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Title:Legend of Dragoon (PS1) Playthrough [1 of 4]
Duration:10:48:16
Viewed:12,533
Published:31-01-2022
Source:Youtube

A playthrough of Sony's 2000 role-playing game for the Sony PlayStation, Legend of Dragoon. This video, covering Chapter 1, is the first part of a four-part playthrough. Part 2: https://youtu.be/15R9KGPu-t4 Part 3: https://youtu.be/Q52OlXEjrIM Part 4: https://youtu.be/QQtXQYqtQko! Legend of Dragoon was a highly-publicized, big budget JRPG created by Japan Studio, a Sony first-party development team known for games like Parappa the Rapper, Alundra, and Wild Arms. Though Sony had internally produced several of the first PlayStation's hits, many system sellers came from third-party studios. In the latter half of the system's life, however, Sony started making big pushes into genres their licensees had so far dominated. Some of these efforts, like Gran Turismo and Omega Boost, set a new gold standard. Others, like Legend of Dragoon, were good games that ended up being too derivative to leave much of a mark. Legend of Dragoon was regularly positioned as Sony's "Final Fantasy killer" in the media, and it seemed to have everything it needed to lock horns with Square's juggernaut franchise: the massive budget, the well-respected and highly-talented development staff, and the overblown marketing campaign were all in place. What else was there to do besides kick back and wait for the cash to start rolling in? Legend of Dragoon is a traditional turn-based JRPG that adheres closely to the guidelines Square set for the genre in Final Fantasy VII. The hero is Dart, a moody blond teenager with a huge sword who seeks revenge on the evil forces that destroyed his hometown. After learning that the attackers had sought to kidnap his childhood friend, Shana, Dart heads to the prison to stage a rescue. There he joins with Lavitz, an honorable knight serving the king of Serdio, who wants to save his men from the jailers. Upon escaping, Dart, Lavitz, and Shana resolve to help one another in uncovering a plot that will ultimately decide the fate of the world. This sounds awfully familiar... The battle system is where Legend of Dragoon makes it biggest attempts to differentiate itself. Your characters learn chains of attacks, "additions," that play out as quicktime events in which you have to press a series of buttons synced to the on-screen action. These are a core component of the battle system, and you'll have to learn to pull them off consistently if you're going to get very far. You can also temporarily transform into the titular dragoons to bolster everyone's fighting abilities, much like how trances work in Final Fantasy IX. It's clear that Legend of Dragoon was crafted to emulate the Final Fantasy games - and thus, their successes - as closely as possible, and awful translation aside, it does an excellent job. On a technical level, it's about on equal footing with FF9 and Crono Cross. The backdrops are beautifully rendered and packed with animation and small details that bring the scenes to life. The battles look fantastic, too. The framerate is smooth, the character models' polygon counts and texture work are grade A on the PS1, and the elaborate spell and transformation sequences almost match the sense of scale and grandeur of FF 7-9's summoning spectacles. In terms of gameplay, it provides a lengthy and fun adventure, but it is also a painfully unoriginal one that feels somewhat less than the sum of its parts. It's afraid to veer outside the lines set by its "inspiration," and the couple chances it does take with the battle system are to the game's detriment. I hated the addition system - if I had wanted to play a game so heavily loaded with quicktime events, I would've gone for anything but an RPG. I didn't find the system engaging, and it thoroughly pissed me off when strategies would fall apart because I hit the X button a fraction-of-a-second too soon. I also disliked how magic is tied to usable items. With inventory space being so limited, I always end up benching mages for much of the game. Those issues aside, the game's biggest failing is its stark lack of originality. Every plot beat and character archetype feels like a rehash. The intro sequence is yanked directly from Cosmic Fantasy 2, the game's final sequences mirror FF4 and 7's, the dragoon transformations were ripped straight from the Breath of Fire games, and the main characters are blatant retreads of iconic figures from older RPGs. None of it feels fresh. But in spite of all these "similarities," Legend of Dragoon is a game that has stuck with me over the years. I originally played it hoping for something to tide me over until the next Final Fantasy, and it fit that bill perfectly. It's an enjoyable experience, but it was no Final Fantasy killer. How could it have been? Its slavish devotion to FF was what robbed it of the magic those games were known for, but it was still pretty damned good. _____________ No cheats were used during the recording of this video.



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