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Dragon Warrior (NES) artwork

Dragon Warrior (NES) review

"Should Dragon Warrior be graded differently because it's such an old game? It's an interesting argument, but it's not particularily valid. The NES is so antiquated that better RPG's can be acquired for it."

Ah, Dragon Warrior. For many, it started their forray into the role playing game (RPG) genre. Dragon Warrior was a given away by Nintendo Power in a promotional giveaway, completely free, as long as you were a subscriber. This unprecendented offer brought in many new subscribors for Nintendo Power, and many new players to the RPG community.

In Dragon Warrior, you play the role of a warrior descended from Edrick. Edrick was a legendary hero who saved the world from the evil Dragonlord in ancient times. However, the Dragonlord has resurfaced, and the king's daughter has also been kidnapped by a green dragon. It's all pretty standard, done in literature since the beginning of time.

Dragon Warrior is a standard RPG. Everything is based on a hit point scale. Combat is turn based; you take a swing, the monster you're facing takes a swing. There's also a decent array of magical spells to use. Equipment ranges from swords to axes to shields to armor, some with magical abilites. There are also item shops to buy restorative herbs and inns to restore hit points. Gold pieces serves as the currency.

However, if you're looking for an epic journey, look elsewhere. Dragon Warrior is long, but it's not a particularily interesting journey. There's a lot of ''busy work'' involved, fighting just for the purpose of gaining levels and gold pieces. The difficulty level is low; most of the tasks are just tedious, especially dungeons. It just simply isn't that fun.

Dragon Warrior's complexity level is also very very low. You control only one character, which is unheard of in current, real, turn-based RPG's. You also face only one enemy at a time. As a result, combat is mainly just acting and reacting. Hit points low? Heal. Not low? Attack. The attack spells given to you quickly become outdated. Combat becomes tedious fast, and the game is pretty damn long.

Graphically, Dragon Warrior is pretty good for an early Nintendo game. The graphics are blocky, but since the format was new at the time, they can be excused. The tunes are a bit catchy, but it's computer generated NES crap, so don't expect it to enthrall you.

Should Dragon Warrior be graded differently because it's such an old game? It's an interesting argument, but it's not particularily valid. The NES is so antiquated that better RPG's can be acquired for it, though none of them are especially cheap because of a lack of mass production. However, if you're on a budget, this game will do as an RPG. If you own any other system besides an NES, you can find better for about the same amount of cash though.

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Community review by sgreenwell (Date unavailable)

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