Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen vs Dark Souls - Which is the better game?

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TiggyTog

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Poll Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen vs Dark Souls - Which is the better game? (138 votes)

Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen 28%
Dark Souls 71%

Which is the better game?

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Humanity

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I think they are two very different games. It’s like which is better Metal Gear Solid or Gears of War?

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TiggyTog

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@humanity: I disagree, they've been getting compared pretty much since release, with Dragon's Dogma considered by many to be very similar to Souls.

You have no idea how many times over the years I've seen "Skyrim/Dark Souls Hybrid."

Hell, in most reviews over the years they've been compared openly.

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Humanity

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#3  Edited By Humanity

I'll take your word for it as I've personally never heard the comparison and really don't see many similarities apart from them being action RPGs from Japan.

I guess my answer is this: If I had to choose between a Dark Souls 4 or a Dragons Dogma 2 I'd choose Dragons Dogma.

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someoneproud

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I voted for Dark Souls but I do really like Dragon's Dogma, I'd also have to say I'd rather have DD2 than DS4. I think I've got everything I wanted from the Dark Souls series but I would love some more Dragon's Dogma.

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Zeik

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#5  Edited By Zeik  Online

@tiggytog: Well anything even remotely similar gets compared to Dark Souls, even if it's not an accurate comparison. "It's the Dark Souls of" is a meme at this point for a reason.

Personally I felt like most of the game has very little in common with Dark Souls. Both the mechanics and the world design are very different. It wasn't until the DLC Bitterblack Isle content that I started to get strong Dark Souls vibes. A lot about that feels much more like Dark Souls, but it's just an optional area I wouldn't say that's enough to compare them.

But back to the topic. I personally would say Dark Souls is a better and more tightly designed game, but I think I actually had more fun with Dragon's Dogma. Even with the extra jank there's a lot of interesting stuff about that game that was just fun to play around with.

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cikame

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I can't compare them as similar games, i think Dragon's Dogma has more in common with Elder Scrolls than Dark Souls, but that aside i personally prefer Dragon's Dogma.
Not to take anything away from Dark Souls, there's a very specific point in time where i loved that game, but have almost no desire to play it or its sequels again currently, whereas DD is something i can see myself returning to, trying new classes, making different pawns based on Tekken characters, and just generally enjoying the variety of its combat.
It also has one of the best title tracks of any game ever.

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TiggyTog

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I feel even as is, Dragon's Dogma has deeper combat, there's just so much depth to it. Plus the magic system blow DS out of the water.

I also didn't really like the way lighting worked in Dark Souls, always a soft glow on your character, it felt unnatural. The way they handled it in DD was far superior.

Bitterblack Isle, imo, is weaker then DS level design, but certainly not by much. BBI is easily one of the best dungeons ever put into a video game, but you could argue that, even being much larger then BBI, Lordran is one of the best "dungeons" ever.

Dragon's Dogma's dungeons overall are far superior to many open-world RPGs, including Skyrim's, which favors quantity over quality in a lot of them. Dogma's dungeons are all expertly crafted, with almost all of them being massive wide-open spaces with tons of detail.

As for music, I love Dark Souls, but it'd have to go to Dogma for me.

I think classes are handled much better then in Dark Souls, each Dark Souls class feels rather same-y, while you can notice the difference in Dogma classes just by using them more then 5 seconds.

Dark Souls co-op was rather innovative, but Dogma's co-op was revolutionary in all the best ways.

I recognize in a lot of ways Dark Souls is more "polished" (aside from the combat, which Dogma has the edge in solely due to the immense depth within it), but I just have so much more fun with Dogma, and that's what should matter more in any game.

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development

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There’s something very empty and soulless about Dragon’s Dogma that I can’t put my finger on. I know that’s literally the case for the pawns, but the world doesn’t feel alive in the same way, and that’s a big thing for me.

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FacelessVixen

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Comparing the two for me is also like comparing apples to pomegranates, especially if we're comparing one singular game to an eleven-year-old series of five games (Sekiro doesn't count).

But, put a gun to my head, and I'll say Dark Souls 1 despite The Bed of Chaos. Dragon's Dogmais a great time sink, but there's nothing like gitting gud at Dark Souls to where Biggie and Smalls aren't that much of a problem and you can parry Gwyn Lord of Cinder to death.

