29
May
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Ask a few JRPG fans about their favorite games of all time and you're bound to hear some of them wax nostalgic for Dragon Quest VIII. After selling nearly 5 million copies worldwide, Square Enix is bringing the Playstation 2 hit to Android. Prepare to set out on the road with Yangus, Jessica, and Angelo on an epic quest to lift the curse that threatens your kingdom. However, in typical Square Enix style, your journey isn't going to be cheap.

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www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5pfz_Acq9A

This is no remake or awkward spin-off - Square Enix has ported the entire game in its original form. Gameplay, storyline, and dialog have made the transition virtually unmolested. Of course, the controls have had to be rejiggered for a touchscreen, but that is to be expected. Unfortunately, the professional voiceovers and orchestra music seem to have been scrapped due to size constraints. The game already consumes a hefty 1.43 GB, so devices with limited storage are going to have enough trouble without piling on extra audio content.

Every version of Android is supported from Ice Cream Sandwich (4.0) and up. It appears that Square Enix caught on after previous complaints and now includes a clear warning that there may be some incompatibilities with running on KitKat with ART enabled. A live Internet connection is required during start up, but it's safe to disconnect after that.

Whether this will be your first time playing Dragon Quest 8: Journey of the Cursed King or you're looking to rekindle classic gaming memories, the ticket price is $19.99. Keep in mind that the game originally sold for $50 and there are no in-app purchases or other tricks, so you only have to pay for it once and you're done. That's not a bad deal for a console quality storyline that's been battle-tested by gamers for the last decade. If you absolutely can't bear this price, it might be worth holding out for one of Square Enix's 50%-off sales.

Happy gaming!

Cody Toombs
Cody is a Software Engineer and Writer with a mildly overwhelming obsession with smartphones and the mobile world. If he’s been pulled away from the computer for any length of time, you might find him talking about cocktails and movies, sometimes resulting in the consumption of both.

  • http://www.youtube.com/crisr82 Kristian Ivanov

    um...is it me or are all the screenshots in portrait mode?
    Also, "internet required during startup"...everytime or just the first time?

    • thermoplastics

      Yep, portrait. Most have not noticed but SE games tend to be letterboxed on a lot of devices. Even when the art was completely redone like in FFVI it is still letterboxed on devices like the Nexus 7.2. It would appear the whoever SE hires to do these ports is either unable or unwilling to support proper fullscreen scaling on Android with the ports looking more and more like the were designed solely with the iPad in mind and then ported to Android with zero thought or effort put into the multitude of screen sizes on Android. Obviously the easy way out would to be to crop off the sides of DQVIII in order to avoid any letterboxing or the work needed to redo many of the graphic assets in order to support widescreens for a game designed in 4:3.

      As for the internet required. I would find it hard to believe it is anything different than what they have done for every other title of theirs on Android.

      • http://www.youtube.com/crisr82 Kristian Ivanov

        Well, now you gave me a reason not to buy FF4 on Android to replace my DS Lite version

        • Ilya Potekhin

          Buy it, it's amazing. Both FFIII and FFIV have fullscreen 16:9 graphics on Android.

          • http://www.youtube.com/crisr82 Kristian Ivanov

            Landscape or portrait orientation?

          • thermoplastics

            They are both in landscape but I am positive do not support proper fullscreen on all devices. Bother are slightly letterboxed on my Nexus 7.2.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/cody-toombs/ Cody Toombs

      Judging by the description, you have to be connected every time the game is started up. The wording is vague, but that's the impression I get from it.

      • http://www.youtube.com/crisr82 Kristian Ivanov

        I wouldn't be surprised if it does...Squinex is not known as a "caring" dev for Android

        • EowynCarter

          Yurk ! How do I play in the metro with no network ?
          And not art compatible in addition.

          I guess i'll pass.

          • Pierre Gardin

            Launch it before entering the metro.

