The Legend of Dragoon

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The Legend of Dragoon
Legend of Dragoon.jpg
North American cover art
Developer(s) SCEI
Publisher(s) Sony Computer Entertainment
Director(s) Yasuyuki Hasebe
Producer(s) Shuhei Yoshida
Programmer(s) Satoshi Mamuro
Artist(s) Kenichi Iwata
Writer(s) Yasuyuki Hasebe
Composer(s) Dennis Martin
Takeo Miratsu
Platform(s) PlayStation
Release date(s) PlayStation
  • JP: December 2, 1999
  • NA: June 11, 2000
  • EU: January 19, 2001
Genre(s) Role-playing
Mode(s) Single-player

The Legend of Dragoon is a role-playing video game developed and published by Sony Computer Entertainment for the PlayStation. It was released in Japan on December 2, 1999, in North America on June 11, 2000, and on January 19, 2001 in Europe.

Despite mixed critical reception, the game has amassed a very large fanbase following, including several online petitions for a remake or prequel/sequel. The game was rereleased on PlayStation Network in Japan on December 22, 2010, and in North America on May 1, 2012.


"The Legend of Dragoon" has a turn-based style of gameplay with a twist, additions. When the "attack" option is selected from the battle menu two blue squares will appear on the screen, one in the center and one on the outer edge. The outer square will begin to shrink and when it overlaps the inner square the player needs hit the "x" button and doing so will allow the player to continue the addition and do more damage. Characters will receive multiple additions over the course of the game which are longer and have the ability to deal more damage. The longer additions, however, allow enemies the opportunity to counter and when they do the player will need to press the "o" at the right time to prevent it and continue their attack.


The story begins when Dart, the protagonist, is heading home from a five year long journey to pursue the black monster, who killed his parents and destroyed his birth city, Neet. On the way, he is attacked by Feyrbrand, a mantis-like dragon controlled by the Sandora, a rebel faction in the Serdian civil war. Dart is saved by a mysterious female heroine named Rose, though they soon part ways. When he arrives at his hometown, Seles, he discovers that it has been destroyed by Sandora, and that Shana, Dart’s childhood friend (and later in the game, his love interest), has been taken away. Dart sets out to rescue her. Throughout the game, he is periodically joined by people that he helps along the way.

After rescuing Shana from Hellena prison, King Albert sends the party to defend the fort-city of Hoax against attacks from Sandora. Among the attacking Sandora is Kongol, the last survivor of a race of giants known as the Gigantos. It is in his battle with Kongol that Dart first gains his ability to transform into a Dragoon using the Dragoon Spirit of the Red-Eyed Dragon. Kongol is injured, but survives and retreats. With the fort safe, they travel to the City of Lohan. In the city, they meet a man named Lloyd, supposedly the greatest swordsman in the world. Later they discover that he kidnapped King Albert and took the Moon Gem from him, an ancient artifact held by the Royal Family. The king is rescued, but Lloyd gets away with the Moon Gem.

They soon discover that Lloyd is gathering other artifacts held by human kings since the days of the Wingly Empire, and at the same time, causing disasters in the lands that he visits. While the party tries to reverse Lloyd’s work, Lloyd manages to obtain all three of the artifacts, and also manages to obtain the Dragoon Spirit of the Divine Dragon, the most powerful dragon in the world. Dart and the party finally manage to defeat Lloyd, who then agrees to take them to Emperor Diaz, ancient Emperor of Gloriano during the Dragon Campaign. Emperor Diaz reveals several things to the party.

During the height of the Wingly Empire over eleven thousand years ago, a creature called the Virage Embryo, also known as the God of Destruction, came to the world to end all other life. Before it could be born, the Winglies used their magical power to separate its body from its soul, making it unable to destroy them. They then cast the body into the sky, where it became the Moon That Never Sets, and sealed it using several magical Signets, one in each of the ancient Wingly cities, to prevent the soul and body from reuniting. The soul of the God of Destruction was originally placed inside the Crystal Sphere, which was worn by the ancient Wingly ruler Melbu Frahma to increase his power. However, during the Dragon Campaign, when the Dragoons assaulted Kadessa, the capital city of the Ancient Winglies, the Crystal Sphere was shattered during the fight between Melbu Frahma and Zieg Feld, leader of the Dragoons.

Ever since, the soul of the God of Destruction has wandered the Earth and, every one hundred and eight years, possesses the body of a human child in an attempt to return to its body. The body can be summoned if the Signets are destroyed, which can be done using the immense magical power contained within the artifacts that Lloyd gathered, called the Divine Moon Objects. At this time, the human that is the soul of the God of Destruction is Shana. Emperor Diaz then reveals himself to be Zieg Feld, Dart's father and leader of the Dragoons that fought alongside Rose in the Dragon Campaign. After Zieg defeated Melbu Frahma, Melbu cast a spell that both petrified him and kept Melbu's spirit alive within Zieg's body. Finally, it is revealed that Rose is the Black Monster that destroyed Dart’s village, in an attempt to kill the person carrying the soul of the God of Destruction.

After all this is revealed, Zieg (or, more accurately, Melbu Frahma, who is now possessing Zieg's body) takes Shana away and proceeds to destroy the remaining three Signet Spheres that seal the Moon That Never Sets, the flesh of the God of Destruction, causing it to fall from the sky and land on the Divine Tree. He then carries her to the body of the God of Destruction, so that the body will sense the presence of its soul and prepare to restore itself. Instead, Melbu Frahma unites with the body himself, taking the form and power of the God of Destruction. Zieg is released from Melbu Frahma’s possession, and aids the party in their attempt to defeat Melbu. The party defeats him, but at the cost of Rose and Zieg who sacrifice themselves to destroy Melbu Frahma. Everyone else is able to return home to live their own lives.


