

Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen will also have its main storyline, filled with a decent amount of side-quests. Again it’s pretty much your own choice to complete these as well, or not.

Again when it comes to the gameplay not much has changed since the release of the original game. You are still able to choose the vocation (class) that suits your characters and learn a set of skills to match it. Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen offers us a new set of skills for the earlier chosen vocations though. You will be able to learn more powerful skills than you were already able to in the first part of the game.

Bitterblack Island is already available close to the beginning of the game. Yet it is not advisable to visit this part of the game if you’re playing with a new character, because everything on the island, except for the smaller monsters, will pretty much annihilate you when venturing deep in the dungeons. Same goes for those who already finished the original game, and are at the beginning of their new game+. It’s recommended to level up first, get yourself some decent gear and a nice party of pawns to back you up. Then again, if you love dying you don’t really have to try your best to do so.

Of course this portion of the game offers us new collectibles and new parts of gear. Nothing that memorable though compared to the first installment.

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Dragon’s Dogma: Dark Arisen is an expansion that will offer loads of new content to those who played the original game. The game offers you a look at the Dragon’s Dogma universe with a slightly darker pair of shades. For those who haven’t played the original one, seeing it is included in the Dark Arisen version, it’s a cheap game to pick up and spend loads of hours on. For those who own the original game, this bundled copy might be a tad overpriced, seeing they will pay for the first part of Dragon’s Dogma as well. Then again, this expansion, if you’re geared up and ready to go, will not even disappoint those who are willing to pay a little extra for a part of the game they already own.

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Rating: 9.0/10 (5 votes cast)
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Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen - Review, 9.0 out of 10 based on 5 ratings

1 Comment

  1. […] For more info on gameplay, please check out our review for the original release on Xbox 360 and Playstation 3. […]

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