Saturday, September 24, 2005

Rediscovering the Classics: Dragon Force

Sega Saturn...sigh. That system had some truly great titles, but unfortunately they never gathered the following that some other games have had...(*cough* final fantasy *cough*). And since then most of these games and the saturn itself have faded from memory...which, I suppose nicely foreshadows Sega's decision to stop making consoles. Interestingly enough, I never personally owned a Saturn system, and only played it on my friend's very rarely.
I guess that wasn't that interesting. Poo.

Dragon Force (Sega Saturn) - 5/5

Wein and Mikhal duke it out.

Anyway, the one game that I always wanted to play but probably played only once or twice on an actual Saturn system was Dragon Force. Dragon Force was I'd say revolutionary at the time it came out, because it combined real-time strategy with role-playing elements, and a nice albeit somewhat generic storyline. You played as one of 8 chosen warriors (all who happen to lead countries, conveniently) destined to stop a great threat. Each leader then had his/her own officers and cities etc. As you made your bid for power across the land, you'd encounter other chosen warriors who would join you (after you beat them into submission that is).
In short, the gameplay was fantastic and I think Dragon Force is what inspired a lot of my own fantasy storylines. Unfortunately, when I really wanted to play, my friend had somehow lost or loaned his copy away...and then the Saturn was shelved for other projects.
The world map...spritey.
I tried desperately to find some way to play the game without having to buy an outdated system, but to no avail. At the time, emulation with the Saturn was extremely difficult and there was no working emulator that could emulate commercial games.

Yum...tastey soldier dinner tonight!

Until very recently that is. A decade after I was first introduced to Dragon Force, I finally managed to obtain a working emulator and a copy of Dragon Force. It's remarkable how satisfying such old gameplay mechanics and sprite-based graphics can still be. Dragon Force is a definite classic in my book, and you should definitely give it a try...if you're bored enough :P

...I'll be right back. Forgot my fork.

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