      • dude

        If it was Enix only I would buy it, but knowing that my money is going to SquareExnis, I'm not buying it.

        • dude

          Opps. Well i was only letter from calling it SquarePenis.

      • Cheeseball

        It's a one-time online authentication check. If you go on Airplane Mode/disconnect from WiFi/disable data you can play the game offline with no issues, provided you don't clear the game's cache or device's Dalvik Cache often.

  • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

    HOLY SHIT, YES! FINALLY!

    The best RPG on PlayStation 2 is finally here! It's still weird that Square Enid decided to make this a portrait oriented game, but I guess there's a reason for that

    Totally worth 20$ and the 150 hours you guys are gonna spend in this epic game

    • Henry Green

      I was going to do my own post but you've summed it up perfectly. Such an awesome game!

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Yup, indeed. I guess the only thing I don't dig is the lack of voiceover and the orchestrated music, maybe SE will make them available as a separate download within the game

    • Blank

      It's NOT the best rpg on PS2. It's one of good rpg, but not the best.

      The battle system is pretty boring. It feels like old-school rpg battle, with scrolling text (“Slime took 8 damage!”) and such. Not to mention random encounter in dungeon every 6 steps or so.

      But exploration in town is pretty good. I remembered most DQ/DW games have good story and npc conversations.

      • Mayoo

        "It feels like old-school rpg battle". And what do you think JRPG is exactly?

        • Alex McLeish

          'And what do you think JRPG is exactly?'

          Games from Japan that stole all their ideas from Ultima and Wizardry?

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        It has a battle system like in almost any other JRPG. Sure, that may be a bit boring, but in case of DQ8 - the game totally makes up for it with its content, the huge world, lots of side quests, lots of exploration, a decent amountof monsters, crafting, monster arena (how many RPG games have you seen where you can actually make a whole team out of in game monsters?), two endings, AND an ever increasing difficulty of the game - from the very start to the very end, you will never feel like the battles are too easy, as the game offers tougher monsters and especially bosses - ooh man, if you won't prepare yourself properly - you will die a LOT. Heck, the very fist boss requires you to have at least LV8 to stand a chance more or less

      • Steve Raineault

        The battle system is why DQ crushes all these action RPGs that wish they were fun.

    • zhong xiang

      If this the best RPG then you're lack experience. There's Ravensword Shadowlands on android and Final Fantasy 12 on Playstation2.

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Lol, yeah right. If ravensword is a better RPG than Dragon Quest - then Call of Duty must be the best shooter ever made

        (hint - both are wrong)

      • szl

        LOL. FF12? U srs bro? Final Fantasy has been utter garbage, since ff7. 9 being the exception, the other games are horribly bad.

        Bland, predictable and boring plot and characters....

        You might find FF and enjoyable experience if you are a 14 year old emo kid.

        Just an FYI, Dragon Quest has consistently outsold FF in Japan.

        • Kirito

          Ff7 fanboy obviously. Ff12 was my favorite game on ps2 and favorite Final Fantasy honestly. I also loved DQ8. It saddens me, however, that there isn't really a way to play it with voice overs and music anymore. I wish they at least released it digitally on ps3 or something.

  • Nes

    Well, their other SNES games are 16 dollars so this is a good price by Squeenix's standards. I never did play DQ8 so I'm strongly considering buying it.

    • Daniel Collins

      It was 9. 10 is a really weird mmorpg with a storyline mixed together.

  • Blane Stroud

    There's a reason they don't have a trailer in the Play Store listing. This game performs like ass. Horribly choppy framerate.

    • Satan’s Taint

      You're full of shit. Watch the youtube vids asswipe.

      • Blane Stroud

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m5pfz_Acq9A

        There's 50 minutes of gameplay.

        There are some some smooth gameplay trailers out there, but they are in widescreen, which makes it pretty obvious they aren't running on Android hardware, because the game runs in Portrait.

