19 must-read Dragon's Dogma 2 tips and tricks the game does not tell you (spoiler-free)

 Dragon's Dogma 2 beginner's tips.
Dragon's Dogma 2 beginner's tips.

More Dragon's Dogma 2

Dragon's Dogma 2 promotional screenshot
Dragon's Dogma 2 promotional screenshot

 Dragon's Dogma 2 FAQ and guide list
• DD2 vocation guide and skills list
• The Nameless Village quest
• DD2 on gaming handhelds
• Dragon's Dogma 2 review
DD2 negative review bombing

Dragon's Dogma 2 is finally here, and if you're a beginner, you're going to want to read these tips and tricks.

Don't make the same mistakes I made playing Dragon's Dogma 2 for my huge review. Dragon's Dogma 2 is a complex and rewardingly deep game that hinges on patient exploration and curious experimentation. However, sometimes the adventure can be opaque to the point of frustration, and there are some pitfalls that can sneak up on you unnoticed, and aren't easily fixed owing to the game's restrictive save file system.

To that end, I've put together a list of the best Dragon's Dogma 2 tips and tricks for beginners, spoiler free, to help you get started in this epic, grand adventure.

Dragon's Dogma 2 is available now on Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 5, and PC. 

Dragon's Dogma 2 story and questing tips (no spoilers)

Dragon's Dogma 2 review
Dragon's Dogma 2 review

Dragon's Dogma 2 is an obscure game with regard to story telling. Your decisions matter a fair bit when calculating the outcomes of quests, and it isn't always clear how you can resolve certain situations. However, that can be part of the fun.

Exploration and rewarding curiosity leads to those "eureka!" moments that are often lost on games that remove friction for the sake of convenience. Dragon's Dogma 2 and its predecessor try to reward those who experiment, and experiment you will.

  • When approaching quests, the time of day can impact the presence of an NPC. Also, the amount of days elapsed can trigger new events. 

Sometimes it might seem like a quest is stuck or "bugged," but it can be more likely that you haven't found the appropriate "trigger" that moves the quest forward. Sometimes this can be vague to figure out, although online walkthroughs will be prevalent once this article goes live.

  • BEWARE of Dragonsplague, and know how to fight it. 

Dragon's Dogma 2 Dragonsplague is hinted at in-game, but it's not explained just how much of a disaster it can be. Dragonsplague is basically a corruption that can befall your Pawns as they exit the rift. The symptoms begin with Pawns being disobedient, progresses to them having red eyes, and then upon resting at an inn, they'll literally explode and kill all the NPCs in the nearby vicinity. Having this happen in a major town like Vernworth can effectively break your save file, although there are reports that if you use a seat to "doze off" repeatedly for up to two weeks or more, the important NPCs should begin to return.

You can fight Dragonsplague by literally throwing your infected Pawns into the brine (deep rivers or the ocean) and respawning them at a Rift Stone.

  • Listen closely to what NPCs say if it doesn't seem like a quest will move forward. They might remark upon your clothes for example, perhaps different attire, or even a mask might help improve your identity and relationship with them. 

The world of Dragon's Dogma 2 is steeped in cultural relevancies. Some areas may be off-limits to you, but perhaps there's a disguise that might help you avoid suspicion. Perhaps a nobleman or upper class citizen might frown upon you if you're wearing clothes that seem "beneath" them, as well.

Dragon's Dogma 2 review
Dragon's Dogma 2 review
  • Rent a Pawn with the "Quest Guide" ability to help you find objectives a little more easily. 

Pawns that have experienced previous quests while travelling with other players may have tips and hints to provide for your currently active quest. Pressing up on the d-pad will also trigger Pawns to offer tips and guidance, if you're not pointing at anything in particular.

  • Use the Grab button to resolve quests, even on NPCs. 

Some quests may get stuck and seem unable to resolve, with NPCs refusing to move or give up information. If you "grab" them, you can sometimes wrestle them to the ground to basically beat information out of them. You can also physically pick up some NPCs and move them to another place, if they're being stubborn. This can also trigger quest outcomes in some scenarios. If an NPC won't move, make them move.