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TiggyTog

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#10  Edited By TiggyTog

@development: Yeah the world isn't as filled as it could be, mostly because it seems to be a "dead world", but I feel like it makes sense for a land that's constantly being attacked by world-ending dragons, cyclopses, chimera's and the like.

It's not supposed to be "teeming with life" because that would mean the dragon wasn't doing his job right, I mean I feel like they got the good end of the stick compared to Skyrim's world of Nirn, which was supposed to be literally EATEN in one gulp by Alduin as opposed to blowing a few countries to shit like in DD's world.

That said, I see where you're coming from, the world is small for an open-world game, the NPC's are uninteresting, the sidequests are boring and mundane, and above all else the world just isn't packed with people like in every other open-world game.

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Efesell

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Yeah I don't see how this works as a comparison and I don't know that I've ever really heard anyone else do so either.

I think Dragon's Dogma is an incredible toolset shackled to a really unremarkable game. The combat and general movement feels great I just don't wanna do any of it there.

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wobblysnake

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#12 wobblysnake  Online

I think the way I see it, especially when comparing purely in terms of combat mechanics and design, Dragon's Dogma gets better and better the deeper you get, while Dark Souls (1 at least) gets worse in the second half.

In Dragon's Dogma, the combat starts out extremely simple but becomes really interesting and varied once you start maxing out vocations and trying hybrid classes and party combinations. In Dark Souls, the combat stays relatively the same depending on build but level design takes a massive dip after getting the Lord Vessel. I love the first half of that game but Lost Izalith, Duke's Archives and Tomb of Giants are such a chore every subsequent playthrough. This isn't to say that the level design in Dragon's Dogma is necessarily good, but it stays of the same quality throughout and the focus on large groups of enemies and larger climbable enemies makes the open empty spaces pretty appropriate.

I also just think the sheer player experience between classes in Dragon's Dogma is so awesome, playing Fighter is almost a completely different game than playing Mage, playing Strider is almost like a third person shooter. Dark Souls obviously has different playstyles, but the fundamentals stay very similar between builds.

Thinking about this has made me wish Dragon's Dogma Online's servers were still up again :(

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Shiftygism

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#13  Edited By Shiftygism

As others have said, those games aren't alike outside their fantasy setting. Very different experiences.

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Rejizzle

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Dragon's Dogma by a country mile. I don't really get the Dark Souls comparison, but I would call Dragon's Dogma a proto-Breath of the Wild with more RPG elements. The sense of discovery is so, so good, and the danger posed by unexplored locations and the day night cycle does more justice to the medieval fantasy genre than any other videogame.

The story can be a slog sometimes but it ends on a high note, and I enjoyed the choices the player could make in a lot of the missions. The combat is exquisite and each class has their own abilities to deal with different monsters and traversal challenges in their own unique way. I might just go play Dragon's Dogma right now. God, Dragon's Dogma is so good!

A final note on the subject: does Dark Souls have Into Free as its title music? No? Then its not as good a game as Dragon's Dogma. Sorry, I don't make the rules. It sucks that the title music got nerfed in Dark Arisen, but you can at least mod it back in on the PC. Its not the smoothest process, but its still less work than it is to make Dark Souls playable on the same platform.

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TiggyTog

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#15  Edited By TiggyTog

@efesell: The most viewed youtube video of DD on youtube literally mentions that it's like Dark Souls multiple times:

Loading Video...

Then we have Prod, a well-known DS youtuber:

Loading Video...

Some smaller youtubers bringing it up:

Loading Video...
Loading Video...

Kotaku says it "splits the difference between Dark Souls and Monster Hunter" in terms of combat:

https://kotaku.com/dragons-dogma-is-getting-the-fresh-chance-it-deserves-o-1834057412

I'm not saying it's like Souls, but I am saying for the first few years they were compared almost constantly. You couldn't go onto a page without hearing "Dogma vs Dark Souls" or "Dogma vs Skyrim", those were the main two it was compared to.

Aside from that, I think them being third-person action-rpg's should be enough to compare them reasonably.

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Humanity

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@tiggytog: oh see there’s your problem right there, you’re watching AngryJoe videos.

