Can My Kid Play is a series of helpful guides for parents that dive further into the ratings and content of video games. We do not pass judgement, instead providing insight and information so parents can make their own informed decisions.

What is Dragon Quest 11?

Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age is a traditional role-playing game developed in Japan (also known as a JRPG). Like the Final Fantasy series, each game tell its own story, and you don’t have to play previous entries to understand the classic story of plucky young heroes battling the forces of evil.

Players take on the role of an unnamed, unvoiced male hero and venture into the 3D fantasy world of Edrea, making allies, fighting enemies, shopping in towns, completing quests, and delving into dungeons. Monster and character designs are mostly unchanged from Akira Toriyama’s (Dragon Ball) colorful and legendary kid-friendly designs that has made the series an enduring RPG staple over the last three decades.

What platforms is it available on?

In the US Dragon Quest 11 originally launched on PC (Steam) and PlayStation 4 in September 2018. A Definitive Edition, which includes extra features such as a 16-bit pixel graphics mode, released on Nintendo Switch on September 27, 2019.

What is the ESRB Rating?

Dragon Quest 11 is rated T for Teen by the ESRB, with the following content descriptors: Crude Humor, Fantasy Violence, Mild Blood, Simulated Gambling, Suggestive Themes, and Alcohol Use.

What is the overall tone of the story?

While the colorful characters and anime art style is instantly kid-friendly, the story does occasionally dip into some heavier places. Without going too far into spoilers, the protagonist has to reconcile with family deaths, characters are attacked and even stabbed in cutscenes (though without blood or gore), and one major character is sacrificed at the end of the game’s initial ending. It’s not exactly Game of Thrones, but the plot and writing are a bit more mature than the art style would indicate.

What is the level of violence?

Battling monsters is the main part of the game, though the violence level is about on par with any action or fantasy animated series. There’s no blood or gore. Monsters don’t sustain any visual injury and disappear when defeated.

What is the level of alcohol and/or drug use?

Player characters cannot use alcohol, but can and will come across a few NPCs who are clearly drunk in a bar, including slurred speech.

What is the level of adult language?

There is no adult language in Dragon Quest 11.

What is the level of sexual content or themes?

Some of the female outfits and armor are overtly suggestive, such as bunny outfits that are meant to emulate the old Playboy bunnies. Players can also solicit a service called “puff-puff” from a few female NPCs in various towns, for money. The associated dialogue is highly suggestive and filled with innuendo, though it doesn’t show anything on screen.

What is the level of online interactivity?

Dragon Quest 11 is a single-player only game. There are no online interactions.

What else do parents need to know about Dragon Quest 11?

Dragon Quest 11 might looks like it’s designed for kids, but it is a full-length, 75+ hour RPG with turn-based combat, multiple party members to manage, and dozens of hours of story and quests. It might make a good stepping-stone RPG with its friendly art style and more classic good versus evil themes compared to more mature RPGs. Combat is generally simple and straightforward, and the default difficulty is mostly a cakewalk for RPG veterans, but could be a good fit for younger gamers.

This article was written by

Eric has been writing for over nine years with bylines at Dicebreaker, Pixelkin, Polygon, PC Gamer, Tabletop Gaming magazine, and more covering movies, TV shows, video games, tabletop games, and tech. He reviews and live streams D&D adventures every week on his YouTube channel. He also makes a mean tuna quesadilla.