        • thermoplastics

          This is an iDevice gameplay video, it is in no way an accurate representation of how this game plays on Android.

          • Blane Stroud

            You're right. In all likelihood, it plays worse on Android.

      • ImSteevin

        Just played it on Note 3, the framerate is a serious issue

        Tried a variety of DPI and resolutions in xposed framework but no real difference

        • Francois Roy

          At least the game works with Xposed installed. Not the case of most Square Enix games on Android..

      • namesib

        Lmao, how needlessly offensive.

    • mustbepbs

      What are you running it on? A Galaxy Tab 3?

      • Blane Stroud

        HTC One. This game came out last year in Japan. There are thousands of videos of it out there for you to watch.

        • mustbepbs

          It looks a little choppy, but definitely playable. Given that it's not really an action oriented game, the framerate can be forgivable.

          • Blane Stroud

            I suppose if you don't have a point of reference. Though, in my experience, the touch controls are not very good and the slow movement makes it feel even less responsive. It's just not a very enjoyable experience.

            Not to mention, this is a port of the inferior Japanese version, without the orchestrated soundtrack and voice acting. So there are just vast stretches of the game that are incredibly boring because the music is so dull in this version, especially the beginning hours.

            Also, I never said it wasn't playable. It technically is. Just not enjoyable.

  • Ghost

    As much as I want to complain I will buy this anyway. I was about to replay Chaos Rings II but now I'll just play this. I never did get around to it on PS2. Feels like I'll get to take care of some unfinished business. Hopefully this will show them that people are willing to drop 20 for a game on Android. And maybe we can get Demons Tune on non Tegra devices.

  • Daniel Collins

    Yes!!! I remember loving DQ 9!

  • Spence1115

    Two things I want to know
    1. Does it support controllers? Bluetooth, NVidia Shield etc. Would be nice...
    2. Does it support Micro SD cards to dump the data on? Previous Square Enix games always stored ALL the data on the internal memory, which hogs a lot of memory when they could just store the game data on external memory instead.

    • Spence1115

      Also noticed that they didn't bother to change the description on the Play Store:

      "and now it's coming to the iPhone and iPad for the first time!"

      • thermoplastics

        What, you expect some kind of quality or attention to detail from SE when they charge $20 for a 10 year old game? Rest assured this game was made for iPhones/Ipads and sloppily ported to Android.

        • Spence1115

          I know, I mean seriously, how much effort would it be to get a good team to do it. People will be much more willing to buy it with those little touches to show some sort of shit was given.

        • Satan’s Taint

          Don't be a retard your entire life.

    • namesib

      2) Use FolderMount if you're rooted.

  • Gaurav Arora

    Now bring Chrono Cross to Android Square Enix !!!

  • Tom

    This won't sell that well because of piracy and they'll blame it on android, rather than their own faults...

  • metalcasket

    Why the hell is this equivalent to 26 (or so) Dollars on the Lebanese Google Play store? Any other international stores with jacked up prices?

  • http://www.binarytuberculosis.com BinaryTB

    Cloud saves?

    • Mayoo

      I guess not. From what I experienced with Chrono, it took them months after 4.3 (yes 4.3) to update their code to make it work ... once 4.4.2 was out. Was crashing on start. And all my attemps to get support from them was denied. I am asking for cloud saves forever. JRPG are time consuming and we don't want to loose our game when we switch device or have to clear our current one.

      Sadly, my hopes are really low to see Square ever impress me again.

      On another note, they now call them JRPG because "regular" RPG were so screw up that they needed to differenciate the good ones from the bad ones.

      TLDR: F*uck you Square.

      • Fatal1ty_93_RUS

        Actually if you watch a 50 minute game demo you'll see cloud saving feature in the main menu right there

  • frafri

    how about chrono trigger ??

  • rad

    If you think $20 is bad, it costs $29.66 in Canada.

