Dragon Riders: Chronicles of Pern Introduction - Dreamcast





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Published on Oct 5, 2010

Well, I'll start with a quote about the game:

"The game takes place on the fictional planet Pern created by science fiction writer Anne McCaffrey for her Dragonriders of Pern series of novels. The story, divided into four chapters, follows the dragonrider D'kor who, with the help of his dragon Zenth, searches for girls to be candidates for Impressing a new young gold dragon. Various side-plots are developed throughout the game including a bit of intrigue involving an epidemic sickness that is somewhat reminiscent of the storyline in McCaffrey's novel Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern. The game contains over 120 locations on three continents. The player interacts and speaks with over 170 characters.

The game did not sell well, and was derided both by the gaming community and fans of the series for inconsistencies, poor storyline, and poor gameplay." -Wikipedia

I honestly don't know much about Anne McCaffrey's "Dragonriders of Pern", which this game is based on (other than the series is much older than myself) and perhaps that may bias my opinion somewhat, as I have no history with the series and can't say just HOW accurate or representative it is of the novels, but speaking as someone who is a long-time gamer, I didn't find this game quite AS BAD as it was made out to be.

It's not very pretty (facial expressions were decent for their time, but most environments had really bland, headache-inducing textures), has pretty long load times (they can be a few seconds, or roughly 30 seconds or more, it depends), its interface is pretty clumsy (one of the worst aspects being that you can't outright skip text/spoken bits), it's very glitchy, the game has very unexciting battles and the "Dragon Riding" isn't very badass, but perhaps the marketing for this game is partially to blame.

While some saw it as an RPG of some kind and others saw it as a clunky third-person action game with a lot of meaningless quests, I see this more as an adventure game. Being based on a novel and with all the loads of interaction with the game's characters and effort put into the storytelling, the fighting and other elements play second fiddle (though I should note that the soundtrack is decent). This should be made more obvious as you can increase strength really high really early just from jumping. You basically walk and investigate many objects and people, collecting a variety of items you need to complete quests or move the story along, ocassionally fighting enemies (in a rather unusual way, but you can see this at least once in our videos).

I wouldn't say that it's the most interesting plot ever and it does get boring at times, but so do many games. I can see that some conscious effort was put into the development of this game, but there are so many little issues with this game that I can't call it a great adventure game. However, if you find it for a price you deem cheap or acceptable, you should give Dalkor (D'kor), his fire lizard, and Zenth the Bronze Dragon a chance, and there are hardly any games based on DRoP (a board game, an Atari 800/C64 game, and a PC/DC game being official). These videos cover the intro and roughly the first 30 minutes of the game. The PC game looks better. Enjoy.


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