Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is a role-playing video game developed and published by Square Enix. An entry in the long-running Dragon Quest video game series, it was released in Japan for the Nintendo 3DS and PlayStation 4 in July 2017, and worldwide for the PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Windows in September 2018. An enhanced version, Dragon Quest XI S: Echoes of an Elusive Age – Definitive Edition, was released for Nintendo Switch in September 2019, for PlayStation 4, Windows and Xbox One in December 2020, and for Stadia in March 2021.
One of the first games announced for the Switch, the game was originally conceived to be fully open world, but the idea was discarded when it conflicted with the story the developers wanted to tell. To increase the awareness of the Dragon Quest franchise in the west, support for Microsoft Windows and features such as voiced English dialogue and 4K resolution were included. Elements added later included an expanded plot and an option to listen to an orchestral version of the score.
While many critics considered Dragon Quest XI to be the best in the series, as well as one of the best contemporary JRPGs overall, some have formed a view that the game was overly traditional and non-innovative. The game shipped over six million copies by September 2020. The game’s protagonist, the Luminary, has also been featured in crossover media such as the Super Smash Bros. series.
Dragon Quest XI continues the gameplay of previous games in the series, in which players explore worlds and fight against various monsters, including the ability to explore high areas. The Nintendo 3DS version features a different style to the other versions, showcasing 3D graphics on the top screen and 16-bit styled sprites on the bottom screen. Before entering battle, players can also toggle between the 3D and 2D graphical styles at any time. Like with Dragon Quest IX, on land the game’s battle system features no random encounters and shows all enemies on the overworld. The battle system also adds a free-form camera option inspired by the MMORPG Dragon Quest X that allows players to move around the enclosed battlefield, although it is purely visual and provides no other benefits to gameplay.