Blue Dragon

Common Sense Media says

Final Fantasy-like RPG with plucky spirit.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The villain, Nene, does numerous evil actions including unleashing the Land Shark on Shu's village for no other reason than he wants to hear the screams of the villagers. These actions are contrasted with the many good deeds that Shu and his friends perform, such as helping to cure a plague-stricken village and freeing a town trapped inside a magical barrier.

Violence

Characters use magic and physical attacks to battle hundreds of monsters, some of which resemble wolves, butterflies, rodents, and birds. There's a cutscene where you see tiger-like monsters getting riddled with arrows.

Sex

There's the occasional cheeky reference but nothing explicit. For example, after recovering from an illness, a character says to his wife "Honey, I feel like we could have another child or two! I feel energized!"

Language

Occasional mild cursing like "bastard," "dammit," and "you damn jerk" while confronting key villains.

Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking

The towns have cafes and bars in them.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this is a role-playing game in the style of Final Fantasy or Dragon Warrior and requires a large time investment (around 60 hours) to complete. While the main characters are all virtuous, the villain of the game performs many evil acts including destroying villages on a whim, deliberately infecting people with diseases, and ordering robots to kill themselves. The game also earns its "crude humor" warning from the ESRB with numerous references to "poo." One of the enemy types is a "poo snake" and various enemies leave behind droppings that contain treasures.

Parents say

Kids say

What's it about?

BLUE DRAGON centers on three children -- Shu, Jiro, and Kluke -- who live in a remote village that suffers regular attacks by a fearsome beast called the Land Shark. Eventually, the three confront the Land Shark and find out that it's owned by an even more sinister villain named Nene. To thwart Nene, the companions embark on an epic quest. Eventually, two other characters join the party for a total of five, and all possess the same ability: Their shadows manifest themselves as gigantic blue creatures capable of using powerful magic and skills.

The shadows can be assigned different jobs which, when completed, unlock different forms of magic and skills. A twist with Blue Dragon is that the monster battles aren't truly random; instead, monsters appear on the overworld map and can be engaged or avoided as the player chooses. Battle is turn-based, and characters can charge up their attacks for added effect in exchange for sacrificing their spot in line.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Blue Dragon was spearheaded by Final Fantasy creator Hironobu Sakaguchi and the soundtrack was written by renowned video game composer and fellow Final Fantasy alumnus Nobuo Uematsu. It has everything you would expect a game with its pedigree to have: beautiful graphics and music, cinematic cut scenes, an engaging (if clichéd) story, varied magic to learn, and plenty of monster encounters. The endless monster battles required to level up characters can be tedious, but it's something fans of the genre are used to.

Blue Dragon doesn't introduce much new to the role-playing genre, but it's a comfortable, well-paced adventure with characters whose plucky spirit you can't help but become attached to. Clocking in at around 60 hours of gameplay, Blue Dragon will certainly give gamers their money's worth if they're willing to invest the time.

 

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about what personal qualities make Nene "bad" and Shu and his friends "good." How did each character demonstrate these respective qualities through their actions? Shu's mantra is to "Never give up" -- is this always a good philosophy to have?

Game details

Platforms:Xbox 360
Price:$59.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Microsoft
Release date:August 28, 2007
Genre:Role Playing
ESRB rating:T for alcohol reference, crude humor, fantasy violence, mild language, mild suggestive themes (Xbox 360)

This review of Blue Dragon was written by

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Kid, 8 years old June 30, 2011
AGE
7
QUALITY
 

a big crap dirty game

terrible game very crap
What other families should know
Too much violence
Too much sex
Teen, 13 years old Written byyooman28 April 24, 2011
AGE
10
QUALITY
 
great game i think if you like rpg you should get it
Parent of a 6 and 13 year old Written bywavymouth June 26, 2009
AGE
12
QUALITY
 

teen rated but cute looking

I've played enough rpgs to know that this is most likely another great game and i need to get an xbox360 because the ds version was turned into a real time strategy game(so annoying to buy it and find out it isn't a turn-based rpg like this one i hear is.i've made DARN SURE to read that it is).

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