Dragon's Crown: Bewbs and Loot

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Aww, no cross platform version? I’m a little surprised Atlus would be so oblivious to one of the main selling points for this-gen Sony. Are there any differences between the PS3 version and the Vita version?

-Tom

PS3 version is on a bigger screen (duh) and has single-system local co-op. Vita version has better controls in some ways, since it uses the touchscreen for interacting with objects and picking up items; in the PS3 version, you control a clunky on-screen cursor with the right analog stick for those purposes. The Vita version also costs $40, versus $50 for the PS3 version.

While there’s no cross-buy or cross-platform multiplayer, the two versions do at least support cross-save, in case you spend $90 for both versions.

I really like how this game works as a portable game. All the missions are really fast and fit in nicely in a lunch break or something, but the game as a whole has some overarching depth in the RPG stuff.

That’s weird. Does Atlus just not do cross-buy? Have they had any cross-buy titles?

-Tom

Just to add another opinion:

I got into the game expecting to be disappointed after a while (I enjoy Vanillaware games, but they end up leaving me cold in the long run). Also, I was pretty annoyed by the stupid sexualization and almost did not buy the game, but alas, I did. I do enjoy Japanese design and old school action mechanics (I even bought the D&D Mystara compilation on steam)

And I have to say this fits perfectly the Vita (as other people have said) and scratches the same sort of itch Soul Sacrifice did. I think this time Vanillaware nailed the quest/progression system (something that in games like Muramasa is missing), extending a relatively small number of stages in ways that do not feel (yet) repetitive (in contrast again to the absurd size of Muramasa’s world -which happens to feel repetitive). I am 75% done with the main quest (5 talismans) and I already see myself continue to play, either to play the multiplayer/leveling up game or to try another character.

I believe Vanillaware has leveled up in terms of game design. Now if their artists could grow up… I was playing the game in the bus and several times I had to check there was nobody looking out of embarrassment. I would pay for a DLC to remove those images…

Dragon’s Crown is the only PS3 game Atlus has published that’s also been on Vita, and its development started before Atlus took over publishing duties. They’re generally the sort of company that focuses on a single platform for their internally-developed titles.

Only Sony 1st party games have cross-buy.

That’s only true for retail (plenty of third-party cross-buy games on PSN), and I don’t think it’s a dumb SCEA policy or anything; it’s just that no one else is releasing PS3/Vita games, or if they are, the Vita version comes months later (Need for Speed: Most Wanted, Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed).

(My copy of Dragon’s Crown still hasn’t shipped. Thanks so much, Amazon.)

So I seem to have developed Character Class ADD. I actually find all the classes pretty fun and I can’t seem to settle on one, but rather I keep switching between them. The game definitely encourages this by making loot, gold and allies universal, not to mention that you can switch between player characters at the tavern without leaving the game. Handy stuff that.

I really wish they had passed on all the boobeez stuff though (A mermaid with her tail coming out of her ass? Really!?), since the game design here is fantastic and I think all the T&A just distracts from that.

Exactly…

I just finished the main game (or the first playthrough) and the more I see of the game (minus offensive pictures) the more I like. They even give you a (thin) plot excuse for the subsequent playthroughs (no mysterious reset like Diablo) and they don’t make you do the boring parts again. It’s not only the improved version of Shadows over Mystara (that’s just the combat system). The whole approach to progression has been redone in a way that I don’t recall any 2D brawler doing. Castle Crashers and Scott Pilgrim -the two more recent ones I played- basically counted on the player to push forward with character advancement, without ant quest framework or forced higher difficulty playthroughs. It’s great that there seems to still be a place for this genre.

Also, for those who feel the combat system is not too deep, starting at lvl 30, some very overpowered skills start to appear that seem to add a lot to the combat system (playing Elf, but for what I have read it’s the same for every class). And it has shitloads of cancels and character specific stuff that can be mastered…

I don´t know if I should start a new character or continue to level this one up… Since I’m in the EU, and the game is still not out here, I know I will get some non-anonymous multiplayer playtime once a couple of friends get their copy, but that might take a while.

Something that I’ve been wondering about Dragon’s Crown, does the game scale the combat based on the number of people in a party? Or does it always assume that you have a full group going into any level?

I’m pretty sure it scales.

So, what’s the verdict on the actual gameplay and such? The PS3 version is currently available from NewEgg for $40 with the listed promo code. Worth $40?

I’ve been enjoying it quite a bit, playing as the Elf. I just unlocked online play this morning, but so far, I’ve stuck to running solo (with no AI partners).

I really love a lot of what this game does with regards to combat and arcade-style design. I like that you don’t have to worry about any of your phat loot or skill points or whatever until you’re completely done beating things up, and I like that there’s a traditional life and continue system (though I wish it were more obvious when you earn an extend—something like the extend voice clip from Battle Garegga, perhaps?).

Tempting…

Tell me about it. I’ve head that sale page open since I made that post, and have been hemming and hawing ever since!

There’s a patch out in Japan that hasn’t come to the west yet; hopefully it gets here soon, because the highlight seems to be the ability to use L1 (and I’d guess L on Vita) to open the item shortcut menu, instead of having to press up on whichever option out of the D-pad and left analog stick isn’t currently set to movement. As it is now, it’s incredibly annoying to use and makes item-reliant classes terrible to play.

Now that I’ve spent a bit more time with it and talked to people playing on PS3:

Vita advantages:
-portable
-significantly better cursor controls
-the ability to pause in single-player (okay, it’s kind of a weird workaround, but you can suspend the game just like anything else on Vita, and that pauses)
-no hackers

PS3 advantages:
-bigger screen
-local co-op available from the start (you have to unlock ad-hoc play on the Vita version, probably because it behaves exactly like online play, whereas local co-op on PS3 has a few quirks)
-none (or at least fewer) of the occasional framerate drops that happen in the Vita version

I’m definitely enjoying DC, but I should note that the WiiU and Vita are the only gaming platforms I have right now. As a result my options are a bit…limited for game choices. It’s a good game, and plays really, really well in bite size chunks, but it’s no masterpiece and I’m not sure I’d even consider it a “must Play”. That said, if you like loot driven games with lots of upgrading and added abilities you will probably like it. The combat is fun and varies a good bit from class to class and if the game has caught your interest I would say it’s probably worth it, since what it does, it does well.

For the scope of what I expect from a handheld I think DC is brilliant, but when I stack it against full console fantasy games like Witcher 2 and Dark Souls it’s definitely much, much lighter fare. I bet it would be fun for couch coop though on PS3. Anyway hope that helps.

I give it 17 out of 23 smiling dolphins

There’s an interesting “review” of this on Tap-Repeatedly:
http://tap-repeatedly.com/2013/08/review-dragons-crown/

It touches on the art, both in specific in context of this game, and in a way that touches on the female representation controversy in general. It’s if anything a little under-written on that point, but she still does a good job of expressing some of the misgivings I have about the whole repair-her-armor meme.