(Wii)

Game Review

Dokapon Kingdom Review

USA USA Version

Posted by Stuart Reddick

Can the Dokapon Kingdom host a party for all ages?

In general, the Wii isn’t well-known for epic role-playing titles, nor is it famous for hardcore games. Though gamers are having fun playing Tales of Symphonia: Dawn of the New World, there hasn't been very much to quench gamer's thirst for RPG's. While Japanese Wii owners are getting a several neat looking role players, these is always some doubt about such text-heavy titles getting translated for English-speaking markets. It's obvious that Japanese gamers are particularly fond of the genre, but in other parts of the world there are fans just as hardcore. In what could be seen as an attempt to satisfy them, Atlus has stepped in with its RPG-themed Mario Party rip-off, Dokapon Kindgom.

In case you haven’t been following the Mario Party series, the games have been getting rather stale lately. Hoping to create an experience like no other, Atlus has decided to bring Dokapon Kingdom stateside. Trust me, Atlus’ take on the board-game genre is a lot more enjoyable than Nintendo’s.

Unlike many party games, Dokapon Kingdom doesn’t centre its gameplay on minigames, but rather fuses the party genre with the role-playing genre to create an experience like no other. Though the game doesn’t have IR support or motion control, it still feels like a perfect fit on the Wii. It's also worth pointing out that the game supports 480p and 16:9, something that the PS2 version lacks.

Dokapon Kingdom is played entirely on one single enormous board in which four players can go head-to-head to compete for bragging rights. Following in the Mario Party series footsteps, the game boasts just enough chance through dice and spinners to make it feel balanced, something that recent Mario Party games execute very poorly. The implementing of this gives the game a sort of casual feel by that there is a slim chance that a veteran may be beaten by a first-time player.

Outside of the 'party' section of the game, Dokapon Kingdom plays similar to a role-playing title in which players select a character and class for him/her before embarking on a great journey in which the king deals out objectives that must be completed. Each turn will have players casting spells, using items, spinning a spinner, travelling the allotted number of turns spun, and so on.

Scattered across the massive overworld are spaces for characters to land on after they have spun the spinner. These spaces can either benefit or harm the player. Some will give you cash and items whereas others will force you into a battle. In these events players can either attack or defend, and if the battle is not over after your turn, it is halted and resumed after the remaining three players have made their move.

Dokapon Kingdom certainly isn’t perfect, nor does it even come close. The graphics and audio are lacking in areas, and interface is just barely above par. Brown boxes are married to simple text in terms of presentation and the textures to rather blocky. Despite this, Dokapon Kingdom is still enjoyable; the customization aspect of the game separates it from other generic party games and gives it a welcome feeling of depth.

Conclusion

What many expected to be a rip-off of the Mario Party franchise has actually turned out to be a very fresh and strategic party game. It is a shame that this release will most likely be met with public indifference and poor sales, but at the end of the day it remains one of the best role-playing games on Wii - despite not actually being one! For those anxiously awaiting epic entries in other blockbuster franchises, Dokapon Kingdom may just be able to fill a gap and satisfy your appetite.

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User Comments (8)

thewiirocks

#1

thewiirocks said:

I think there's a bug with the stars. It appears to show 10 stars while the score says 8/10. If I stare at it really hard, I think the last two stars are supposed to be lighter colored, but the effect doesn't seem to come through. (Safari 3.1.2; Mac OS X 10.5)

FWIW, my kids love this game. The only problem is that they tend to get into fights and arguments over stealing in-game stuff from each other or beating each other to goals. I ended up having to force them to take a break from the game.

It's extremely competitive and does not enforce any sort of moral code. So keep an eye on your kids if you let them play this one. Despite the graphics and cutesy appearance, it may be too old for them. :)

Edit: Looks like Firefox works. So it must be an issue with Safari and how you're rendering the stars.
Edit2: Bug fixed! Yay!

PhillepinO

#2

PhillepinO said:

To summarize the game, this game is like Mario Party, Monopoly, Fighting, and all kinds of RPG combined! This game is really great and I do agree that beats Mario Party when it comes to a Party game.

This is a really long game specially when you play in story mode, however time really flies when you play this game since you can't get enough of it and there's always new objectives.

I really recommend this if you have 2+ players or as a family game. Having to play this as a single player will not get you anywhere and will not even be close to having as much fun as multiplayer.

As a single player I would rate this as a 6 while as a multiplayer I would rate this as a 9

SwerdMurd

#4

SwerdMurd said:

Please keep in mind, this game is mind-numbingly boring solo (like the Mario Party games)...the review didn't really hammer this point as much as I would--even with 2 people, it's kinda lack-luster. Also--the people playing have to like RPGs. Mario Party appeals to the Wii everyone+grandma crowd, whereas this game requires a little more "background" to really enjoy--mom, grandma, and Uncle Tobias aren't going to want to get off of the Wii Fit to play this game. Just FYI. Game still rocks when played as its intended.

Rabspat

#6

Rabspat said:

I don't think I've ever seen a game with such mixed reviews! XD I hope it lives up to my expectations.

WaLzgiStaff

#7

WaLzgi said:

Me and a friend played story mode and it took us 47 hours to get everything

Mabbit

#8

Mabbit said:

i love this game! mainly because i destroyed my friend in it, i thought it was overall good

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