Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age

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Dragon Quest XI (ドラゴンクエストXI 過ぎ去りし時を求めて) is the eleventh main Dragon Quest game. The game was initially released on the Nintendo 3DS and the PlayStation 4 game consoles, and later for Microsoft Windows via Steam and the Nintendo Switch.[1] The game was first revealed during a livestream on July 28, 2015[2]. The game was released on July 29th, 2017 on the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo 3DS in Japan, on the PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Windows via Steam in the West on September 4, 2018, and on the Nintendo Switch worldwide on September 27, 2019.

On July 28, 2017, Yuji Horii announced that the game will be released internationally in 2018 in five different languages. The Western release of the game was announced on March 28, 2018, which will include various new features added from the Japanese release, including voice acting, as well as a release on PC systems. The five languages the game will be released are English, Spanish, French, Italian, and German.

During the Dragon Quest Paradise News Station event at Tokyo Game Show 2018 on September 23, 2018, Square Enix announced that the Nintendo Switch version will be titled Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age S, with 'S' meaning "Switch," "Special," "Shaberu" (Speaking), and "Seiyuu" (Voice Actor), according to Yuji Horii. Dragon Quest XI producer Hokuto Okamoto added that "Even though shaberu (speaking) will be taking priority...I think there are some players who would prefer Dragon Quest without voices, and we're keeping that in mind. Horii will be able to say more about that at some point..."[3] Nintendo announced during the Nintendo Direct presentation on February 13, 2019 that the Nintendo Switch version will be titled Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition and will be released during Fall 2019[4].

During E3 2019, Nintendo and Square Enix[5] announced that Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition will be released worldwide on September 27, 2019[6].


Dragon Quest XI has the same gameplay elements from the previous Dragon Quest games in the series, in which the players explore and fight against monsters, including the ability to explore high areas. The Nintendo 3DS shows a different style than the PlayStation 4 version. The game's battle system still uses the series' traditional turn-based battle system.


Dragon Quest XI shows several styles for the Nintendo 3DS and the PlayStation 4. The Nintendo 3DS version shows super deformed graphics which is shown on the top screen and 16-bit styled sprites on the bottom of the screen. However, the split scene between 3D and 2D graphics is not entirely shown in the game, which revealed that it is only like that for the opening stages and after the opening stages, the players can decide which style to play. But the players can switch between its 3D and 2D styles at any time during the game.[7] The PlayStation 4 version of the game shows an entire 3D style layout with a clear appearance of the area and the monsters. The players has a lot of freedom to walk through many part of the game which the players can even walk through ropes[8].

Battle style

Dragon Quest XI is still using its traditional turn-based battle system, which the player and monsters can attack by turns. The player can switch the battle style graphics of the Nintendo 3DS version from 3D to 2D, which the battle system can be toggled after encountering a monster when the players are walking through the field. For the PlayStation 4 version, there are two battle systems as well. With the Free Camera-style, the player can rotate the camera freely and position characters as desired, similar to the style of Dragon Quest X. While using the Classic Camera-style, the player cannot move characters around and camera angles are dynamic, similar to Dragon Quest VIII. Regardless of style, battles are still turn-based.

International bonus features

  • Fully voiced characters.
  • Draconian quest: an excessively difficult mode for experienced players.
  • A sprint button that allows a character to dash.
  • Redesigned menus that replace the traditional transparent black with sepia tone parchment that displays item and equipment artwork.
  • Refined camera control for easier viewing of details.

S: Definitive Edition

The Nintendo Switch version of the game will include the following new features and improvements in addition to all content seen in the international PS4 release:

Party interaction

  • Additional Party Chat dialogue
    • In-battle speech bubbles for yet more party chat
  • Fully voiced cutscenes for the Japanese version
    • The ability to silence the protagonists' idle sounds such as yawns and battle cries
  • Party members will follow behind the Luminary as in 2D titles
  • Party members will move on their own while in battle, adjusting to the conditions of conflict for more player-immersion. This is a aesthetic adjustment that does not affect gameplay

Mini game refinements

  • A photograph mode reminiscent of Cameron's Codex
  • Horse-racing minigame has been fine-tuned
  • The cross bow minigame has been fine-tuned
  • The amount of monsters to ride has been increased by four, including a Goldem, Great Sabrecat, and Slime Knight
    • Riding monsters can now be attacked for experience points and gold
    • A dedicated musical theme will play when riding a Great Sabrecat

Quality of life adjustments

  • Improved camera controls in 3D mode
  • The ability to dash in the overworld has been added for the Japanese version
  • Forging is now available at all times
  • Cutscenes may now be skipped immediately
  • Additional appearance-changing equipment
    • The equipment set based on the protagonist of the eighth game that was added to the international release has been added for the Japanese version

Scenario additions

  • An extensive sidequest involving Hendrick and Jasper has been added to the end-game.
  • A new character, Madame Cherie, has been added. She is a professor at L’Academie de Notre Maitre les Medailles.


