"One of the best platform games for PSX"

When I first saw this game on TV, my initial thought was, ''Oh great. Another kiddie game full of magic sugarplum faeries and happy leprechauns!'' I managed to play this game at my local BX (Base Exchange; it's a military department store) and well... that really shut me up! This game actually proved to be pretty fun for all ages. While it is easy to beat, it's definitely not easy to do everything there is to do in this game. I, however, was able to, and being a veteran gamer, I can say it was a bit of a challenge. Maybe not a great challenge, but certainly not easy.

Rock On, Young Dragon
In Spyro the Dragon, you play as a young dragon named Spyro whose brethren have been transformed into statues by an evil being named Gnasty Gnorc, who also stole their eggs and their treasure. Spryo was the only one he missed, so he accepts the responsibility to defeat Gnorc, restore his people, recapture the treasure, and retrieve the eggs.

Simplistic and Fun
The game is pretty easy to understand and get the basic grasp of. As you walk around, you can push the square button to run. You can also jump in the air and glide. Another of Spyro's actions, one that is very important, is the ability to breathe fire. This can kill most of your enemies as can running into them. Some enemies, however, are killed only by running and others only by fire. Most of the ones that wear a lot of metal cannot be harmed with fire (unless it is a super-powered fire which you can get from certain faeries).

Games and Dragons
As you go through the game, you find various gems. Picking them up mainly helps contribute to gaining access to the secret area at the end of the game. There are also dragon statues which you can touch to release a dragon from Gnorc's magic. Doing so will cause a message to play that might give you some hints in the game.

Worlds and Levels
When you start the game, you'll notice all around you are portals to other levels. These are sublevels to the world you are currently in. It is not necessary to complete every level, but if you want the secret at the end of the game, then you may want to do all the levels. In each world, you will notice a strange character standing in front to of a balloon. He can take you to the next world. However, you must fulfill a task before advancing. Each world has a different task. In some, it's collect a certain number of gems or eggs, in others it's free a certain number of dragons.

Game Elements
The game has great graphics and good voice acting. The music isn't too bad, either. The controls can be a bit overresponsive at times, but nothing much to worry about. One thing that sort of ticks me off on this game is the camera angles. The gameplay is a lot of fun, as this is a solid addition to PSX's platform games.

Graphics: Some of the best exhibited by Sony 10/10
Sounds: Good voices and okay music 9/10
Controls: Can be a bit of a problem sometimes 8/10
Plot/Storyline: It's sort of different, but nothing spectacular 5/10
Gameplay: Lots of fun 9/10
All Together: 9/10

If you like platform games, I say give this one a try. If platforms aren't your type of game, then stay away from this one.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 01/18/01, Updated 04/19/01

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