Some juicy tidbits about Dragon Quest XI were revealed as part of a 30th-anniversary television special for the series that aired in Japan. The Dragon Quest XI segment, available on YouTube, gives glimpses of dragon riding, a crafting system, camping, and some peeks at portions of the overworld.
Translations of the crafting menus (called “Mysterious Smithing”) show several possible weapons that can be created, ranging from a presumably simple “Copper Sword” to the more tantalizing “Miracle Sword Modified.” A similar inspection of the camping menu explains that while camping you are able to restore your stats, initiate the smithing process, pray to the goddess statue, and patrol the area.
Few details are shown about actually riding dragons, but a character is shown flying a rather small blue dragon near some grassy cliffs. It isn’t known if there are other mounts available to ride, or if riding larger dragons is possible—but we can hope this isn’t the biggest mount out there.
Most footage in the clip is presumably from the PlayStation 4 version of the game, although a blurred out piece of hardware at one point could be proprietary Nintendo Switch development equipment. The game is set to release on PlayStation 4 and the 3DS as well as the Switch. Some segments do feature the 3DS version, which still looks gorgeous even when blown up to fill a conference room screen.
A small portion at the end shows composer Koichi Sugiyama consulting with another designer while watching videos of the game. This is quickly followed by a view of a blurred laptop screen in front of another monitor with sheet music visible. We can only speculate on what must remain hidden at this point, whether it be other unrevealed features or plot details.
Dragon Quest XI is releasing in Japan this May, but there is still no word on a North American release date.