Playable Characters

  • The Luminary - A young man from the village of Cobblestone who is, in fact, the reincarnation of an ancient hero that once saved the world. He was born with a mysterious mark on his left hand.
  • Erik - A blue-haired thief that the Luminary encounters in the dungeons of Heliodor and decides to accompany him on his journey. Despite his rough-and-tumble appearance, he is a kindhearted and loyal friend.
  • Veronica - A strong-willed tomboyish girl who hates being treated like a child and will stand up to anyone, regardless if they are an adult or monster. She is gifted with offensive magic.
  • Serena - A kind, dependable, and compassionate young woman who has a talent with healing magic and the lyre. Her hapless personality sometimes causes trouble for her sister and traveling companion, Veronica.
  • Sylvando - A flamboyant and carefree entertainer with a dream to make people smile around the world. He is described as the mood maker of the party and has a strong sense of justice.
  • Jade - An expert martial artist who travels the world with Rab in order to fulfill a mysterious goal. Her beauty and dignified demeanor suggests that she is more than just a talented fighter.
  • Rab - A mysterious elderly man who looks like nothing more than a simple traveler, but in combat he wields ferocious martial arts skills and high level magic. He seems to know someone in every port and town around the world.
  • Hendrik - A Heliodoran knight and general who is initially opposed to the Luminary and is tasked by the King of Heliodor to capture him. After a change of heart, he vows to become the Luminary's sworn shield and companion.

Other Characters

  • Gemma - Childhood friend of the hero, who was born on the same day as him. She and the Hero celebrated their birthday together, just before the young man departs on his journey.
  • Jasper - A cruel strategist from the Kingdom of Heliodor. His cold methods have led to many victories.
  • King Carnelian - The wise and respected ruler of Heliodor. He is known as a master swordsman and is skeptical of the Hero's claims.

Pre-released information


The news about Dragon Quest XI was revealed by its creator Yuji Horii, when saying that he won't release Dragon Quest XI for smartphones.[9] In April 2014, Yuji Horii teased that he is working on the next Dragon Quest title.[10] In July 2015, they announced through a Japanese magazine Shonen Jump that they will release a new Dragon Quest title during a livestream on July 28, 2018. [11] After the announcement in Shonen Jump, there were been rumours that the newly titled game is in fact Dragon Quest XI. A Wall Street Journal Japan reporter received a letter of invitation from Square Enix containing that there will be "a new title from main Dragon Quest series." which the letter fully revealed "a new title from the main Dragon Quest series for the first time in three years."[12] During the livestream on July 28, 2015, the revealed gameplay footage of Dragon Quest XI, revealing that it will be released for the Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation 4. They also said that the PlayStation 4 version uses the Unreal Engine 4 game engine to create a high quality game.

Dragon Quest XI producer Hokuto Okamoto confirmed during an interview with Dualshockers on April 8, 2018 that Dragon Quest XI S will be based off the PlayStation 4 version. He also mentioned that while Dragon Quest XI S was already part of the outlook when the development team started developing Dragon Quest XI, the game at the time couldn't run on the Nintendo Switch since the SDK (software development kit) wasn't ready within Unreal Engine 4. But the development team is now able to start working on Dragon Quest XI S since the SDK that supports the Nintendo Switch has been implemented on Unreal Engine 4. However, that SDK only supports a version of Unreal Engine 4 that is higher than the version that the original game is developed on, which means the development team had to update the engine, which comes with its own sets of issues; the developers are in the process of resolving those issues. Square Enix had considered releasing Dragon Quest XI at the same time as the PlayStation 4 and PC versions. But since they don't have a solid input on how long the development for Dragon Quest XI S will take, they believe it's going to be a long ways out, and they didn't want fans on PlayStation 4 and PC to wait that long to be able to enjoy Dragon Quest XI[13].

Dragon Quest XI producer Hokuto Okamoto announced on Twitter that the Japanese version of Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition went gold on July 19, 2019[14] while the Western version of Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition went gold on July 26, 2019[15].




Early gameplay of Dragon Quest XI.


  1. Dragon Quest XI And X Are In Development For Nintendo NX: Update
  2. Watch Square Enix's Dragon Quest Announcement Event Right Here
  3. Dragon Quest XI for Switch titled Dragon Quest XI S [Update]
  4. Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition - Nintendo Direct 2.13.2019
  5. 『ドラゴンクエストⅪ 過ぎ去りし時を求めて S』プロモーション映像
  6. DRAGON QUEST XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age - Definitive Edition - Nintendo E3 2019
  7. Dragon Quest XI On 3DS Won’t Simultaneously Play In 3D And 2D For The Entire Game
  8. Dragon Quest XI’s First 3DS Footage Shows Its 2D And 3D Styles
  9. Dragon Quest XI Won’t Be For Smartphones Says Dragon Quest Creator
  10. Could Series Creator Yuji Horii Be Teasing Dragon Quest XI?
  11. A New Dragon Quest Title To Be Announced In On July 28th
  12. Rumor: Dragon Quest XI To Be Announced Next Week
  13. Square Enix Confirms Dragon Quest XI for Switch Is Based on PS4 Version; Explains Lack of 3DS Version
  14. 岡本 北斗 DQ11S 9.27発売 on Twitter: "最近悲しいお話がいっぱいありましたので、できるだけ明るい話をということで……… 「ドラゴンクエスト11 S」日本版 マスターアップしましたーー!!! 開発のみんなお疲れさまでした! …でも、海外版はまだ終わってないのでもうちょっとだけ続くのじゃ"
  15. 岡本 北斗 DQ11S 9.27発売 on Twitter: "海外版もマスターアップしたようです - 完 -"

Names, etymology and in other regions
Language Name Meaning
Japanese ドラゴンクエストXI 過ぎ去りし時を求めて Dragon Quest XI: In Search of Departed Time