Introduced in Dragon Quest V: Hand of the Heavenly Bride, the recruitment of bested beasts has appeared in some capacity in nearly every title in the series since 1992.
Specifically, the system is present in every even-numbered title beginning with Dragon Quest VI: Realms of Revelation.
Monster recruitment was simplistic in its original inception, being a fixed percentage that could not be changed by the player. If multiple recruitable monsters appear in the same encounter, only the final felled foe will have a chance to join the Hero. In the Nintendo DS and cell phone versions, monster allies will only alternate between two lines of dialogue during Party Chat, as opposed to the fuller conversations of human characters.
As of 2019, the Cell phone ports saw the addition of the Monster magnet accessory for the the Hero, which when equipped can increase the odds of a monster joining up by one rank. This is likely due to the release of Dragon Quest: Your Story, which would have attracted a new audience to the title and such players would have desired an easier time collecting monsters.
|Sprite||Monster Name||SFC||PS2||DS & Phone||Tame Rate||Level required|
|Liquid metal slime||Yes||Yes||Yes||1⁄256||20|
|Man o' war||Yes||Yes||Yes||1⁄2||18|
|Old man of the sea||Yes||Yes||Yes||1⁄32||25|
In the original SFC version of VI monster recruitment worked identically to V, though someone in the party must be a Monster Master for the chance to activate. When the DS version (and subsequent Cell phone porta) were produced, this mechanic was retired in favor of "Slime Buddies": Slimes players could interact with in towns and dungeons like NPCs who would join the party once certain conditions were met as was the case with Lizzie. These Slimes are not treated as full characters, however, and thus lack the detailed Party Chat of humans and Lizzie.
Available in the SFC version
|Sprite||Monster Name||Tame Rate||Rank required|
|Liquid metal slime||1⁄256||6|
Available in the DS & phone versions
|Kingsley||Château de Sass|
Monster recruitment is not present in the seventh game; instead, monsters will sojourn off to a sort of wild life reserve called the Monster Meadows that is unlocked during the normal course of the game. Once there, they can be spoken to in their natural habitat as if they were NPCs, though only one line of dialogue will be spoken. The Animal Magnetism skill makes taming these beasts much easier than in previous games, being the first time a player has direct influence on the probability in a numbered title.
Additionally, defeated monsters will occasionally drop Monster Hearts. These function similarly to the Dragonic Diligence and Liquid Metal Mind scrolls from VI, and allow the character holding them to take on monster-based vocations at Alltrades Abbey. The main difference is that a character's sprite will change into the corresponding monster once the vocation is mastered.
- In the 3DS remake, the character will immediately become a monster after using a heart.
In the PS2 version of the game, players will notice several monsters wandering the overworld. These infamous beasties prove much more capable than their randomly encountered counterparts, but once the player pays a visit to Morrie's place they can join the party. This allows the monsters to enter the competition in Morrie's Monstrous Pit, and through the use of the Call Team skill they may be summoned into battle for 3 or more turns. All recruited monsters grow more powerful as the Hero's Level rises, and do not need to gain battle Experience themselves.
- In the Nintendo 3DS port, all monsters are visible in the overworld, with the infamous monsters being given distinctive icons.
Available in all versions
Certain monsters can be recruited by players beginning in version 2.0, which saw the return of the Monster Master vocation to the series after nearly 14 years of absence. Version 2.1 added the Item Master vocation and it's selection of monsters. The former tames organic monsters, while the latter handles living objects and robots, with each having 15 species to choose from.
Taming itself is fairly simple, but players must perform research on the species they want prior to the encounter. This is done in the form of obtaining zoological books on monsters or user manuals for machines, and using one as an item in battle to unlock the scouting attack for that particular breed. This attack creates a base 10% chance to capture the monster once it falls. The skill does not need to be the final blow of the battle; as long as it has been used over the course of the encounter the chance to recruit the beast is established. Once tamed, the monster can join the player immediately or be sent off to the monster bar where most scouting books are obtained, and one character can store up to 24 monsters at the pub.
Monsters that have joined players are controlled through A.I. dependent on their personality and essentially serve as party members for times when the player's friends and comrades are offline. Monsters have a Level cap of 50, but can undergo a process similar to a Revocation to further raise their stats. The equipment pool of a given monster is fixed and cannot be changed, but gear can be shared between the monster and master: for example a Monster Master and Hacksaurus can simultaneously wield the same Kaiser axe in a battle for the sake of player convenience. New to the series is the concept of bonding, a hidden stat that denotes the level of attachment a monster has to its master and is raised by fighting together. Once this stat is maxed out, a monster will follow a character regardless of their Vocation.
