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Featured Review

Dragon Sword for the Nintendo 64 was UK-based Interactive Studios' new entry into the adventure-battle genre with a game the developers were calling a fantasy-combat-action game. In single-player, Dragon Sword was a "battle" adventure with a storyline and RPG elements, where you selected one of several characters and worked through a progressive theme that wrapped up in just over ten levels. You'd unlock different characters and items as the single-player mode progressed, and all of these would then be selectable in the multiplayer mode.

The two-player option was co-op based and would have allowed gamers to assist another player in a more difficult setting of the 10-plus levels story mode. There was to have also been a four-player deathmatch mode and a time trial "slayfest" that would have taken place in arenas, where you could have used many of the weapons and items also available in single-player mode.

As the story was an essential part of the single-player game, here's what Dragon Sword was all about.. The game took place in a world called Avantaria. Your goal was to work your way through the increasingly difficult levels, fighting a variety of bosses in order to reclaim fragments of the fabled, yet dismembered Dragon Sword. And apparently, each level would have been quite different. And what's so important about this sword? It was the tool you would need to free an entity called the Light God from inside the Darrc Dragon. (The LG was placed there by a force none other than the Dark God.)

So to toss some variety in the mix - because just finding sword pieces would constitute a puzzle game, not a fighting or action game - the Darrc Dragon is protected, in a sense, by the Darrc Horde, the Darrc Army (ogres, grunts, scavengers, dogmen, undead, and insect warriors), Darrc Mages, and a Darrc Entity, in addition to the Dark God (note the different spellings) who initially caused all of the problems in the first place.

Batting for your team (the team of all things good or "Light," to keep the metaphor going) was the warrior Kailan and the good-guy heir to the Darrc throne, Cutter - two characters who sounded more like bad guys with good intentions than heroes. These were the characters gamers would have used during single-player and co-op mode, with others (including enemies) from the game available for the deathmatch mode.

The weapons included the standard fare - battle-axes, swords, throwing knives, and crossbows - as well as less standard items, such as bones and flaming torches. These were to be sprinkled around the environment, or you could have snagged them from thwarted opponents.

Other items included spells and power-ups. Some of the spells we knew of were environmental, like storms and infernos that would increase in value and strength as your characters became stronger and more experienced. Your characters would also have had two health meters, one for actual physical ability and another for the condition of your armor, which you would have restored by picking up power-ups from the surroundings.

WHAT HAPPENED?
The game was canceled with no press announcement or comments from UK-based Interactive Studios, which is a shame, as this was one of the more promising N64 games. Interactive Studios had gone on the record as saying that the game's future didn't look promising in light of the dwindling N64 market, but a final, official cancellation slipped through the cracks.



Although the name Dragon Storm has been popping up on Nintendo’s release lists once in a while, information about the game’s content, genre, or story has been a well-kept secret.

Programmed in the UK, this surprise arcade action game is apparently making it to the N64. So far, the game’s alleged publisher, MGM, has not confirmed that a Nintendo 64 version is under development (in fact, MGM has not announced any N64 projects), but secret custodian sources swear on their broomsticks that it’s coming out.

Set in the Middle Ages amidst wizards and dragons, Dragon Storm mixes fast-paced action with exploration, adventure, and strategy.

The story involves the magical land of Tengarra, which has fallen into the hands of the evil Queen Zordanthia. Without a spark of goodness in her soul, Zordanthia has dedicated her life to terrorizing Tengerra’s inhabitants and uses her hoards of dark creatures to wreak havoc where she can. But when the former Grand Wizard of Tengerra returns after 100 years of meditation, the scared inhabitants see a glimmer of hope at the horizon. The wizard manages to find the descendants of the country’s three great heroes, Morpheus, Kage, and Tia. With the help of Tengerra’s magical Earth Stones and mystical creatures, the four set out to free the lands from the clutches of the malevolent queen.

Dragon Storm is said to be very early in development, so don’t hold your breath waiting for it. Actually, it’s safe to say that you should NEVER hold your breath waiting for an N64 title...

We will report more about Dragon Storm when MGM or another publisher is ready to formally announce it or confirm the game's existance. Until then, remember that this game does not exist. Anything you saw was probably just a weather balloon.

Peer Schneider

source: http://www.n64.com (January 29 1998)

Author: Gamespot Videogame Graveyard