Dragon Quest Builders Switch Review – It’s time to plant your flag!

Reviewed February 13, 2018 on



February 9, 2018


Square Enix


Square Enix

If it seems like we’ve been down this road before then it’s probably because we have. Back in October 2016 Dragon Quest Builders was first released on the PlayStation 4 and PS Vita and Checkpoints very own Luke was on hand to give you his thoughts on this unique take not only on the Dragon Quest series but the creation simulator genre itself. Well now your favourite Alefgarding hero is back again with Dragon Quest Builders on the Switch!

Dragon Quest Builders on the Switch is a direct port from the original 2016 title on the PlayStation 4 and Vita and I have to say that the move to place Dragon Quest Builders on the Switch seems like a natural one to me. The game feels completely at home here, the Switch’s portability makes it the perfect platform for any creation simulator in my opinion and while it does lose some crispness and isn’t as visually dynamic which is to be expected with these kinds of direct ports, this does nothing to take away from the games overall visual appeal or my enjoyment while playing it.

Right from the moment you step into the world of Dragon Quest Builders on the Switch you’re tasked with building a variety of things. So naturally I set out exploring and gathering materials rather than tackling the task at hand.

Once I had done exploring though I did eventually start my allotted tasks/storyline. To my surprise I quickly discovered that not only was Dragon Quest Builders highly addictive but it actually had quite the snarky and sarcastic sense of humour. From subtle jokes or snipes at your character to pop culture references, Dragon Quest Builders is full of them and will have you laughing just as much as it has you focused on creating the perfect building or construction project.

“…the environment around you isn’t exactly a safe haven of peace and tranquillity.”

In regards to building your obviously going to be doing a lot of it, and not just for the tasks laid out before you. I started to find myself building for fun and amusement as well.

This came in particularly handy as the environment around you isn’t exactly a safe haven of peace and tranquillity. Much like another famous creation simulator Minecraft, Dragon Quest Builders is filled to the brim with things ready to try and kill you. So in my efforts for defence I built a wall… With a ditch and a bridge for entry of course. The above mentioned ditch (thanks to a quick chat with my plumper friend Mario) is currently under town planning to be filled with water via an intricate tunnel system – for increased safety, naturally.

Dragon Quest Builders is as much RPG as it is a creation simulator, you’ll encounter many an enemy and creature from Dragon Quest lore in your quest to rebuild your town into Fort Knox.

The mechanics for Dragon Quest Builders on the Switch are exactly the same as its predecessor. Fighting is much the same, still clunky at times and lacking any real lock on system you’re left to simply hack and slash you way to victory. Building is still intuitive as well; the premise of destroying existing objects, obtain materials and start building, will soon have you making everything from weapons, armour for health and anything else you might need to survive! You’ll even put your building skills to use by learning to cook as the game progresses.


  • Pick up and go play style
  • Building is addictive
  • Funny and cute
  • Great storyline and quest structure


  • Combat can be too easy
  • Camera can struggle in buildings at times

It’s probably been said before but I’m shocked that more developers haven’t tried to dip into the creation simulator market. Dragon Quest Builders does it so seamlessly that I simply don’t question the journey I’m being taken on, and then its too late because I’ve dug myself into a hole I don’t want to build out of.

Like I said earlier, this is a direct port from the PlayStation 4 and Vita version of the game so as far as I haven’t been able to tell if there isn’t any new content lurking hidden for people to uncover or enjoy. That being said, if you never got to play it or simply enjoyed it enough the first time around then having it at hand on your Switch to take with you really does have its perks. This newly released Switch edition of Dragon Quest Builders  really does feel like a definitive version of the game to me. Where the Vita version gave players portability it lacked the visual quality the PS4 version had. Here on the Switch, it blends the graphics and performance found in the PS4 version with the portability of the Vita. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time in the realm of Alefgard and I’ll most definitely be playing and building long after this review is over.