Big Games of 2012: Dragon’s Lair Returns With a New Twist (Xbox 360)

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    Dragon’s Lair is one of those games that could be considered an immortal classic.  It got its start way back in 1983, when laser disc technology was king (we’re talking the big flipper discs, not the Blu-Rays as you know them now) and Don Bluth’s animation shined down on arcades, ushering in an interesting new technology that took the gaming scene by storm.  Now, almost 30 years later, the game lives on through Digital Leisure’s re-releases, and the company has confirmed that it’s now coming to Xbox Live Arcade – with a twist.

    In case you’ve never played Dragon’s Lair before, let me break it down for you.  It’s essentially an interactive cartoon, where you control Dirk the Daring, a brave yet silent knight, as he works his way through a booby-trapped castle, attempting to rescue the beautiful Princess Daphne from the clutches of Singe, a fire-breathing dragon that doesn’t take lightly to strangers.

    Each room in this castle is ridiculously different, though for Dirk, the objective is the same – survive.  One minute he’s braving the rapids in a turned-over barrel, paddling his way out of danger.  The next, he’s taking on a black knight that’s got a nasty tendency for electrifying the floor.  It’s the player’s job to follow the on-screen prompts (or rely on instinct in some cases) to avoid watching Dirk perish…though, we admit, watching the death animations is pretty humorous.

    After re-releasing the game on DVD, Blu-Ray, PC platforms and the PlayStation Network, Digital Leisure is now bringing the game to Xbox Live Arcade, announcing its official arrival a day or so after several sites reported that the game had received a PEGI rating for digital release.  All of the game’s stages will remain intact, along with competitive leaderboards – though we can only imagine there’s a certain score you can reach within the game, even with random stages.  And you can expect digitally restored visuals, along the same line as the Blu-Ray release.

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