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ErdrickRotoLotoOrtega

Is the world in this game a bit small or it just me? (Question for those who beat this game)

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I've felt this way since the first promo image dropped two years ago and I feel this way after playing the demo: Is the world map smaller than the other 3D Dragon Quest games or is it just me?

As a newcomer to DQXI, I can only guess that most of the land masses are interconnected due to the roots of the Yggdrasil tree appearing throughout the land but what of the small size? Does the map simply not do the size of this world justice? Is there more than meets the eye? Just curious because I see many people claiming the game takes 70-100 hours to beat. That's roughly DQVII territory in terms of size.

Can anyone shed some light on this?

 

PS: I should note that it doesn't necessarily bother me that the world may be smaller than some of the other 3D games this time around--I'm just curious if it actually IS at all.

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It’s not small. There is plenty to explore. Don’t judge it before you can fully play the game.

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10 minutes ago, YangustheLegendaryBandit said:

It’s not small. There is plenty to explore. Don’t judge it before you can fully play the game.

That's reassuring.

Also, I'm not really judging it yet, hence why I'm questioning my own perception of the map. Just genuinely curious.

I WILL judge one thing, though, from what I've noticed:

I'm a bit disappointed about the screen transitions. One thing I loved about DQVIII was how you could explore very large chunks of land without ever having a screen transition. In fact--I seem to recall exploring entire continents seamlessly. The screen would only transition if I entered a town/cave/etc. In DQXI demo, I've noticed the game has lost some of that seamless feeling from VIII and transitions quite often while traversing the terrain. While this isn't something that I hold much against the game, it makes me wish it was more seamless like VIII's terrain. Not a huge deal for me--just personal preference.

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I'd say it's smaller than DQVIII, but that's maybe about it. It's large enough.

Know that you'll be going through the world 3 times if you do the 100 hours. It's not a 100 hour map. It's maybe a 40 hour map. The rest is spent revisiting for story reasons with other dungeons and stuff open.

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It's smaller than open world games people play. The thing is, though, is DQ 11 uses its space right and makes the world feel the size it needs to be.

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1 hour ago, Plattym3 said:

I'd say it's smaller than DQVIII, but that's maybe about it. It's large enough.

Know that you'll be going through the world 3 times if you do the 100 hours. It's not a 100 hour map. It's maybe a 40 hour map. The rest is spent revisiting for story reasons with other dungeons and stuff open.

NOW it's all making more sense...

Given the fact that this is Dragon Quest and no one is complaining about repetition, I'm assuming these map retreads are full of unique experiences. It's Dragon Quest, after all--I've never felt bored backtracking in a Dragon Quest game.

40 minutes ago, cprmauldin said:

Didn't feel all that small to me. 

Good to know. Thanks!

1 minute ago, DrippySlimeStar said:

It's smaller than open world games people play. The thing is, though, is DQ 11 uses its space right and makes the world feel the size it needs to be.

I don't doubt that for a second. :)

Thanks for the input, guys!

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It feels smaller because of how segmented the regions are. But playing through the game I didn't feel like it was too cramped or large. The game had a good use of the space in the world map. Also the world feels a lot larger when you are able to start sailing.

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20 hours ago, Twinkie said:

It feels smaller because of how segmented the regions are. But playing through the game I didn't feel like it was too cramped or large. The game had a good use of the space in the world map. Also the world feels a lot larger when you are able to start sailing.

Yeah, I don't care for the severe segmentation of the regions so far. VIII wasn't like this--felt much more seamless and open. XI feels a bit more cramped with the segmented regions style. Again, not a huge deal to me but it takes something away in my opinion.

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13 hours ago, ErdrickRotoLotoOrtega said:

Yeah, I don't care for the severe segmentation of the regions so far. VIII wasn't like this--felt much more seamless and open. XI feels a bit more cramped with the segmented regions style. Again, not a huge deal to me but it takes something away in my opinion.

