IREM - ARCADE
Reviewed by Malc
days fly by without a whimper. Some days get noted in the Shmup history
book. One of those days was when that young impudent upstart of an emulator
RAGE added Dragon Breed to it's slew of supported shooters. I mind when
Dragon Breed popped up in my favourite arcade in Glasgow (the Treasure
Island, now a mere shadow of it's past glorious self) and I dutifully
pumped my 10 pees into its bowels. Damn I miss those days:)
Anyway, they're back with the revitalised emulated version of a real
classic Irem shooter, so fret ye not. Featuring a small boyish type
character, sitting astride a huge dragon (the real star of the piece)
the game eschewed shootemup convention (Watch out, I'll be using that
other EDGE clichéd term in a minute, see if you can spot it UK
fans!) by adding a much needed extra element of control.
Your dragon had several different powerups, each of which had significantly
different weapon styles, even allowing you to curl up and protect your
rider. Best of all was the control you had over the tail, which you
could arse-bash the aliens with. This seminal title mixed the best elements
of R-type (detailed bosses, holdie-downie blast shots and damn hard
gameplay) with a more random, less strictly structured level design.
The graphics are still pretty much unmatched today, with a unique fantasy/alien
feel to them, and unlike some contemporary shooters, these graphics
did not get in the way of the game.
Jumping atop your pal the dragon at the beginning.
Note the special attack - yer dragon sheds an ectoplasmic head alienwards...
Level 2 monster - rather Gigeresque
Lovely graphics, shame the snakey things are fairly static.