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Thursday1977

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#17 Thursday1977  Online

I could have a highly viewed YouTube video in which I state how a sofa is like a dining room chair, it doesn't make the comparison accurate. I'm going to have to agree with those who state that the two aren't comparable. Easy enough to state which one of the two that somebody may have found more enjoyable, but I do not see the similarities beyond some very general characteristics.

I understand that you like Dragon's Dogma considering your bumping of your two year old thread comparing Dragon's Dogma to Shadow of the Colossus on the basis of the climbing mechanics; but this is, to me, even more of a stretch.

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TiggyTog

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@humanity: It's literally the most viewed video of any kind based around Dogma on youtube.

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@thursday1977: ...You're saying comparing these two games is more a stretch then comparing this game to Shadow of the Colossus as a game?...

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For those not worried about how different they are:

Dragon's Dogma: Dark Arisen:

Loading Video...

Dark Souls:

Loading Video...

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Haz_Kaj

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I mean its not a fair comparison.

Dark Souls has the better core design. But that design has been improved upon and tweaked many times.

dragons Dogma is last generation game and Capcom have never made iterations on modern hardware to evolve it.

For their times Dogma was more of a package in terms of variety compared to Souls but didn't have that unique pull.

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Efesell

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@tiggytog: I mean..sure okay. I'm not going to watch Angry Joe. I guess some youtubers found it a viable comparison. Or perhaps understood that "The Dark Souls of.." was a popular comparison to anything and made videos about it.

Either way I still don't think it works.

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@haz_kaj: DS:R has about the same effort put into it as the Dogma remasters. :/

Also I'm sorry but Dragon's Dogma is WAY more innovative and unique then Dark Souls.

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@efesell: I'm not saying they're incredibly similar games, but I think they're similar enough to be compared.

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GuardianBob87

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They are not similar enough for objective comparison, IMO.

  • Open world - Zones
  • Party - One character
  • Quest log and map - A player with functioning memory
  • Async multiplayer - Async & Sync multiplayer
  • Normal reload on death - Death penalty

The parent categories they have in common are basically "RPG" and "Fantasy", which is a uselessly giant abyss going from Baldur's Gate to World of Warcraft.

A better question might have been the clearly subjective "Which one do you prefer?".

I love both of these games. DD is fresher to me (2020) but I also did my second playthrough of DS this year. I'm going to echo the sentiment that I'm more excited for a DD2 announcement but not because it's better. It's because I've played 3 DS games, Sekiro, and still have Bloodborne and DeS on my plate when I get a PS5, so I'm loaded up on Souls-likes for a good while (and Elden Ring might be very Souls-like).

If I look at their outcomes as objectively as possible, Dark Souls now has a genre keyed after it: Souls-like (and yes, it's consistently distinct enough from the Metroidvania genre). Most of my friends know Dark Souls and almost none of them have heard of Dragon's Dogma.

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geirr

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Now I might just be a dog but these games are too different to compare for me,
and I don't care if someone prefers the one over the other.

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#27  Edited By TiggyTog

@guardianbob87: I think them being Action-RPG's should be enough, it shouldn't matter what they FOCUS on, it should matter what kind of genre they are, that's just what I believe.

You're welcome to believe different though, thats just what I personally believe and I think I have that right, haha.

Besides, fun factor is one of the biggest things that come up in comparison, and that's always 100% subjective.

If you compare them walking side-by-side, their base attacks, special attacks, comparing grounded combat and such they can be compared openly enough.

I like to say, play a game side-by-side and if they look too odd next to one another, they can't be compared.

Like, example, Left 4 Dead and Dead Island, both zombie games but way too different to be compared.

This is something in the same exact genre, it shouldn't matter what they were going for and if they have a different FEEL, it should matter more what they look like side-by-side when compared directly visually. That's just how I personally feel.

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someoneproud

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@geirr: Who's a good boy?Yes you are, yes you are! *scratches ear*

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TiggyTog

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#29  Edited By TiggyTog

Jesus the votes tho lol.

Over on gamefaqs Dogma was beating Souls:

https://gamefaqs.gamespot.com/boards/189706-nintendo-switch/78150578

https://gamefaqs.gamespot.com/boards/691087-playstation-4/78406774

https://gamefaqs.gamespot.com/boards/927750-playstation-3/68153449

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darkmoney52

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Eh, it doesnt have to be apple's to apple's to enjoy comparing them.

