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Drake of the 99 Dragons - Angry Video Game Nerd Episode 158

(Mystic Asian music. We open on the Nerd meditating.) 

Nerd: ... Oh, hey. I've just been meditating to summon the power of the Chosen One to give me the patience and the courage... to play today's game. And this is one that I've gotten tons of requests for, and I've been dreading the day when this game is old enough for me to review.

Drake of the 99 Dragons. This game is what you get if somebody ate every badass dual-pistol wielding, trench coat-wearing late '90s action movie cliché, then barfed it out, ate the barf, and then dumped their ass into a piss-and-shit-stained bus station toilet, and then they took that rancid concoction, and somehow printed Xbox discs made out of it! 99 Dragons, made out of 99 percent bullshit! This game was supposed to spawn a comic book series and a TV show, kinda like Cheetahmen, but it was so shitty, it faded into obscurity.

The first thing you see after the game boots up is the Majesco logo. At least I think that's what it is, because it's blurry as fuck! Seriously! Did they do that on purpose?! Maybe they wanted to blur the logo, so nobody would know they had anything to do with this miserable manifestation of demon semen and Reese's feces. It's a shame, because the artwork is actually kinda cool! It has a Saturday morning animation or indie comic vibe to it. Then you see the cutscenes, which look atrocious. This is two years into the Xbox's life, and this was the best they could do? But ooh boy, let me tell ya, I haven't even started playing yet, [as he picks up the Xbox Controller] so let's pick up the Duke here, this big-ass tank fuckin' controller, and let's get started. 'cuz it's gonna get fucked...

The slightest movement of the control pad makes his arms flail all over the place! Why would they do that?! I understand the game was developed under a very short time, but somebody had to pop this in at least ONCE and say; "This controls like ass." So, after jumping around, shooting at nothing for a minute, you finally kill the first bad guy and get another awkward cutscene. This is where the voice acting gets real good.

Drake: "... I sense a presence inside it. A soul? W-what was that? Intruders in the penthouse of the 99 Dragons Clan?! You must be out of this world to get past our guards!"

Nerd: ...the hell does that mean?

So then Drake runs in and does absolutely nothing, while some ninja ghost Grim Reaper guy steal some kryptonite, and then more awful voice acting.

Master: "This theft can't be Tang's doing alone! He must have aid from beyond this world!"

Drake: "The artifact! It can't be gone!"

Nerd: (his own lips barely moving) Oh, and the lips barely move, so I can never tell if they're actually talking, or it's some kind of inner monologue.

So anyway, now we're onto the first actual level of the game. "Chase down the Ghost Ass-assin." You run around smashin' the trigger buttons as fast as you can while Drake swings his arms around and hopefully hits the targets. A little tip here: NEVER switch weapons. Like here, I picked up some machine guns, so of course I'm going to switch to them, but look! They don't hit anything! And I die! And I'm only fighting two guys. I emptied a total of four machine guns, and hit nothing. What the fuck?!

And the game's not hard; it's actually really easy, but it's so broken, and glitchy, and weird, and you're swinging your arms around li-like crazy, and th-then, then... you're clickin' the buttons like this, le-let's listen, (clicks the trigger buttons repeatedly) You like hearin' that?! So all this, with the bad controls, and everything all combined, is a 5-star recipe for your declining sanity.

So after you restart, you begin to adjust to the shit controls and vomit-inducing camera angles. But make sure you have a barf bag on hand for this game.

(Nerd picks up a barf bag and pukes into it)

... ugh, excuse me. After the bad guy goes through the window, you find out that somehow, even though you were running all around the fucking building, you died in the same room you started. Oh, and your master's also dead.

Drake: "This can't be... All dead! Nooooo...!"

Nerd: So now, to add to the cliché list, you're an undead chosen one, who has to avenge his master's death. Never heard that one before! Being undead also gives you the ability to run off walls, which takes the game's controls from shitty... to crusty-ass crack barnacle shitty! Look at that; the game doesn't know what to do with itself! So you run around, collecting 30 balls, and then Drake, hopped up on roid rage, throws himself out a WINDOW, and dies!

Statue: "Obviously."

(Nerd stammers, dumbstruck)

Nerd: This is where the game's most frustrating feature comes into play, the Serene Garden. Here, you meet four asshole statues who insult you, and then send you back to the normal world to get your revenge. But the thing about this place that really sucks shit soda through a straw, is that every time you die, first you get a loading screen, and then you go back here for ten seconds, listen to one of the statues talk shit about you...

Statue: "There's no cure for stupidity beyond death."

Nerd: Yeah, well, fuck you too, you fuckin' statues! ...and then go back to the cutscene before the level. So now, I'm chasing the artifact again, but the Ghost hands it to some guy, and you chase him all over the place. You need to shoot him, and then follow the blood trail through the streets of... whatever generic Asian city you're in. Watch out for the firetruck bus things that keep tryin' to hit you, and also, this is where I ran into my first actual glitch. So while I was chasin' this dude, he got hung up on some wall, and then he just ran into a pit of acid. Good job, Majesco. This level, simply put, is annoying. The sounds of the cars are loud, and you can still hear them inside the buildings.

(loud traffic)

And why is that truck going backwards in the middle of the road?! It's in the middle of the road goin' backwards!

After you finish the level, you run into a fireworks factory where you shoot another hundred things while shit flies everywhere. In this level are the slowest platforms ever made. O-oh, come on! I could build a sculpture of a horse takin' a shit, out of horse shit, in the time it takes to get up there! Once you finally get up there, you just fight your way into this room where you kill everyone, and um... just die in an explosion. Yeah, whatever. Alright, next level.

