Review of Dreamworks School of Dragons for the PC
By: Stephanie Bardy

I am trying something new this month and filling in for our usual game reviewer Jeff. Now, before I start, I must warn you, I am not a gamer. Not avidly. I used to be, but I quickly realized that I can become addicted very easily. I lost 2 years of my life to World of Warcraft…enjoyably of course, but still, when you are gaming for 8 to 10 hours a day, that is a bit excessive.

I am an old school gamer. Yes folks, I played Pong…when it was new. I experienced the very first Atari, and the Commador 64. I played on my cousin's ColecoVision when Mario was still climbing ladders and jumping barrels to reach a princess he could never rescue.

I know what I like, and what I don't. I can't tell you which systems are better ( I have a personal and deep loathing for the Xbox, but that is only because it hogs all my internet), and I can't give you game specs or any other of the wonderful things that Jeff does.

I can only tell you about a game I have recently started playing to add a little more fun into my day of almost constant writing.

School of Dragons.

If you have seen any of the How to Train Your Dragon movies, you are familiar with Hiccup and Toothless. If not…go watch them. What is wrong with you??

This game picks up where the last movie ended….sort of. You are playing quests that involve aspects of that movie. The Hidden World, the Dragon Hunters. Hiccups Mom is there, his brother, and of course all the original crew from the movies. Including the Light Fury and their three adorable little babies. Yes Toothless is a Dad.

Anyway, as I mentioned earlier, I lost 2 years of my life to WoW. While I enjoyed the questing aspect of Wow, I didn't like the kill or be killed aspect.

SoD has all the parts of WoW I love and none of the stuff I don't. The game is put out by Dreamworks and can be found on Steam. If you don't know what that is, google it. It's late and this is a short article.

The graphics are movie quality. It can get a bit laggy when you are in MMO mode, but, joy oh joy, you can turn that mode off and play in single player mode. The only thing you miss out on are the events, where you go to the Training Grounds and defend the harbor against the Dragon Hunters. If you win, they retreat. (No dying). If you lose, they laugh and hang around.

The quest aspect ranges from easy to difficult. The HobGobbler quest was a tough one for me. It took me a few days just to get through the maze and master the art of gliding.

Did I mention Dragons? YOU GET DRAGONS!!! Of your very own, to raise and train and ride! Right from the start you earn a full grown dragon, so you get to fly right away, which I liked. But through the quests you get several other baby dragons, and eggs to hatch. At present I have 12. You can name them and choose the colors for them.

Ok, game play. It is pretty fast paced, in the aspect that the quests don't take you forever to complete a part. You can play at your own pace.

One of the more intriguing parts of the game I found was the learning aspect. There are actual real world lesson such as science and history, math and geography, mixed in and you don't even realize you are learning. Which I think is great for kids! You can do science experiments in Heather Lab and see what metals melt at what temperatures. You can play Dragon Tactics and figure out the best way to make the enemy retreat in the least amount of moves possible. The reward for that is a series of chests, but you have to answer questions like "What is the highest mountain on earth" "How far is the earth from the sun" "What metal stays in liquid form at room temperature?" Each right answer opens a chest to a prize.

Did I mention the graphics? I think I did, but they need mentioning again. It's like controlling your own movie. The graphics are that good. It is based off of an animated movie and the graphics are movie quality. But if you have a slower system, you can adjust the graphics to make the game go smoother.

I use my laptop for everything, from writing, to doing the magazine, to watching T.V. so the obviously choice for a game would be one I could play on said laptop. It is perfect for that.

It plays like most quest game so if you are familiar with the exclamation points and question marks, you will be able to figure out what to do fairly quickly. Hiccup does run you through a brief tutorial at the beginning, that is where you get your first Dragon.

I am going to give this game a solid 5/5 because it has efficiently, effectively and sometimes unintentionally given me hours of enjoyment. If you don't want the kill or be killed but want the questing and exploring, this is definitely the game for you.

Did I mention you get Dragons??