Spyro the Dragon returns once more for Dawn of the Dragon, the 10th game in the series and the final part of the Legend of Spyro trilogy. In the new game which was developed by Australian company Tantalus, Spyro is voiced by Elijah Wood and the dialogue remains as snappy as ever. But many other aspects of the game have changed. Three years have past since the last game, and Spyro has teamed up with his old enemy Cynder, voiced by Christina Ricci
in this game. For the last three games, Spyro's graphics have been less cartoony than the earlier games in the series, but Dawn of the Dragon takes this to new levels, with the most detailed graphics yet seen in a Spyro game.
The basics of the game are the same as ever, it's a 3D platform game, with puzzle and combat elements. But this time there's more focus on combat than in previous games. Where old Spyro games were predominantly find and collect games, with a small amount of combat, the new game has much more emphasis on combat, and far more moves Spyro can do. There are now melee combination moves, and if Spyro or Cynder link moves, they will gain more blue gems for defeating their enemies. Elemental powers are retained too! As well as breathing fire, like any good Dragon can, Spyro can also use electricity, earth (rocks) and ice. And Cynder has the power of poison, wind, shadow and fear. These power can be levelled up using the gems that Spyro and Cynder collect as they progress through the game. Blue gems can be used to power up the Dragons' moves and combat abilities. Red gems, which are less common, are used to restore health.
As you play, you'll have to use different powers at different times to overcome the obstacles you encounter. In single player mode, you can also switch between Spyro and Cynder at any time to make use of their different abilities. Spyro is stronger, but Cynder is faster. You can also play in co-operative two player mode, and the second player can drop in or drop out as and when they like, meaning that you can get a friend to help you when the going gets tough, and still make progress on your own when they aren't around. When you're playing one player, the other dragon is computer controlled.
The game is set in a vast open world environment, making it less linear than the previous games. So in order to enable you to get around more freely, and explore the world more fully, Spyro can fly at any time during the game, in previous games he has only been able to jump and glide.