If you want to build a detailed world, that's a requirement (even on PC...look at shooters with seemless worlds, and sandbox games, they have very minimal distinction between "different" environments within the same map, so still usually cut to cutscenes, then load up brand new environments when it's needed as it's a lot to work out the details for vastly different forms of trees/foliage/rocks/dirt/grass/etc).

8 uses techniques where the models are very simplistic, and repetitive.  It's why all areas use the same sand/grass tiles/trees (3 sizes)/foliage.  It allows for a lot more to be loaded, and to use low-grade models worked in a way where it doesn't appear they're very low-grade until you get up close to them, and cleverly designed hillsides and curves in the landscape, on top of having very few monsters on the landscape.

If you look at other games with highly detailed models, actual textures on the PS2, detailed foliage, detailed rocks, distinct types of flora and fauna, distinct types of trees, distinct types of environments, a lack of repeated tile patterns, and instead a fully uniquely developed ground specific to each area, they're closed off to subsections.

FF10, FF12, both require being split into sections due to the level of detail (and 12 has monsters that appear on the world map).

WRPG's have more pop-in with more details, even on higher end-systems, because they're writing and dumping constantly from RAM, but that's a difficult technique to get right and assure a solid 30+ or 60+ FPS.

DQ11's world has a LOT...and I mean a LOT of detail, and a lot of distinct environs.  This would not be possible with DQ8's style of world map.  They would have to cut down on almost half the detail, then work out tricks to dump distinct environments, and make transitional write/dump sections, and rehash the same flora and fauna with little variance between them (they couldn't create individual trees as appear in DQ11...yeah, each and every tree is individual in the PS4/PC, but they're not in the Switch due to RAM and processor limitations while maintaining 30FPS).

While back on the PS2, DQ8's world worked, because is still looked superior to a PSX game, and it still looked quite good, and because of the method of modeling made trees and tiles look similar to cell-shading, without using cell-shading, it fit.  However in DQ11 it would look terrible due to the textures and level of detail present on the character models.  It just wouldn't fit, and would seem like a cheap quality world map with high-grade models.  It would likely feel off and ugly, and avoid the thing I adore about DQ11's world...the distinct environs, their detail, and the sheer volume of work put into each part of the world.  There's a lot of love in DQ11's world design that never shows up in DQ8's design.  It doesn't really seem bland, but after a lot of running around DQ8 over and over again, having the exact same trees everywhere, same foliage everywhere, same grass tiles everywhere, same hill tiles everywhere, same mountain tiles everywhere, same sand tiles everywhere...it works but it's boring and ugly.  DQ11 feels more alive, feels like a real world to me, and so if I have to handle having transitions between sections to make that a reality, I'm happy to do so.  FF12 was annoying for this as well, but wow did I love the unique environs and appreciate the amount of work that went into each section of the game.  It just feels more like an actual world rather than a cookie-cutter carbon copy.

Maybe with the PS5 we might finally see seemless worlds with high levels of detail.  Or maybe the DQ team picks up some tricks from the Western game designers, and comes up with a nice compromise for transitional sections where we're still moving through the world as previous sections are dumped and new sections are written into RAM.  However even with Western game designs, the world environs are more like DQ8...just more variety in terms of foliage, trees, rocks, etc, but nothing truly...distinct or unique, just a greater range of models.  Morrowind doesn't count, as the distinct environs aren't that distinct.  It's why Oblivion looks the same EVERYWHERE.  Same with Skyrim, same with Witcher 1, 2, and 3, same with Dragon's Dogma, and the list goes on and on and on.  So I guess it would be nice to see Western developers use their tricks of the trade, and aim for more distinct environs and learn to transitional sections with fixed models that load up front as the previous are dumped.

