Dragon Quest XII: The Flames of Fate is in development. Square Enix recently announced the latest entry in its long-running Japanese role-playing game (JRPG) franchise, claiming that it would tell a more "adult" story, and put player choices first and foremost.
If you're worried about Dragon Quest XII taking the series too far from its upbeat, family-friendly roots, then don't worry: Square Enix also announced Dragon Quest III HD-2D, a gorgeous remake of fan-favorite Dragon Quest III.
We learned about these games, as well as a handful of other Dragon Quest titles, during the Dragon Quest 35th Anniversary Special livestream, which aired on May 26. This marks the first time a Dragon Quest livestream had official English subtitles, which is a big deal for Western fans of the series. If you missed the livestream, you can rewatch the whole hourlong presentation on YouTube.
First, the big news: Dragon Quest XII: The Flames of Fate is in the works. This is the first main entry in the series since Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age in 2017. According to Square Enix, the game will have a "new" battle system, as well as a story that takes player choices into account. The series has never really experimented with that feature before. The game will also target an older audience, in contrast to the bright, happy games in the series so far. (Although, to be fair, many Dragon Quest stories start out that way, and get plenty dark before the end.) Otherwise, all we have right now is a logo.
Dragon Quest III HD-2D
We have more substantial information about Dragon Quest III HD-2D. This game is a remake of Dragon Quest III, which debuted in 1988, and which Square Enix has re-released many times since then. At present, you can play an updated version on both smartphones and the Nintendo Switch.
By contrast, Dragon Quest III HD-2D looks like a ground-up reworking, particularly when it comes to graphics. The game resembles Octopath Traveler, with high-resolution sprites, multi-tiered environments and a soft-focus filter that gives the whole production a storybook angle. The battle system seems to be the same turn-based affair as before, although this time, you can actually see your characters, rather than just the enemies.
Square Enix also touched on a few other titles, including Dragon Quest Treasures and Dragon Quest X Offline. The former is a spinoff starring supporting characters from Dragon Quest XI. The latter, though, is an offline version of the Dragon Quest X MMO, currently available only in Japan. If the offline version launches worldwide, Western fans would finally get a chance to play Dragon Quest X.
There is one drawback in all this news, however: Square Enix didn't announce platforms or release dates for any of these games. Dragon Quest XI was available on PlayStation, Xbox, PC and Switch, so hopefully the next suite of games will follow suit.