Capcom pulls the veil off their interesting “Pawn” system for the upcoming Dragon’s Dogma.
At first blush it actually just resembles something like Dragon Age. You have a party of up to four people (your character included) and three of them will be pawns.
You main pawn will follow you through the game and grow with you. The other two can be recruited, actually borrowed from other players online. You can select them by class and choose how you want them to behave in battle. Apparently, when your pawn is selected by another player, he/she will actually grow stronger from the experience.
From the Capcom Unity blog:
Main Pawn: The Main Pawn is like a permanent partner, who will follow the player throughout the adventure. As with the player character, the Main Pawn’s appearance and gender are customizable, and the Main Pawn will also level up and improve through increased experience and knowledge. You can also “rent” other players’ Main Pawn’s using an online feature.
Support Pawns: Main Pawns borrowed from other players will act as your Support Pawns. Of course, there are also many Support Pawns built into the game, so you don’t have to take advantage of the online feature to have these pawns and create the party of your liking. Players should consider the conditions of battle when choosing their pawns.
Online Mode: Players will be able to borrow other players’ Main Pawns and use them in their own party. Lending one’s pawn out to other players will cause that pawn to improve and gain new knowledge of enemy weakpoints and dungeons. Players can also “educate” pawns and choose the way they want their pawns to act.