Sunday, May 20, 2018

Dragon's Crown Pro (PS4) Review

Dragon's Crown, the infamous game with beautiful Vanillaware artwork, fun fights, and odd design choices, gets released on the PS4.  It looks and sounds better than ever before...that's what makes it so Pro.  I honestly didn't think the game could look any better, but it does.  It's not a huge difference (I don't have a 4K TV), but it's there.  I enjoyed playing the original release co-op, and later, even my children had fun playing the game together.  Yes, there is some risque stuff, but they are too young to pay attention to it.  The updated music sounds great.  The entire soundtrack was redone with an orchestra, and I prefer this music to the old version.

One awesome feature is that your old save file will work on Pro.  I downloaded my save and jumped right back in...only to realize I don't remember most of the stuff.  So, I started another character and ran through a few stages, shaking off the ring-rust.  A re-release or updated version that allows me to keep my save file from before always gets my appreciation.  Maybe some people want to do everything over again, but letting me keep my work, while still allowing those people their fun, is a very good design choice.  Of course, the flip side of this is that this game shares the trophy list with the previous version.  So no getting new trophies, if that is your thing.

The controls for the game are pretty much the same. Square is used for attacks, X is jump, Circle is for your special attacks, Triangle is for item/pick-up weapon use, and the R1 dodges. The only new feature is the touch pad. This can be used in place of the touch screen (Vita version) or the right stick (either other version) for directing your rogue buddy, grabbing treasures, or cooking. The right stick can still be used, and in most cases feels better to me. The touch pad is faster, but less accurate, especially when clicking the pad down.

The game flows in the exact same way it did before. You go to each new dungeon, kill a boss, then move on to the next. Once you have done all nine, You have to do them again, this time with a slightly different route, and a different boss. While I'm okay with that, I still strongly dislike that at this point your destination is random, unless you want to pay in-game money. Considering how much you are already spending for repairs, items, and resurrecting helpers, there is way too much to take your money already.

Dragon's Crown is still a fun game, and the Pro release on PS4 is no exception to that. If you really want to play it again, or missed out while it was on the PS3/Vita, then this release will suffice. Otherwise, there really isn't anything extra to justify buying it again.  Being brought back nearly 5 years after release, I would have liked to see some new content.

The Good:
A fun and great looking game looks even better.

The Bad:
While the music is nice, I'd rather they changed some other things.  Unfortunately, everything but looks and sound is left the same.

The SaHD:
I saw the steel book in the store, and I totally want it!

(Review code for Dragon's Crown Pro was received from the publisher)

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