How To Train Your Dragon

James Batchelor

How To Train Your Dragon

With the release of Dreamworks’ 3D animation film How to Train your Dragon, Activision Blizzard is giving gamers the chance to take part in the story with a video game adaptation.

The publisher is hoping the multiformat release will be a success at retail, in particular with the fim’s target audience ­– children and families.

Players of the third-person action-adventure game can take control of humans Hiccup or Astrid and embark on an epic quest to become the ultimate dragon trainer.

The film follows the story of Hiccup himself, a young Viking who aspires to hunt dragons but ends up becoming the unlikely owner of one, forcing him to step back and take another look at the mistaken species.

Activision Blizzard promises a larger-than-life adventure game, set after the events of the film, where players can explore environments and train dragons before taking part in battles and prestigious dragon tournaments.

The game is set on the vast island of Berk which features a range of expanded locations from the film, including Vikings’ Village, the Wild Zone, Training Zone and Fight Arena.

It also boasts a talented voice cast from the film, with Jay Baruchel as Hiccup and T.J. Miller as Tuffnut.

YOUNG'UNS AND DRAGONS

How to Train your Dragon features a multitude of game modes and features, such as a “Create Your Dragon” option. This allows players to customise six different types of dragons in order to create and tweak their own unique monster.

In an interesting RPG element, gamers can develop their dragon’s skills and level up its speed, power, fire and other abilities to make it strong enough to enter the Viking challenge and turn them into the ultimate dragon trainer.

A key feature is How to Train your Dragon’s multiplayer mode, which pits gamers against each other in a series of dragon battles. Players can select four of their customised dragons or choose from a flight of pre-trained dragons to form a dream team.

Each dragon has its own strengths and weaknesses, from The Gronkcle’s powerful fireballs to Night Fury’s speed and agility.

This competitive aspect promises to add an extra layer of depth to the game, as well as adding extra playable characters to the mix – Tuffnut T, Ruffnut T, Fishlegs and Snotlout, with the winner becoming the game’s ultimate dragon hero.

On top of the single-player adventure and multiplayer mode, there are also a variety of mini-games for players to enjoy. These include ice sculpting, dragon races and memory puzzles. Successful completion unlocks extra experience points, special items and new skills for the player’s dragon.

Activision Blizzard’s decision to include a range of options extends the lifespan of the game, offering the target child audience more to come back to and replay.

How to Train your Dragon is one of this season’s biggest kids’ films and the hype is sure to drive sales at retail. Activision Blizzard has also published similar titles including Kung Fu Panda.

The game will be released for Xbox 360, PS3, Wii and DS on March 26th, one week before the film’s UK launch.

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