====

I mean I get why you like.  It does feel less stifling having that seemless transition, but it is a give and take.  So I would say, instead of looking at it from the perspective of what you wish was present, look at it from the perspective of what you get out of it.  What it allows for, and the amount of work put into assuring each section is distinct in shape, size, hill formations, rock formations, tree sizes and forms, etc.  That might help drive home an appreciation for it, and make the experience more enjoyable.

Edited by ignasia
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On 9/20/2019 at 11:24 PM, ignasia said:

If you want to build a detailed world, that's a requirement (even on PC...look at shooters with seemless worlds, and sandbox games, they have very minimal distinction between "different" environments within the same map, so still usually cut to cutscenes, then load up brand new environments when it's needed as it's a lot to work out the details for vastly different forms of trees/foliage/rocks/dirt/grass/etc).

8 uses techniques where the models are very simplistic, and repetitive.  It's why all areas use the same sand/grass tiles/trees (3 sizes)/foliage.  It allows for a lot more to be loaded, and to use low-grade models worked in a way where it doesn't appear they're very low-grade until you get up close to them, and cleverly designed hillsides and curves in the landscape, on top of having very few monsters on the landscape.

If you look at other games with highly detailed models, actual textures on the PS2, detailed foliage, detailed rocks, distinct types of flora and fauna, distinct types of trees, distinct types of environments, a lack of repeated tile patterns, and instead a fully uniquely developed ground specific to each area, they're closed off to subsections.

FF10, FF12, both require being split into sections due to the level of detail (and 12 has monsters that appear on the world map).

WRPG's have more pop-in with more details, even on higher end-systems, because they're writing and dumping constantly from RAM, but that's a difficult technique to get right and assure a solid 30+ or 60+ FPS.

DQ11's world has a LOT...and I mean a LOT of detail, and a lot of distinct environs.  This would not be possible with DQ8's style of world map.  They would have to cut down on almost half the detail, then work out tricks to dump distinct environments, and make transitional write/dump sections, and rehash the same flora and fauna with little variance between them (they couldn't create individual trees as appear in DQ11...yeah, each and every tree is individual in the PS4/PC, but they're not in the Switch due to RAM and processor limitations while maintaining 30FPS).

While back on the PS2, DQ8's world worked, because is still looked superior to a PSX game, and it still looked quite good, and because of the method of modeling made trees and tiles look similar to cell-shading, without using cell-shading, it fit.  However in DQ11 it would look terrible due to the textures and level of detail present on the character models.  It just wouldn't fit, and would seem like a cheap quality world map with high-grade models.  It would likely feel off and ugly, and avoid the thing I adore about DQ11's world...the distinct environs, their detail, and the sheer volume of work put into each part of the world.  There's a lot of love in DQ11's world design that never shows up in DQ8's design.  It doesn't really seem bland, but after a lot of running around DQ8 over and over again, having the exact same trees everywhere, same foliage everywhere, same grass tiles everywhere, same hill tiles everywhere, same mountain tiles everywhere, same sand tiles everywhere...it works but it's boring and ugly.  DQ11 feels more alive, feels like a real world to me, and so if I have to handle having transitions between sections to make that a reality, I'm happy to do so.  FF12 was annoying for this as well, but wow did I love the unique environs and appreciate the amount of work that went into each section of the game.  It just feels more like an actual world rather than a cookie-cutter carbon copy.

Maybe with the PS5 we might finally see seemless worlds with high levels of detail.  Or maybe the DQ team picks up some tricks from the Western game designers, and comes up with a nice compromise for transitional sections where we're still moving through the world as previous sections are dumped and new sections are written into RAM.  However even with Western game designs, the world environs are more like DQ8...just more variety in terms of foliage, trees, rocks, etc, but nothing truly...distinct or unique, just a greater range of models.  Morrowind doesn't count, as the distinct environs aren't that distinct.  It's why Oblivion looks the same EVERYWHERE.  Same with Skyrim, same with Witcher 1, 2, and 3, same with Dragon's Dogma, and the list goes on and on and on.  So I guess it would be nice to see Western developers use their tricks of the trade, and aim for more distinct environs and learn to transitional sections with fixed models that load up front as the previous are dumped.

