Dragon's Lair to see its Nth releases on the DS and PSP (PR)


PRESS RELEASE: Dragon's Lair(R) Up For Grabs On Sony PSP!
Press release supplied by Games Press 09:48 (GMT) 03/01/2008


Dragon's Lair®, the world's first full-animation laser disc video game - debuted in 1983. The game features Dirk the Daring, a rather clumsy knight that must make his way through the castle of an evil wizard to save the beautiful Princess Daphne. The game's visionary team of creators (Don Bluth, Rick Dyer, Gary Goldman, John Pomeroy and Chris Stone) was astounded by the public's overwhelming enthusiasm and witnessed lines as long as several city blocks as people of all ages waited to play the game. Currently, Dragon's Lair® is one of only three games on permanent display at the Smithsonian Institution (the other two are Pac Man and Pong).

United Coders, developers of the Nintendo DS version of the game, are currently putting the final touches to the Nintendo DS version, and is currently seeking a publisher for a version of the game on the Sony PSP. In exchange for funding the development and intellectual property cost of Dragon’s Lair® for Sony PSP, the publisher will be granted the global publishing rights for the format. United Coders expect to begin development of Dragon’s Lair® for Sony PSP in February with a release date of Christmas 2008 on the platform.

The story of Dragon’s Lair® is classic: “Dragon’s Lair®: The fantasy adventure where you become a valiant knight, on a quest to rescue the fair princess from the clutches of an evil dragon. You control the actions of a daring adventurer, finding his way through the castle of a dark wizard, who has enchanted it with treacherous monsters and obstacles. In the mysterious caverns below the castle, your odyssey continues against the awesome forces that oppose your efforts to reach the Dragon's Lair. Lead on, adventurer. Your quest awaits!”

According to Hans Olsen, the Executive Producer and Lead Programmer on Nintendo DS and Sony PSP, the PSP version will feature – like the Nintendo DS version, two distinct modes of play:

“From a players perspective you can choose to play an arcade accurate version simply called Arcade mode, or you can opt to play the more unique Director’s Cut mode. The Arcade mode is exactly what its name implies; a genuine arcade accurate version of the 1983 arcade game with LEDs for scores, featuring the same semi-randomness of the scenes being played. The Arcade mode was implemented to maintain the current hardcore fan base of Dragon’s Lair®, which is quite large in numbers, and naturally also because never before has there been an arcade accurate version on any handheld. The Director’s Cut mode is very different. One difference is that the Director’s Cut mode features 5 lives instead of the typical 3 lives for Arcade mode. Another difference is that Director’s Cut mode features extra scenes, such as a scene where Dirk the daring has to cross a drawbridge and avoid getting killed by tentacles. This video footage existed in 1983 but was never used in the North American version, only in the European version of the arcade. In Director’s Cut mode, this is always the very first scene you play, as it gives a nice introduction to the player beginning the adventure. The laserdisc from 1983 had a lot of video footage that was never made available to the player in 1983. All this extra footage is now available in Director’s Cut mode, and the amount is quite substantial. Another important difference is that back in 1983, the game played somewhat “semi-random”; some scenes, such as the falling platform, was played no less than 4 times during a single game play session! To new players who has never played Dragon’s Lair® before, it’s highly confusing that you need to play the same sequence over and over again, and unlike Arcade mode, the Director’s Cut mode is based on a more linear adventure approach where the scenes are not really played semi-random, but rather in a specific sequence carefully conceived and invented by our Technical Producer, Dave Hallock, who is, without doubt, the worlds leading expert on Dragon’s Lair®. Dave Hallock is also one of the few people who has ever reversed engineered the original ROMs, and improved flaws in the original game from 1983. But this is only the beginning! In addition to an extra scene, more video footage, more lives, and more logical scene sequencing, the Director’s Cut mode also features a unique scrolling castle showing new players how they are currently progressing throughout the adventure to save princess Daphne. In Director’s Cut mode, you don't play to achieve the highest score; scores doesn’t exist in Director’s Cut mode! You play to save the princess, and the game play experience for a player who has never played Dragon’s Lair® before will love the unique Director’s Cut mode. In Arcade mode you have the old-school audio effects, while in Director’s Cut mode we have added more “modern” audio effects to the game. Director’s Cut mode is also the only mode featuring the unique Sony PSP features. To summarize, the Arcade mode is for the hardcore fan who wants to play the game from 1983 – unedited from 1983. Director’s Cut mode is aimed at new players more familiar with the Sony PSP as a handheld, but no prior experience to Dragon’s Lair®, who seeks an arcade adventure experience featuring fantastic visuals and unique controlling mechanisms “, Olsen concludes.


Night_Trekker said:
Why does anyone care about this anymore? How many more version of Dragon's Lair does the world need?

Somebody must keep buying Dragon's Lair, and I guess somebody also said we needed portable versions to boot.


GAF's Pleasant Genius
According to High-Def digest for a true Arcade like experience (minus some problem which might or might not be solvable through some option in the disc configuration menu) you should get the Blu-Ray version.


JeremyR said:
Wow! According to Wikipedia, the DS version will be the 58th version of it released.

I guess people must keep buying them...

And the PSP would be number 59, the mind boggles.
I bought the DVD version of DL about six years ago, and it is pretty much unplayable. It's only useful in the "watch" mode for nostalgic purposes, and to watch the old early 80's video footage for the hair and fashion. This was really disappointing to me that it was of such poor quality, and I'd love a version that is actually playable. It could have been the DVD player I was using, but I tried two different players.


Lost all credibility.
Night_Trekker said:
Why does anyone care about this anymore? How many more version of Dragon's Lair does the world need?
Yes but were any of them actually GOOD? The DVD releases play like molasses and the GBC version is a joke.

I'm hoping the DS version will be faithful to the original arcade machine.


(more a nerd than a geek)
I got this e-mail as well.

I find this particular line interesting:
In exchange for funding the development and intellectual property cost of Dragon’s Lair® for Sony PSP, the publisher will be granted the global publishing rights for the format.
Let me get this right... if you agree to fund all the development costs AND licensing fees, you win the honor of being the global publisher? Isn't that the sort of deal that is rather -standard-? I never heard of "Dragon's Lair" being big enough (in this day and age) to justify a bidding war for the rights to publish it.

I suppose they could always see if Capcom wants to take another swing at it.


provides useful feedback
I remember them showing screenshots of the DS version of Dragon's Lair. It's terrible! All they've done is spread the video over the two screens, which is pretty stupid since you have the gap between them.

If you were going to pick one over the other, choose the PSP version. Maybe.
last one i bought was the gamecube version in full 3-d, as flunky as it was i LOVED it.

i'd so buy a next gen version of it done in full3-d in high def cel shaded cartoon visuals .
specially if the nail the mechanics.
Loved the Xbox version of Dragon's Lair 3D, the puzzles were nicely put together. If it gets good reviews, I might pick it up on PSP.