During our time at Tokyo Game Show 2023, we got the opportunity to speak with Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince producer Kento Yokota in an interview, prior to the game’s launch on 1st December 2023.
Dragon Quest Monsters
The first question we asked Yokota was what sets Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince apart from other Dragon Quest titles.
Yokota replied by saying that this title is one of the Monsters spin off title, and that the main thing that sets this title apart from other games is that the Monster take center stage.
“What we do is in the previous games the story was that we would beat the monsters, right? But in this series we take them on our side and fight together, and that’s what we do. That is what is sets us apart this game apart from the other game and that’s what make this game attractive over the other games.” he said.
The synthesis system is a big part of the Dragon Quest Monsters titles, We asked Yokota if there were any new features implemented in the synthesis system or were there any changed made from the previous games.
Simply put, Yokota said that the core system hasn’t been changed. But that also meant that they haven’t changed the fun aspect of the synthesis system. However, they did alter some of the recipes where fusing monsters might yield different results.
Considering how the game has different theme environments that players can interact with, we asked Yokota what was the inspiration behind each of these designs as well as its interactive elements?
Yokota mentioned that the environments in this version has more characteristics, is due to the team wanting to do something different since it’s Dragon Quest’s 25th anniversary.
“We want to change how it looks, the motive. We want to therefore try something different like where to position the monsters, how to blend things in. That’s what we wanted to do. So we wanted try something different, more refreshing to see when you see the field. That’s what we wanted to bring about and that’s what we did.”
Amount of Monsters
Considering how the game is bringing in an impressive amount of monsters. We asked Yokota what was the process when deciding how many monsters to bring in this title.
Yokoto mentioned that the development team would choose monsters from the vast pool they’ve accumulated from past titles.
“For every new title that we come up with, we always make sure we have new monsters that are brought into each title and one of the most popular ones everyone knows about slime. We always make sure that we have a sub species of slime or subgroup of slime that is a new one that comes out with each new title and so on. So that’s what we all are always working on.” he continued.
For fans who may have grown up with the series, we asked Yokota which aspects of nostalgia have the team aimed to capture in Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince.
“We had the synthesis system from back way back then. And that system of synthesis that is you take two monster, blend it together, get one monster that has not changed. Then from down in the road we came out with Joker and we changed the synthesis system a little there. And that Joker series it went up to the went 1,2,3 then it ended.”
“Then after that we did was the 98 Game Boy, Terry’s Wonderland came out on Game Boy in 98 and we try to do something that blends that with that synthesis system, with the Joker synthesis system to come out with something new. And we’ve been trying to come up with a synthesis then for monsters that is different from before.” he replied.
As a fun question, we asked Yokota what was his favourite aspect in Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince.
“In the newest title we have more like newer fields, newer seasonality elements, season field elements and each come with a variety of monsters and you are in each of the fields and each of the seasonal scenes, come across those monsters you have to catch them, make new monsters out of it and that’s what you can do.” he replied.
To cap off the interview, Yokota had a few words to say:
“Dragon Quest is a game that was came out of Japan. In Japan it’s quite popular. But I think there’s a lot of people still in Southeast Asia who haven’t really played with the game yet. And this new title is the spin off monsters. So even if you haven’t played the main game, the Dragon Quest game, you could still enjoy monsters.”
“It’s developed and designed in that way and there’s a lot of various monsters that come up with the title. You could play with them have fun there’s one monsters that are not even in the main game that you could play with. You could collect them make them fight there’s the that’s the fun of the game. So please do try it out. It’s also something that you could just play. You could play it as a light game, not so seriously as well if you wanted to. It’s versatile.”
We would like to thank Kento Yokota for taking the time to answer our questions regarding Dragon Quest Monsters: The Dark Prince.
The game is set to launch on 1st December 2023 on the Nintendo Switch.