|Monster Name||Version available||Weapon||Armor||Book|
|Brownie||2.4||Hammers||Metal armor||Monster battle road prize|
|Dracky||2.3||Heavy wands||Robes||Monster battle road prize|
|Great sabrecat||4.1||Claws||Clothes||Monster drop|
|Hacksaurus||2.0||Axes||Metal armor||Casino prize|
|Healslime||2.0||Wands||Robes||Sold at tavern|
|Imp||2.2||Spears||Robes||Sold at tavern|
|Mandrake major||2.0||Swords||Metal armor||Sold at tavern|
|Meowgician||2.0||Heavy wands||Robes||Sold at tavern|
|Mischievous mole||2.0||Staves||Clothing||Monster drop|
|Slime||2.0||Boomerangs||Clothes||Sold at tavern|
|Slime knight||2.0||Swords||Metal armor||Sold at tavern|
|Small fry||2.2||Claws||Clothes||Sold at tavern|
|Teeny sanguini||2.0||Wands||Robes||Sold at tavern|
|Monster Name||Version available||Weapon||Armor||Book|
|Bambooligan||2.1||Spear||Metal armor||Sold at tavern|
|Fromage Fray||2.1||Heavy wands||Robes||Sold at tavern|
|Golem||2.1||Greatswords||Metal armor||Sold at tavern|
|Harmour||2.1||Swords||Metal armor||Casino prize|
|Ham hatwitch||2.1||Heavy wands||Robes||Monster drop|
|Hellbound horror||2.3||Axes||Clothes||Sold at tavern|
|Killing machine||2.2||Greatswords||Metal armor||Sold at tavern|
|Magic marionette||2.2||Knives||Clothes||Sold at tavern|
|Mecha-mynah||2.1||Claws||Clothes||Sold at tavern|
|Needle man||2.1||Knives||Clothes||Sold at tavern|
|Pocus poppet||4.2||Boomerangs||Clothes||Monster drop|
|Prancing pillar||2.1||Fans||Clothes||Sold at tavern|
|Restless armour||2.1||Swords||Metal armor||Sold at tavern|
|Wardrobe mimic||2.4||Bows||Robes||Sold at tavern|
On explorer's shores after Skelkatrez, one can recruit monsters with Monster munchies. When a monster that can be tamed is defeated, there is a chance that it will stand up instead of fading away and a thirty second timer will begin to count down--the munchies must be used in this period or the monster will become annoyed and go away.
Tamed monsters join the residents of the Island of Awakening as NPCs, who go about their daily routines as the other islanders do, and some have special effects: the Chimaeras can be ridden to fly, the Powie yowie can be given an ice lolly to spread snow, the Liquid metal slime will play tag once a day for 100 hearts, etc.
|Bloody Hand||Unholy Holm||Plays with islanders|
crafts items at workstations
|Brownie||Iridescent Island||Demolishes blocks marked with a smashing sign|
|Chimaera||Blossom Bay||Flying mount|
|Corpse Corporal||Laguna Perfuma||Bartender|
|Cosmic Chimaera||Rimey Reef||Flying mount|
|Gold Golem||Coral Cay||Can use terraforma tiles|
|Golem||Sunny Sands (one per visit)||Can use terraforma tiles|
|Great Sabrecub||Blossom Bay||Double-jump mount|
|Great Sabrecat||Soggy Skerry||Double-jump mount|
|Hammerhood||Sunny Sands||Demolishes blocks marked with a smashing sign|
|Healslime||nearly all Explorer's Shores||Casts Heal in battle|
|Hocus Chimaera||Iridescent Island||Flying mount|
|Hunter Mech||Rimey Reef||Farmer|
|Killing Machine||Laguna Perfuma||Farmer|
|Living Statue||Rimey Reef (one per visit)||Produces dyes at stain extractors|
|Liquid Metal Slime||Laguna Perfuma||Plays tag|
|Muddy Hand||Soggy Skerry||Plays with islanders|
crafts items at workstations
|Powie Yowie||Rimey Reef||Feed ice lollies to freeze ground|
|She-Slime||Sunny Sands||Double-jump mount|
|Slime||Blossom Bay||Double-jump mount|
|Stone Golem||Iridescent Island (one per visit)||Can use terraforma tiles|
|Stone Guardian||Unholy Holm||Produces dyes at stain extractors|
|Walking Corpse||Soggy Skerry||Bartender|
While monsters retain a base chance to join the player upon defeat as in previous games, the chance can be greatly enhanced by using Monster munchies in battle.
Dragon Quest Monsters: Joker series
Recruitment is implemented via the Scout option in the battle menu. When selected, the player's team of monsters will perform a group assault on the target to impress the monster into joining. The percentile chance is displayed onscreen, and can easily reach 100% if the group's sum attack power is high enough. However, if the enemy is too durable then the assault can easily leave the player with a big fat 0%--it is imperative to apply Oomph and Sap to raise the chances even higher.
Level requirements and percentages in V.