Thursday, 26 March 2015

Dragon Gun - Arcade


It has guns, and dragons. Ronsil would be proud.


It's an interesting idea, but given the fact that Dungeons and Dragons, Dungeon Magic and a whole other glut of "Dragon" based games came out around this time, it was only a matter of eventuality that someone did this in a board meeting. "How about... a gun game... wait for it... with DRAGONS" which was invariably met with rapturous applause and much cashbags of money heaped upon the little bastards head then with a quick return to reality for the rest us, this I think is how Dragon Gun was born.

You name it, and it'll come running to attack you.

And it's mad. I mean seriously mad in the way that when you stop and think about it, you realise why everything wants to kill you beyond the "Some git is trying to take over Fantasia... I mean the World". Yep this game is heavily rooted in the fantasy world so much so that I'm half expecting Luck Dragons and David Bowie dealing me "this little slice" of a piece of cake inside a Labyrinth.

It's an interesting take on the boss battle, actually being grabbed and attacked.

The plot in Dragon Gun is a simple affair, after all it's an arcade game so there's little point in doing anything convoluted, especially when you can just skip it and get back to shooting dragons. (And a whole host of other things) But for those that like to get their money's worth out of a game: Some Princess in a far away land (ooh) needs help after being attacked, a messenger from the dragons tells her to find two asshats that can fire the Dragon Gun (Name drops are great aren't they) and these people will be legendary enough to stop everything while blowing up most of the countryside with their god-like weaponry.

Do special, get dragon.

So you're either Twatty McJock or Dopey Doris in the quest to save the fantasy land from, some threat. Which, upon reflection, seems to be the BIGGEST case of mass parasites I've ever seen. Practically every enemy you fight has some sort of living critter in their body while they expel at high speed towards you, puking it up, arm-cannon-ing it at you or ass-blasting you with some living (or undead, we're not picky here) monstrosity that will damage your health. Seriously, some nit-shampoo and a worming drugs would solve this problem far quicker than a gun could. But wouldn't be as much fun.

Huge monsters will assault you at every turn.

So you've your character in Dragon Gun, you've a gun with infinite rounds but holding off the trigger charges up for a bigger shot, and a selection of Dragon Bombs that wipe out everything on screen or at least, cause heavy damage to the bosses and sub-bosses, and as an added bonus, if you run out of bombs, you get a weaker recharge blast that still destroys all projectiles and does minor damage to everything as well. You're quite well equipped in this game. But then so are the enemies, with worms, skulls, face-hugger looking things and god knows what else living in their bodies.

"Pull trigger to cap asshat" - a much better game.

Dragon Gun is an on-rails shooter, you don't choose where to go, you just follow the pre-set route and meet the boss at the end if you get that far. Which would be a shame if you didn't as the bosses are a rather colourful and lively bunch that range from Large Dragon, to flying centipede, Large Frog, running centipede with more parasites than one would care to think about, last boss and last boss 2 (back for revenge as per typical unimaginative game approach). While things to move at a quick pace, there's plenty to shoot at but thankfully not everything is capable of hurting you and there's a little mercy invincibility from one damage point to the next.

Look out, it's got a glimpse of plot here!

Graphically creative is an understatement for Dragon Gun, the variety and sheer scope of monsters is incredible. Yes you get your typical types with the dragons, lizards etc, but there's so many more monsters in the game which can be shot and killed in various ways. Heads get blown off only for the monster's JAWS to fly out and try one last bite, chests are shredded and limbs shot away, legs running off with the rest of the monster long since departed. Wyverns dying then returning as skeletal dragons to take more attempts and killing you. There's a high level of originality within the monster department here, it's a shame the backgrounds and scenery for the most part is either too pixelated or clearly a photograph, probably from New Zealand long before hobbits were filmed.

Insects, dragons, demons, dogs, this game has a LOT of things killing you.

Once again with the sounds, the music is overshadowed and drowned out by the explosions and screams of things dying, some monsters have some VERY human sounding screams while other sound effects sound like they're been taken from Alien 3 and Space Gun, I'm guessing someone sold a game engine at one point. Thankfully the music doesn't really add much to the game when you do hear it, so there's little missing when you don't hear what Dragon Gun is trying to pipe out through the speakers.

Even the bosses take quite the stab at the originality approach.

Overall it's a fun game, worth a few quick plays and if you're careful enough you can get quite far on just a credit or two but it's  not likely that you'll want to come back and play it again as there's no real variation in the game to want to see if things are different, however it is still enjoyable and at least with the relative ease of the game, you'll feel like you're getting good value for your cash.