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E3 2013: Dragon's Crown (Hands-On)

Posted by: Matt at 6/13/2013 12:00 AM
     Atlus made a bold move when they picked up Odin Sphere back in 2007 for the PS2. Fast-forward to 2013 and I'm thinking the same thing with Dragon's Crown. I figured the game to be dead in the water after it was dumped by UTV Ignition back in 2012, but during the show today I finally had the chance to get my hands on the game. This chance turned into nearly an hour of me clutching the PS3 controller and Vita tightly, refusing the let go. I had to down that harpy one more time, had to appraise that loot, had to enjoy the archer's combos, had to tap the screen to find hidden loot, I just had to get my fix.

    What drove me to such an act of madness and obsession? Duh, it was the fantastic gameplay (read: Sorceress' Assets). No seriously, this game is everything a fan of games like Final Fight, Dungeons and Dragons: The Tower of Doom/Shadow Over Mystara, Streets of Rage, and any other early 90's brawler could ever want. Each character plays distinctly different from the rest, but I opted for the archer most of the time (juggles not jiggles) as her combination of ranged attacks and ability to keep enemies airborne made her perfect for my style of play. 

    The two maps available for the E3 demo allowed for a decent amount of exploration, and using the right analog stick on the PS3 controller, or Vita touch screen, I could direct the companion thief to open chests and locked doors that gave me access to some sweet loot. Completing a level gives players the option to appraise their loot or just sell it outright. Though the demo gave players access to some pretty powerful gear, it was interesting to see that some weapons and armor had buffs against specific attack types, and offered damage bonuses depending on the type of enemy hit, offering a great deal of depth to the weaponry that is carried in to battle.

    Dragon's Crown is incredibly easy on the eyes, and it looks amazingly fluid in motion. The PS3 visuals looked fantastic, and the OLED screen of the Vita did an amazing job of showing off the visuals. The Basiscape soundtrack was kind of muddled because of the loud show floor, but if their past work is any indication, I expect it to be great when the game is finally released. August 6th is the day when Dragon's Crown is finally available on the PS3 and Vita, and after this brief taste, that seems like a very long wait.