Thursday, August 04, 2011

At long last, I can play Dragon Knight II (once I, you know, actually buy it)

I'm not at all into women (duh, right?), but for some strange reason I've always had a bit of a thing--aesthetically speaking--for the kind of girls Japanese anime artists specialize in bringing to life. You know, the kind with huge, glassy eyes, tiny, pixie-like noses and rainbow-hued hair that runs the gamut from blue and green to orange and pink.

A number of such girls appear in Dragon Knight II, an eroge ("erotic game") RPG developed by the folks at ELF and released for the PC Engine CD-ROM2 system in 1992.


Unsurprisingly, I've wanted to play this saucy little title ever since I saw screenshots (like the one above) of it in an issue of PC Engine Fan magazine as a teenager. I've long refrained from picking up a copy, though, because I don't know a lick of Japanese--and based on the aforementioned screenshots, the Dragon Knight games definitely seem to be the sort that require at least a slight understanding of their language of origin.

Thanks to a handy-dandy guide recently created by The Brothers Duomazov's IvaNEC--check it out here--I (and you, too) can go ahead and pick up a copy of the series' second release later this year and finally play through, if not fully understand, it.

34 comments:

Viewtiful_Justin said...

Well, how about that! I'm interested to hear your thoughts about it, considering it's most likely tailored to straight men.

Kamiwoo said...

Yeah, half (okay, most) of the fun is lost with this kind of game if you can't understand what's going on, so a guide would make all the difference!

I think I might have to pick up a copy, too... you just HAD to post a screenshot of a bunnygirl, didn't you?

It'd be interesting to hear what kind of experience/enjoyment you got out of the game, Bryan, since as you said, it'd be a little different than if someone like me was playing ;D Of course, anime-style girls cross all boundaries! Everybody loves 'em.

RetroKingSimon said...

Whoa, who's that foxy chick? :P

Bryan Ochalla said...

Justin: I'm sure it is tailored to straight men, but I'm pretty sure it can be enjoyed by all. Well, as long as you can enjoy anime-esque, pixelated breasts now and then :) I mean, it is a dungeon-crawling RPG at its heart, after all. Anyway, I'll definitely report back after I've finally acquired and played it!

Bryan Ochalla said...

Kamiwoo: I'm as gay as they come, but there's something about this art style that appeals to me so much that I'm sure I'll be willing to put up with seeing breasts now and then. Also, I absolutely love dungeon crawlers and RPGs, so there's that, too. Anyway, like I told Justin, I'll definitely report back after I've played it. I hope you buy it, too, though and let me/us know what you think of it as well :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

I wish I could tell you her name, Simon!

apricotsushi said...

Wow, I wouldn't have thought that you'd be interested in a cute Japanese eroge, Bryan! ;) I'm interested to hear your impressions after you play though a bit of it. I'm a little intrigued by the screenshot you posted... Looks like it's a battle screen, haha.

Seems like you control a guy named Takeru and the other member of your party is Vaan... I don't know if that's the girl pictured's name or the name of someone in your party not visible at the moment. Hmmmm

apricotsushi said...

Oh no, why isn't my pictures working?! That's new

Bryan Ochalla said...

Ha ha, yeah, I understand that, Anne! I wouldn't have thought I'd be interested in such a game either :)

As for the screen I posted: Yes, it's a battle screen. I'm not sure if these girls are possessed and you're supposed to snap them out of it, but I think that's the case.

Anyway, I'll definitely let you know what I think of it -- after I finally play it, of course.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, and I'm not sure what's up with your avatar either! Maybe it's too large or something??

apricotsushi said...

Huh, it's odd because I haven't done anything to it since I changed it a while back... I'll try re-uploading it, I guess!

Bryan Ochalla said...

Sorry about that :( Hopefully you can figure it out!

Kamiwoo said...

I'm definitely interested in playing it, especially if you are as well. It'll be interesting to compare our thoughts on it! I could probably brute force my way through the game with my limited Japanese knowledge, but I know I'd miss out on the exciting details ;D

I'm not aware of any gay eroge with English guides or translations that incorporate the dungeon-crawling element in them. Most I've seen (like Silver Chaos) play more like visual novels/dating sims. Even then, the target audience is straight females, but perhaps you'd be able to enjoy it regardless? No pesky breasts in the way in those games...

Kamiwoo said...

Oh, speaking of avatars, I figured Rainbow Dash would fit in nicely with my comments here! I was kind of feeling guilty posting with the Four Heroes of Light one anyway, since I know you haven't finished it, haha. No pressure!

Curtis said...

I have the exact same weird draw to play these games. I loved them on like... FM Towns Marty, and stuff. They always seemed to bob to the surface on those strange and majestic import platforms.

I wonder if I'd like a "gay" version as much. The possibilities for something like are neat and I've seen it done well a couple times, but I really don't mind playing the traditional for-straight-men versions as long as there aren't too many "dating" elements. I hate that dynamic.

Bryan Ochalla said...