  • Remember and make a note of where you picked up your first Seeker's Token ... 

Just trust us on this one. You'll be glad you did.

  • Before making major story decisions, go and rest in an inn. This gives you an opportunity to double back to an earlier save. 

You can't really "save scum" in Dragon's Dogma 2, because there are only two save files you're allowed to have per account, and only one character per account as well. You have one auto-save file, which triggers before entering combat generally, as well as every few minutes. You also have an inn rest save file. When you rest in an inn, it records that as a separate save file. So when you load back into the game, you can "resume from last inn save," which gives you an opportunity to correct previous "mistakes."

  • You only need to carry one camping supply, and you can use your materials even if they're stored in your inn storage. 

Save yourself a headache (and encumbrance) by only carrying around one, maybe two camping supplies at any one time. Camping supplies are only used up if they get destroyed during a night time raid. Even during the raid, if you're quick, you can save the camp from being destroyed.

Additionally, remember to always store your materials in a deposit box at an inn. You can use them from there even if they're in storage, to enhance your armor and weapons, etc. Speaking of enhancements ...

  • There are several types of blacksmithing options in the game for enhancing gear. 

If you want to min-max a bit, you should check alternative options for blacksmithing before going ahead with it. Vernworth blacksmithing is "balanced," enhancing all stats. Battahl blacksmithing enhances strength and defence primarily, and also increases weight. Elven blacksmithing enhances magick and magick defence primarily. Dragonsmithing is a special additional smithing bonus, once per item, and permanently halves the weight of equipment.

  • Before you do the quest with the Gigantus from the trailers, be sure you've finished everything else prior. This is a "point of no return" for that specific act. 

In the Dragon's Dogma 2 trailers, a giant clay Gigantus golem can be seen rising from the ocean. The quests around this chap represent a "point of no return" for that specific act of the game. After this point, it will be hard to return and do some of the unresolved side quests and missions. So, before dealing with the Gigantus, be sure to be ready. I really wish I'd known this one sooner, lol.

  • Explore the whole map, if you can. There are a ton of story quests that aren't obvious to find, and aren't even marked on the map. 

A big regret I had from my Dragon's Dogma 2 review is how I sort of had to rush out some of my exploration gameplay to meet the review deadline. As such, I later found out that I had missed an entire town by not fully exploring the entire map, and thus, missed out on several side quests and character threads.

Dragon's Dogma 2: Talk to Wilhelmina.
Dragon's Dogma 2: Talk to Wilhelmina.
  • Dragon's Dogma 2's story quests often revolve around characters, and they might offer new dialogue and missions based on how much they like you. Give them gifts! 

In Dragon's Dogma 2 tradition, you can give NPC characters gifts. You can go to the History tab in the menu to get an idea of what type of gifts an NPC might like, and then giving them gifts can change their dialogue towards you and offer new story events on top.

  • The Forger is in the Checkpoint Rest Town. This guy can duplicate quest items, allowing you to keep the real deal for yourself. 

As was true of the original game, you can duplicate items using a Forger. Sometimes, you might get a quest item to deliver, that also doubles as a powerful piece of equipment. It might even be that two separate NPCs want the item, and you can resolve a quest by giving it to them "both" by giving one of them a fake version. Experiment with the Forger, it could lead to some interesting outcomes. This is particularly important for the Dragon's Dogma 2 sorcerer / mage maister quests.

Dragon's Dogma 2 combat and open-world tips

Dragon's Dogma 2 review
Dragon's Dogma 2 review

Dragon's Dogma 2 is very similar to its predecessor when it comes to combat and open world design, albeit with everything turned up to 11 for the modern age. Superb visuals, combat refinements, and a large array of interactive, overlapping systems make combat in Dragon's Dogma 2 more dynamic than ever. To that end, we have some tips to help you along the way, Arisen.

  • Upgrade you and your main Pawn's gear frequently, but don't give your hired Pawns items — you'll lose them when you ditch them. 

