Dragon Quest Builders 2 review: Building on success

Dragon Quest Builders 2 review: Building on success

The three-decade-old Dragon Quest franchise loves its traditions. While Final Fantasy has never been afraid to depart from its roots, there are big parts of Dragon Quest XI that are directly drawn from the very first Dragon Quest NES game from 1986.

So when 2016’s Dragon Quest Builders successfully combined the art, story, and general aesthetic with the open-world Lego-style building of Minecraft (itself seven years old at the time), it was paradoxically fresh. The games share exploration, crafting, and an intentional retro streak, and those elements formed the foundation of a short, sometimes limited, but ultimately entertaining game.

The game did well enough to make Dragon Quest Builders 2 a thing, and it’s a game that does what good sequels do. It gives you more of what its predecessor did well—both

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Dealmaster: Sony and Microsoft launch a bunch of PS4 and Xbox deals ahead of E3

Dealmaster: Sony and Microsoft launch a bunch of PS4 and Xbox deals ahead of E3

Enlarge / The limited-edition PS4 Sony has launched for its E3 sale this year. (credit: Sony)

This weekend marks the unofficial start of E3, the most prominent video game trade event in the United States. Ars will be at the show again, and this year’s edition is expected to be somewhat muted compared to years past, what with Sony joining Nintendo in foregoing a formal presence at the event. There should still be plenty of news and new game footage for industry watchers to digest, however.

For those who are just interested in playing games, though, E3 has also become an excuse for game companies to hold sales events. Sony and Microsoft both rolled out big promotions this time last year—and apparently, their efforts went well. On Friday, the two once again kicked off sweeping sets of discounts for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One owners, respectively.

The deals apply to

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Kojima’s Death Stranding gets November 8 release date, wackadoo trailer [Updated]

Kojima’s Death Stranding gets November 8 release date, wackadoo trailer [Updated]

Video game auteur Hideo Kojima’s first game since leaving Konami, Death Stranding, finally has a release date: November 8 for PlayStation 4 consoles. The news came at the end of the game’s most revealing “gameplay” trailer yet, though as you might expect from the enigmatic Kojima, Wednesday’s trailer raised more questions than it answered.

Yes, we’ve seen long and utterly confusing trailers for this game before, but this one comes with a semblance of a plot anchor. From what we can tell, the game revolves around a United States that has been torn asunder by some kind of plague or extinction event. The hero, Sam, played by actor Norman Reedus, is asked by the president “to help us reconnect, to make America whole.” To which the character Sam replies, “You’re the President of jack shit.”

Yet clearly Sam

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