They’re arguably the most feared and respected mythical creature known around the world. Dragons. They’ve pervaded tales and folklore in numerous cultures for thousands of years and have become the ultimate villain faced by heroes in fantasy settings. So it’s not surprising that the dragon also has become a staple character in games, which are known for drawing inspiration from sources that already have a proven draw to audiences.
One such game that has successfully transplanted dragons into its own brand of lore is World of Warcraft. In the upcoming WoW Magazine, the role of the dragons is explored with a 16-page feature introducing each Dragonflight and their connections — from Nozdormu to Deathwing himself. The feature can be previewed online, and looking at it reminded me a bit of just how much dragons have influenced gaming culture.
From MMOs to action and adventure games to micro-games played on a mobile device, dragons have been seen in an incredible number of variations in games. The constant reinvention of their charismatic yet terrifying demeanor keeps their appearance in games fresh and relevant, and you’ll never see me shying away from a shot to slay a dragon. Although almost always respected, we also see the other side of dragons in folklore — wise, empathetic and deadly protective of what they hold dear.
After the cut, let’s take a look at a few of the standout games in which dragons have played a significant role: