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The Year of the Dragon celebration is held every 12 years and the faeries are due to deliver a batch of new dragon eggs, 150 to be exact... but far away in a forgotten world an evil sorceress has a plan. She will enlist the help of her hoards of "Rynocs", and her troublemaker disciple Bianca, to steal them and wipe out the future of dragons forever.
Spyro Year of the Dragon (which I will just call Spyro 3 for short), is the latest free-roaming fully 3D platform adventure game in the popular series. Visually it's as good as previous versions, the polygonal worlds are gorgeous, bright and colorful. Camera work is stupendous. I could count on one hand how many times the camera angle was less than perfect, and that is rare among free-roaming 3D games.
The look of the characters is both technically well done and pleasing on the eye. In keeping with the cartoon feel, the variety and zany-ness of the critters in are top quality.
With every world and level you visit the musical score is constantly changing. From crazy jams to jungle beats, the rhythm seems to be a fitting ally on your quests. Good voice acting is another thing that isn't easy to come by in games, but the Spyro series has always been blessed with it, and this is no exception. The story is both funny and interesting and much is due to the fine voice-overs.
Spyro 3 plays almost exactly the same as the previous titles in the series, with a few notable exceptions. There are quite a few playable characters other than just the Dragon, each with their own set of controls to master.
Even our hero has been given some great new moves to add to the ones we all know and love. He can still flame broil his foes or ram them to smithereens... but now he can spit objects, swim, climb and also do a spinning head dive.
There are mini-games and new vehicles to help (and hinder) you along the way. Usually eggs can be had when these games are completed, so try your best to get them done (even though getting all the eggs isn't required to complete the game). The games are light-hearted and include... saving little critters from the Rynocs, by blasting them on your speedboat, protecting a figure skater from hockey players who keep slap shooting her off the ice. All are fun and some can be quite difficult, but they seem to add another twist to this game and provide a nice distraction from the plot.
The vehicles and other devices Spyro can operate can be quite a blast. You can run a speed boat around a mean old shark as you pummel him with artillery, or hop in a stationary turret and blast baddies out of the air or off the ground, it's all good. There are even hovercrafts and subs that Spyro can maneuver through parts of levels that keep this game fresh and high up on the fun scale.
· All new playable Characters. Five playable critters all with their own unique moves and talents.
· Huge new worlds. These massive worlds take you to the limits of your imagination and test your "fiery" skills.
· Loads of mini-games. Everything from skateboarding to boxing and more await you on your journey.
· Enemies, enemies, and more enemies. Loads of all different types of baddies to try and squash Spyro and his gang.
· All new vehicles and abilities. From tanks and speedboats to who knows what.
Number of Disks: 1
Number of blocks used on Memory card per save: 1
Maximum number of Players (without a multi-tap): 1
Multi-tap compatible (max players): No
Link-cable compatible (max players): No
Split screen multi-player option (max players): No
Other accessories: None
Dual Shock Pad Digital Button compatible: Yes
Dual Shock Pad Analog Stick compatible: Yes
Dual Shock Pad Vibration compatible: Yes