Dragalia Lost: How Not to Do an Event

By: Mitchell Lord
Editor: Joshua Francom

I have a confession of a guilty pleasure: I really like ‘gacha games.’ I often need something quick to play that won’t take up a lot of time. Some of them have remarkably good plots which result in an addictive need to follow to completion. They’re the gaming equivalent of a bad action movie, or a bad romantic-comedy. It is worth noting that ‘gacha games’ are based on Japanese capsule machine which make a *ga-chunk* noise. They could be considered physical versions of micro-transactions gamers are familiar with.

The gacha games I’m talking about are mobile games with micro-transactions. These ones don’t have that normal $60 buy-in cost. These are also called ‘freemium‘ games.

One of the ones in my backlog is Dragalia Lost; it’s a story-based game by Nintendo. In my opinion, it has a lot going for it; however, one thing I want to go over is the recent Mega Man event which went wrong in every single way.

One of the ones in my backlog is Dragalia Lost; it’s a story-based game by Nintendo. In my opinion, it has a lot going for it; however, one thing I want to go over is the recent Mega Man event which went wrong in every single way.

Gacha games.

Months ago, the event was announced for a November launch. When November 1st arrived, they explained it was launching at the END of November, the 29th in fact. It was cutting it very close to being tardy for their own announced time, especially considering the event is running for two weeks. Now, these events normally have approximately five story scenes and at least one level in between each. Each level includes new assets, and they often have a couple of bosses. This has a different structure.

There are five levels, each are based around one of the ‘Robot Masters’ (those familiar with the Mega Man series should be familiar with the concept). In this case, however, the ‘robot masters’ are instead recycled Dragons, who aid the character. The conceited hook: they have been brainwashed. This normally wouldn’t be a big deal, but unfortunately, all of these dragons are fought as story bosses beforehand in the opening five stages of the game. This makes them feel like filler content.

The only real change is the introduction of a ‘Mettall’ enemy. This enemy only appears once per encounter, so it comes across as a simple challenge. What’s worse, a sufficiently high-leveled player can defeat these levels on autopilot. Even worse, the ‘gimmick’ of these levels generally consists of a trap that has already been used on the story mission version. The last mission is a boss battle against Dr. Wily, which is amusing. Unfortunately, an over-leveled team can beat it in thirty seconds.

Mettall: the iconic, hard-hatted, mechanical foes of the Mega Man franchise.

The real draw are the gacha mechanics; tricking someone into spending hundreds of dollars on a slim chance to draw their favorite character from a property they love! A great way to manipulate someone’s psychology with nostalgia. You may be surprised to hear there is no gacha for this event. Yes, that’s right. There is no reason to spend money on this! This is a major event in a gacha game meant to draw people in, but it has no gacha! It’s designed for people who are almost finished with the game’s story missions. This means that anyone who comes for the Mega Man missions, likely won’t spend money on it.

That said, there’s a reason why people play: they want Mega Man. He is the ‘welfare’ character, given freely to people who play the game. That said, there is still an issue. In Dragalia Lost, he is added to the player’s roster as soon as the event is started. He is kept forever if the player can complete 250 AP of stages. This is normally a pretty major thing, however, these can be ANY stages. The player can just auto-skip the EXP up stages, spend some energy-recovery items, and they get Mega Man instantly. No items that help level up up are available in the event, so there’s no real reason to play it after it’s finished, aside from the story.

For the record, it took me five minutes to obtain Mega Man. That was without touching the event stages. That’s how easy they make it for you.

The original Famicom (NES) intro for the Japanese game: Rock Man 2. This game is known as Mega Man 2 internationally

The story consists of a prologue, which is a single NES style intro scroll, and an epilogue which has already dropped. The epilogue is more of the same. Even worse, the story has not dropped yet. Normally, players get a nice, little set of five long stories tied to a character to give them depth. Mega Man has none of these extra stories.

In conclusion, there are no reasons to play this mission. Which is a shame, since Mega Man and Dragalia lost could have been awesome. I am now disappointed and plan to return to other games such as Anthem or Battleborn. As Battleborn is closing soon, I feel it deserves a postmortem. Anthem is finally almost at a reasonable price, thanks to the Black Friday sale. Ten dollars is only ten dollars too much, but that’s a subject for a later article.

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