A problem arises quickly enough. All the teams behind licensed games have seen that problem: How do we turn this into a video game? I also mentioned in my article that you could keep true to the film's story, or you could go with something completely different. Or you could go with the movie's aftermath, which is an original story in its own right, but a story that still needs to keep true to everything that happened in the movie.
Does the Wii version of How to Train Your Dragon accomplish this? We'll see.
|Will you pick the nerd or the tomboy? Whichever is your|
pick, you still fight the same loser idiots.
Do you battle natural creatures like sheep, wolves, or untamed dragons to level up? No. Or, well, almost not. You won't spend a lot of time in this game wandering around with your dragon and fighting. You will explore Berk, but that's as far as you go. No, instead you spend all your time leveling up your dragons in an arena, fighting dragons... except all you will actually do is practice your dragon's main attacks, melee attacks and fire attacks. And that's it. You don't actually practice against real opponent, but instead against pre-programmed dragons whose objective is to make you train one attack combo your dragon learns or a fire attack.
|Dragon tamers MUST be badass, or else they're fakers.|
|Monstrous Nighmare? That's what I'll give you.|
After you win the first tournament, Snotlout is very bitter that you have beaten him, so he devises a plan to stop your winning streak while it's low. He's gonna do that again and again through the game, between each tournament, and your task is to stop his machinations. Being a dumb muscle, Snotlout doesn't really think about the consequences of his actions, but... he's just dumb, so we'll give it a pass.
|Training... It isn't training if the opponent is rigged!|
Oh, but wait, that's not all. You find out that for the next tournaments, the challenge has been increased. You fight against opponents who all have... two... dragons... and thus you are encouraged... to go get... a second... dragon... yourself... to train... and... fight with... in the tournaments... dot dot dot...
|Have you ever seen Hiccup on the back of a dragon that is|
not Toothless nor doesn't belong to another teenager? NO!
I. AM NOT. AMUSED.
So yes, you can actually go pick another dragon among those that appeared in the movie. Congrats, you have approximately four different choices. If you don't count the Night Fury, Toothless's species, then yes, you have four different species to choose from. It doesn't change the fact that it shouldn't be this way.
|Bam! Paf! Pow! Badaboom!|
If you venture at the very end of the second island (the one in the wilderness), you reach a beach that is... very nice-looking. You can see far in the distance, it's a beautiful view. Now that I think of it, I forgot to say, but the 3D work in this game is great. It all looks nice. Not as nice as the movie, but maybe on par with the TV series, which is an impressive feat for a licensed game. But, I'm straying from the point. Where was I getting at? Oh, right, the beach. It looks beautiful, but you find something else at the beach: A cave. Wait, are there other dragons in there? ...Actually, no. But there's something even better: Mini-games!
|To be fair, minigames are always a plus when the game is|
kinda meh. Unless the minigames are meh too. Pictured:
Flying Shepherd, which is NOT meh.
-Flying Shepherd: Grab sheep lost on the islands and bring them back to the fold.
So, more training, and then it's back to the third tournament. Who is the champion this time? It's Tuffnut. You know, the male half of the twin siblings? Yeah, I always forget which is which as well. So, the tournament begins, and... everyone has three dragons, which makes the battles a lot longer. But, luckily, it's still possible to win despite that problem.
|As you can see, the purple-ish dragon gives a shocking performance.|
I'm getting too good at predicting how video games go... I'm entirely right! There goes your fourth and final tournament. You know what to do. Level up, and then beat those dragons in the tournament! ...Once you win the tournament, Astrid feels very bitter that you defeated her. However, she has an additional chance to beat you back, because it's finally time for Thorsday's Thursday, the FINAL Tournament event in this game! This tournament works a bit differently, however: You have to fight against the five other main teenagers, and of course defeat them all. This is clearly the final lap in this story, right? You go and defeat Fishlegs, Ruffnut, Tuffnut, Astrid and Snotlout, and boom the game is over? When you reach Snotlout, you discover that he has found a new dragon species that can be tamed, and those are based on the Japanese long dragons! However, they're still as normal as the other dragons in this game, so you can beat them the same way. Once you defeat Snotlout and his four dragons, you officially win the tournament, and Stoick, Hiccup's father and the village's chief, congratulates you in first-person view. Awesome, right? Oh, you can now play with the new species of dragon, too.
|The legendary dragons are just... regular dragons with special appearances.|
Except they are unlockables i Arcade Mode? ...Nice.
Also, as you progress through Story Mode, you unlock videos and artworks from the game. That developers' content is always a lot of fun to look at. Also, when you finish Story Mode, you unlock a lot of legendary dragons for the Arcade Mode. Nice.
|I gotta admit, dragon customization is a nice thought.|
I'd say it's an OK licensed game, but not more. It's really an average one. But truth be told, I enjoyed it for a good while before it became boring. Like every game out there, you'll probably stop once you beat Story Mode. That's the problem with licensed games most of the time.
Considering a sequel to the original How to Train Your Dragon movie is coming out soon, let's hope the next licensed game for this will be better. And by this, I mean that I hope we'll participate in fights against real bad guys. Kind of like what Season 2 of the TV show is built up to be. And THAT will bring awesome back to dragon riders.
|Both cute and BADASS at the same time. Awesome show.|