Dragon's Crown - Post-E3 preview

5:37 PM, Jul 3, 2013   |    comments
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'Dragon's Crown' for PS3 and Vita.

Those who remember gaming back in the late 1980's probably remember a gem from the arcades (and later on the SEGA Genesis) called Golden Axe.  A good new Golden Axe-type game is something occasionally wished by gamers of a certain age these days, and it looks like Atlus is ready to fulfill the request with its upcoming PlayStation 3 and PS Vita title Dragon's Crown.

In development by Vanillaware, the company behind Muramasa: The Demon Blade for the Nintendo Wii, Dragon's Crown brings side-scrolling 2D hack-n-slash gameplay and modern-styled visuals reminiscent of that late 80's classic.  In fact, it seems to take that game as its core inspiration and turns it up to nine (though not to eleven) to provide a game that has the promise of being superior to that arcade classic.

Set in a medieval world of swords and sorcery, Dragon's Crown combines a nice mix of new and evolved ideas compared to similar titles.  Enemies can be lifted and thrown, parts of the environment are destructible, and there are hidden secrets to be found within the game's levels.  Still, the most satisfying element of this game is the same as could be found in those that came before it - side-scrolling hack'n'slash action.

Like the side-scrolling brawlers of yesteryear, Dragon's Crown supports co-op multiplayer of as many as four players in total.  Those players get to select from six available classes via both local and online multiplayer.  A neat thing with this worth mention is that, should a player die and leave the game, his/her character's bones can be collected and that character used as an AI controlled party member so other players can venture onward.

Still, there are a few questionable things about this game.  Most of these revolve around two of the game's female characters.  The sorceress is busty to the point of causing back pain to those looking at her, and the body-building Amazon is so scantly clad that even Susan Wayland would want her to cover up.  Both can be fairly distracting when cleavage... that is, cleaving through one's enemies.  Honestly, these two characters are ridiculous and take away much of what could be positive with Dragon's Crown.

Also, it looks like Vanillaware, Atlus, or both (depending on from where the decision came) will not be allowing cross-play between the PS3 and PS Vita versions of the game.  That is quite the shame.

Still, the game looks quite entertaining and should quench the thirst for a good modern Golden Axe type of game.  At least, it should for now.

Being released on August 6 only for PS3 and PS Vita, Dragon's Crown is rated "T for Teen" by the ESRB.


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