Dragon Rage: a Cutesy, Rampage-esque Destruct ’em Up That’s Fun in Small Doses

Dragon Rage is an enjoyable, albeit short, bout of destruction and mayhem. Play as an angry, chubby little dragon and destroy a mountain-top village.

.Story.
You are one angry dragon. Why? Why not.

As your path of destruction spreads, the king of the village you’re tearing asunder will send out different units to stop you until, finally, His Majesty himself appears in an attempt to thwart you.

Let them try.

.Gameplay.
The keys are fully rebindable and, though the starting configuration is a little strange, it works. You use the left and right arrow keys to move, the down arrow key to eat, Z to do a ground pound that’s good for pushing enemies away, X to jump, and C to breathe fire.

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It’s through these combinations of draconic talents that you’ll lay waste to the peaceful village before you. Meting out destruction will net you points while eating will keep your angry little friend alive as well as fill his Rampage meter. Once you fill it all the way, the game really shines because, for the brief moment you’re in Rampage Mode, you feel like a real dragon. You’re able to dash, jump, and breathe fire without restriction and it feels very, very satisfying to lay waste to buildings while dashing about and lighting a trail behind you.

Unfortunately, Rampage ends rather quickly and you’ll have to begin filling the meter anew by feasting on the kingdom’s residents.

There are powerups that recreate the endless abilities and can also grant you an insta-Rampage. They’re pretty much geared towards increasing your score, however, so don’t expect anything permanent.

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One of a handful of power ups.

You can also lay eggs, though I haven’t figured out exactly what adds to your egg meter. Once it’s filled, your dragon will lay a single egg and you have to protect it until it hatches. Once it hatches, you’ll have a little buddy who will attack everything within its reach until it is slain. You can hatch several eggs per wave, though after the third it seems impossible to fill the meter again.

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They grow up so fast…

As you destroy more buildings, the king begins to send out tougher units in a sort of story-like fashion. Dialogue is presented regarding the new unit that’s being introduced and it’s oftentimes quite amusing.

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Do your worst!
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Not for long…

The game continues on like this until you destroy 100 buildings and then it’s off to the next stage to do it all over again. The stages vary slightly in background and the units that are introduced seem to be re-colourings of units you see in the first stage–one of three, as of the most recent patch (August 13th).

Watch my gameplay video here.

.Atmosphere.
The music of Dragon Rage is perfectly conductive for destruction. The effects that punctuate your rampage—the crunch of buildings caving in beneath your mighty feet; the whoosh! of air as you leap over the heads of those foolish enough to try and stop you; the crackle of flames as they leave your belly in brightly coloured gouts—are all very satisfying as well.

The cutesy graphics give a light-hearted feel to your warpath. I mean, really, how seriously can you take that face? The jumping, fire-breathing, and lunging-to-eat animations all look great. My favourite effect is when you enter Rampage mode and the screen is awash with scarlet while everything else is reduced to black silhouettes. The brief metal riff that accompanies Rampage mode is great as well.

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Rampage mode is oh-so cool.

.Longevity.
As of the most recent update here are now three stages with varying difficulty, but they do nothing to add to the base gameplay. There’s also an endless mode and timed trial, but the game’s repetitive nature makes the former a drag and the short length (30 seconds) of the timed trial does nothing to add replayability or variety.

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There’s nothing to unlock and no real reason to keep playing except for those of us who enjoy hunting achievements.

I can’t agree with the asking price of 6.99 due to the rather small amount of content.

.Pros and Cons.

+Destruction is satisfying. Very satisfying. Run, peasants, runAn adorable art style.

+Power-ups and RAMPAGE mode make you feel like a total beast if only for a little while.

+The dev is active and promises more content. I’ll update this review as he updates the game.

-No real incentive to keep playing. It would be great if the dev patched in unlockables like different dragons and/or included an upgrade system.

-Repetitive gameplay.

-A steep asking price for such a simple concept.

-No online leaderboards. Your only opposition is yourself, so the replay value relies heavily on your willingness to challenge yourself.

-After about five minutes, you’ve seen all the game has to offer.

.Bottom Line.
I can recommend Dragon Rage as a game because it’s a fun way to blow off some steam. I cannot, however, stand by the asking price. I’d say anything around 1-3 dollars would be fair for the amount of content it currently offers.

If you’re looking for a meaty game to sink your time into, this title isn’t for you. If you’re the type to revisit a title just to tool around and destroy things, Dragon Rage will offer you up a satisfying, bite-sized experience.

Stay in the know, gamers ❤

~Dawn

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