How can a game made by Square, that allows you to control a dragon and take out hordes of enemies turned out to be such a failure? I don't know, but let's take a look....
Note: I did not complete this game and so my review is based purely on what I did play of it. But I doubt it would have got much better later.
The game's graphics are not up to PS2 standard. The enemies and scenery are horribly undetailed, and the landscape is totally bland. The FMVs are okay, but given that Square made the Final Fantasy games, I know they can do better.
Drakengard's story falls neatly into stereotype RPG cliches along with a totally forgettable hero. The story didn't grip me enough to keep playing, and given that's one of the selling points of an RPG, that immediately deprives it of any recognisability.
I don't normally mention music in my reviews unless it's particularly good or bad. Guess which one Drakengard falls under? I'm pretty sure the game's music is a 10 second sample set on an infinite loop, which gets very annoying very quickly. Ironically it's perfectly suited to the gameplay - repetitive and horrible.
Fights take place in real time, outside of a battle mode, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but in this case, it was. The game simply consists of hack and slashing your way through hordes of badly programmed enemies. The game's lack of AI is noticeable even to a beginner - enemies charge into you with no attempt to defend themselves, making them very easy to dispatch.
You can also control a dragon and fly around the level, but this just consists of breathing fire on troops of soldiers, who are just as easy to kill from the air. Who would have thought flying and breathing fire could be so little fun?
Granted there are a variety of weapons which get upgraded as you use them. Not that it makes much of a difference; your enemies are easy enough to kill as it is.
I have no idea how long this game is as I didn't complete it (generally I aim for 100% completion on any game) but seeing as I sold the game after completing the first level, this should give you an idea of how long you can expect to play it.
I got this game for free when I bought MGS3, and the only use I found for it was selling it and buying a better game with the money. There is no fun to be found in this wreck of a game.