Dragon Quest XI S Review – Nintendo Switch

With only a month before its full game release, the Dragon Quest XI S demo that was announced earlier this month can now be downloaded on the Nintendo eShop. I’m glad that I’ve been able to try out and review the game myself.

I immediately felt the excitement upon starting the game on my Nintendo Switch. The launch scene gives a brief overview of how the story will move forward throughout the game, which is very interesting and intriguing. The title screen is also very nice and gives a bit of a “nostalgic” feeling. I’m not sure if it’s just because Dragon Quest is a game that became popular during my childhood, or it’s something with the art style that was used.


The gameplay itself is amazing. The battle style is still fun and full of action despite it being a traditional turn-based combat. I like the idea of being able to roam around the area while waiting for my turn to attack, despite it not having any effect on the result of the fight itself (or does it make a difference? None that I noticed though).

I was also impressed by the fast character movements in this game. It allows me to move quickly from one place to another. By holding the ZR button on the Nintendo Switch’s pro controller, I was able to make my character dash and run faster, allowing me to travel the vast world of Dragon Quest easier without getting bored. Also, running faster in this game isn’t limited by “energy” or “stamina” of some sort (looking at you, Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild). Kidding aside, I also love that game!

Battle Style

Leveling up is a bit difficult at the start, however, as skipping battles is relatively easy in this game. As an impatient gamer who just wants to get into action as soon as possible, and with the very enchanting story of Dragon Quest XI that makes me want to immediately jump from one scene to another, I made the mistake of skipping every possible battle needed to grow my character stronger. Unlike traditional turn-based RPGs with random encounter mechanics which makes fights mandatory as you roam through the game, Dragon Quest gives you the ability to see (and avoid) the enemies before engaging with them.

Overall, I was very fascinated with this game, as it gave me more than what I was expecting from it. With my very busy work schedule and impatient nature, I never thought I would be able to enjoy a turn-based RPG again.

Additional information:

The full demo of Dragon Quest XI S will take at least 10 hours of gameplay – may take more if you’re a completionist and wants to finish every side quests currently available on the demo. It would also allow you to transfer your progress to the full game once it is released.

Also, playing this demo won’t just give you a head start on the full game. As per Nintendo, the save data from the full game and this demo will unlock the “Tockle” spirit in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. 

The file size of the demo is around 4.7 GB and can now be downloaded on North America, Europe, and Japan eShop.

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