The Fantasy Anime Series On Netflix Based On An Amazing Game

By April Ryder | Published

Dragon’s Dogma

Another Netflix game adaptation brings video game giant Capcom to the streaming platform. Dragon’s Dogma is based on a game of the same name and was first released in September 2020. 

Somehow, the Capcom Action-RPG Dragon’s Dogma, which is non-linear in an open world, became an anime series now on Netflix.

The series consists of seven episodes, and it was animated by a company called Sublimation. The director of the show is Shinya Sugai (who is also one of the producers), and Kurasumi Sunayama writes the scripts while Kaoru Nishimura is in charge of character design. 

Viewers will find that the audio of the series is on par with the audible appeal of the game, and that is mainly due to Tadayoshi Makino. He was the original composer of the game, and he served in the same role for the creation of the television series. 

There have been some quite notable video game adaptations on the roster for Netflix in recent years (Castlevania and Sonic the Hedgehog), but the task of morphing Dragon’s Dogma into a linear plot was likely a bit more challenging. The game is an open-world RPG with a not-so-linear progression. 

The main plot of Dragon’s Dogma is based on a quest to slay an evil dragon (voiced by David Lodge, who did the dragon’s voice in both the game and the series) that steals people’s hearts and will ultimately lead to the destruction and annihilation of everything and everyone if it is not stopped. 

Dragon’s Dogma Season 1 didn’t appeal to critics, or fans of the game, but Netflix hasn’t canceled it and a second season might be coming.

Greg Chun voices the lead character, Ethan, who has had his family slaughtered and his heart stolen by the dragon, and he aims to get it back. Surviving the absence of his heart makes him “Arisen” and bestows upon him eternal life. 

Dragon’s Dogma

All “Arisen” get the assistance of “Pawns,” which are human-like warriors whose sole purpose is to support the “Arisen” in their quest to slay the evil dragon. Hannah (played by Erica Mendez) is Ethan’s “Pawn”, and viewers can enjoy watching her gain more human-like characteristics as the series progresses. Ethan, on the other hand, seems to follow the opposite path. 

Unlike the game, the animated series provides a little backstory to Ethan. Dragon’s Dogma on Netflix introduces viewers to Ethan’s wife (who wasn’t in the game), Olivia (voiced by Christina Vee). Olivia plays a key role in connecting viewers to the story, and she provides an emotionally charged performance early in the series. However, due to her untimely demise, Olivia doesn’t really get much screen time overall. 

Olivia’s brief appearance in the series, unfortunately, sets the tone for the rest of the episodes. Too often, side characters are introduced and then quickly killed off, and viewers are expected to care about their passing without much of an opportunity to connect. 

Also, after the opening of the show, the anime swiftly deviates from the game by attaching one of the seven deadly sins as the title of each episode. The content of each episode clearly aligns with the title. 

The adaptation of Dragon’s Dogma certainly has potential, but it wasn’t fully realized in the show’s first season.

For instance, the episode entitled ‘Lust’ features Ethan battling a succubus, and the last episode portrays the final battle and is entitled ‘Pride.’ Viewers who played the game should expect a much different ending while watching the animated series than they experienced during gameplay. 

Dragon’s Dogma

Critics of the show have said that the ending is not well crafted and finalizes the allegory of the seven deadly sins in an entirely unoriginal and anticlimactic manner. Overall, the show didn’t fare well among critics in general. 

The audience score on Rotten Tomatoes is a mere 39 percent, and individual voices posted on the show’s tomato page share some unfavorable remarks. There is mention that the show is definitely not for kids, as there is a little too much sexualization in the series. A recurring theme among critics is that the broad storyline of the game was too simplified in the series. Seven episodes was not nearly enough to really delve into the story. 

Final summation? The adaptation of Dragon’s Dogma certainly has potential, but it wasn’t fully realized in the show’s first season. Maybe in future seasons, the creators will take a little more time to develop the plot and a few of the main characters in the realm. Season 2 has not yet been approved for development by Netflix, but the show has not been officially canceled.