As with lots of other RPGs, esspecially with the Final Fantasy series, either an introduction cutscene or a menu with the typical option of starting a new game, continuing a game, or adjust the settings in the options menu, appears if disc 1 is playing. If it's disc 2, 3, or 4, just the menu appears.
What seperates this game from most of the other RPGs is the "Additions" System, transforming into dragoons for enhanced attack and defense with powerful spells on the side, and unique equipment that will help the characters in the long run. First, the addition system is the attack combos for each character when you attack. When a character attacks, the character closes in and a blue square reticle appears in the center. As the character closes in on an enemy, an outer larger square circles onto the reticle, and the player must press the "X" button exactly when the square hits the reticle to execute an addition.
As a character obtains more addition combos, the player must execute an addition more than once or twice. For example, if a combo adds 3 button hits, the character will strike 4 times as long as you time the addition perfectly 3 times in a row. However, the enemy can try countering your attack at anytime during the attack. If this happens, the enemy flashes a red aura and the reticle will turn red and you must hit the "O" button instead. If timed perfectly your character repels the attack and continues the combo attack. If you miss, the enemy knocks your character back into its place with the enemy receiving some damage and your charcter sustains some damage as well and the attack ends. Each addition has its unique function to either earn more Spirit Points (SP), which is required to transform into dragoons, or inflict more damage.What is awesome, is the dragoons themselves. How the dragoons' power works is that SP is required to transform. The more SP a character has, the longer the duration of staying in dragoon form. SP capacity and stronger spells are obtained by leveling up their dragoon level (D-LVL) with 5 as the maximum level. It can be increased by attacking and obtaining SP more often. Dragoon attacks (D-Attacks) are of course more powerful, but executing them is different. Before a dragoon attacks, a dragon's eye orb with a notch at the top right appears. When you start the attack, the outer star spins around the orb and you must hit the "X" button every time it passes the notch at the top. If you timed them all perfectly, the "PERFECT" meesage pops up in place of the orb as it disappears and the character begins the attack at full strength. However, if you miss once, then the orb disappears without warning and the character attacks with less additions, therefore the attack will not be as strong.
With knowlege from Jesper Juul's book, this game expresses the fictional world as the created fantasy of a world with certain people with dragon powers. People could dream that they could fly with wings either as an angel or as a dragon. It gives a person the imagination to have the look and the power of these dragons and dragoons.
As far as the rules go, every character has different stats and a certain element. Strategy comes into play by aquiring different equipment to change the stats. It's as if the equipment alters the rules in your favor. For example, there are pieces of armor that can nullify damage from a certain element. Plus, you must talk to certain people in order to progress into the story and the game itself.
Overall, The Legend of Dragoon is just as good as any of the Final Fantasy games released around the time of this games release. It gives more room for creative strategizing. The Sony Entertainment Team was in the process of creating a sequel, but the project got cancelled, which disappointed many fans, including myself. Still, the game would be more popular if was re-released to either the PSVita or the PS3, or both if possible. I hope they can because, in my opinion, it is one of the best RPGs ever created.