The next Panzer Dragoon game's time period and setting

Supposing that there is another Panzer Dragoon game, and I think there will be eventually (after all, it took 15 years for a new Rocket Knight game to come out but we did get one in the end), what would be the most appropriate time period to set the next game in?

I’ve come up with several possibilities:

  1. The Ancient Age
    Pros: An epic time period that could make for a powerful story. A good excuse to reuse the designs from the Saturn trilogy, but not exactly the same. Dragons, lots of them… maybe even multiple “good” dragons.
    Cons: There’s no way it’s going to live up to everyone’s personal interpretation of this time period. Would take away a lot of the mystery of the series.

  2. Long before Panzer Dragoon Zwei, but after the Ancient Age (for example, 5000 years after the Ancient Age).
    Pros: Fresh time period allows for innovative concepts. Could still involve the Towers/Sestren directly or indirectly.
    Cons: No hero dragon; Lagi was one of a kind.

  3. The Founding/Development of the Empire
    Pros: A good excuse to reuse the old ship designs. Semi-familiar setting to the Saturn trilogy. Insight into the Empire’s origins without taking away the mysteries of the Ancients.
    Cons: No hero dragon. May suffer from prequel syndrome… we already know how the Empire rose to power, just not exactly how.

  4. After Panzer Dragoon Orta
    Pros: We find out what happens to Orta and Lagi II. Direct continuation of the story of the first four games.
    Cons: Some people prefer Saturn style, and for consistency the setting would need to be closer to Orta’s (new Imperial ships, etc). A direct continuation would confuse new players.

  5. In the far future (for example, 1000 years after Panzer Dragoon Orta).
    Pros: Lots of room for innovation. There could be multiple dragons descended from Lagi (maybe even on opposing sides). Potential for the Empire, if it still exists, to have become more Ancient-like, maybe even to have created their own dragons.
    Cons: Look at how much the real world has changed over the last 1000 years. How closely would the Panzer world be, realistically, to the setting we’ve come to know and love?

What would be the more suitable time period and setting for the next Panzer game? Let’s discuss the possibilities…

I would personally most like to see a sequel to Orta. There was too much unexplained in that - it seems to me that Smilebit had the story lined up for a potential sequel. They never really explained WHY she was locked up by the Seekers - to prevent some sort of future catastrophe, clearly but WHAT? I think if it was set maybe a decade after Orta, new players could hop on board with minimal confusion.

However, I think maybe an RPG set in the Ancient Age would work in terms of appealing to a wider audience. I imagine the setting as being something like Phantasy Star, with a more surrealist aesthetic. Too many RPGs take place in dirty, gritty, savage settings, I like the idea of one set in the height of technological and cultural sophistication - but ending with the total collapse of civilization. (Because downbeat endings aren’t common enough.)
I don’t think it would be the game designed for the folks on this forum, but it might allow for “Panzer Dragoon” to gain a little bit of recognizability again.

I’d like to see either a sequel to Orta or something in the far future. I don’t really mind the setting becoming more futuristic, so long as I can ride a dragon that shoots lasers, has a bond with my character and leaves him “alone” to fulfill his mission in the end (and that’s what defines Panzer Dragoon for me). My very first post here:

From a story standpoint, it would be interesting to have more of the Ancient Age revealed, but not through a game set on that age. The mystery is a part of the Panzer atmosphere, and going back to the beginning would just poison it. But yeah, I agree with Nemoide when it comes to cater to a larger audience. The game needs more popularity; going for a “mainstream” but unique approach would help with that.

For spinoffs and Pandora’s Box unlockables, I’d suggest showing what happened between Saga and Orta from the Empire’s POV as well as the Seekers’ (perhaps from Azel’s POV?), and something from the Towers/Sestren POV, possibly the events that led him to bring the Heresy Dragon to the world – a direct prequel to Zwei.

The dream sinernio would be for SEGA to split the team into 2 One to make a sequel to Saga, and one to make a sequel to Orta .

Me though I love to see a direct sequel to ORTA m but I must admit

[quote]1) The Ancient Age
Pros: An epic time period that could make for a powerful story. A good excuse to reuse the designs from the Saturn trilogy, but not exactly the same. Dragons, lots of them… maybe even multiple “good” dragons.
Cons: There’s no way it’s going to live up to everyone’s personal interpretation of this time period. Would take away a lot of the mystery of the series[/quote]

That does sound like a great blueprint for a Panzer game

I’m against the idea of making a game set in the Ancient Age or even before/during the other PD games. I’d just leave the old games alone and make a sequel to PD Orta, preferably one modeled after PD Saga. I wouldn’t make Orta the main character again, instead she could get a role similar to Azel in PD Saga with the main character being the “new” Edge. References to the old games, even PD Orta, should be kept to a minimum so that it’s really a fresh start for the series.

