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I Made My Own Maps

  • Dyhalto
  • 07/27/2015 06:00 AM
It's true. I walked around, pressed PrtScn, parsed it to a PNG, then moved a few steps over to rinse and repeat. Here's the Tomb of Uncas.
Figures it turned out to be a waste of time. The Creator's Blog has all the maps, monster data, and equipment lists I ever needed. The same stuff that was included if you bought the original DW. If I'd bothered to check the link before getting halfway through the game, I would've saved a few hours of my time.
Alas. At least I can say Wizardry and Dungeon Master taught me well.

Visual: 3.5/5
The goal of this project was to recreate, as closely as possible, the original aesthetic of Dragon Warrior 1, and present it with a new world, new story, and essentially a brand new game.
The result is a 70% success. As someone who owned DW and played it to death, I know at a glance what parts are dead accurate and which aren't. There were some minor grievances, like how the hero's name and "COMMAND" overlay the window frames instead of erasing them, but the big offender was in battles.
Compare for thyself.

Yes, we are both named SLIME.

If you're going for a faithful recreation, and seeing as half the game is spent fighting enemies, I would think the battle system should be the focus of your efforts.
But there are positive feats too. The Radiant spell slowly dims over time as it should, and the custom enemies (about half the roster) are pretty cool looking. Like I said before : 70% Success.

Audio: 4.5/5
It'd be kind of hard to botch the sound effects. DW SFX have been a part of the RM community since, hell, probably it's inception.
Dragon Warrior Classic steps it up a notch with it's own original soundtrack, mostly (I recognize a few old tunes in there). The BGM itself isn't anything to write home about, but DW's music wasn't exactly rock-out material either. It functioned, and so does Classic's. I just hope the sequel's overworld music is beautiful, because Dragon Warrior II's sure was.

I still have to knock off a half point. Why? Because Ephiam Oricuna, that's why. In Dragon Warrior, when you bump into a wall, you hear *BUMP*. If Ephiam hadn't incorporated this into his Dragon Fantasy series, I wouldn't have worried over this nuance. But it's been done, and the bar's been set. You can't have a Dragon Warrior adaption without *BUMP* anymore.

Storyline: 3/5
The one-dimensional villian, Lord Devmin, borrowed the Scepter of Domination from the Lodoss universe and is wreaking havoc on the land. One Haukness-like town got thrashed, and another is under siege. It's a slightly more in-depth story than the original DW where the Dragonlord simply IS and must be dealt with.
But then again, there really wasn't much in the way of storytelling during the NES era of RPGs, and it would be disingenuous to try otherwise. Instead, I can applaud the relevance of NPCs to the gameplay. Just like in the original, they tell you what you need to know without actually telling you outright. "I saw a shiny object on a peninsula to the east" is all the clue you get, and any reasonably intuitive player can act on that.

There's also plenty of townsfolk nonsense and gibberish, again just like in the original. Remember the guy and girl on opposite sides of Rimuldar, both saying "I am waiting for my girl/boy-friend"? Pointless, but cool, stuff like that. Just look at what this damsel had to say to me.

What thy hell, wench?! Screw thou!

Gameplay: 1/5
Two categories of flaw exist with the gameplay here. Re-creation flaws and Dragon Warrior in the 21st century flaws.

Re-Creation Flaws
1) Re-raising the imperfect battle system issue, it irks me that I have to select a command and then select which enemy I want to attack. There's only ever one. Why should I have to choose it from a list of itself?
2) Items didn't stack in the original game. Magic Keys did, but only up to a limit of 6. Being able to hold 99 Herbs removes a lot of challenge.
3) Level-ups don't tell me what stats went up by how much. That was the best part about getting them.
4) The Repel spell breaks the game. In the original, it kept the riffraff away so you didn't have to fart around with Slimes and Drakees anymore. Here, it's a Moogle Charm that lets you walk the earth with total impunity.

Dragon Warrior in the 21st Century Flaws
1) Walking back to the home castle to save was absurd in the 80s, let alone now.
2) Dragon Warrior was one hour of actual gameplay and 30 hours of grinding. It's not quite 30 hours here (maybe only 6-8), but the formula remains.
3) Enemies putting me to sleep and there not being anti-Sleep armor/items.

Now see, the main problem with Dragon Warrior Classic is that it can never be given a blanket "Play This" recommendation. Whoever wants to try it needs to realize that they're going to be playing a largely-faithful recreation of a 1980s game, complete with all the bad ideas that modern RPGs have since rectified.

Overall: 3/5
As a reproduction of a genre trailblazer, Classic measures up. If someone wants to go back in time, but have a fresh set of quests to liven up the nostalgia with, this is definitely the right game for the job.
But for the everyman... Dragon Warrior is boring now. DW2 started eliminating the tedium, so I'm hoping the sequel will be superior in every way.

Thou said it, man.