Dragon Sinker Review
Just because something is “retro inspired” doesn’t always make it good. I’ve played some good retro inspired games and some pretty bad ones too. For me, a retro inspired game should be like an old game but doesn’t have to completely ignore modern conveniences like “save anywhere” and multiple modes of difficulty. The good “retro inspired” games take from the old and from the new to create something that feels like an older game and yet is something that both new and old fans can enjoy. Take, for instance, Dragon Sinker: Descendants of Legend for the 3DS eshop. It has both old and new things about it. Could Dragon Sinker be an rpg that retro and new fans can enjoy?
Dragon Sinker has a really good story. It is a story that starts out simple and becomes more complex as the game progresses. The addition of dialogue choices and multiple endings keep things very interesting. And you know what also helps this game a lot? Its gameplay is excellent too!
Everything you would expect in a NES/SNES era jrpg is present in Dragon Sinker. There are towns, dungeons, and a world map to explore. There are random battles (LOTS of random battles). And there is turn-based battle system with all the usual things like attacking, defending, and skills. The ability to save anywhere, including in dungeons, is especially cool! Hey, wait a second, that wasn’t in NES/SNES era games!
Dragon Sinker does have everything you’d expect in those classic jrpgs, plus some things you wouldn’t expect. The ability to save anywhere, for example, is such a great addition. On a portable game, the ability to save anywhere is a must-have! You want to be able to quit whenever you need to and with Dragon Sinker you can do just that!
There are other things, like having extra teams of heroes to switch to during battle, that are great new additions to Dragon Sinker’s classic feel. And thats exactly what Dragon Sinker feels like: a classic rpg with a few modern twists. These new twists do not take away from this game at all. In fact, they make the game an even better experiance than it would be if it was just an old school rpg. Its also nice that the game has good controls for the most part.
Dragon Sinker controls really well. The d-pad and the circle pad both work well for walking around, but I liked the d-pad best because it gave me that feeling of playing a classic rpg. The rest of the controls are pretty good too. I especially liked that the R button will let you completely heal all of your characters at once. I do wish that the team change button was something other than the b-button though. It was pretty easy to accidently change to another team without meaning too. Its not a big deal, but was occasionally annoying.
There is, however, one thing that the game left out that I wish was included with Dragon Sinker and thats touch screen play. All of the games menus are on the bottom screen look like they’d be perfect for touch controls. Its not a major loss to not have them, but the inclusion of touch screen controls might have made navigating the menus a little quicker. The bottom screen does get a lot of use though, between menus and the world, town, and dungeon maps! So Dragon Sinker does feel like a 3DS game even though it doesn’t have touch screen controls or 3D. And the game’s retro inspired graphics shine on this platform.
Dragon Sinker looks and feels like an older game. If you like the old style Dragon Warrior/Quest games, then you’ll love Dragon Sinker’s graphics. The visual style of Sinker is very in line with the older Dragon Quest and/or early Final Fantasy games. However, the characters and the places that you visit are more detailed then those games. I do wish there was a bit more visual variety to the towns, dungeons, and world map areas, but the lack of landscape variety is in keeping with traditional role playing games so its not too big a deal. I really like how this game looks overall.
The soundtrack for Dragon Sinker is very true to retro rpgs too. The soundtrack reminds me a lot of early rpgs like Final Fantasy and so do the sound effects. The music is especially good and never gets annoying. Dragon Sinker is such a great tribute to the classic rpgs of the NES/SNES era but also stands on its own as a really fun rpg.
With Dragon Sinker, KEMCO has created an rpg that pays tribute to games of a bygone era while also updating some things that were not so great about those old games. You can save anywhere, you have a map at all times, and its easier to get your party healed and have plenty of backup to help you defeat enemies. Meanwhile, random battles are still the order of the day and pixel characters are everywhere.
Dragon Sinker is a true one-two punch for rpg fans. Players are getting the best of the old school and new school gameplay with this rpg.
And yet, not everything about Dragon Sinker is perfect. While the game does take advantage of the 3DS bottom screen for menus and maps, it doesn’t include touch screen controls or 3D. Neither of these exclusions are huge losses to the game overall, but I think they would have been very nice additions to Dragon Sinker! That said, this game is near perfect in my eyes. If you love the rpg genre at all, you should give Dragon Sinker a download right now!
Thanks to KEMCO for providing a copy of this game for review. Dragon Sinker is currently available on the 3DS eshop.
- Good Story
- Fun gameplay
- Nice retro graphics
- Good Soundtrack
- No touch screen support