    • Firmino

      Ha, here in Brazil is 43,79 dilmas...
      they need to use or must exist price by region

      • GraveUypo

        isso é mais barato que o preço em dolares.

        • Firmino

          Mas não recebemos em dólares, esse é o problema, quase 50 reais um app em um país que a maioria recebe um salário de 700.

          • GraveUypo

            e você quer repassar o problema do país pros devs?
            eu sei que é ruim mas eles não tem nada com isso.

    • Harsha

      Around the same price in India too.

  • http://mekakiwi.blogspot.com.br/ ED-Z が あらわれた!

    Dear Good Lord! Finally!
    20 USD!? Totally worth it! This game is awesome! And I not even using my nostalgia goggles.
    I wish more PS2 remakes/ports on android.
    MGS Snake Eater?
    Devil May Cry?
    A lot more?
    I DO WANT!

    • primalxconvoy

      20 dollars is GOOD? Are you on crack?

      • http://mekakiwi.blogspot.com.br/ ED-Z が あらわれた!

        Please, mind you that this is not a shitty time waster that you play in the bus or in the toilet. This is a full console game. You probably will not find the original game any cheaper on eBay.

        • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/cody-toombs/ Cody Toombs

          To be fair, Michael and I looked it up before I posted this and saw that PS2 copies were running around $10-$20 on ebay. So, it's possible to get it cheaper, but only barely, and it's not exactly an apples-to-apples comparison (console vs. mobile, music and voiceovers missing, etc). If I had time for a proper JRPG right now, I'd probably pick it up, but alas, too busy.

  • bL4Ck

    17€ and has issues with ART, squeenix please get your shit together.
    I'm willing to pay that much for such a great game but at least support ART, any small dev takes the time to optimize his game for it, you should have a couple of Devs to spare to make the jump on all your games, sooner or later you'll have to do it anyway, so why not do it now?

    • Kacho_ON

      If you are using something that GOOGLE THEMSELVES are saying is experimental maybe you should get your shit together?

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/cody-toombs/ Cody Toombs

        While this is the sentiment I've supported since 4.4 was released, there's enough evidence that ART will become the default (for new devices) in less than a month. Obviously, this isn't something SquareEnix would know in advance, so planning for it would be premature. There's also a possibility the next release of ART will be considerably more compatible with existing apps. With all of those things considered, it's time for devs to take ART more seriously.

  • Andrés Rázuri

    about 27 dollars in peru...

  • Fila Brasileiro

    Why is it that a lot of newly released games (XCOM, DQVIII, GTA SA) have no Google Play Games integration and no achievements, multiplayer, cloud saves etc? Is it that hard to integrate it with the Google API? I can kinda see DQVIII and GTA SA (probably used Unity to port and PS2 code base, hence why no gamecenter support on iOS either), but what's the excuse with XCOM? Or even something like Jetpack Joyride.

    I thought a lot of games would get achievements and play games integration, but it's really not happening.

    • thermoplastics

      All of those games were ported from iPad/iPhone. It's not like any of those devs are going to put Android specific features in their ports. Don't you understand, we are second class in Android land.

      • Fila Brasileiro

        Sure, but XCOM and Jetpack Joyride support gamecenter on iOS, so not sure what's stopping them here...

  • http://infotainmentempire.blogspot.com Rob

    Has Square Enix even fixed ChronoTrigger so it can work on KitKat devices? I paid $10 for it and I haven't played it at all since my devices got updated to KitKat soon thereafter.

    • EowynCarter

      Well, there is a note on google play saying the problem was fixed.

      • http://infotainmentempire.blogspot.com Rob

        Really? Splendid. Maybe now I can play it on my SHIELD. I haven't checked in awhile, a little after the SHIELD's last update I checked and it just force closed on me. I have been playing it on the ROM, but man having it in widescreen and HD would be nice.

    • Ilya Potekhin

      Why not just use a SNES emulator?

