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Posted by Zippedbinders

I hadn't played a single DQ title before IX and I loved it.

Edited by PenguinDust

Let me preface this by saying I am a fan of the Dragon Quest series.  It's not Shin Megami Tensei, but I prefer it over Final Fantasy and a few other notable JPRG franchises.  I count Dragon Quest V among my most favorite games.  Now, I didn't think highly of Dragon Quest VIII either.  The characters had little personality in comparison to DQ IV and DQ V, the grinding was tiresome, and there felt like there wasn't enough variety to keep me focused during the bland parts.  I am currently obsessed with Dragon Quest IX, though.  It is very similar to DQ VIII, but also more like DQ IV or V.   
 
To begin with, you completely create yourself and your party so it's very personalized.  There are 6 classes to choose from at the beginning with other unlocked via quests as the game progresses and about mid-way through you gain the ability to switch to any (unlocked) class without losing everything from your previous class.  Secondly, there is a loot-whore aspect to this game that's carried over from DQ VIII in the inclusion of the alchemy pot.  There are a lot of weapons, armor and items manufactured via the pot, so gathering resources and holding onto old components for newer, better objects is fundamental.  There is a downside to this and the exploration in general.  I felt that DQIX required a lot more grinding than I was used to in the recent DQ games.  DQ VIII asked a lot but the DS incarnations of DQ IV and DQ V flowed very easily.  In DQ VIII in addition to grinding for levels I ground for cash.  Fortunately, lack of funds has never been an issue in DQ IX.  Additionally, for some reason, I don't mind grinding as much in DQ IX.  I'd set the party's tactics to "fight wisely" or "don't use MP" and then just click attack once when mining for a particular drop or working for XP.   On the up side, since you can see all the enemies on a map, it is often possible to avoid encounters simply by walking around the monsters.  Only a few varieties will chase you down.  In that sense, battles aren't random as they can be in a Final Fantasy. 
 
Another thing I thought would turn me off because you create your party hasn't actually been an issue for me as it was in DQ VIII.  That is the lack of conversation and remarks that comes from your party members.  In earlier DQs I've referred to, the party you gather has something funny or insightful to say on everything.  In fact, they sometimes have multiple comments for every event no matter how minor you encounter.  I was very disappointed with this aspect in DQ VIII and knowing that, I thought I'd miss it in DQ IX, too but so far I haven't.  The NPCs all around make up for it in their retorts and commentaries.  If you leave a town and come back later on, all the dialog changes which gives you a sense that time has passed.  I'd love it if there was some sort of preset personalities to choose for your party so that they too could chat it up, but I am willing to accept the trade off of being able to set their name, appearance, and professions.  The next DQ is being made for the Wii, so I hope they use the extra power to add more to the party's capabilities.  I expect there will be an eventual port for the 3DS or PSP2/NGP.   
 
Anyway, I really love the game and have put 35-40 hours into it and am only about two-thirds through (I'm at the school), but if you are wary of the traditional battle system, grinding and encounters then you might want to wait for DQ X to see if any changes have been made that appeal to you.  I urge you to try it if you can, but I caution purchasing it since several key elements with the game alienate you.  
 
On a side note: perhaps I just haven't run across it yet, but I noticed there isn't any gambling or odd games in DQ IX.  Money hasn't been an issue in this one as it has in earlier games, but I was surprised to see that the gambling/boardgames/tournaments were missing in this iteration. 

Edited by Underachiever007

HOW DID YOU NOT LIKE DQVIIIfr#$%$#&%^*&uhjjkhiuy!?!?!! 
 
I kid, I kid. You should probably give it a shot since it's a little more accessible and a little less grindy than VIII.

Posted by ttocs

I wasn't a big fan of many of the early dragon quest games.  They just couldn't keep me interested.  That said, Dragon Quest IX is one of my favorite handheld games.  It's similar, but very different.  It's more accessible and not as grind heavy (or at least it doesn't seem like it is because battles are fun).  I say give it a go and see because IX is an amazing game.

Posted by takeshikitano3

I'm still pretty early in the game (7 hours) but I can answer to a degree.  It's very similar to VIII in visual style and sense of humor (both of which I loved).  Combat is pretty traditional, but you can see all enemies on the screen first like in Chrono Trigger, so you can avoid encounters when you want to.  Doesn't seem slow to me, and it's easy early on, if you're willing to grind just a bit, but ultimately if DQVIII left a bad impression on you, I'd say avoid DQIX.  Hard to type that in though, since I'll probably be playing this for months.
Posted by CharlesSurge

I haven't played any DQ IX, and only played a few hours of DQ VIII (time constraints, etc..). I'm not qualified, but I suggest holding off on DQ IX for you. Looking at DQ IX battle footage, battles seem mostly the same speed except possibly sometimes when healing or your whole party is hit in DQ VIII, I think the camera and action lingers for a touch. DQ IV, V, and VI on DS may actually be a bit faster because of what they show in battles and you can crank(!) that battle speed, I do believe. I'm not sure about the degree of battle speed cranking in DQ VIII and IX, that might be something good for you to look into.

Posted by ShadowMountain

I am a fan of jrpgs (Tales of, Final Fantasy, Persona, Ar Tonelico, Golden Sun) and wrppgs (bioware stuff, fable) however I did not like Dragon Quest VIII. It was too 'traditional' for me. I'm done with random battles and turn based combat unless they change things up and offer something new ala persona and ar tonelico. 
Also the game was too hard and too slow paced for my liking. It had wonderful graphics, sound and voice acting but it just wasn't for me.
 
So it may sound silly to ask this question, but would I like Dragon Quest IX?
 
At first I thought 'of course I won't!' but I've been hearing good vibes from people who are new to DQ or new to jrpgs in general. Also people who liked DQ VIII generally (so I've heard) did not like DQ IX. So that made me think 'If I did not like DQ VIII - would I like IX?'. Make sense?