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Dragon's Lair The Arcade

Dragon's Lair Arcade Cabinet
Dragon's Lair - The Arcade Game

Dragon's Lair was a revolutionary arcade game, created back in 1983 by Cinematronics. It was the first video game to feature fully animated characters, as opposed to blocky pixel-based sprites. The game relied on the latest Laserdisc techonology and featured the artwork of former Disney animator, Don Bluth (whose previous works included The Secret of Nimh, An American Tail and The Land Before Time). Players were now able to see Dirk the Daring as a fully animated character. Watching someone play the game, is like watching an animated movie. Every scene is fresh and exciting, every room contains a new experience.

When the arcade game was first launched, people waited in line all day to play the game. Because the game was so revolutionary, lines stretched down city blocks (remember, this was back when home consoles were limited to systems like Atari and Colecovision.). In addition, it was the first video game to cost 50 cents, when most games cost only 25 cents. But, because there was nothing else like it, plenty of people waited and paid.

Dragon's Lair Arcade Cabinet
The Goal is the Rescue Daphne

You follow Dirk the Daring, on an epic quest to save the princess Daphne from an evil castle full of traps and pitfalls. You choose Dirk's actions, but choose wrong and you will see one of the game's infamous death scenes.

Since the days of the Dragon's Lair's inception, I've puchased and played all of the Dragon's Lair series (including Space Ace). Perhaps it's the fantastic animation, classic story line, or the intriguing and unique characters. Over the years, there have been many conversions and ports of the game (i.e. NES, PC CD). You can even buy a DVD that will let you watch the game all the way through.

Most recently, Don Bluth and Gary Goldman are seeking to to create Dragon's Lair the Movie. They just reached their funding goal on Indiegogo to produce a trailer, which they hope to shop around to studios. Hopefully it will be feature film in some time!

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