This level's just a clusterfuck. From the beginning, shit's flyin' at you everywhere, you're constantly running and jumping off walls, and getting stuck in walls... Look at this! I didn't mean to run in here, and now I'm stuck. The door won't open, and now I have to run the clock out until I die, and restart the level. I could just load another game, but I fucked up and I haven't been saving this whole time. So now, I gotta sit in this room, for over eight minutes. Kill me.

The end of this level has a boss fight, and man, let me tell you about the boss fights in this game. For a while, I had no idea what to do, because when you shoot the boss, there's no indication you're even hitting him. I thought maybe there's some trick or something, but then, after hammering the triggers over and over again 'til my fingers are numb, the mission... just ends.

The next level is just a fetch quest. Collect keycards to open doors, and find the exit. It's annoying, it's boring, and everytime you use the card, a message pops up to tell you that you used the card, and stays on the screen for what feels like an hour. You gotta love this dance floor area, with that jammin' three second loop. Can you imagine going to a nightclub, and the only song playing is a three-second loop of auditory anal grease?

(Generic three-second disco loop. Shoes skidding across the dance floor.)

One thing I forgot to mention, because I couldn't figure how to do it until now, is Drake has the ability to freeze time, but it freezes and slows YOU down, too! So you end up taking hits either way.

By this point, the game ramps up the difficulty and frustration to the highest possible level. Enemies teleport outta nowhere, and this is the very beginning of the stage. The game fills each room with as many enemies as fucking possible, and now, they're even more powerful! This is the very beginning of the level, and I'm dead! The worst part is that the level also begins to focus more on platform jumping!

This is where the problems in the game REALLY mount up, and it just... builds inside you with all this RAGE, and you become... just BOILING SO FUCKIN' HOT! It's not like you're in Hell; you've become Hell! Bad people die, and they go into you!

This level is based on riding elevators and making jumps, but Drake does whatever the fuck he feels like! Also, if you fall from too high, you die! I almost CRIED tryin' to beat this elevator level, and I'm not ashamed to admit that! Because if this game doesn't bring you to the verge of spilling rage-filled tears of anger, then you CAN'T be human. This level has you flying through the air on fans, tryin' to reach the right door. Sometimes the fans work, and sometimes you go right through it! And sometimes, the fan's so powerful, it shoots you up the the ceiling and kills you! It's one of those sometimes-sometimes games. Sometimes you'll struggle not to tear out your eyelashes, and sometimes you'll throw the Xbox out the fuckin' window! Another thing I don't get, is every time you start the level, the camera faces towards Drake, so you start off goin' in the wrong direction. It's not a huge deal, but it's annoying, especially when you fight this robot boss. I mean, look at this! The level hasn't even started, and I get hit, losing almost 20 health! How is that fair?! I mean, shit's flyin' all over the place, I don't even know what's hitting me! And before I know it, I'm dead! What the fuuucck?! I froze time before I died, and it's still frozen.

So you defeat the boss, you rescue your master, and now you gotta go down into the subway, and...

(Drake is run over by a train and does. Nerd is shocked because of he saw Drake getting run over by a train in disbelief, Nerd's hands shake while holding the controller.)

Nerd: HAAAAAAAAAAGHHH!!! WHAT THE FUCK?! Thi-I-I-I-I can't fuckin' stand this. I-I would cheat, but, they didn't even program cheat codes! But how could they, if they can't even program a fuckin game?! (stammering, meditates for a second, and picks up the controller, and gets back to the game)

(sigh) Whether you have the patience, or just fuckin' hate yourself, it IS possible to make to the end. The game may be unplayable, but it isn't impossible. When you get there, get ready for the culmination of all the shit you've experienced so far in concentrated anal suppository form. The final levels are all the same, with some minor differences. Each level begins with a stroll down Satan's shit-chute, and ends with the most frustrating platforming so far. At the end, you fight a boss. But here's the thing; at the beginning of the level, it says: "You can only damage the Ghost when using the slow- or freeze motion abilities."

Well, I'm gonna tell ya, right now: That's a complete fuckin' lie. It's probably why you fight 'im on a giant mound of bullshit, too. I wonder if the Ghost Ass is actually the Bullshit Man in disguise. So anyway, don't listen to what the game says. Just shoot the fuck out of 'im, until the game decides: "Meh, it's had enough", and ends the level. After you kill 'im, you have to grab the artifact, and equip it to fly around. But go too slow, and ya get too dead! If you manage to do it right, you fly around like a fuckin' idiot, grabbing blue balls in the void of Hell. It's hard to die here, and it's pretty pointless, but whatever.

Alright, this is it! The final boss! Almost free from this Hellhole.

It's time to slay the Spirit Lord Supreme! This boss is a metric ton of fuck! Convert that, and you got 2,205 pounds of pure fuck-shit-pissness!

But I'm here! We've come this far, and it's time to end this!

I dunno if it's a glitch, but when you don't face the boss, he won't hit you as much. Shoot the bones until that weird techno music kicks in, and unleash all the fury of the Undying Dragon on the Spirit Lord Supreme!

And ya know what? I know I said not to use the machine guns... ... but here? Let's do it! I love this plan! See ya on the other side!

(Ineffectual machine gun fire.)

Statue 1: "He returns!" 

Statue 2: "With the artifact."

Nerd: I've done it! I've fulfilled the prophecy! I've avenged my master! I am the One! Woah!

(Techno music. Suddenly the disc pops out of the Xbox, and comes at Nerd wearing a jacket flailing guns around. Nerd dodges the bullets Matrix-style.)

Statue: Become one with the Undying Dragon, Nerd. Then the power will be yours.

(The Nerd appears in a Neo getup and starts shooting everywhere with the disc. Gunshots and explosions.)