GBAtemp Recommends! Defender of the Crown

Discussion in 'GBAtemp & Scene News' started by Hadrian, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. Hadrian

    Hadrian Everybofy knows badgers like MASH POTATOES!

    Former Staff
    Oct 12, 2004
    United States
    [​IMG] GBAtemp Recommends! Defender of the Crown
    G.R. Issue #20 (GBA)

    Sorry for the delay, things have been busy for us what with the server switch & all that gubbins. Better late than never eh? Welcome to GBAtemp Recommends! Our popular weekly magazine feature in which we, the GBAtemp staff, recommend classic Game Boy Advance titles!

    GBAtemp Recommends!

    Defender of the Crown
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Defender of the Crown has been on many gaming systems, starting on the Amiga 500 way back in 1986 and since then it has been ported to PC, C64, NES, ZX Spectrum, Atari ZX, CDi, Amstrad CPC, Mac & the Apple llGS. In 2000 a couple of chaps bought the rights to the Cineware name and all of its games and went about making some remakes and sequels and also porting a couple of its titles to the Gameboy Advance in 2002, one of which was this very game.

    The game is set in the 1100s and the Norman invaders have killed King Richard. The Normans have taken the throne. You play as a Saxon, your intentions are for the good of England, not for the good of your wallet (or cloth sack). You start off trying to rid each territory of England of Norman invaders to try and slowly take back the country. Its not a simple case of attacking your enemy and hoping to win, oh no you have to manage your resources well! You'll have to decide what you spend your gold on and in turn become a strong enough leader that the men of England will want to fight for you. The gameplay is sort of like a version of Risk, you have to take turns with each action you take and each turn can either mean getting closer to the throne or losing the confidence of your men. Between turns there are mini games to take part in, each suit the theme to a tee. There is jousting & mace combat which can help you win favour with your men as well as land, you can raid castles, either for money or to rescue a Maiden is distress. Each mini game is easy to get into and helps break up the board game like structure of the gameplay, though none of them are very deep.

    Although at the time the game was 15 years old, it still looked good on the GBA. Movie like quality presentation (which was the standard for Cineware games), well drawn sprites and backgrounds & great sound effects (for the time). The GBA port was pretty much identicle to the original Amiga release AND you didn't have to wait for it to load! Sadly being identicle means that there are no multiplayer which is a missed opportunity as it would have been great to play against another player. Some may not like this due to the hard difficulty at the start but once you have got use to it, it becomes addictive and because the enemy AI is different with each turn, its one of those games you can just whip out whenever, even once you have become King.

  2. shaunj66

    shaunj66 Administrator

    Oct 24, 2002
    United Kingdom
    South England
    Thanks for the issue Hadrian. Never played it but it sounds good.

    And sorry to all members for the delay like Hadrian said, but we have been literally unable to post the new issue. But there will be another issue on time on Wednesday to make up for it...
  3. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer

    pip Reporter
    Nov 21, 2005
    United States
    I still have the NES version around here somewhere and I think I ended up playing it on the GBA via HVCA or pocketnes.
  4. shakirmoledina

    shakirmoledina Legend

    Oct 23, 2004
    Dar es Salaam
    hmm never saw this game...
    i joined the scene quite late but this looks nice, thanks
  5. Styles420

    Styles420 GBAtemp Regular

    Dec 27, 2008
    United States
    Denver, Colorado
    For such an old port, this game looks intriguing. I don't have the time to try every game recommended here, but I will definitely have to fit this one into my schedule. Hadrian, thanks for another great issue - keep up the good work!
  6. TomMannCenturia

    TomMannCenturia Member

    Jul 10, 2008
    I have this game, and with most cinemaware on most formats it looks good. I just found it a bit repetitive. Wouldn't mind seeing a remake/update for the DS though with its bigger capabilities.
  7. Maz7006

    Maz7006 iSEXu

    Aug 2, 2008
    Hmm ill definitely check this one out [​IMG]
  8. Satangel

    Satangel BEAST

    Nov 27, 2006
    Bruges, Belgium
    Never heard of this game, I'll check it out [​IMG] The screens look promising though.
  9. Jdbye

    Jdbye Always Remember 30/07/08

    May 10, 2006
    Are you sure you have the right screenshots? The graphics look great! [​IMG]
  10. Rayder

    Rayder Mostly lurking lately....

    Former Staff
    Jan 14, 2007
    United States
    Ah! Defender of the Crown. I remember playing this for hours on end on the C64 back in the late '80's. I still have the C64 version in an emu on the PC. I have a lot of the old Cinemaware games for the C64. They were a heck of a lotta fun back then. And for me, they still are. I don't know if younger people would get into this, it's pretty old-school, but I love it!

    I own the actual cart of DOTC. I also have the other 2 Cinemaware games for GBA; Three Stooges and Wings. If there were any others for GBA, I don't know about them.

    They DID do a remake of the original for PC....I have it around here somewheres.....and it is to the GBA version, what the GBA version was to the originals. That is to say, it's exactly like the originals, but with much improved graphics and animations.

    They made a slightly modernized version of DOTC for the PC a couple years back, it's called "Robin Hood: Defender of the Crown" you can DL the official demo here: (some of the mirrors don't work) but it's not that great. Beyond the MUCH improved graphics, there are a couple of new mini-games. You have one where you're hiding in a tree and firing arrows in first person mode at some royal ugly dudes to rob them of their money as they ride by on their horses and carriages. The main battle screen is much more animated. But of course, they messed it up, it plays ok but it's freaking impossible to beat the final dude! There were many, many complaints about that when the game came out, so it wasn't just me. I still think the original version is better though.

    There was one other....DOTC: Heroes Live Forever....or something like that.....didn't play that one, so I can't really comment on it other than to say that it exists.

    I might have to boot this one up later......
  11. jesuschristmonke

    jesuschristmonke GBAtemp Regular

    Jun 13, 2008
    United States
    The Global Economic Plantation
    The GBA port has great graphics, but the swordplay sucked if you asked me. c64 & NES were better.
    But I think they did that to make the playability more enduring.
  12. Raven Darkheart

    Raven Darkheart The Radioactive Flamer

    Aug 27, 2008
    United States
    Cyclo DS Paradise
    i have to agree, the gameplay was nothing to write home about though
  13. cupajoe

    cupajoe Have a cup of joe!

    Aug 25, 2007
    United States
    Odd recommendation, but I'll take it as it is. Hopefully next week there will be something that I didn't want to pass under my radar.
  14. Goshogun1

    Goshogun1 GBAtemp Fan

    Jun 20, 2007
    United States
    I can't believe in this day and age, there are still GBA games I have never heard of before. I remember hearing about the NES version, but never played it. Thank you for alerting me to this game, I am going to check it out ASAP.
  15. Hadrian

    Hadrian Everybofy knows badgers like MASH POTATOES!

    Former Staff
    Oct 12, 2004
    United States
    Its wasn't very good to be honest, none of the original Cineware people had anything to do with the any remakes or sequels.
  16. Smuff

    Smuff Fossilized Gamer

    Jul 29, 2006
    By the sea
    WOW - Spent many many hours on this on the ole Amiga back in the day. Never realised there was a GBA version released.
    Going to get on this bad boy right away - thanks for the heads up !!!
  17. Psyfira

    Psyfira Credit: 0ml. Insert tea to continue

    Dec 31, 2003
    Oh wow, I used to play this on the Atari [​IMG] Could never get the jousting to work, I was rubbish at that part. And after a few hours I'd always lose and wind up running away into the forest. Hm, come to think of it I don't think I was very good at this game at all [​IMG] But I kept coming back for another crushing, still liked it anyway.