Panzer Dragoon gets a history lesson

Gamsutra has just posted up a history of PANZER DRAGOON, see if you agree with what they say… … ragoon.php

Shit article, I commented this via e-mail on Kotaku since that’s where I saw the mention (great site usually) but I don’t know if I did it right so here goes:

[quote]Well, why does he spend 3-4 pages for Panzer Dragoon 1, one for Zwei, and the rest to criticise Saga’s technical shortcomings? It’s almost a technical achievement presentation, the kind of JUST PLAIN WRONG review we get from low-grade mainstream magazines.

Anyway, I just want to say the cut scenes perfectly complimented one of the most beautiful and emotional storylines ever despite the not-of-square-quality character models. The same goes for the in-game graphics. Sure they were “empty” landscapes if you want to look at it that way, but the atmosphere was all over the place. The music helped of course, but the lighting effects and other visuals were more up to the task than anything else offered at the time as far as a full 3D rpg went.

As for Zwei, it was a VAST improvement over the original in every single way, it didn’t just “seem to run a little smoother and that’s the end of all I have to say about it” by far.

Really, this isn’t a very good article at all GamaSutra.

Anyone who wants to know more about the series should look at these websites instead.

The Will of the Ancients

Panzer Dragoon Legacy[/quote]

Really bad article I agree. From getting Lagi’s name wrong, to saying it’s impossible to escape random battles (you can by using a Berserk attack) to overall downplaying Saga’s importance and quality. You’d figure a 8 pages-long feature would be a little more informative. And what’s with criticizing 10 year old game’s graphics for how they don’t stand the test of time?

If the games really were the way described here, then they wouldn’t have deserved an article about them ten years later. Why did he bother writing?

I started a thread about it @ ( which despite the stupid mentality in most threads manages to have broad enough a audience to discuss the history of videogames in numbers. (and is a steady supply of gaming news)

The guy who wrote the article is apparently posting as “discoalucard”.

I don’t wanna sign up there just to belittle his ignorant ass. Invite him.

Bad humour aside, he tries to defend his articles pretty pathetically. Sure it’s not wrong to say Saga “has not aged well graphically” (though it’s done so much better than most games of its era and you can still appreciate the GREAT art), but when the whole article gives off a negative tone and half of it is about graphics (in game & FMV) then it makes a lame article and a writer who simply didn’t “get” it so shouldn’t write about its history.

I guess FFVII’s popeye models were apparently so much better. I loved it as a GAME but all it offered over PDS was technically better battle graphics. The art was not art in the full sense of the word, just well produced content. The FMVs were actually not great at all as far as character models were concerned either. They were rather impressive overall but PDS had just as impressive scenes. And yet he says Sega’s stuff weren’t up to Square standards? Give me a break and go play FFVII again, it’s really not awesome looking for the most part and the battle graphics themselves are at pretty low frame rates as well…

Not to mention every next part of Saga upped the ante of the graphics. Who can forget the first Uru sunset or the eventual entrance to Sestren? It really was very impressive at the time, and is still sufficient to give off a sense of awe atmosphere wise.

True but understandable. These people don’t seem to know much about PD series and you may say they’re not fans of old school games.

As for FFVII, there are lots of reasons why it was praise 30x more than Saga; 1. FFVII was the first FF game to be in a 3d model and graphics
2. I suppose that one death scene does make it dramatic
3. Best character designs
4. Best music?
5. Easy game?
6. Most well known title
7. Lots of replaying?

Now don’t kill me for saying this but stop blaming FFVII for the fault of PD Saga. Saga came out almost exactly one year after FF VII and the Saturn was dying because gamers are on PS1 and N64, not the game. They could’ve launched on the Dreamcast but they couldn’t do it because they can’t risk it again.

I’m not blaming FFVII for anything, Saga doesn’t even have faults to blame it for. I also don’t think it’s even possible to blame a different game for another game’s flaws so why did you feel the need to say that? As I said, I absolutely adored FFVII as a game. The article specifically states things like “not up to Square standards” and that’s the only reason I mention the game here.

I’m also not blaming Square for anything, I liked quite a few of their games, for example Vagrant Story, Final Fantasy Tactics (both had GREAT storylines and art in my opinion, FFT also matched it with great gameplay) and especially Xenogears which was another RPG with great atmosphere almost to the standards of Saga in some parts of it.

It was just badly written more than anything else. Not the sort of thing you get on Gamasutra in general. The guy should stick to forum posting.

It’s a weird read… some surprisingly accurate facts here and there, then equally surprising inaccuracies as well. That they called Orta the best game of the series, was the final proof this person should never have written an article of this sort. Combined with all the bizarre misrepresentations, such as for the opening cinemas in PD and Zwei, and choosing “gun power” over laser power in Saga? It’s beyond obvious that the author didn’t do much refreshing on the Saturn games, but just wrote the article based on poorly remembered - and clearly half-hearted - first plays. And just as obvious they didn’t play any of the earlier games till probably after Orta got them into the series.

A really lame article all around, as has been noted already, the pages for the Saturn games are totally preoccupied with negative nit-picks, all of which are either subjective to this person’s limited understanding of the genres and/or the period… or based on irrelevant comparisons.