      • http://infotainmentempire.blogspot.com Rob

        1. I have been using an emulator (referring to above comment "playing it on the ROM").
        2. I bought the Android version so it would be nice to use something I bought.
        3. Android version is HD and widescreen; emulators show the black bars on the right and left of the screen since they were originally in 4:3.

        • primalxconvoy

          You can remove the bars and fiddle with the graphics to make it better. I like to stretch and fill to wide-screen myself.

    • blindexecutioner

      They have but it's not very good.

  • ImSteevin

    The worst part is no voice over! The voice acting was amazing in this game.

  • Carlos Paixao

    AWESOME GAME, ANDROID POLICE. YOU GUYS SHOULD PLAY IT.

  • Matthew Fry

    No orchestra or voice over... so basically the best parts of the game. *sigh*

  • Ilya Potekhin

    The Japanese version's been available for quite some time.

    https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.square_enix.android_googleplay.dq8j

    It's also expensive, but it's been doing pretty well with 50-100k installs.

    • primalxconvoy

      But you can't find it by searching Google Play for the name in English or by using the link provided in the story above, right?

      That's thing with some Japanese versions/companies; unlike most western games (which either have a single, all region release with localised language function OR multiple languageversions available in all regions), Japanese released games and apps seem to forgo this.

  • DKT70

    Surely a better, & cheaper way to play these great PS2 rpgs would be to buy a pre-owned retail copy & play them in stunning HD res in the emulator Pcsx2 ?
    Obviously you will need a fairly decent PC, my getting-on-a-bit I5 2500k handles all PS2 rpgs superbly, & they look amazing in 1080p.

    • primalxconvoy

      Android can emulate, too.

      • Godspoken

        PS2 games? lol

        • Heimrik

          Yep. PPSSPP. ;)

          • APReader

            PSP != PS2

  • Serotheo

    Everytime Square Enix re-releases a game on Android I want to buy it but I've been burned too many times, I'm sure others have as well. With the lack of updates and proper porting to Android as well as the necessity for an internet connection disappoint me make for a bad experience.

    Sure some of the games are playable - but there are times you can't get a game to play till months after they decide to update it. Then there's switching between devices as well as needing an internet connection - what if I'm playing on a tablet on the go?

    I remember changing to CM 11 on the Note 3 and no longer being able to play any of the titles since they just weren't compatible - I haven't even re-installed any of the games since I've given up on them working.

    Its best to just get an emulator, you'll have the option to backup your saves, controller/keyboard support as well as Fast Forward.

    • primalxconvoy

      Playing ff3 via a ds emulator gives full gamepad support and has a nice fmv intro (which the android version hasn't got).

    • blindexecutioner

      I doubt there is a PS2 emulator that runs worth a crap on a phone.

  • Chris Shields

    And...It's not available in Japan.

    Again.

    • primalxconvoy

      I've noticed Sega and other companies releasing separate versions of their games for Japan and outside Japan BUT they don't add access to both our either version (based upon language or region). Just another reason why Square and other old-guard Japanese companies agent making money and simply don't "get" mobile (especially at the ludicrous money they are charging for incomplete ports).

      No hardware controls? DRM? No voiceovers? No demo?

      No money from me.

      • Coollead

        Japan got this game last year, and it was free for the first few months it was out.

    • Coollead

      It came out a year ago in Japan, for free. But hey, let's complain.

      • Chris Shields

        I never saw it for free in English. So yeah, damn right I'm going to complain when there is nothing stopping them from making it available now.

        • APReader

          What makes you feel so entitled to an English version in Japan? Why is Square Enix obligated to release a game in a language that isn't the dominant language in the country of release? Do you see people complaining about a lack of a Japanese release in the United States?

          • Chris Shields

            Entitled? No. But I am annoyed to see another once-respected Japanese company making dumb decisions because they are living in the past.

            There is no reason not to release it in English when there are many people here who would gladly pay to play it in English.