I would generally prefer dogma just for having similar highs, without some of the extreme lows of the original dark souls.

Love em both though.

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TiggyTog

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#31  Edited By TiggyTog

@darkmoney52: I wouldn't say Dogma is "without extreme lows".

The world, while beautiful, doesn't have nearly as much to discover as say, Skyrim. It's not a bad open-world by any means, but it isn't filled to the brim with detail as it should be, it's also very small in comparison to most video game worlds.

The story and especially the characters and sidequests have many issues, but the story does close off very well, excellent ending.

Monster placement can be annoying, it's very hard to find rarer enemies outside of Bitterblack Isle.

Fast Travel comes in early if you get the Eternal Ferrystone as soon as you get to Gran Soren, but unless you're hunting for Portcrystals the journey will still have some very long slogs from point A to point B.

Game has trouble nailing the JUST right difficulty, you're usually almost always severely underpowered or severely overpowered.

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_Brojangles_

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#32  Edited By _Brojangles_

I think Dragon’s Dogma has aged infinitely better than any of the Souls games. The combat in Dragon’s Dogma is still top of its class in regards to open world RPG combat. I look fondly back on the atmosphere of the early souls games, but I think the souls gameplay loop doesn’t hold up as well.

I think the influence Souls games have had on the industry are better than the games themselves, and Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls came out at the perfect time to capitalize on a market that was absolutely sick of excessive hand-holding in games and being treated like fucking morons.

They really were a desperately needed breath of fresh air. But I could probably go the rest of my life not playing another one at this point. I feel like that style of game has run its course.

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Ryuku_Ryosake

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To quote myself from a GOTY list I did.

If the monkey paw came to me with the wish that the game industry picked up on Dragon's Dogma's design at the cost of the Souls games being forever ignored. I might take that wish.

I think they are very different games. But of the Japanese Action RPGs of that era I think Dragon's Dogma had the better ideas that would have made for better games if they were picked up on by other studios. Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order is the only Souls like not made by From that I have liked and it had nothing to do with it being a Souls like and just being a competent Star Wars games.

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Markus1395

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I have purchased Dragon's Dogma four times (Once when it came out, once when Dark Arisen came out, once when it came to PC, and once as a gift) and currently have 315 hours into it on Steam alone. It is in my top 5 games of all time.

I suffered through Dark Souls exactly once, mainly due to a mix of stubbornness and love for Demon's Souls. I hope to never play it again.

So while I mainly agree with most of the people in this thread saying that they're really not easy to compare (or even SHOULD be compared, despite what a bunch of trashy Youtubers say for hits) for numerous reasons, It's Dragons Dogma. All day. One is one of my all-time favorite games, and one is a game I wish I didn't waste my time playing.

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TiggyTog

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I just think, art-style, where they were made, the implications of the story...

I think you can compare linear and open-ended games. To me those aren't apples to oranges.

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fisk0

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#38 fisk0  Moderator

Of these two I'd probably go with Dragon's Dogma. If it were between DD and Demon's Souls I'd lean Souls though. The Souls games are incredible, but as a sequel/spinoff, I don't think Dark Souls improved much on the original, and Dragon's Dogma kinda does what Dark Souls tried to do with Demon's Souls and did it better.

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Christoffer

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I like Dragon's Dogma but I don't think I remember anything about it. Catching a thief? Killing wolves? Getting told you're soaked in something?

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BoOzak

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I feel like Dark Souls has been compared to pretty much everything at this point but I agree with the general sentiment that theres a lot more potential in a sequel to DD but DS is the better more realized game.

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Rejizzle

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I like Dragon's Dogma but I don't think I remember anything about it. Catching a thief? Killing wolves? Getting told you're soaked in something?

Yeah, the game was pretty subtle in its dialogue. If you missed a line there was a good chance you would never hear it again.

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Christoffer

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@rejizzle said:
@christoffer said:

I like Dragon's Dogma but I don't think I remember anything about it. Catching a thief? Killing wolves? Getting told you're soaked in something?

Yeah, the game was pretty subtle in its dialogue. If you missed a line there was a good chance you would never hear it again.

Sorry, must've missed the line that made any boss fight good... except the Hydra fight, that was fun

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Efesell

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