I'd probably still like the made-for-straight-females eroge games, Kamiwoo ... if I could understand them. As it stands, though, playing a dating sim without knowing the language (even if a guide were available) seems kind of pointless to me. This game, though, is different because it's a dungeon-crawling RPG -- one of my all-time fave genres :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, and RE: your avatar -- use whatever image you wish! I'm totally fine with a 4 Heroes of Light avatar. Speaking of wish, I didn't play the game during the week as promised. Maybe this or next weekend? Sigh...

Bryan Ochalla said...

Did you or do you own a Marty, Curtis? If so, I bow down to you! I've always wanted a Marty -- or at least I wanted one back in the day. Arcade-perfect ports of Bubble Bobble, R-Type, Viewpoint, etc. Sigh.

As for your second comment: I'm sure I'd like gay versions of these games (Dragon Knight), but there's something particularly interesting about these straight-male versions, too, isn't there?

Kamiwoo said...

The whole "intended audience" thing only goes so far, anyway! (says the man with the My Little Pony avatar) Silver Chaos HAS been fantranslated, so search for it if you're curious... anime-style guys have their own nice appeal, too!

I love dungeon crawlers as well, so a SEXY dungeon crawler is like... well, it's like the best thing ever. "Lightning Warrior Raidy" (PC) is one that has actually been translated, I think it's somewhat similar to Dragon Knight II in most respects.

Kamiwoo said...

I'm not even gonna lie, Bryan, the very end of 4HoL is pretty taxing even on my oldschool-minded brain. I had to go upgrade a bunch of my weapons/armor/crowns which required hunting a bunch of gems, which dragged things down quite a bit.

I never had any trouble up until that point, really, so it was kind of a bummer to discover that the last boss was that brutal. I'd highly recommend looking up some guides on how to prepare for that online, if you want to give it another shot. (You WERE right at the end if I recall, weren't you?)

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, thanks, Kamiwoo! I'll definitely check out Silver Chaos then. Speaking of which, the title makes it sound like it features daddy-types :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

Yes, Kamiwoo -- I'm literally at the last boss. I can beat his first two forms fairly easily, but the third (and hopefully last??) form kicks my butt (as far as I can remember). Sadly, it's been so long since I've played the game that I'm not sure what strategy I even used to get by those first two forms, so I'll have to check out some sort of strategy guide regardless before I give it another go.

Kamiwoo said...

Haha, I hadn't thought of that angle with the title! I suppose I'm just not experienced enough to spot such things ;D

You basically play as a typical RPG hero looking-guy, but I don't know enough about it to comment on any other character types that may be found within. I'm sure you'll let us know if you play it, though!

And yeah, picking a game back up when you're stuck at the (hard) final boss is very tough. There are four towers around the world map that you can scale to gain levels/gems/new crowns, which might help you. Though, at this point, I wouldn't blame you for just watching the ending on Youtube or something...

Bryan Ochalla said...

Actually, Kamiwoo, I played two or three of those towers before I quit the game. I know I had conquered the first one at least, and maybe the second, too. Maybe I should go back to those before taking on the final boss again?

Kamiwoo said...

I actually only finished one of the towers myself before (finally) beating the last boss, so perhaps it doesn't do as much good as I'd thought! I remember Elementalists being pretty important in reducing the damage the last boss can dish out, but I'm fuzzy on the rest of the details.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, yeah, I used Elementalists, Kamiwoo. One or two other important classes/jobs, too. The particular combo I used didn't work, though. Anyway, back to the drawing board, I guess...

IvaNEC said...

Cool, I hope the guide comes in handy for you. I'm always happy to see someone give Dragon Knight II a shot. It really is an excellent game.

Bryan Ochalla said...

I'll definitely let you know what I think of the game, IvaNEC! BTW, are planning to do any other such walkthroughs? If so, I'll be looking forward to trying those games, too :)

IvaNEC said...

Yep, I posted a few others in July (Shape Shifter, Basted, La Valeur), and I'm currently working on one for what I consider to be one of the most enjoyable PCE RPGs. I hope to complete and post it pretty soon.

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, yes, I knew about the others! I was just asking about future ones. Anyway, one of the most enjoyable PCE RPGs, eh? Hmmm, which one could that be?

I don't suppose you'll ever do a guide to go along with, say, Astralius (I know, I know...) or Madou Monogatari?

IvaNEC said...

Actually, my good buddy Zig already has an Astralius guide posted on his site. I used it myself when I played through the game. :)

Bryan Ochalla said...

Oh, right! I forgot about it. I know I'm nuts for saying this, but I am going to give Autralius a try some day. Maybe I'll blog about the experience :)

IvaNEC said...

Well, good luck with it, my friend. I know how intriguing Astralius can seem before you actually play it. It sure did seem neat to me. And it'd be awesome if you end up blogging about how it treats you. Tales of agony and woe are always fun. ;)

Bryan Ochalla said...

You know, I'm kind of hoping it *is* a tale of agony and woe, IvaNEC, as that surely would prompt some interesting blog posts :)