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|Princess Crown is an action role-playing game released in 1997 for the Sega Saturn featuring a dialog-driven story advancement, an incredible attention to detail, a unique fighting engine for combat with simple controls and tons of interesting items, and a large world to explore. The game was ported to PlayStation Portable in 2005, but a planned Sega Dreamcast sequel was cancelled, though later revived by Vanillaware as Dragon's Crown.|
STORY / GAMEPLAY
Set in the fantasy Kingdom of Valendia, you play the role of the 13-year old princess Gradriel, the daughter of a the warrior queen Elfaran De Valendia who defeated an evil demon tried to resurrect its demon lord Larva years ago. Much like her mother, little Gradriel, who ascends to the throne now, needs to prevent once more the evil Larva who awakens after a long slumber and possessed her sister Eriel transforming her into an evil sorceress who begins to wage magical mayhem on Valendia. At the same time, Gabriel needs also to crush the demonic forces controlled by Larva threatening her land, by using the might of her sword and the magic of the gems (there is a gem shop where you can buy magic gems) and save once more the Kingdom. Should you run into difficulty fighting a certain kind of monster, a few gems are usually the simplest solution. While the melee fighting options are limited, there are several throwing weapons (daggers, axes, bombs but they have to be picked up after each use) and scrolls as single use items of attack or enhancement to utilize. Of course, energy can be healed by eating apples found on trees, but may also find other types of food such as corn, meat, fish, and eggs, which are raw and cannot be eaten as they are, thus needs to cook first before tasting (you can grill the food with a pan and a pot found, but can be broken as you can thrown at an enemy!).
Gameplay focuses on a beat em up-style fighting system while incorporating role-playing elements, navigation through towns, castles and dungeons along with several character interactions and scenarios to be unlocked by completing Gabriel's quests. Despite the Japanese dialogue between the characters, the game is very playable and you won't have any difficulty with it.
GRAPHICS / SOUND
This game is a brilliant testament to the 2D prowess of the Saturn, featuring amazing animation, brilliant color, and some of the best hand-drawn video game artwork this side of a Capcom fighting title. Sprites are huge, very detailed and beautifully animated e.g., the goblins are all cute and fuzzy and malicious all at the same time, while their expressions on their faces when they get smashed are priceless! Same quality stands for the backdrops, offering a vast selection of landscapes (castles, medieval towns, caves, forests etc.).
The game's sound has sixteen CD Audio tracks (composed by Toshikazu Tanaka who also worked in many SNK games) while there is a wide array of sampled sound effects during gameplay (but no speech).
|CPU: 2 x Hitachi SH-2 32-bit RISC (28.6 MHz) each has 4 kB on-chip cache|
MEMORY: 1 MB SDRAM fast RAM for both SH-2 CPUs (faster), 1 MB DRAM slow RAM for both SH-2 CPUs (slower), 512Kb internal ROM
GRAPHICS: dual custom VDP chips for graphics processing:
Custom VDP 1 32-bit video display processor (running at 28.63 MHz) for sprites/polygons, 512Kb SDRAM, supports texture mapping and Gouraud shading, Custom VDP 2 32-bit video display processor (running at 28.63 MHz) for backgrounds/video out, 512Kb SDRAM.
VGA: 320x480 or 640x480, non-interlaced (progressive scan), Hi-Vision: 352x480 or 704x480 (480i), non-interlaced (progressive scan)
SOUND: Motorola 68EC000 sound controller (running at 11.3 MHz / 1.5 MIPS), Yamaha FH1 DSP sound processor, "Saturn Custom Sound Processor" (SCSP), running at 22.6 MHz, 44.1 kHz sampling rate
|24bit RGB 16,7 million-color palette (all on screen)|
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