The Let's Play Archive

Panzer Dragoon

by nine-gear crow, Blind Sally, TravelLog

Part 2

Episode 2 is the level that came bundled with the launch-era Sega Saturn on a demo disc. It was one of two demos that Sega included with the Saturn to try and entice people to pick up some games for their penultimate console outing. The first one was of course Panzer Dragoon, and the second one was Bug!. One became a hit that to this day is fondly remember by gamers the world over. The other... was Bug!.

The game's intro plays ahead of the demo like normal, but then it dumps you into Episode 2 without any more context to it than that. The demo also doesn't feature the boss fight with the Dark Dragon at the end. After the tussle with the two sandworms at the end of the level, the demo just fades to black and the words "TO BE CONTINUED" flash up followed by an ad prompting you to buy the full version of Panzer Dragoon.

As Blind Sally and TravelLog point out, this is the Dune level of the game. The most obvious examples of this are that it’s a desert stage and it’s bookended by the massive sandworms that appear at the beginning and end of the level.

The title of the song that plays over the level is called “Worms” and it’s also what I’ve decided to title this update.

See here the comparison between the worms that appear in this stage and the Shai-Hulud from Dune.

In the video Blind Sally questions whether or not the Emperor of the Panzer Dragoon world is actually Baron Harkonnen from Dune.

What do you guys think?

Left: The Seventh Emperor
Right: Baron Vladimir Harkonnen.

Despite the ubiquity of the Empire in the game, the Seventh Emperor doesn’t show up in the original Panzer Dragoon, but he is a fairly major player in Panzer Dragoon Saga. His predecessor, the Sixth Emperor, is also glimpsed in Panzer Dragoon Zwei.

A gigantic statue of him mounted on one of the New Empire’s massive dreadnaughts serves as the boss for the “Gigantic Fleet” level of Panzer Dragoon Orta.

Also to further the Panzer Dragoon-Dune connection, in Panzer Dragoon Zwei one level shows the PD world with two moons in the sky.

According to the Dune novels, the planet Arrakis also has two moons in orbit around it. However, some people use this as evidence that the Panzer Dragoon series is actually taking place on Mars and that those two moons are Deimos and Phobos.

There hasn’t been any word one way or another from Team Andromeda on what or where the Panzer Dragoon world is.

One last thing before moving on:

At the end of the stage you fight a pair of worms as an optional boss. You really don't need to kill either of them to trigger the final the boss. However, one of the two worms has a darker carapace to it than the other. I don't know what the significance to that is, but I'm pretty sure one if male while the other is female.

And now I’ll let the boys for WotA wrap things up.

The Will of the Ancients posted:

Episode 2

Over dry land again, the familiar desert of the world stretched out to the edge of vision. This arid region also swarmed with all manner of mutated monsters, including a species of enormous and ravenous sandworms.

It was in this desert that Kyle first caught up with the Dark Dragon, and the two dragons engaged in vicious combat amidst the writhing sandstorms. The Dark Dragon took many hits, but unfortunately it was able to boost away and vanish into the distance before Kyle and the dragon could really damage it; their mission was destined to continue.

Episode 2 sees our first of several confrontations with the Dark Dragon in the game.

He's fought in the midst of a pair of twisters, however the cyclones themselves aren't any threat to us.

As seen in the video, the double D has three attacks that it cycles through. First it positions itself in front of you and fires of a set of orange energy waves from its back about three or four times. These are very hard to dodge on Hard mode and incredibly easy to dodge in Easy.

It's second attack is its own version of the lock on charged attack that Lagi has. It fires off a pair of gigantic homing missiles at you, though they're incredibly easy to shoot down before they hit you. Even on hard mode.

The last attack is done by it's drone. It takes a couple of potshots at you with its own laser blaster trying to goad you into dodging. What you actually need to do is remain still and let the shots fly past you.

Once you figure out the pattern, the Dark Dragon goes down pathetically easy. So easy that I kill it before I even get finishing describing its attack pattern in the video.

The Seventh Emperor (Seventh Emperor of Mankind. Has anti-gravity chair. Fat asshole.)
Baron Vladimir Harkonnen - Dune (Patriarch of House Harkonnen. Has anti-gravity chair. Fat asshole.)

Shai-Hulud - Dune (Massive worm-like creatures native to the deserts of Planet Arrakis)
The Guardian (Armed and armoured statue crafted in memory of the Seventh Emperor. Fat asshole.)

Panzer Dragoon world (Planet Arrakis?)