I just have to say that if they were to make a game set in the Ancient Age, the protagonist should be named Will. :anjou_happy:

[quote=“Team Andromeda”]The dream sinernio would be for SEGA to split the team into 2 One to make a sequel to Saga, and one to make a sequel to Orta .

Me though I love to see a direct sequel to ORTA m but I must admit[/quote]

Do you mean in terms of gameplay or story?

I agree with leaving the Ancient Age alone. It’s not that there couldn’t be a decent game set in this time period, but the risks involved are great. Anything less than legendary would likely disappoint fans. The continually would suffer unless the old games were thoroughly researched, and the mystery would be taken away. Not to mention if a new developer enters the picture, the style of the world wouldn’t necessarily match that of the Saturn games. For a game set in the Ancient Age, this is really important as the designs need to reflect those in the trilogy for consistency.

I’m not sure about a sequel to Panzer Dragoon Orta. If the story takes place shortly after Orta, the character would need to be reintroduced in a way that makes sense to new players. It wouldn’t make sense to return to the style of the Saturn games (artistically), but an RPG or action adventure title would make sense in terms of gameplay.

Since a sequel would be played by a new audience, it would make sense to change the scenario more. I.e. don’t feature Orta at all, but have her story mentioned in a sidequest or via books (as Lundi’s was in Panzer Dragoon Saga). I’m leaning towards option 5 from my original post, although it wouldn’t necessarily need to take place so long after Orta. If a new developer took charge of the franchise we’d likely see different art style from both Saga and Orta, so maybe there could be a different Empire yet again. A story about Lagi’s descendants, rather than Lagi’s direct offspring.


I’ve mentioned both of these ideas before, but since I’ve had a scenario for an action-adventure that takes place a few hundred years after the existing games in mind for so long… I guess I’ll say that would be ‘best’. :anjou_happy:

But for The Ancient Age: what if it all takes place from the point of view of a “Dragon Unit” and as such the player is essentially a soldier carrying out missions? You could easily keep the mystery alive, if as a drone / dragon, you’re obliged to just take orders with no questions asked. Very much as in PD1 or Zwei, all exposition could be treated as mere glimpses of the larger picture; you clear objectives and get to watch events unfold, but no one has any reason to actually explain anything to you.

So imagine a (more or less) RTS game style, but taken back to the very beginnings of the genre, with a certain other “Zwei”. It’s Towers and dragons fighting Towers and dragons, and basically the Dragon Unit is the General. That’s the only thing you directly control, but you have various tactical options to support the lesser troops - maybe even different abilities for different dragons, such as Atolm style heavy fire support, or even fast transport capability. Recall this paragraph from the Zwei World Document:

[Dragons] were the Ancient Ages weapons of war, a variation on the “Living Weapons”. Simply, if it is compared with the other mass produced “Living Weapons”, the Dragon lineage was a trail manufacture, so only a limited number of units were produced. Still, they were used for many purposes on the battlefield, because of its role guarding people they are inserted with consideration, their many additional functions hidden from view by their diverse forms.

Multiplayer fun with each side in control of one Dragon Unit and one Tower? You don’t lose till your own Tower is terminated, but of course that is unlikely to happen till your other Living Weapons are exhausted as well. And that mode could have little to do with the canon, so no problem. But the campaign is just you doing what you’ve been created for, winning the ultimate conflict, yet things don’t turn out quite how you expected anyway… and you can’t possibly know exactly why.

IMO, two empires with diverging beliefs. One aggressive and the other defensive, then throw some highly intelligent mutants into the mix.

Then an ancient disguised as a human called Samir Duran merging them all into a hybrid.

Oh wait, that’s too Starcraft-y.

Ride that DNA spiral to the end; it may just go where no one’s been!

For Orta II a direct sequel in gameplay terms and also for story.

A Saga II would need to clear up what happened between Saga and Orta Time-line I feel . But I would also love it take place before the 1st game , and for at long last, the original Sky Rider mystery to be cleared up .

I really would like it for the RPG to take you up to the end point of the Saturn intro and end with you being killed And then as bonus you play next gen remake of the 1st very 1st game as an Epilogue bonus . That would be cool

Yeah, it’s just a matter of getting someone on board who really understands the feel of the Ancient technology.

Multiple enemies could be a good way add complexity to the world. No Empire lasts forever, the Ancients are proof of that.

Ancient age, i want the secrets revealed, after all this time guessing what happened i think its time to unclose all the ancient age secrets.

But i think that such game would have to be developed by Yukio Fatatsugi, he?s the only one who could make a great storyline for such game since he?s so close to PD universe.

