Release Date: June 2007
ESRB Rating: Rating Pending
From the makers of Final Fantasy and Chrono Trigger comes my future favorite game ever!
From publisher, Microsoft Game Studios and three of the greatest minds in gaming: Hironobu Sakaguchi, creator of Final Fantasy; Akira Toriyama, artist of Dragon Quest and Dragon Ball Z; and Nobuo Uematsu, composer for Final Fantasy, comes this amazing 1-player role playing game set to be released this summer for the Xbox 360.
Many of you remember the famed Super Nintendo RPG, Chrono Trigger, which was the last time these three game geniuses worked together. After the release in Japan, 1up.com released their own preview of the anticipated game for all the excited fans waiting on the US release. You can see this complete preview with tons of beautiful screen shots, videos and much more at the 1Up site.
Right off the bat from screens and videos you can see the high quality of the graphics and the artistry put in by Toriyama in true RPG-style. The main character has a striking Dragon Ball resemblance in typical Japanimation style. The world is vibrant, lively and engaging and there are wilderness areas with every detail included, elemental effects, carefully designed villages and towns and so much more. The consistency throughout the world is similar to what you would find in Zelda games and entices you to explore.
But Blue Dragon doesn’t just look good. The game play is great and the battle system well thought out. You can learn a multitude of skills while you level up as well as acquire new accessories to aid you in your battles. In addition to the core battle system, they have implemented a system to allow you to choose which battles you want to enter. All enemies are easily spotted and you can choose if you want to avoid them or fight. Learning how to use your opponents is one unique and interesting feature of the game.
About the game: The “blue dragon” is a shadow character that the main character, Shu can summon. The other two characters have their own special “blues” which they can also summon. Kluke (the female character) has Phoenix Shadow, a bluebird; Jiro, the other member of the trio cast, has Shadow of Minotaur, a blue cow. Once you get past the initial stages of the Blue Dragon, your shadow character will do most of the work for you in battles; it is your job to tell him what to do.
Blue Dragon has more than just battles, however. In true RPG style, there are many places to explore, tons of cut-scenes, chests full of valuable items to discover and other game-play elements such as pulling key levers, closing doors before enemies get in and much more.
The cut-scenes and story line are well thought out and actually pertain to the storyline and plot of the game. They are not boring and irrelevant. I’ve heard the voice-overs in the Japan version are truly high class. It is yet to be released which actors are doing the voice-overs for the English version but let’s just hope they do as good a job as the Japan version.
Already released in Japan, Joystick reports that people stood in line to be some of the first to pick up a copy of Blue Dragon. Pre-orders were sold out as everyone wanted to get their hands on this hot new game. Statistics show that Blue Dragon sold over 70,000 units in the first week, which for Microsoft is a pretty big deal in Japan.
This may well be the next best, well thought our role-playing game for the console in many years! Many US gamers are saying Blue Dragon will be the reason they buy a 360 and based on the reaction in Japan and on many US previews, like they will not be disappointed.