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Game Over Online ~ Drakan: Order of the Flame

GameOver Game Reviews - Drakan: Order of the Flame (c) Psygnosis, Reviewed by - Yamantaka

Game & Publisher Drakan: Order of the Flame (c) Psygnosis
System Requirements Pentium 166, 32MB Ram, 3D Accelerator
Overall Rating 93%
Date Published Friday, September 3rd, 1999 at 07:51 PM


Divider Left By: Yamantaka Divider Right

When playing Drakan: Order Of The Flame, the game player must realize that he or she has been transported into a time of legend, myth and magic. Therefore one should expect a rich atmospheric environment throughout the game that helps to depict the fictional era of Drakan. Drakan: OTF delivers extremely rich level design and clean textures, which serve as a great enhancement to the atmosphere. Furthermore, a beautiful soundtrack creates a cinematic feel similar to something such as The Never Ending Story. The beginning of the game emoted majesty by its clever use of torch-lit ruinous villages as a backdrop combined with your initial quest of finding a hidden magical scripture. There is also a fair bit of character development that relates intricately with the story-line, skillfully presented by the in-game, engine-based, movies.

You are Rynn, the medieval equivalent of Lara Croft, but much sexier and more of a warrior. Rynn’s brother has been kidnapped by the ugly Orcs and you have, being a hero, dedicated yourself to saving his life from these violent, deadly but stupid creatures. Upon returning to your village you discover everything destroyed and find the local priest dying. With his scripture you discover the lair of Arokh, a legendary dragon, and with the assistance of the creature and your skills in battle you win the game. With a cut-scene you are shown a well-done history lesson about the formation of magic and the rivalry between good and evil. In a nutshell, Arokh and his dragon army of the “Order of The Flame” defeated evil and ever since has been in his lair until now, woken by Rynn.

You ride the back of a fire breathing dragon killing Orcs, Wartoks, and other creatures, while also finding weapons and armor. The variety of the weapons is quite good; you will find weapons ranging from a simple sword to a middle-eastern blade to a bow and arrow. The drag and drop nature of the inventory is intuitive and highly useful: when you drag and drop a suit of armor on your character you will simply see the leather shirt replaced by the new armor. Moreover, your dragon will also receive weapon upgrades through multiple “runes” found throughout the game. These include fire, poison gas, ice, lightning, and lava.

The graphics are definitely up to modern standards and I found that running at high resolutions was not a problem, with Drakan being both clean and smooth at most times. One of the major advantages to the graphics engine in Drakan: OTF is that it does not consume large amounts of CPU power. The dynamic lighting is realistic as is the shadowing. Your shadow is constantly changing depending on the angle of the sun - as it should be. The physics are moderate, but not much to comment on but the dangling ponytail of Rynn. Furthermore, when riding Arokh the dragon over a canyon of rivers and bridges, though fog is present, the combination of water and sky and the fluid motion of the soaring dragon are impressive. When on foot you can call your dragon and he will come on command.

The sound in Drakan: OTF is very crisp and superbly executed throughout. The voice acting is also appropriate and makes the main character more likeable and personable. Ambient sounds such as the sounds of metal against metal and running water are very believable. The soundtrack really pushes to add a rich and encompassing atmospheric quality. The sounds of the Orcs and Wartoks could have more life, but after all they are supposed to be stupid beasts - the grunting is decent.

The multi-player gaming is tons of fun because it integrates both methods of gameplay - ground and air. You can play only on foot, only in the air, and a combination of the two. A game example includes fighting other warriors and racing them to a scepter that will allow only you to use the dragon so only you can own the air and ground while your competition runs for cover. Weapons are scarcely placed around the level along with various power-ups trying to allow each warrior to get well equipped. What makes the multi-play so enjoyable is that, as in the single play, the level structure is intricate and properly designed for multiple players, making your game quest-like.

Drakan: Order Of The Flame offers an interesting storyline, smooth graphics, extremely well done sounds and music, and hours of gameplay. I suggest that the average game player give this title attention, as most will find it very enjoyable. It is one of the few third-person action/adventures that actually gives a strong sense of atmosphere along with magical legend and myth.

 

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Rating
93%
 

 

 
 

 

 

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