====

I mean I get why you like.  It does feel less stifling having that seemless transition, but it is a give and take.  So I would say, instead of looking at it from the perspective of what you wish was present, look at it from the perspective of what you get out of it.  What it allows for, and the amount of work put into assuring each section is distinct in shape, size, hill formations, rock formations, tree sizes and forms, etc.  That might help drive home an appreciation for it, and make the experience more enjoyable.

Wow...thank you for laying out such a detailed explanation! I'll admit, I know zilch when it comes to the technical specifics of 3D games. Now that I thnk of it--VIII's map is definitely not as diverse in its presentation as XI. XI has large gorges, deep, winding valleys, caves carved right into mountains, etc. None of that was as pronounced in VIII that I think of it.

If that's the case, I prefer XI's style then if I must have a trade off. I love the lush, vibrant, wildly diverse environments in XI.

Thanks for the explanation. Makes me think of Breath of the Wild and other games in an entirely different way now.  :thumbsup:

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11 hours ago, ErdrickRotoLotoOrtega said:

Wow...thank you for laying out such a detailed explanation!

Grow accustomed to that from him.

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1 hour ago, AustNerevar said:

Grow accustomed to that from him.

Yeah...I realize it takes a lot of time to read my posts.  Most of them, not all.

Edited by ignasia

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Yeah...I realize it takes a lot of time to read my posts.  Most of them, not all.
Wait...this isn't allowed.
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19 hours ago, ignasia said:

Yeah...I realize it takes a lot of time to read my posts.  Most of them, not all.

I, for one, love it. 

 

You tend to provide unbiased, fact-based, detailed forms of analysis which others (myself included) are just too lazy to write. 

 

For that, I thank you. 

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26 minutes ago, cprmauldin said:

I, for one, love it. 

 

You tend to provide unbiased, fact-based, detailed forms of analysis which others (myself included) are just too lazy to write. 

 

For that, I thank you. 

Much love, bro.  Much love.

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22 hours ago, ignasia said:

Yeah...I realize it takes a lot of time to read my posts.  Most of them, not all.

Who doesn't enjoy a well-written, densely informational treatise on Dragon Quest material? I am a fan.

Edited by GrandAlchemist
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19 hours ago, ignasia said:

Much love, bro.  Much love.

We all have our little unofficial roles here in the Den. Yours is to be a trove of knowledge, mine is to hide in the corner and talk every once in a while.

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9 minutes ago, cprmauldin said:

We all have our little unofficial roles here in the Den. Yours is to be a trove of knowledge, mine is to hide in the corner and talk every once in a while.

WHO LET YOU OUT OF THE CORNER CAGE?!?! Get back in there!

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58 minutes ago, cprmauldin said:

We all have our little unofficial roles here in the Den. Yours is to be a trove of knowledge, mine is to hide in the corner and talk every once in a while.

Is the punching bag role taken? I am pretty good at that.

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On 9/24/2019 at 10:57 AM, YangustheLegendaryBandit said:

WHO LET YOU OUT OF THE CORNER CAGE?!?! Get back in there!

Oh okay. 

 

Freedom scared me anyhow. 

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Anyway, getting back on topic here, I'm thinking the reason why this world map looked smaller to was more out of the fact that most of it is one large land mass. Almost every other game in the series features numerous continents that are spread out over the map. This game's map is more like a giant Alefgard...which I like. This is something new.

Regardless, I'm thinking that's why it was deceiving me into thinking it was smaller: it's mostly an enclosed land mass. I realized that, if you took basically any of the maps from the previous games and cobbled the land masses together like this game it would be about the same size/content.

I have a theory on why the world map is designed like this: the Yggdrasil tree is rooted throughout the entire land. It explains why it is in a near central point of the map and seemingly "binding" the world. I guess I'll find out soon enough. ;) 

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...Ahem...

