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King of Dragons

Genre

Beat-’em-up

Console

SNES

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SNES

King of Dragons

 King of Dragons[1] is a 1991 beat-’em-up video game by Capcom that follows players as they control characters through the kingdom of Malus to defeat monsters led by the dragon Gildiss. It features a level advancement system, allowing character attributes to be upgraded as players progress through the game. The game’s music was composed by Yoko Shimomura.

Gameplay

The game has 16 levels, though many are quite short. The King of Dragons features a role-playing video game-like level advancement system. Points scored for killing monsters and picking up gold count towards experience, and the character gains levels at regular intervals. With each level, the character’s health bar increases, other attributes such as range improve, and the character also becomes invulnerable for a few seconds. Along the way, different weapon and armor upgrades for each character may also be picked up.

The King of Dragons features a simple control system that consists of a single attack button, and a jump button. By pressing both buttons, the character unleashes a magical attack that strikes all enemies in screen (its strength varies according to the character used) at the expense of losing energy. The fighter, cleric and dwarf can also use their shield to block certain attacks by tilting the joystick back right before the impact.

This is one of the many Capcom games to feature the yashichi power-up item (a “boost power-up” icon resembling a shuriken). There are three such power-ups hidden throughout the game, each giving the player an extra continue.

The five playable heroes each have their own traits and fighting skills in the game. The Fighter is very good with melee attacks and defense but lacks magical ability. The Dwarf is able to dodge and block attacks, is the most agile character that has decent melee attacks albeit the shortest range and little magic ability. The Elf has good agility and great range with archery but is not physically strong. The Cleric has great defense, decent magic (with the ability to heal his comrades) and melee attacks but bad agility. The Wizard has poor defense but very good magical attacks and quick melee attacks.

The King of Dragons was ported to the Super NES in 1994. An emulated version of the game has been released as part of Capcom Classics Collection Vol. 2Capcom Classics Collection: Reloaded, and Capcom Beat ‘Em Up Bundle.

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