The remade version has received a complete graphical overhaul. It features fully 3D graphics and 2D sprites for characters; the visual style resembles that of Dragon Warrior VII. Battles now have backgrounds that represent the location the battle takes place in. Interaction with some of the environment is now physical, as the characters can visible raise, hold, and break barrels, pots, etc. The music has also been enhanced significantly, with orchestra-like quality.
The main gameplay change is the possibility to directly control characters who were AI-controlled in the original version. The AI system is still present, but the player can turn it off and command all the characters manually. A "party talk" feature is now available: it is possible to talk to the characters in the party at any time. The remake also features additional sub-quests and mini-games, such as building an immigrant town and monster collecting. A prologue as well as a post-game chapter were added to the game; the latter offers more insight into the game's story.
An official press release was made by Enix on 21 August, 2001 that confirmed what many US gamers had hoped: the Dragon Quest IV remake was bound stateside. An advertisement can also be seen on the back of the Dragon Warrior VII manual. As we now know, the game was never delivered.
The reason first given for the cancellation was the Playstation's near-geriatric status at the time. Rumors held a more specific explanation as to why the game was aborted despite its complete translation. Heartbeat, the company who developed the engine that the game ran on, had left the business of game-making, and Enix couldn't complete the project without their programming. This rumor was later confirmed by Enix on their own message board in May of 2002.