SO...

About what I said in this thread...yeah, not only am I happy to be wrong--I'm ecstatic to be INCREDIBLY wrong!

The map only LOOKS small in comparison to the others. It's only when you truly delve into the continents that your realize the sheer mammoth size of them. Good lord, this world is huge. Not only that--you spend HOURS in each section of the game. If anything, it's very similar to VII--go to a new location with a new story, spend HOURS there and onto the next...rinse and repeat...rinse and repeat...

Out of curiosity, I switched over to 2D mode and my jaw hit the floor. I had NO idea they were going to convert those large area maps into widespread 2D areas. I was thinking it would be more condensed than it was. Nope--the areas are MASSIVE even in 2D making this game's 2D map the absolute largest 2D world map in the series BY FAR.

Wow...what a behemoth of a world map!

And here I was, thinking it looked a bit small. LOL! I'm happy to be wrong! :thumbsup:

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...Ahem...
SO...
About what I said in this thread...yeah, not only am I happy to be wrong--I'm ecstatic to be INCREDIBLY wrong!
The map only LOOKS small in comparison to the others. It's only when you truly delve into the continents that your realize the sheer mammoth size of them. Good lord, this world is huge. Not only that--you spend HOURS in each section of the game. If anything, it's very similar to VII--go to a new location with a new story, spend HOURS there and onto the next...rinse and repeat...rinse and repeat...
Out of curiosity, I switched over to 2D mode and my jaw hit the floor. I had NO idea they were going to convert those large area maps into widespread 2D areas. I was thinking it would be more condensed than it was. Nope--the areas are MASSIVE even in 2D making this game's 2D map the absolute largest 2D world map in the series BY FAR.
Wow...what a behemoth of a world map!
And here I was, thinking it looked a bit small. LOL! I'm happy to be wrong! 
It is surprisingly small and big at the same time. The mechanic for shiny spots in 2D encourages you to really explore every corner of the 2D world. There's a long stretch/swamp between Gallopolis & Gondolia in 3D. They didn't make it a separate dungeon in 2D, just made it part of the world map. Holy crap, I spent an hour walking between them last night checking everything out!

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22 hours ago, Plattym3 said:
On 9/30/2019 at 12:11 AM, ErdrickRotoLotoOrtega said:
...Ahem...
SO...
About what I said in this thread...yeah, not only am I happy to be wrong--I'm ecstatic to be INCREDIBLY wrong!
The map only LOOKS small in comparison to the others. It's only when you truly delve into the continents that your realize the sheer mammoth size of them. Good lord, this world is huge. Not only that--you spend HOURS in each section of the game. If anything, it's very similar to VII--go to a new location with a new story, spend HOURS there and onto the next...rinse and repeat...rinse and repeat...
Out of curiosity, I switched over to 2D mode and my jaw hit the floor. I had NO idea they were going to convert those large area maps into widespread 2D areas. I was thinking it would be more condensed than it was. Nope--the areas are MASSIVE even in 2D making this game's 2D map the absolute largest 2D world map in the series BY FAR.
Wow...what a behemoth of a world map!
And here I was, thinking it looked a bit small. LOL! I'm happy to be wrong! emoji106.png

It is surprisingly small and big at the same time. The mechanic for shiny spots in 2D encourages you to really explore every corner of the 2D world. There's a long stretch/swamp between Gallopolis & Gondolia in 3D. They didn't make it a separate dungeon in 2D, just made it part of the world map. Holy crap, I spent an hour walking between them last night checking everything out!

Yes, that swamp was enormous. I think part of the reason I spent so much time there was because I was having a little too fun riding that mechanical bee. :P

That area looks like it could be rather punishing if you weren't properly leveled up. Even in the lower 20s, the enemies were a BIT tough there. Nothing too bad but that area was SWARMING with monsters.

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