There’s much to love about last month’s Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age — the combat is enjoyable, the characters are fun and the overall presentation is gorgeous. However, if the game were to have one weakness, then it would be the soundtrack, and, thankfully, a newly-released mod on Steam now fixes that.
Assuming you haven’t played it, Dragon Quest XI’s greatest fault lies in its soundtrack. And the reason that’s the case is because rather than having it orchestrated, the game’s composer, Koichi Sugiyama, elected to only include MIDI versions of all of the game’s tracks — a stance he’s maintained for almost all of the series.
The end of result of this decision is an aural experience that pales in comparison with everything else the game offers. That isn’t to say that any individual track is particularly bad, of course, but the inherent quality is just lower as a result.
Luckily for those on PC, this issue is now a thing of the past. Titled “Dragon Quest XI Orchestral Overhaul Mod,” this mod does exactly what it suggests: replaces all of the MIDI with orchestrated pieces, improving not just the soundtrack, but the overall strength of the game.
If this sounds like you’re interested in (and it should), just be sure to follow the instructions properly, as the installation process involves manually tampering with pre-existing files. Overall, the process does look simple, though, so it doesn’t look there are many opportunities to screw up too badly.
As a final note, do be aware that this mod nothing to address the game’s other real flaw, track variety — it just makes everything sound better. That said, there does seem to be plans to allow for custom soundtracks in the future, so stay tuned for that.
You can download the mod here, and do be sure to offer up some thanks to the creators (they don’t accept donations) — they just fixed one of DQ XI’s only weaknesses and are on course to fix the second.