Digimon World Dusk – NDS – Review

Hey, where did my kick-butt team
go? I’m slow, so it took me a little while to figure out what had happened
when abruptly midway through the introductory part of the game, I noticed that
my Digimon were a lot weaker than before.
Apparently, a nasty virus has attacked the Digimon
world, and subsequently, most of the Digimon have
devolved, including yours truly. <Sigh> Oh well,
easy come, easy go, as I hadn’t actually trained these guys.

Well, that’s about it, as far as
the story goes. There’s a virus attack, the Digimon
have devolved, and the trainers have to get busy training their
Digimon back to full strength. Along the way,
they’ll be very busy running lots of errands for various
, and taking care of their personal Digimon
on the farm islands.

I’m new to the
Digimon franchise and most of my previous RPG
battle games have been Pokemon editions. So, I
can’t really compare Digimon World Dusk and World
Dawn (two editions with different monsters, but same game) to previous
Digimon games. Unfortunately for this franchise, I
can compare it to the current Pokemon phenomena
known as Pearl and Diamond. While there are some features that are implemented
better in Digimon World Dusk than in Pearl and
Diamond, the bottom line is that Digimon Dusk just
isn’t quite as fun to play as Pokemon

Essentially, this is a turn-based
battle RPG, where the bulk of the game is spent fighting the
Digimon in teams against other
Digimon. These battles take place either in the
wild with randomly encountered wild Digimon, or
are official events in the Coliseum. The battle system is one of the features
that is designed efficiently and is better implemented and more interesting
than in Pokemon. Here, the creatures are lined up
in order of turns on the left side of the screen, superimposed on top of the
actual battle screen. Each creature’s stats are listed with the creature, and
the battle moves with their stats are listed on the right as the different
battle moves are iterated. The creatures look better than in
Pokemon during the battles, too.

The points earned during battle
will be awarded across the board to all the Pokemon
in the party. However, each opponent will lend their unique flavor to the type
of points awarded, depending on what type of monster they are.

When not fighting in battles,
trainers will spend much of their time being errand boy or girl. There are
lots of quests to undertake, and at first they are fairly engaging. However,
they are disconnected from each other and from the game, so over time they
become boring. It’s more fun to uncover the hidden items found in the
different dungeons while on the quests, than to solve the particular quest.
And, these quests most often involve dungeon crawls through endless dead-end
tunnels populated by tons of wild Digimon. This
means that players will get stuck fighting endless battles as they try to
maneuver out of the dungeon and back into civilization.

There is a lot of dialogue
to click through, and this is one of the downfalls of the game. It’s not much
fun to keep hitting the “A” button repeatedly in the hope everyone will
shut-up and just get on with the game advancement. It would help if the
dialogue was actually cute or interesting, but it’s not.

World Dusk has a neat system for raising Digimon:
They are placed on “Farm Islands” and evolved while there. This requires much
upgrades to the islands, which is a pretty cool method for earning and using
items and upgrades. The islands themselves can be upgraded, and a ton of
things can be added to aid in evolving the Digimon.
Evolving the Digimon via this system is involved
and engaging.

Overall, this is a good RPG that
is typical of the genre and exemplifies much that is good. Evolving and
leveling up the Digimon is treated well and
involves a good amount of time and strategy. The items that can be found
during the quests are fun, too. However, the gameplay
isn’t very exciting after awhile, due to an overabundance of dialogue and
fighting in the dungeons, and not enough substance to the overall story
elements. A slightly above average RPG that could have
been better with more variety and story.

Review Scoring Details


Digimon World Dusk

Gameplay: 7.0
The battle system is well-implemented and
interesting. Using the Farm Islands to upgrade and evolve the
Digimon is engaging as well. The interface is
easy, and offers a lot of information and stats about the
and other items. The gameplay could
have been more interesting overall if there were more elements to the story,
and a larger variety of types of quests.

Graphics: 8.0
The Digimon all look great, but the
environments are somewhat sparse.

Sound: 6.0
The sound is fairly average.

Difficulty: Medium
The game isn’t difficult, except in the lack of
instruction in the beginning.

Concept: 7.0
liked the Farm Island

Multiplayer: 8.0

Battling other players is easy with the Wi-Fi
connection and the Wireless mode. Players can also trade their
Digimon, and even send their
to the other players’ farms!

Overall: 7.5
This RPG series is pretty popular, and this edition is a good game in its
own right. The Digimon are varied and plentiful,
and the dual process of evolving them is interesting. The battle system is
fun, and the stats and other information is easy to find and understand.
However, there is way too much dialogue, especially in the beginning, and not
enough variety. Quests that tie into a bigger story would be more interesting,
and more things to do like farm or fish would have been fun.