Of course, for someone like say… Light Wing there, for whom comparing everything unfavorably to Final Fantasy games is only natural and just… then at least that aspect of the perspective wouldn’t even make them bat an eye. As she seems to have demonstrated. So in that respect I suppose the article would be relevant:

“The Saturn sucked, the Panzer Dragoon games were some of the few great games on it, but despite what you may have heard, they weren’t actually that great.”

Sums up the apparent agenda of this article.

The PS couldn’t pull off the transparent riverscapes like the Saturn did with scaling 2D bitmaps, which is the reason those effects are so much worse in Grandia on the PS compared to the Saturn original.

Any self-respecting gamefan recognizes any great game for what it is regardless of platform.

[quote=“Heretic Agnostic”]
That they called Orta the best game of the series, was the final proof this person should never have written an article of this sort.[/quote]


Does someone need to be a fan of the original games to write a history article on them?


[quote=“Heretic Agnostic”]
That they called Orta the best game of the series, was the final proof this person should never have written an article of this sort.[/quote]


Does someone need to be a fan of the original games to write a history article on them?[/quote]

If it was a “history article” it would have merely stated facts. And he didn’t get a lot of the facts straight.

^indeed… it was in the form of subjective - and poorly qualified - reviews.

The article is pathetically disingenuous… or perhaps somehow offensively ingenuous, I can’t even quite decide.

I guess you guys take everything PD related serious, perhaps a bit too serious.

No, we’re just all insanely jealous of Final Fantasy, like everyone else in the world… who doesn’t happen to adore it. I thought you had that all figured out a long time ago Light Wing, keep your insults in order!

Chill guys. It’s pretty easy really, Light Wing. We happen to think PDS is the best JRPG out there (I think I can safely speak for the majority around her I when I say this).

The reason FFVII gets more praise is not because it is better. Quality is, after all, subjective at the end of the day. The reason FFVII gets more praise is simply because it is better known. The game surely deserves praise for a lot of things it managed to accomplish but that doesn’t mean PDS isn’t worthy of the same kind of praise simply because it was released on a dying console and played by a select few.

For each and everyone of the good things you had to say about FFVII I can name you a good thing about PDS.And let me tell you that apart from “Most well known title” everything else is very subjective. And it’s the fact that articles tend to be biased towards FFVII that ticks us off.

Game “journalists” could talk about the fact that FFVII is a much longer game if you want. Or how it enabled you to do X or Y. But they shouldn’t say it has better graphics, presentation, art than Saga because that is a direct comparison of very subjective matter. And certainly not in a “history” article.

On the contrary, some of us aren’t quite so blinded by such blatant fanboyism to believe that an RPG’s worth can only be measured by its popularity.

Damn, I miss the days when games journalists were all hardcore gamers. I remember the flak CVG took over being totally objective when judging the PS2 when it arrived.

Being impartial doesn’t pay well.

In my opinion, PDS had no flaws in regard to the overall game design. The minor flaws that were present, such as the slow draw rate, were due to the limitations of the hardware; no amount of coding could have changed it. Therefore, PDS is, by far, the greatest RPG to ever come from the land of the rising sun.

The thing that we should all be despairing about is the fact that we will never see a game of this caliber ever again. Videogames have severely regressed in the past 5-7 years and are no longer fun; there are several reasons for this, of course, but the overall main reasons are the fact that the profit motive has become rampant, almost like a virus throughout the entire industry, and the fact that the majority of the games available now are pitted towards the mainstream. The Golden Age of videogaming (the 16bit and 32bit eras) have all but vanished, and it won’t be coming back again - you can thank capitalism, corporate greed, and bad writers for that.

I think the thing I find the most tragic is how desperately we Panzer fans seek to connect with others who share our passions. I can’t tell you all how happy I was when I found Die Welt. We get protective of our passion. We’re seldom understood, and because it was such a relatively unknown game, others have a tough time relating to its wonder. I agree that because Sony (and Square) were relatively well established and common household names, they developed a greater following. The thing about games is that they take so long to develop, and PD already had a loyalty with their previous two games. We were practically chomping at the bit when we knew that an RPG based on the series was to be released, despite the inevitable demise of the Saturn looming on the horizon. I also think that it takes a different sort of gamer to be a Panzer fan. We’re a unique lot of individuals, and I can’t thank you all enough for coming here to share your views, theories, information, screenies and thoughts on everything Panzer related and in between (and Solo for carrying the torch!).

I think that those of us who were with the series from the beginning hold a special place in our hearts for the characters and the world we came to know and crave to understand. Not that those who were introduced to the series via Orta are any less passionate, but I think that those of us who awed at the demo of PD and spent days (and nights) before our televisions trying to comprehend the wonder of this world and its complicated past are in a league of our own. We come here every day to share this part of ourselves that we cannot share with the rest of the casual world. This place is almost like our own communion. A place where we can share this obsession, this curse, this blessing, and this realm which we eternally hold alive in our hearts.

The writer of this “history” needs to be slapped.