            I don't care about the USA.

          • APReader

            My mention of the US was so serve as an example for the preceding sentence, so I'm not really sure how your latter sentence really adds to the conversation.

            At any rate, in retrospect I guess I was conflating your frustration with a feeling entitlement. My bad. Sure I get the frustration.

            Still I would be wary of characterizing their decision as "dumb" or "backwards" though. I doubt they just woke up one day and said "oh I don't feel like releasing an English version here in Japan just so I can miss out on revenue for no reason".

          • Chris Shields

            That's part of my frustration, I don't think they really gave it any thought at all.

            Japan used to be a world leader in games and electronics. But it looks like they are being left behind because they are unable to keep up with changing tastes and business methods.

            While other companies are innovating at a rapid pace, Japanese companies are mentally stuck in the 1990s.

            This apparent failure to properly grasp the benefits of worldwide digital distribution is just another page in an all too sorry tale of slow demise.

            It's the squandered success and potential that is frustrating. (As well as the smaller fact that I can't now get a legitimate copy of the game I've been waiting all this time for)

    • Eoth

      I hear you. I don't get it too. I was hoping they would release an English patch on the JP Play store. They might do it in the future, since I did buy FF4: after years, and FF5 from the JP store, and I got them both in English. Just saying, I could be wrong though with DQ. Although if I am, Squeenix makes no sense.

  • GraveUypo

    online DRM is the stupidest idea ever.
    the only times i ever play cellphone games are when i'm away from any kind of internet connection (usually in a farm), so a game that doesn't work then has no purpose to me. instant deal breaker.

    • Cheeseball

      Again, like all the other Square-Enix Android games, It's a one-time online authentication check. If you go on Airplane
      Mode/disconnect from WiFi/disable data you can play the game offline
      with no issues, provided you don't clear the game's cache or device's
      Dalvik Cache often.

  • Zac Yong

    A bit steep $20 for a game probs $10 and under would be more fair , love the game though so i will save up or wait till a sale . I'm pretty sure this game came preloaded on the dragon quest themed mobile phone available in japan.

  • ThatGuyzx

    As someone who does most mobile gaming on the trains of New York, it's pretty nice to find less "casual" games in portrait mode. It helps me hold on to something as NY's trains are pretty horrible at not shaking when overcrowded. Although, games that need internet connection when the game data is local ruin my underground commute.

  • Ben Freund

    Wow. Yeah this was my favorite DQ game.. But $20. Hrm.

  • Tykin

    Can anyone confirm is this worked on rooted devices?

    • Grayson

      Yes, I have a rooted note 3, running xposed mods, no problems.

  • regalia xvii

    I checked the game this morning, you can't have quick save until the first half hour passed. WTF. That's just awful. mobile game is supposed to be able to quick save ANYTIME ANYWHERE.
    Just because something interrupt on my commute, I had to start the game from beginning, watched that long intro, can't be skipped, long loading time on my phone, roaming around town again, Aaaaaargh this game is FAIL on many level.

    • blindexecutioner

      Yeah, this is killing me. I want to play this game on my way to and from work and at lunch and I can never get to the point of the first save...

  • Grayson

    I used some xposed mods on a rooted note 3 and managed to get these results. Can't get it to stay that way though. Maybe there's a workaround on the user end, any help android police? Notice the extra boxes and information on the sides. Obviously this game plays in portrait on something.

  • Cory Crete

    Having a Xperia Z1 running Kitkat 4.4.3, I can say this game won't run at all. Was hoping there may be some solution, no I don't have ART enabled, the app installed just fine, but when attempting to do the initial first download after turning the app on, it crashes. Won't even pick up that I have wi-fi on and never downloads anything. I assume it just hates the latest KitKat. SE got to get on the ball and fix this shit, considering the insane price tag on their apps.

  • YohKingSama

    This game is good but it facing 2 many lag at start game, facing battle and much more..

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