This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.
All throughout the Saturn's life, the system struggled for an RPG to define it, in comparison to the alliance of Final Fantasy and Dragon Quest on the PlayStation. Many fans felt GameArts' Grandia would be Sega's flagship RPG; that was later ported to the PlayStation, where it received its only release outside of Japan.
Instead, that role ended up going to Panzer Dragoon Saga, one of the last titles officially published by Sega for the system. Panzer Dragoon Saga takes the vibrant world found in the previous games and fleshes out its back story, filling four CDs worth of cinematics, and telling the story of a young dragon rider named Edge.
There are two standard attacks -- Edge's gun targets a single enemy with heavy damage, while the dragon's laser targets multiple foes with lessened damage. There are also several Berserk powers, which act as the equivalent of magic spells. If you want, you can wait to build up two or three power bars to attack multiple times at once. Certain Berserk attacks also drain multiple bars. Similarly, the enemy can attack after it's built enough energy, although you can't determine when that is.
During combat, you're positioned in one of four quadrants surrounding your enemies, and can move between them at will, although this momentarily stops the power gauge. A radar at the bottom of the screen will mark which zones are safe and which are dangerous. If you're flying in a green zone, the enemy can't attack; if you're in a neutral zone, the enemy can use a weak attack, and naturally, the red zone indicates that the enemy can use a fierce attack.
Obviously, you'll want to spend as much time as possible charging in the green zones to avoid damage. However, enemies often have weak points in other positions, encouraging you to fly in the face of danger to finish battles efficiently. The enemy's attack patterns often change multiple times during battle, forcing you to adapt and figure out the optimal positioning, timing, and type of attacks to use.
So, in other words, it's a lot more involving than the typical RPG battle, since you always need to think on your feet. You can also control the growth and powers of your dragon by tinkering with different attributes, which in turn alters your dragon. For example, you can choose to balance your attack power between Edge's gun and the dragon's laser, depending on which you use more often.
You also need to balance between defense and speed -- do you want to be able to take a pounding, or do you want your power bar to charge faster? Depending on how you choose your statistics, your dragon also gains additional powers, such as counterattacking and healing abilities. Although your level-up bonuses change depending on your dragon form, you can change them at any time, including in the middle of battle, so you can figure out what abilities work best against certain enemies.