The Legend of Dragoon was developed by Sony Computer Entertainment of Japan (SCEI). The project began in 1996 with a small group of people while the company simultaneously built teams for developing other games such as Ape Escape and Ico.[1] At its peak, the development team consisted of over 100 members, with ten people simply dedicated to drawing the game's concept art. As the game contains a large number of pre-rendered maps and full-motion videos, content was spread over four discs.[1] The Legend of Dragoon took three and a half years to develop before its December 1999 release in Japan. Prior to its June 2000 release in North America, the gameplay was rebalanced following complaints of the Japanese version's difficulty level.[1] According to Shuhei Yoshida, The Legend of Dragoon cost Sony Computer Entertainment $16 million to develop in over a span of three years and that most of the game's sales were made overseas, saying "the sales in the U.S. were very strong."[citation needed]

On December 22, 2010, Sony released The Legend of Dragoon on the PlayStation Network.[2] The North American version was released on May 1, 2012.[1] The title was the best-selling PSOne Classic for three months, remaining in the top 5 for five months.[3][4]


Aggregate score
Aggregator Score
Metacritic 74/100 (12 reviews)[5]
Review scores
Publication Score
Famitsu 31/40[6][7]
GamePro 5/5[8]
GameSpot 6.4/10[9]
IGN 7/10[10]

The Legend of Dragoon received mixed to positive reviews.[5] The game was praised by IGN for its graphics and cinematics.[10] However, the combo system was criticized for requiring too much precision, while the titular element of Dragoon transformation was deemed inconsequential to gameplay.[11] The game's battles were considered repetitious due to an excessive frequency of random encounters.[12] GameSpot's Peter Bartholow was more critical of the game. Bartholow called it a "highly generic RPG" and stated that the game "borrows too heavily from other games and lacks that 'hook' to make it worth dealing with excessive defending."[9]

The Legend of Dragoon sold 960,000 copies in North America and over 280,000 copies in Japan as of December 27, 2007.[13][14] In 2009, GamesRadar included it among the games "with untapped franchise potential", commenting: "A massive, epic RPG designed to compete with the then-juggernaut Final Fantasy series, Dragoon actually succeeded in its task. It was just as beautiful, nearly as deep, had a touching story, and actually improved upon FF in a few ways (avoidable random battles, for example). (...) [G]iven The Legend of Dragoon’s cult status among PlayStation loyalists today, we’re astonished that Sony has allowed this series to fade into obscurity."[15]


The Legend of Dragoon is a manga book by Ataru Cagiva based on the game. The manga only published one issue under the publisher Bros. Comics. The book follows the story of the events of disc one of the game but pulls away from the story in many parts. It is missing many characters and events in order to decrease the book's size. The book was released in 2000 only in Japan and was never translated in America.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d Yoshida, Shu (April 11, 2012). "The Legend of Dragoon Coming to PSN: RPG Classic Reborn May 1st". PlayStation.Blog. Sony Computer Entertainment. Retrieved January 9, 2013. 
  2. ^ Ishaan (December 22, 2010). "The Legend of Dragoon Sneaks To PlayStation Game Archives". Siliconera. Retrieved January 9, 2013. 
  3. ^ "May 2012 PSN Top Sellers: The Walking Dead Invades The Charts – PlayStation Blog". 2012-06-13. Retrieved 2013-02-02. 
  4. ^ "September 2012 PSN Top Sellers: The Walking Dead Crawls Back To the Top – PlayStation Blog". Retrieved 2013-02-02. 
  5. ^ a b "Legend of Dragoon (psx: 2000): Reviews". Retrieved 2011-11-21. 
  6. ^ プレイステーション - レジェンドオブドラグーン. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.22. 30 June 2006.
  7. ^ IGN staff (November 30, 1999). "IGN: New Legend of Dragoon Info". Retrieved 2009-05-17. 
  8. ^ E. Coli (2011-06-07). "Legend of Dragoon Review from GamePro". Archived from the original on June 7, 2011. Retrieved 2013-02-02. 
  9. ^ a b Bartholow, Peter (2000-02-14). "The Legend of Dragoon Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 2014-07-30. 
  10. ^ a b "Legend of Dragoon". IGN. 2000-06-13. Retrieved 2008-10-10. Lovely backgrounds, amazing CG, and some very impressive 3D bosses (the Divine Dragon is something else). Very high marks here. 
  11. ^ "Legend of Dragoon". IGN. 2000-06-13. Retrieved 2008-10-10. The Addition system demands too much precision combined with too much repetition, and the Dragoon transformations are pretty, but often superfluous. 
  12. ^ "Legend of Dragoon". IGN. 2000-06-13. Retrieved 2008-10-10. For example, when I've gone all the way through the dungeon and finished off the long, tedious boss fight, a game should be kind enough not to make me hike back out of the dungeon and back home to the castle or town or whatever, battling random monsters all the way. 
  13. ^ "The Magic Box - US Platinum Chart Games". Retrieved 2009-05-17. 
  14. ^ "1999 Top 100 Best Selling Japanese Console Games". Retrieved 2009-05-17. 
  15. ^ 123 games with untapped franchise potential, GamesRadar US, April 30, 2009

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