The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon Game Poster Image

The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon



A feisty, fiery dragon adventure that's magical.
Popular with kids

What parents need to know

Positive messages

If you partner with a smart dragon to defeat evil and become a hero.


Weapons include fire, water, and lightning. Angry bosses are downright scary.

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Drinking, drugs, & smoking
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that while this is a delightful game that's a cinematic experience, it can be frightening to younger kids or more sensitive kids who are 10 and under. Although good triumphs over evil, the monsters may even scare some adults. This is a review of the Xbox 360 version.

What's it about?

THE LEGEND OF SPYRO: DAWN OF THE DRAGON is one of the year's best, albeit occasionally flawed, platformers. Spyro, who debuted on the original PlayStation 10 years ago and will star in a 3-D feature film next year, is back with a compelling, nicely written story starring the voices of actors Christina Ricci, Elijah Wood, and Gary Oldman. In the final installment of a game trilogy which began with A New Beginning, the bright purple reptile (Wood) and his gal pal Cynder (Ricci) try to stop Dark Master Malefor from making the world an utterly evil place.

The game wastes no time, starting out fast and furious. In an awesome, volcanic cavern you're thrown right into the action as you try to quell the fury of a giant lava monster. How giant? Spyro is about the size of half of the monster's thumb. Even adults will be timorous of the beast, especially if you see him on a big screen TV. As you play, Dawn of the Dragon introduces you to many new features, most of which are offered up during a tutorial that takes place during this beautifully rendered, perfectly acted first level. Sure, both Spryo and Cynder have light hits and heavy hits, via your controller buttons. But they're also in command of various elements (via the D-pad) like lightning, fire, shadows, wind, earth, and the like. You'll have to switch between Spyro and Cynder throughout the game, as the two have powers that help each other. And you can flap, fly, and glide around your environment pretty much when you want to.

Is it any good?


The game isn't a completely open environment. So you can't fly anywhere you like. Want to check out a waterfall in the depths of a cavern? It's like there's an invisible fence preventing you from doing so. And, early on, while you can look around by using the right control stick, it's like you have a stiff neck: you can't look at anything in a full 360 degrees, not even a full 180 degrees. (This changes in the second level, where you can look around a full 180 degrees.) And sometimes, when switching between gameplay and a canned scene, your screen will become black for a split second, an egregious error of design.

You can't save your game at will, but there are enough save points interspersed throughout to make most gamers happy. While there's no online component to the game, there is two-player coop. A second player can drop-in or drop-out at any time, kind of a handy feature. But the true brilliance of Dawn of the Dragon is the mix of a taut, Hollywood-movie-like tale, fine actors, and, most importantly, exciting gameplay. You'll feel like you can fly like a dragon. You'll scale walls by using the vines that have grown there, then jump from vine to vine when the wall separates the two. You'll see elements of the recent Prince of Persia and God of War games, both great games to use as inspiration. And your jaw will drop, full of joy and wonder.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about who you would like to partner with to fight evil in the world. Which of Spyro's and Cynder's abilities would you choose to use to defeat the evildoers? If you had the powers of fire, lightning, and shadows, what would be the first good thing you would do for your community and society as a whole?

Game details

Platforms:Windows, Mac, Nintendo GameCube
Available online?Not available online
Release date:October 21, 2008
ESRB rating:E10+ for Fantasy Violence

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Teen, 14 years old Written byshanno15 April 25, 2010

Spoilers Spyro

Good graphics but the story can be confusing if you dont play the first 2 games. Spyro the dragon, I thought was better though because of the less complicated gameplay, a super long story. Though the ending is unique because Cinder falls in love with Spyro, but it leaves you hanging, did Spyro and Cinder die or not? I dont think they did but you dont know for sure, I like how Ignitus turnes into the chronocaler though
What other families should know
Too much violence
Kid, 11 years old December 31, 2013

Great story but the combat isn't as good as eternal night

This game has an awesome story but the combat isnt as good as the first 2 it's just that u can't see the enemies life except when ur taking on a boss like the golem or malefor I would say 8/10 it's easy to complete I'm 11 and it takes me 6 hours to complete eternal night so kids won't have much trouble completing it
What other families should know
Great messages
Teen, 15 years old Written byChristian_girl May 11, 2010

WATCH AFTER THE CREDITS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Don't miss it! Nothing is as it seems. After every Legend of Spyro game, there's something after the credits. This time, it's the ending. Yes, you heard that right. Once you get to the credits, you can hit the start button and skip the cutscene if you want to hurry up and get to the ending clip. I've tested it, it works. You'll see the clip if you don't do that, this is just for impatient people, like me. ***END SPOILER*** At the end of the game, it's implied that Spyro died very heart-wrenchingly. But don't sell the game just yet! After the credits, it's shown that Spyro is alive, uninjured, flying happily in Avalar, in the world he has brought back to peace. There's other stuff after the credits but I won't spoil everything. I fell over onto the couch when I found out he was alive. I didn't faint, I just thought it would be funny. I got up and started crying tears of joy, which wasn't a joke. I cried at a video game. I've been a Spyro fan since the first game and I couldn't stand to see the little guy go. But he didn't! *sob, sob, cry* Please make another Spyro game. They're so stinking cool! Especially compared to the old games. Please, please, please, please, please, please, please, please, please, please!***SPOILER OVER*** This game is completely devoid of bad language. The same goes for the rest of the trilogy. Well, actually, in this game, Spyro, Cynder, and Sparx go to a dam and... well, they had to make a pun. There is no dirty stuff whatsoever and I like that about this game. The closest this game gets to anything mushy is one use of the phrase "I love you" which is the most romantical thing in the whole trilogy. No kisses or anything else gross. There's no blood but this game still scrapes by with its E10+ rating. The story alone can get so intense, I almost want to say it should have been rated T. The actual beating up of things is okay for an E10+ game but a few of the creatures you fight may look too scary for sensitive 10-year-olds. Of course, me being a teenager, my jaw dropped from how awesome the monsters looked. The gameplay is brilliant compared to the last two games. Are you kidding, EVERYTHING'S brilliant compared to the last two games! It's also much longer compared to the first two games. I like long games. There's a level select with about sixty-seven levels. It takes the average person sixty-seven days to beat one of them. But you can get help from a friend with the new co-op feature. I mean, if Cynder's going to follow Spyro for the whole trip, she should be a playable character, right? Why can't they make more games with a plot as great as this? Why can't they make more games with a plot? I like games with stories, as long as there aren't too many cutscenes but there's plenty of fighting. Anyway, this is one of the best games you'll ever play in your life, or at least it will be if you play it. I'm kinda glad they cancelled the movie, though. If they're going to base it off the exact plot of the game like they said they would, it's going to be... unimaginitive. Maybe they can make one with a different plot in a few years but I'm glad they didn't do what sounded like re-animating all the game's cutscenes and putting them on the bigscreen. It just wouldn't make the game seem as cool. But the game was AMAZING!!! The controls are simple, but the game's a little hard. It's funny, exciting and real cool-looking. It's my dream game.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Great role models


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