Dragon Quest Tact

App review by
Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media
Dragon Quest Tact App Poster Image
Tactical battles, slow pace aid players' strategy in battle.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn about strategy and logic as they try to choose monsters whose abilities are a similar match to their various opponents. Some challenges involve counting, and conversations with characters provide reading practice. Kids will also get money management experience using the in-app currency items they earn and will work toward goals. Critical thinking skills play a large role in the game -- more so than traditional academic subjects -- and kids get a chance to hone them by repeating rounds and learning from their mistakes.

Ease of Play

Players see a detailed tutorial and get helpful hints along the way. They can also refer to an FAQ-type section, and some of the gameplay is fairly intuitive.


Although the app features frequent battles with weaponry such as swords, no blood or gore is shown, and the characters involved are mythical creatures.


The app offers gem purchases that range from $0.99 to $79.99. It's also based on a long-running role-playing game franchise from game consoles.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Dragon Quest Tact is a strategy game for iOS and Android devices. The app is based off a long-running and popular role-playing game franchise found on consoles. While gameplay is battle-focused, confrontations happen through slow, deliberate moves, and the creatures don't bleed or seem to be in obvious pain. The game involves a number of elements, including different types of rewards, fight moves, and monster rankings, but there's a clear effort to present it in a digestible way. Players get a chance to strengthen their strategy skills while playing, and they won't feel any pressure to advance levels quickly -- so the overall experience doesn't feel rushed.

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What's it about?

Players use creatures from the Dragon Quest game series in fights against other monsters in DRAGON QUEST TACT. They collect monsters and move ones they've chosen around highlighted squares that indicate unit mobility in battles and hit a button to attack. Some monsters have special abilities they can use, but may need to wait to use these strikes if their HP is low. Players can earn gold, gems, and other items for winning or meeting certain criteria, such as finishing in a set number of moves. In between battles, characters they meet advance an ongoing storyline.

Is it any good?

This strategy role-playing adventure should capture the imagination of gamers looking to explore a fantasy game at their own pace. In Dragon Quest Tact, players are tasked with ridding evil monsters from the land of Orchesterra. They see events through the eyes of character who can control certain monsters' actions using a magical wand. As you play, you add characters to your party -- sometimes after fighting them -- to use in later battles. Players can level or rank monsters up through EXP, crystals, and items they obtain while playing, which makes the creatures stronger. Before each battle, you generally want to build a team with the skills to address enemy weaknesses you're shown before the fight begins. Monsters move along a grid, with blue-outlined squares indicating their potential mobility range. Once they face an opponent, they can wait or attack. Sometimes you have to beat a team of monsters, and other times,  you can just overpower one of them. Players can also choose an auto battle function, which may help earn a quicker victory and get a better sense of how battles can work.

When you're not battling, dialogue can feel slow and somewhat drawn out, and comments don't always advance the plot. This is a stark contrast with the more well-paced battle scenes, which switch from an overhead bird's eye view to up-close action when a blow lands. At least players can take their time to make decisions, since monsters don't leap at them aggressively or attack without provocation, which offers a chance to strategize next moves. They can also repeat a round by choice without pressure to move through the app's challenges at a specific pace. While the variety of gameplay elements has the potential to be confusing and may cause players to check the Help section in the app to clarify something, the support materials, such as the concepts and tips that frequently pop up before activities, help make playing Dragon Quest Tact a generally manageable and entertaining experience.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about violence in video games. Is the impact of the violence in Dragon Quest Tact affected by the animated nature of the visuals? Would the impact be intensified if the visuals were more realistic? Does the fact monsters are fighting make the violence seem more acceptable?

  • How can players create a plan to win a battle in Dragon Quest Tact? What strategies can be helpful when you have a problem like that to solve? What if you need to adjust your original plan during the game? What steps can you take to determine the best course of action?



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For kids who love strategy

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