Fast travel has become a staple mechanic in video games over the years, particularly in sprawling, open world games where traversing long distances can be viewed by some gamers as monotonous or “boring.” According to Dragon’s Dogma 2 director Hideaki Itsuno however, in-game travel doesn’t have to be boring, even in an enormous setting, and that’s a design mantra he maintained in his work on the highly-anticipated upcoming action-RPG sequel from Capcom.
“Just give it a try,” Itsuno said in an interview with IGN. “Travel is boring? That’s not true. It’s only an issue because your game is boring. All you have to do is make travel fun.”
Itsuno elaborated, “That’s why you place things in the right location for players to discover, or come up with enemy appearance methods that create different experiences each time, or force players into blind situations where they don’t know whether it’s safe or not ten meters in front of them.”
Itsuno noted that while Dragon’s Dogma 2 won’t be reliant on fast travel in-game for the very reasons he mentioned, there will be forms of fast travel available as Quality of Life options.
“We’ve put a lot of work into designing a game where you can stumble across someone and something will happen,” Itsuno continued, “so while it’s fine if it does have fast travel, we decided to design the kind of map where players will make the decision for themselves to travel by bike or on foot in order to enjoy the journey.”
Fast travel in Dragon’s Dogma 2 will come in the form of Port Crystals, which require the use of rare, expensive Ferrystone items, as well as Oxcarts, which can fast travel along certain routes. However, especially in the case of the latter, don’t expect fast travel to be a simple click of a button and that’s that — players will still run the risk of being ambushed when using Oxcarts.
“While riding one, you might find the path blocked by goblins and have no choice but to get off and join the battle,” Itsuno revealed.
“Then as you do, a Griffin might swoop in and destroy the entire cart with one blow, forcing you to walk the rest of the way while cursing its name. But none of that has been set up by us in advance. Instead, Griffins naturally have an inclination toward attacking cows they discover as they move, and these pieces all just happen to work together to naturally create the situation. So yes, an oxcart ride in this world may be cheap, but a lot can come as a result of that cheapness. I think that’s the kind of world we’ve managed to create.”
Dragon’s Dogma 2 is set to release on PC, Playstation 5 and Xbox Series X|S formats on March 22nd, 2024.
What do you think of the fact that the Dragon’s Dogma 2 director dislikes fast travel? Do you think that fast travel is fine in games when used in moderation or do you believe that breaks immersion unnecessarily? Let us know in the comments.