I just started really playing Dragon's Dogma for the first time. This game is absolutely badass. It allows for you to get lost, it lets you screw up, and it lets you have second chances. It's unforgiving, but it gives room to explore.
Let me tell you what happened to me:
I was deep in a dark - and when I say dark, I mean pitch black - dungeon. Bats occasionally nibbled at my neck, but I brushed them away. I reached the bottom of a gigantic spiral staircase and found an item.
Suddenly, monsters appeared all around me. I began to fight them but grew frustrated with my inability to kill them all. That's when I realized: I don't need to kill them. I just need to run.
Rather than sprinting back up the stairs, I noticed a small passageway. I found refuge there. I make my way through the passage, expecting it to be an escape route.
I walked slowly through it, having been safe for a short while. Suddenly, those invincible creatures I had just escaped begin rising all around me. I reached the end of the tunnel. The passage had been nothing a long dead end.
At this point, I thought I was screwed. I sprinted back towards the room I had fled. The enemies rose around me as I ran out of breath. Occasionally, one of my companions would rouse me when I am was out of stamina, and I would aid them as well. I was filled with terror.
I then ascended the pitch-black stairs I had strolled down so leisurely before. This time, I was tripping and running out of breath all along the way, barely dodging enemy attacks. I also escaped with the quest item I needed - thank goodness.
Had Dragon's Dogma not let me tread down this passage with such safety, luring me into a false sense of security? Or, had it not let me sprint down a series of lengthy passages to a dead end? I never would have had such a gripping and memorable experience. It felt like I was adventuring because it felt like I was in a place that wasn't designed for me. I was lost in a long-abandoned tunnel, and it felt like it.
What a truly strange, lovely experience this game is. I can't recommend it enough for folks looking to scratch an RPG itch.
PS: Literally just writing this in the heat of the moment, so pardon the rough writing.