Yukio Futatsugi apparently doesn’t want to do anything that would involve dragons / riders though. While the lack of his influence on Orta is definitely felt, making his involvement a requirement is about the same as saying there just shouldn’t be another Panzer Dragoon game. IIRC the (a?) director of Skies of Arcadia was involved in the story for Azel as well, I tried to find her name but couldn’t run it down yet. But I think she may deserve a lot of credit for the elements so many people love there.

It’s a given that any new game wont please everyone, even if Futatusgi-san himself made it happen. But as always it just comes down to hoping the team is doing things in the right spirit, starting from a point of genuine inspiration, and affording a dedication to quality.

I don’t think I ever want everything revealed though, that would actually represent a betrayal of the whole spirit of the series for me. But again, there’s no reason a game set in the Ancient Age couldn’t answer a lot of questions while creating even more. Just the same for any games set after Orta or whenever.

How about a game that takes place through all sorts of eras? Your character, human or drone (or both), could have the ability to sense the past (it’s easier to explain if it’s a drone or hybrid, getting its dormant Sestren collective memories activated like flashbacks or something), so whenever you found some ancient structure, machine, or whatever, you could get a glimpse of it in all its glory during the ancient age. Perhaps you could even use that in the gameplay, to find clues in the past that help you in the present, or even alter that past (maybe that’s far fetched and too supernatural for some people) as a way to progress in the present, Cryostasis style. You could see the placement and function of defence systems and avoid them, find out the weak points of bosses you’re about to face by knowing how they were created, etc. If the altering mechanic was in, you could solve puzzles in the ancient age, activate things in the past that allow you to progress in the present, sabotage guardians before you have to fight them, etc. As little or as much the designers wanted to allow, while with not setting the whole game during that era you still keep its mystery intact, showing the player only glimpses, and from certain plot driven points of view, without making it feel like a cardboard cutout as it could if you were supposed to really be there, yet the game’s design limited your experience of it. You could also get fan-service flashbacks to the best scenes from past games if that game’s “present” was well after all of them in the timeline. Or, Lagi-style future visions?

Thats the best idea i?ve heard so far, a game like that would be epic, unfortunatly, i guess we?ll never see it, i lost all hope already :anjou_disappointment:

Yeah, I just came up with it while writing the post but I see it could be really awesome with the “flashbacks” mechanic since then they could show whatever they wanted. Flashbacks to the ancient age’s prime where the best scientists are creating the first drones or dragons, flashbacks just before the destruction of the world while things are falling apart around them, flashbacks to rebel missions as they’re stealing something, a guardian or drone or whatever (Azel?!), even flashbacks to more recent things (Sestren network observing pretty much everything anyway), like the re-activation of stuff, willingly by the Empire or as an accident by the Seekers or Hunters, etc. If only! Of course it would need a good “present” story and require expertly designed pace for it all to work together but that’s everyone’s desire for any new Panzer Dragoon game anyway…

Whatever happens, no story is complete without that ever unique serendipitous human element.

So unexplored. Oh well.

Al3x, your idea might work quite nicely with a drone protagonist whose journey/mission spans several generations or disconnected time periods. We know from Orta’s record on dragon self evolution that dragons were designed to fulfill missions over thousands of years. It’s likely that this was the same with for their drone riders. Perhaps the drone could go into hibernation at certain points to explain the time gaps, reawakening in a time of need.

What if it was a drone Azel reactivated to help her find Edge, and while they were looking she was teaching it of humans, either by actually teaching it, or perhaps as it was simply observing Azel’s behaviour and dedication, all through the process of looking for Edge, mumbling of past events, getting more and more desperate, deciding to create Orta, etc. And when she left it alone (the drone speaking of it could be vague about it, so it could mean she died, or just left), without enough time for the drone to learn everything, it was conflicted between its original mission and caring about all the things it learnt from Azel, so it would then start going through the world trying to see what it should do, and depending on your play style either become more and more human like Azel or more and more dedicated to its original mission, whatever it was, whether it spanned thousands of years or not (it could try to complete it anyway, like Abadd did even though it was impossible at that point so he twisted it into something else). That premise could lead to some fairly interesting things (on top of the flashback mechanics from my previous comments), with it having a child-like ignorance, yet enough power to scare or even kill people without realising the importance of such actions, simply out of fear of its own as humans, seeing it as a monster before it thinks of having a disguise like Azel, would be scared of and attack it, the Empire would want to capture it, or use its naivety for their purposes (from these it would learn of the bad side of humanity as well), etc.

Yeah something like that might work. I’d prefer it if the characters weren’t too closely tied to those in the previous games, as that might alienate new players. But otherwise it sounds like a good concept.