Dragon's Dogma uses a fixed levelling curve, with each area having its own power level with regard to enemy combatants. As you get higher level, things will get gradually easier where you are, hinting that you'll be powerful enough to explore further afield. To get more powerful, be sure to upgrade your weapons at the various vendors frequently, both with enhancements using crafting materials, and just upgrading the models outright. Upgrade your main Pawn too, but remember that your two hired Pawns won't level alongside you. And on that note ...

  • Swap your two hired Pawns out frequently, since they don't level up with you like your Main Pawn. 

Dragon's Dogma 2 parties consist of four characters, two being characters you create yourself, and two being Hired Pawns you grab from the various Riftstones in the game's world. Once you've exceeded those Pawn's levels by two or three, you may want to swap them for more powerful ones, especially if you're struggling with combat.

  • Enemies have specific weaknesses worth exploiting.

There are several types of damage in this game, from slashing, to blunt damage, as well as elemental damage. Some enemies are particularly susceptible here. For example, furry animals like Minotaurs and Griffons are particularly easy to set on fire. Enemies that are coated in metal armor or "wet" status will be susceptible to thunder. Skeletons are particularly weak against blunt weapons, like maces, and so on. Experiment, and listen to your Pawn's remarks, they'll often have hints about weaknesses and the like.

Dragon's Dogma 2 review
Dragon's Dogma 2 review
  • Try to maintain a balanced party, that compliments each other's strengths and weaknesses.

For my Dragon's Dogma 2 play through, I played as a mage and then a sorcerer mainly, who wear cloth armor and are particularly squishy. As such, seeking tanky Pawns that have the shield bash ability to draw attention away from myself proved to be a great help. Try to adapt and swap your Pawns out frequently to meet the challenge ahead. For example, if you're stuck trying to battle a specific monster, try to find Pawns at the Riftstone that can exploit their weaknesses. There's no limit on how many Pawns you can swap around, besides Rift Crystal costs.

  • You only need one camping set, so sell the others.

This is weird, but I didn't realize until several hours in that camping sets aren't used up after resting. As such, you only need to have one camping set on you at any one time. Your camp can get raided occasionally, and even destroyed, at which point you would need a new one. However, I only needed one camping set through the entire game, as long as you clear the area of enemies before resting.

  • Save your high-end curatives like Panacea and Wakestones, you may need them for difficult fights later on. 

There's an old meme in Skyrim and similar games about saving up your most powerful potions for dangerous battles that never arrive, but it's actually quite true in Dragon's Dogma 2, especially in the final acts of the game. I would recommend saving any of your most powerful curatives, particularly potions like Panacea and the revival Wakestones specifically. You should also probably save your Ferrystones as much as possible, for times traveling on foot may become more difficult.

Thou art Arisen, charge and all

Dragon's Dogma 2 Sphinx with crazed eyes.
Dragon's Dogma 2 Sphinx with crazed eyes.

More Dragon's Dogma 2

Dragon's Dogma 2 promotional screenshot
Dragon's Dogma 2 promotional screenshot

Dragon's Dogma 2 review
DD2 FAQ and Guides List
DD2 Vocation guide
The Nameless Village quest
DD2 on gaming handhelds
Greatsword and Archistaff quest

Dragon's Dogma 2 is a fantastic, if at times, confusing game, with heaps of depth and complexity. Cutting through the adventure by yourself is half of the fun, honestly, but not everyone has the amount of time to dedicate to that level of discovery. To that end, hopefully, these tips and tricks will help you on your journey without spoiling some of the game's deeper mysteries and secrets. And believe me, there are many.

Be sure to take a look at some of our other Dragon's Dogma 2 guides before heading out, and enjoy one of this year's best Xbox games and best PC games. If you have any questions, drop them in the comments, and I'll get to them ASAP!

More general Dragon's Dogma 2 guides

Dragon's Dogma 2 vocation guides and tips

Dragon's Dogma 2 quest guides and walkthroughs