Become A Dragon, Crush Your Enemies, And Kidnap Princesses - With Your Phone

Illustration for article titled Become A Dragon, Crush Your Enemies, And Kidnap Princesses - With Your Phone

You are a dragon. A magnificent, iridescent dragon - but how disdainful are you? Would you prefer to eat the princess or just kidnap her? Welcome to "Choice of the Dragon," a funny, addictive fantasy game for iPhone and Android.

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Modeled on multiple-choice role-playing games popular in the 1980s, Choice of the Dragon draws you into a quest to amass treasure (of course) and gain disdainfulness credits (a helpful popup will let you keep track). You choose how you look, whether you're more a bruiser type or a wily scoundrel, and even allows you to choose to become a dragon toll taker if you'd rather earn gold the semi-honest way.

The best part of the game, however, is the narrative voice crafted by designers Dan Fabulich and Adam Strong-Morse. It's a perfect blend of Monty Python humor and RPG geekery. Early on, the game helpfully informs:

Disdain for petty matters is essential for a dragon, as it avoids the pointless feuds that weaken you and allow your enemies to achieve great goals. Manipulating peasants is also not the most honorable of activities for a mighty dragon such as yourself.

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I quickly found myself a lair and started hoarding gold, ordering my minions around, and kidnapping an even number of princes and princesses (wouldn't want a sexist gender ratio or anything).

Here's one of the typical character-building questions:

The cave complex within the hill is everything you hoped for: it's defensible, spacious enough for a good hoard, and full of those greasy little goblins, who quickly acknowledge you as their eternal sovereign and overlord.

They give you the best of their treasure and the finest of their foods. Well, almost the finest. They burn the very best of their foods on a crude altar to their primitive goblin god. How do you react to that?

- It is good for them to serve their god, as best they can.
- As long as they're loyal to me, I don't care if they worship a unicorn covered with polka dots.
- I should be the focus of all of their attention, not some stupid god!

Of course I chose the second answer. It's the most disdainful.

I could play this game all day. And now you can too - there's a version for iPhone, and for the dragons among you who rightfully disdain iPhones, there's an Android version too.

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Dragons have always been awesome, and this game only adds to their awesomeness. If you like a good text-based game, you must check it out.

via Choice of Games

Image via Wili Hybrid

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DISCUSSION

(Veering wildly off topic to deliver another book recommendation.)

If you haven't already I urge all right-thinking dragon fans to pick up a copy of Jo Walton's Tooth & Claw (Tor, 2004). Set in a world with a passing similarity to Victorian England, this delightful novel centers around a family squabble over inheritance and woeful marriage prospects. Walton consciously emulates the very best to be found in the writings of Jane Austen and Anthony Trollope with witty banter, comic misunderstandings and arch looks galore.

"But wait Mr. Area, you said dragons. Are there dragons?" I hear you cry, your pudgy little fingers knotted with anticipation.

Yes, gentle reader there are indeed many glorious dragons here — snooty and disdainful, in fact; everyone in the novel is a dragon! In fact only one human being appears in the whole text and that's barely a walk-on role. The disputed inheritance is not just over a patriarch's hoard of gold but the flesh of dearly departed daddy as well. Cannibalism among dragons is considered a high honor as the more dragonflesh one consumes the larger and stronger one grows (also unlocking mad fire-breathing skillz). Tooth & Claw describes a mannerly struggle for prestige and respectability in a industrial society of apex predators. These resplendent scaly terrors strut and plot through their rigorous caste system riding steam-powered trains and wearing silly little hats.

HATS!

So yeah, a really fun book with imaginative world-building and a sharp and biting look at society and dominance. Go read it now.