I’m gonna paint quiz my wagon dragon

I am convinced that Capcom Classics Collection Remixed for PSP is going to be the single best retro compilation ever. Ever ever ever. I mean, yeah, having arcade-perfect ports of Strider and Magic Sword and Black Tiger to take with me everywhere is more nerd-bliss than I could ever have hoped for back when I was hooked on those games in their coin-op incarnations. And the wi-fi “quarters” mode where anyone else in your vicinity with a copy of the game can interrupt your session to challenge you is brilliant. But there is one thing that sets CCCR [1] above and beyond the competition is one single title:

Quiz and Dragons.

You’re forgiven if you’ve never heard of this particular chapter of Capcom’s history, because I hadn’t either. But it’s basically a trivia game gussied up as a Dungeons & Dragons board game. (ATTN SHIVAM: If you do not own the PCB of this I will be very disappointed in you.) That in itself would be interesting, but what pushes it well beyond “novelty” status isn’t the fact that you can play as any of four Gauntlet-approved character classes. It’s not the fact that “battles” are trivia contests versus various D&D monsters like ogres and black puddings. It’s not even the “magic spells” you can use which weight the quizzes in your favor.

No, what makes Quiz & Dragons completely incredible is the fact that it is frozen in 1990 stasis. Capcom hasn’t updated the questions to be more contemporary, and while that doesn’t affect, say, entries about James K. Polk (the president, not the song) or the biological classification of a mushroom, the pop culture elements are completely incredible. Do you know which movie the Fat Boys played a team of hospital attendants? Or the hot sitcom which stars George Wendt? (Hint: Not the Cosby Show.) