Legend of Dragoon was a RPG released for the PlayStation. Since it was released in 1999 for the Japanese market, 2000 for the North American market, and 2001 for the European market, it can be considered one of a number of RPGs that followed in the footsteps of Final Fantasy VII, meaning that comparisons were inevitable. On the whole, Legend of Dragoon met with a fair amount of success, though a follow-up was never released. Here are 10 things that you may or may not have known about Legend of Dragoon:
1. Centered on Dragoons
Given the name, it should come as no surprise to learn that Legend of Dragoon is centered on Dragoons. In total, there are eight Dragoons for eight elements. However, players can expect to come upon not seven but nine player characters over the course of the game because of story-based reasons.
2. Very Much Fantasy Dragoons
Dragoon is a real life term. In short, it refers to soldiers who rode from place to place on horses but would fight on foot, though it wasn’t unknown for them to fight from horseback as well. With that said, fantasy media sometimes uses dragoon as a name for people with some kind of connection to dragons, which isn’t wholly baseless because dragoons were named for a kind of short musket called a dragon. Naturally, said fantasy media includes Legend of Dragoon.
3. The Dragoons Are Empowered By Dragoon Spirits
For those who are curious, the Dragoons are humans empowered by Dragoon spirits connected to the Dragons. This enables them to take on a Dragoon form, which can be recognized by the knightly elements plus the draconic-looking wings. Story-wise, Dragoons are also supposed to be very powerful, so much so that they are capable of wiping out entire cities on their own.
4. Mismatch Between the Story and the Mechanics
Player characters can turn into their Dragoon forms in Legend of Dragoon. The Dragoon form is actually a pretty powerful ability from a mechanical perspective. However, there is a definite mismatch between the mechanics and the story in this regard. In short, while the Dragoon form is powerful, it isn’t so powerful that players should use it over less flashy but much more practical combat options. As a result, the Dragoon form tends to be rather pointless when playing through Legend of Dragoon.
5. Elemental Weaknesses
Different Dragoons have different elements. As a result, it should come as no surprise to learn that different elements have different elemental weaknesses. With that said, elemental weaknesses work on the basis of paired elements that are both strong against and weak against their counterparts. Said pairs would be fire and water, wind and earth, and light and dark. There are two other elements in the form of thunder and divine, but these two elements have neither elemental weaknesses nor elemental strengths when matched with other elements.
6. There Are Temporary Party Members
As mentioned earlier, interested individuals can expect to come upon nine player characters over the course of Legend of Dragoon. However, every single playable character has a Dragoon spirit, meaning that there is a mismatch because there aren’t enough Dragoon spirits for the full set of playable characters. The answer to this problem is simple. In short, there are temporary party members who will leave the party for one reason or another at certain points in the game’s story.
7. The Game Wasn’t Exactly Subtle About the Temporary Party Members
The existence of the temporary party members can be considered major spoilers. However, neither the game nor the game’s marketing was particularly subtle about the fact that there were temporary party members. For example, one character shows up with a distinctive move-set before he joins up with the party as a replacement party member for his predecessor. Likewise, it should be mentioned that the Dragoons are color-coded based on their elements, which is a huge hint regarding who will and who will not be replaced over the course of the game.
8. Had QTE-Like Mechanics
Legend of Dragoon had a mechanic that was somewhat reminiscent of QTE. In short, players could launch more attacks during battle by hitting the right buttons at the right time. However, their attack chain could be interrupted by their targeted enemy, meaning that they had to hit a different button in order to keep on attacking. Legend of Dragoon was by no means the first RPG to make use of such a mechanic. However, said mechanic is unusual enough for it to be one of the things that stands out the most about the game’s otherwise not particularly unusual turn-based combat system.
9. Marketed For Being a Big Budget Title with a Big Team
Some of the marketing for Legend of Dragoon made use of the fact that it had a big budget with a big team. In short, the making of Legend of Dragoon started out with a very small team that would expand and expand until it encompassed to about a 100 staff members. Moreover, the project had a $16 million budget. By modern standards, that might not be particularly impressive. However, the turn of the century was a very different time, meaning that both the team size and the project budget were definitely considered impressive for their time.
10. There Was a Sequel At One Point
On the whole, Legend of Dragoon winded up as one of those RPGs that had a huge impact on the people who played it but never actually went anywhere as a series. Apparently, there was a plan to make up a follow-up to the initial title at one point in time, However, that plan never resulted in a finished product for one reason or another. Nowadays, old franchises are being revived left and right, but it doesn’t seem that Legend of Dragoon will ever be one of them, seeing as how it never had the chance to build up the kind of franchise fandom needed to push for such a thing.