RPG Analysis

Posted on Nov 12th 2012 at 02:59:36 PM by (Fleach)
Posted under NES, Dragon Quest, Adventure, RPG

I am a big fan of RPG style games. I love getting immersed in the mythical and fantastical worlds these games create. From the industrial metropolis of Midgar to the Kingdom of the GreatTree, I relish the experience of guiding my band of adventurers on their quests.

It should come as no surprise that for my mission to play as many NES games as possible I'd sooner rather than later play Enix's Dragon Warrior.

Aside from having an opportunity to go down memory lane, another great aspect of being a video game collector is finding a game in the wild and bringing it home to find strangers' save files. I think many other collectors will say that these retro games are parts of technology history, and I can't disagree. However, I also feel that these games are a part of someone's personal history. What would one of the save file owners say if they knew that a copy of his or her game is still being enjoyed today?

Once I decided whose file to delete (I wished I didn't have to delete any, but the game only has three save slots) I was thrown into the midst of my quest to retrieve the Ball of Light from the Dragonlord to reestablish peace in the world.

It begins!

Why do I always have to save the darn princess? Can't she learn to stay out of trouble?

I must admit that the game is quite charming. It follows the classic plot scheme of introducing the evil lord who has stolen an antient artifact and is now ravaging the world. Of course it is your duty to put an end the reign of chaos and save the damsel in distress. The main character is a descendent of Erdrick, the previous warrior to stop the Dragonlord, and in good old RPG fashion, that pesky evildoer is at it again but now it's your turn to show him a thing or two.

The game starts off with King Lorik telling you that you must return to him after achieving a set amount of experience. Great, I just started the game and already have to level grind. So grind I did. When traversing the world map it is easy to venture off into an area with monsters that can easily take you down so one must tread with caution. I spent a few hours leveling my character so I could head into the regions to the north where the strong baddies from early in the game roam.

Like many early role playing games, Dragon Warrior is predominately a text based adventure with the exception of showing a character sprite when traveling across the overworld. Battles take place with a picture of the enemy in the centre of the screen. The player's stats are shown to the left, commands appear above the enemy, and the play-by-play of battle events are displayed at the bottom of the screen. Evidently, these games took many cues from pen-and-paper RPGs such as Dungeons and Dragons.

After roughly three hours of playing I reached level 6 and the second town. I could have probably reached the locale sooner, but I wanted to reach a sufficient level and be adequately equipped. The gameplay was enjoyable and refreshing when juxtaposed with modern RPGs. I liked reading the battle text and relying on my stats and upgrades to get me through to the next part of the story. These games certainly exploit a creative imagination. The music set the tone for journey of epic proportions. Just listen to music that plays in the overworld.

It makes you want to take up arms and become a legend!

I will return to this game again to finish off the story.

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Great post! This is a game I missed out on as a kid and for whatever reasons still havnt put much time into. I'll definitely have to give it a run though. You make it sound quite enjoyable!
I just beat this game about a month ago. I got a bit lucky and found a copy of DW2 at the old work hole just before I beat it so I could start on that right afterwards!

I enjoyed the game for what it was but oh man does it just get better from here!
This was one of the few games I had as a kid that I bought on its release date.  I believe I read a review about it somewhere.  I have very fond memories of this early RPG.
@ Crabby It's a fun game if you're into the adventure genre. I'm really liking my play through. You should give it a go, I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

@ Singlebanana Being one of the first people to experience this game must have been great. Do you still have your original copy that you got on release day?

@Fleach:  I still have my copy of the game, but sadly, no box, manual, or map.  My mother was a neat freak and therefore didn't believe in keeping any "unnecessary" cardboard.
I loved this game so much as a child that my friends and I would play "Dragon Warrior" in our neighborhood when we were told to go outside and we would fight slimes and wraiths etc...
Man this was such a great game. Ive only played through it once, I need to do so again. It was cool to find that there are 2 versions of this game on the NES, well its a patched version with a few minor changes like dialog and event text edits and what not. Really good game and will always have a special place in my heart.

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Role Playing games are my favourite genre of the gaming library. I feel it is appropriate to take a look at the games that have touched me in my time as a gamer and collector and share them with the community. Feel free to discuss your thoughts, ideas, and challenge my opinions. The conversation is welcomed.
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