To the untrained eye, Square Enix's next Dragon Quest release -- a DS remake of Dragon Quest V, subtitled Hand of the Heavenly Bride -- looks like basically the same thing as Dragon Quest IV, which arrived a few months ago. Squishy midget warriors wander through a world made of simple 3D graphics, connecting the dots of a bare-bones plot, fighting in an archaic turn-based battle system against familiar-looking enemies for 30-odd hours.
But that's just a superficial view. The purpose behind Dragon Quest's consistency isn't just familiarity; it's also a way to accentuate the small differences. DQV is as different from DQIV as the latest Call of Duty is from its predecessor.