Dungeon's & Dragon's Shadow Over Mystara Review + Complete Playthrough
I wanted to try doing a review and play through video for one of my all time favorite arcade games
Dungeons and Dragons Shadow Over Mystara
(My complete playthrough all Classes played)
Dungeons and Dragons Shadow Over Mystara is a side scrolling arcade game made by Capcom in 1996.The game was made at the height of Capcoms ability to produce world class games with tremendous amounts of re-play-ability.
You just have to think of games like Street Fighter 2 , Final Fight and Ghouls and Ghosts and you know Capcom is capable of producing games people will play for years in the future.
Shadow Over Mystara is a sequel to Dungeons & Dragons: Tower of Doom. The game is set in the Dungeons & Dragons campaign setting of Mystara.After defeating the Arch Lich Deimos, the heroes continued on their journey through the Broken Lands of Glantri after realizing that Deimos is only part of an even greater evil plan, and he was in fact being used by a mysterious sorceress named Synn.
Synn, who appears to be a young woman but commands incredibly powerful magical abilities, has been scheming to control the Kingdom of Glantri and conquer the humanoids of the Republic of Darokin. But now that Deimos has been defeated, Synn vowed to punish the land that she desired.
At the game's end the player discovers that Synn is in fact a centuries-old huge red dragon, bent on harnessing the mystical forces of the lands she has conquered, in order to awaken a creature of even more devastating physical prowess than herself - known and described only as The Fiend. The heroes then fight against Synn in her lair; when she is slain, her monster is also destroyed by airship bombing.
The game combines the side-scrolling gameplay of a beat 'em up with some aspects found in a role-playing game, such as managing an inventory of weapons,spells and armors and finding and upgrading new gear and earning new spells as the player gains experience.
Players can wield a large variety of weapons and armor, although this selection is limited by the character the players chooses.
There is also an extensive assortment of magical and hidden items in the game, many of which are completely unknown to exist to the typical video gamer,a fact I personally find huge exciting.It is one of the reasons I keep coming back to this game,one of these days I want to find the legendary 2 Handed Sword which only the Master Swordsman can use and use it to slay the Dragon!
This, along with the addition of multiple endings and forking paths, gives the game huge re-playability and has led to a cult following among fans of the genre.
It was one of the last 2-D arcade side-scrollers created by Capcom; only Battle Circuit (1997) came after Shadow over Mystara. The game has seen two home releases as part of the compilations: Dungeons & Dragons Collection published for the Sega Saturn in 1999, and Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara made available on the Nintendo eShop, PlayStation Network, Xbox Live Arcade and Steam in 2013.
Dungeons and Dragons Shadow Over Mystara is one of these games I could never get tired of playing.I love the visual style of the game,the cartoon-esque graphics hold up well and still look stunning today.I always enjoy the look of the spell effects every single time I play through it.
The game allows you to pick from 1 of 6 characters which are all Dungeons and Dragons stereotype characters.
I mainly play the magic user which represents the classic Wizard/Mage archetype as he has the most impressive arsenal of spell effects and he starts of with wands of Frost and Fireball which are alot of fun right out of the gate...
His offensive spells are greatly enhanced by the Staff of Wizardry, arguably making him the most powerful character in the game and certainly one of the most fun to play and re-play :).
(Wizard Casting conjure Storm Elemental)
(Casting Conjure Fire Elemental)
The game offers a small selection of arcane magic, available for the Magic-User and Elf, and divine magic, available to the Cleric. Instead of an MP system, characters use D&D's Vancian magic system where a certain amount of each spell ready to cast.
(Wizard casting Ice Storm)
(Reverse Gravity is good for hard to hit flying enemies...)
Extra uses of the spells can be picked up off the ground, represented graphically as scrolls of paper, or occasionally recharged after certain boss fights. When a spell is cast the entire game is momentarily paused during which the spell effect is played out (some spells can be controlled during this time).
In the play-through video above I cycled through all the classes at least once.
The Elf is a Ranged Magic wielding Warrior ,she gets unlimited arrows and can use them in rapid fire succession.She can also cast haste on herself for Ninja fast attacks.
She also has access to a few spells like magic missiles and Ice storm making her a good and fun all round class for beginners...
We also tried the fighter classes starting with the Dwarven Warrior ...
He has the most hit points of all 6 class and he has a shield so he can guard against enemy attacks. Successfully guarding an attack and avoiding damaging makes a huge difference in this game...
The Dwarf is also able to deal the most physical damage in a short amount of time. His short stature allows him to safely pass under enemy projectiles. He also has the unique ability to bash opened treasure chests to reveal extra gold and treasure.
The Master Swords man is similar to the dwarf but has less hit points and I believe he is the only character who can pick up and use 2 handed swords. Unfortunately we didn't find a 2 handed greatsword on this playthrough.
This Master Fighter has the best armor class, making him suitable for beginners and experts alike
He can wield nearly every weapon in the game, and is the only character with the ability to dual-wield with a short sword in his offhand.
The Sword of Legends item in the game is named after the highest ranking Master Swordsman Fighter in the high scores.
Next up we checked out the Cleric class ,this character is the only one of the 6 characters which has healing abilities.
He can cast severe heal 4 times and critical heal once.He has a good amount of hit points and a powerful mace attack making him another good choice for a first time player. He also has the ability to turn undead, instantly destroying skeletons and ghouls, and can cast from a large library of clerical spells that can heal, strengthen allies, and debilitate or damage enemies.
In line with classic Dungeons & Dragons rules, the cleric cannot wield any weapon that is bladed; however, he can wield a spiked morningstar from which he gains new special attacks.
Last but by no means least is the Shadow Arts Pro who is the classic Rouge archetype.She has an unlimited slingshot,traps like bottles of flaming oil and her trusty daggers
The gameplay is classic hack and slash side scrolling beat em up style with the addition of these scrolling menu wheels which allow players to cycle through spells and abilities.Mastering the art of juggling these menus while in combat is very tricky in the beginning...
There are 11 stages in total with optional branching paths throughout the story at the end of each stage there is a shop keeper offer various items for sale...
The Boss fights are all epic with the monsters being classic Dungeons and Dragons themed monsters...
The end boss fight of course being with a huge Red Dragon named Synn!!!
As an overall score I give Dungeon's & Dragon's Shadow Over Mystara a perfect 10.
10 for visuals
10 for game play
10 for replay ability
10 for sounds
Thanks for taking the time to checking out my review and play through. Stay tuned for many more classic arcade Reviews and Play-through's in the near future!