Dramatic Dungeon Sakura Taisen ~Kimi Aru ga Tame~

Original Title
Nintendo DS
Neverland Company
Official Website
Modelled in the style of the evergreen Fushigi no Dungeon series, Dramatic Dungeon takes the Teito, Paris and New York teams on a globetrotting adventure to find out why Joan of Arc has suddenly reappeared 500 years after her death and decided to turn the city streets into mysterious demon-filled labyrinths.
As a roguelike Dramatic Dungeon is based largely around diving into randomised dungeons while trying to balance item-grabbing with survival. Unlike a lot of similar games however Dramatic Dungeon has you form a party of four (Ogami/Taiga and three others) who gain and keep experience as they go out adventuring with you, learning a selection of skills mirroring their abilities in the mainline Sakura Taisen games along the way.
Much as regular Sakura Taisen is split into adventure and battle segments, Dramatic Dungeon is split into distinct adventure and dungeon parts. Adventuring plays out much as it has always done – Ogami/Taiga go through a visual novel style section of plot and occasionally the player has to make a snap decision during a LIPS event.  Two new LIPS events have been added – touch and slot. Touch involves pressing the correct words to create a sentence before the time runs out and slot is a reel system that requires the player to line up three icons in a row. As with other Sakura Taisen games, giving a positive answer to a LIPS event will give the character they’re reacting to a stat boost in the later dungeon sections.
When the player has the ability to wander around freely (done via menus rather than an overhead view of the area this game) sometimes instead of just bumping into a character for a chat the player will have the chance to go out on a quest with a particular character. Successful completion of these quests can give further stat boosts and valuable items.
During dungeons only the captains are directly under player control, although a selection of general orders can be given and certain behaviour can be toggled on and off (if you don’t want a character to use special attacks on an easy floor, for instance). Characters can also team up for critical hit attacks, although the frequency of these depends somewhat on how often Ogami/Taiga have responded to them favourably during LIPS sequences. Everyone also has their own unique personal strengths – Iris has the ability to teleport around a room at will and Lobelia will sometimes steal items from enemies; to balance out characters also have their own weaknesses too – Kanna will run away from snake-like enemies and Erica falls over a lot, for example.
A multiplayer mode is also included, separate from the main game. Up to four players can participate and the goal is to race to the end of a random dungeon, with the first to finish getting a grand prize. The player furthest along needs to be careful however as the other players can use special paper seals to cause them trouble no matter where they are in the dungeon – sending them to sleep or even summoning a batch of monsters to make things more difficult for them.
There were two packages available at general retail – the standard edition and the “All Star” pack. On top of that Sega Direct offered (and at the time of writing, still do through their Ebten store) a “DX Pack”, containing the poster binder, posters and telephone card pictured below. The All Star pack contains a pouch, a set of DS Lite covers and a set of stickers in addition to the game.