Dragon’s Dogma 2 Archer Gameplay Preview

Learn what to expect from this Starting Vocation (Class) in the upcoming sequel with Dragon’s Dogma 2 Archer Gameplay Preview.

Dragon's Dogma 2 Archer Gameplay Preview

In the Dragon’s Dogma series, traditional RPG classes are called Vocations. The developers of Dragon’s Dogma 2 have confirmed ten available Vocations for the sequel. These are divided into three categories: Starting, Advanced, and Hybrid. In this gameplay preview guide, we’ll look at the Archer vocation, its playstyle and abilities, its strengths and weaknesses, and it’s viability as a Pawn vocation.

Dragon’s Dogma 2 Archer Gameplay Preview

In the Dragon’s Dogma series, the Archer Vocation is one of four main starting classes which will be available in the sequel. These include the Fighter, Mage, Thief and Archer.

In the original Dragon’s Dogma there was a vocation called the Strider. A Strider could utilize both the bow and arrow for range damage or switch to daggers for close quarters melee combat. However, in Dragon’s Dogma 2 these two weapon types have been split between two new vocations. The first is the melee-based Thief, and the second is the ranged Archer.

Archers attack their enemies by dealing physical damage with arrows at range. Furthermore, they don’t have great defense and are therefore more nimble. When playing as an Archer you will want to move swiftly across the battlefield in order to stay out of attack range. Movement and positioning will be key when you are playing as an Archer.

DD2 Archer kick flip preview

Additionally, similar to the Thief vocation, Archers typically do not deal single, powerful blows. Rather, they more often rely on their quickness and skill to fire multiple arrows in a row.

Finally, as you level your Archer they will gain access to skills which will grant you some very helpful crowd control abilities. Other skills will allow you to shoot arrows more quickly, or even to fire multiple arrows at once. Furthermore, some skills will improve your mobility, allowing you to disengage and put some extra distance between you and any attacking enemies.

Archer Skills and Abilities

Dragon's Dogma 2 Archer preview from IGN trailer
Archer Vocation (Image Source: Capcom and IGN)

The Archer vocation has some unique skills and abilities, some of which will be familiar to original game players. So far what we’ve seen of the Archer vocation has shown a lot of basic bow and arrows skills. However, more recent trailers and videos have highlighted some of the more useful weapon skills the Archer vocation can pick up. Some of these will offer players greater group utility with their crowd control affects.

The Archer is a standard RPG class that many players will be familiar with and possibly already be comfortable playing. An Archer needs to stay at range, stay mobile and use their skills strategically in order to benefit the group as a whole.

Here are the known skills and abilities for the Archer in Dragon’s Dogma 2 that we’ve seen so far:

Core Skills
  • Front Kick – Unleashes a swift kick that causes the target to flinch. Launches the user backward if the kick connects in mid-air.
  • Leaping Punt – Delivers a weighty kick that can knock foes off balance. Launches the user backward after it connects.
  • Loose – Aim and fire an arrow at a nearby foe. Can be employed while moving.
  • Parting Shot – Fires and arrow while jumping back after performing a Leaping Punt or a mid-air Front Kick.
  • Puncture Dart – Draws the bowstring to the shoulder limit before firing. Makes aiming more difficult but allows arrows to puncture targets with greater impact.
  • Steady Shot – Draws the bow carefully, allowing for perfect aim. Can be employed while moving. Length of the draw affects armor impact and distance fired.
Weapon Skills
  • Barrage Shot – No official text yet.
  • Cascade Shot – An advanced form of Sweep Shot that fires a greater number of arrows.
  • Dire Arrow – No official text yet. The original Dragon’s Dogma described this ability as: “Focuses the user’s gathered strength into a single, devastating shot that grows in power as it is charged.”
  • Exploding Shot – Fires a loaded arrow that adheres to foes or terrain. The arrow will burst when attacked or after a time, and can knock targets off balance.
  • Keen Sight – Special sight augments the user’s vision while drawing, allowing them to fire on distant targets. Consumes Stamina while bow is drawn.
  • Sweep Shot – No official text yet. Likely allows an Archer to fire 2 or 3 arrows at once.
  • Tarring Shot – No official text yet. Appears in gameplay video to add a sticky ‘tar’ effect to foes which can knock them prone and slow their recovery.
  • Torrent Shot – Fire multiple arrows in rapid succession. Rate of fire increases with consecutive shots. Prevents movement while active.

Archer Strengths and Weaknesses

The following is a list of the pros and cons of the Archer Vocation/Class in our Dragon’s Dogma 2 Archer Gameplay Preview:

High mobilityWeaker Defense
Powerful at RangeNo switching to daggers for melee
Weapon Skills add crowd controlBasic Core Skills do not

Should You Choose the Archer Vocation For Your Pawn?

DD2 Glyndwr screenshot

The Archer vocation/class would be a good choice for a Pawn only if you already have a defensive vocation in your group. This defensive vocation (likely a Fighter in the early game) could be either the vocation you choose for your Arisen, or the one already assigned to another recruited Pawn.

The Fighter class is likely going to be a very valuable vocation to have in your group make up, especially in the early game. As you are learning your chosen vocation’s playstyle and getting comfortable with mechanics, the extra group protection that a Fighter can provide will increase your survivability. An Archer would be good secondary choice for a Pawn given their range, damage, crowd control and mobility. However, you probably won’t want to start out the game with a party full of predominately damage-dealing vocations.

When starting the game, each player will get to create their own Arisen character. Additionally, you will also get to make a custom-designed Pawn. Within the world and story of Dragon’s Dogma, Pawns are said to lack emotion and a true will. Their one purpose is to follow and aid the Arisen. You can only create one single Pawn with the vocation of your choosing. You can recruit other Pawns from within the game if you want to bring along a full party.

Pawns can have any of the Starting vocations, and can eventually choose an Advanced vocation. However, they cannot use Hybrid Vocations. Those are only available to the Arisen character.

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