posted by palumatzu (SAN ANTONIO, TX) Jan 18, 2013
Member since Feb 2011
When I played this, I felt like I was playing Mario Party a lot. You go around, fighting monsters in control of towns. When you defeat a given monster in control of that town, the town starts producing tax for you, which you have to collect, either by landing on that town, or by landing on certain game board spots. The rub comes in the multiplayer aspect. Alone? Then get the exceedingly broken AI to play with you. Either way, the base premise is you go around, grinding for levels and money, trying to keep your combat levels ahead of your opponents. Whoever has a superior combat level is destined to win out-- Having more money does not mean you have an advantage, it just means your standing in first place. Sound confusing? Then try racking up over a million gold coins, only to have your opponent come and beat you into coughing it all up. And then there's the towns--oh, the towns. Beating the monsters in control of them makes you the governor, and makes that town's worth go to your final score, which in the end determines who wins the game. After all this, there's luck. Sometimes, even the strongest player can fall to last place with a little bad luck. I did not like this game, and if you don't like fighting to cheap-shot your opponent with out receiving cheap shots in turn, then neither will you.
As usual, Atlus has delivered a unique game which doesn't fall into the usual genres. The best summary I can give is that Dokapon Kingdom is like the board game Life if it were an RPG. On the one hand you have a class, level, stats, equipment, etc., but on the other hand you move around on a board and land on spaces which give you random battles, new items, gold, and so on. Your goal is to end the game with more stuff ("Life points") than any other character.
Unfortunately, this game is undone by all of the details. There is too much randomness and chaos in the game, the battle system is not fair or well-balanced, and the game is extremely confusing and somewhat aimless when you are getting started. The rock/paper/scissors style battles are not a suitable battle system for an RPG, the random chance of who acts first in a battle or what numbers you roll can make a huge difference in the game, and good luck figuring out any of the game's details and nuances without using an online guide of some kind. I really wanted to like this game, but instead I found it frustrating, confusing, and unpredictable.
In addition, it's worth noting that the game is much more fun with more than one player. The one player game is simply the multi-player game with AIs controlling the other player(s). At least if you are playing with other humans, you can enjoy the ups and downs, enjoy harassing and pranking your friend's character, and maybe even enjoy when you are undone by a frustrating bit of random chance. Against an AI, none of these things are very fun, and the game falls especially flat.
If you've got 1-3 RPG lovers who'll dedicate some time playing with you, if you really love board games, or if you love to see something unique and different, this might be worth a rent, but otherwise I'd skip it.