After Expedition 33, My Desire To See The Legend Of Dragoon 2 Just Got Stronger

It's about time the OG hybrid-combat JRPG gets a proper continuation.

Story Highlights

  • Watching Expedition 33’s hybrid combat reminded me of the hidden gem, The Legend of Dragoon.
  • Featuring real-time QTEs, mind-blowing CGI cutscenes, and creative mechanics, it was truly underrated.
  • The classic revival is good, but what the game deserves is a proper remake or a sequel, Sony.

You remember the Xbox showcase, right? Let me pose the question differently. Who doesn’t remember the Xbox showcase? It was filled to the brim with mindblowing reveals, utterly crushing the competition.

There was one particular game in there that caught my attention: The JRPG-esque Clair Obscur: Expedition 33. Looks interesting, doesn’t it? My question is, what does this game and its hybrid combat system remind you of? I’m sure the first answer you’ll give me is Paper Mario and Mario and Luigi (real-time actions in a turn-based system), but that’s a whole different kind of genre.

Let me tell you what this game really reminded me of. A gem you probably haven’t heard of much, Japan Studio’s underappreciated The Legend of Dragoon.

YouTube video

The Legend Of Dragoon — The Very Definition Of Underrated

Today, I’d like to take you on a journey, visiting a game I place among my favorites from the PS1 era, and a highly overlooked gem that slowly but surely gained the respect and following it rightfully deserved since Day One.

The Legend Of Dragoon is an iconic JRPG borrowing a lot of elements from what was considered a genre staple back then, pioneered by games like Final Fantasy. In fact, this inevitable resemblance to Final Fantasy is what earned it the bad name in the first place. I didn’t understand it back then, and I still don’t. What’s wrong in taking inspiration, and featuring elements that were sort of a must in JRPGs back then?

The Legend of Dragoon Aged Pretty Well!
byu/mike47gamer inJRPG

If The Legend of Dragoon was just a mindless clone, I would’ve been the first to berate it. But trust me, it’s so much more than that. Provided its plot is rather straightforward, the iconic characters and their interactions, extremely gorgeous visual presentation, and highly creative gameplay mechanics more than makeup for it. The game’s combat system is still among the best turn-based systems for me.

The iconic hybrid combat | Source: Game On (YouTube)
The iconic hybrid combat | Source: Game On (YouTube)

What set it apart from anything available back then was the unique addition of action prompts in a turn-based core battle mechanic. Every time you execute a particular move, you have to press a series of timed QTEs to buff the hell out of that attack. And trust me, these QTEs are no walk in the park. Back on the PS1, the janky framerate actually made these a nightmare, but extremely cathartic when done right. Achieving a flawless QTE on a high-level move was truly a surreal feeling.

Played The Legend of Dragoon for the first time in almost 20 years and was surprised at how much I still liked it
byu/Claude892 inJRPG

An Aesthetic Masterpiece Above All

The Legend of Dragoon’s unique take on the gameplay is certainly the most interesting aspect, but even more than being fascinated by the combat, the presentation of a PS1 game blew me away. Its unique art style and 3D character sprites but with the iconic pre-rendered backgrounds painted a brilliant picture and felt quite advanced during an era when stuff like this was pretty rare.

So what’s great about The Legend of Dragoon? Plus three aspects it did “ahead of its time” and “better” than many JRPGs of the 90s (in my opinion).
byu/PassoSfacciato inJRPG

That’s not all. The aspect where it transcended all its peers was the addition of high-quality CGI cutscenes and animation to complement the gameplay. I had never seen anything like this before. I genuinely thought I had come across a game way ahead of its time.

The CGI cutscenes were ahead of their time | Source: Phoebius's VGM (YouTube)
The CGI cutscenes were ahead of their time | Source: Phoebius’s VGM (YouTube)

The visual presentation is impressive sure, but the audio design and soundtrack aren’t that far behind, either. All in all, it is an extremely underrated game wrongly criticized. Man, am I glad for all the fans spreading the word that it finally reached close to the heights it deserved.

Has my description piqued your interest? I don’t think you can revisit the time when this game was a technological masterpiece on the PS1, but you can certainly enjoy it with the PS4/PS5 re-release through the classics catalog.

It’s Time For A Sequel, Sony

The Legend of Dragoon fans received the overwhelmingly joyous news almost a year ago. Sony decided to bring the game back with the classics catalog, featuring enhanced features like the obvious visual overhaul, plus the rewind and quick-save features. The game’s nightmarish QTEs were a little easier this time around, but enjoyable all the same.

The classic revival was incredible indeed | Source: PS Store
The classic revival was incredible indeed | Source: PS Store

However, as elated as I am for this sem-revival, it’s nowhere near what the game deserves. A proper remake would be a start, but even more than that, what the game deserves is a proper sequel that expands the lore and gameplay mechanics. The game’s cult following and evergrowing popularity strengthen the case.

I hope that one day The Legend Of Dragoon will be given the respect it deserves. I would love a remake/prequel or even a sequel to this wonderful rpg. The lore is so very deep.
byu/ChainsForAlice ingaming

A sequel was indeed planned once but was unfortunately canceled. I can understand that it might’ve been due to the poor reception. But now, that’s all in the past. Over the years, The Legend of Dragoon has gathered a massive following and sales count, it’s no longer the failure it once was.

With Xbox coming up with Clair Obscur: Expedition 33, It’s time for Sony to strike back with The Legend of Dragoon 2.

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Hanzala is a dedicated writer who expresses his views as opinion pieces at eXputer. He's always been fascinated by gaming and has been an avid consumer of many different genres for over a decade. His passion for games has him eager to encounter the latest RPGs and actively look for new Soulslike to challenge. He puts forth his experience and knowledge of gaming into captivating opinion pieces.

Experience: 8+ months || Education: Bachelors in Chemistry.

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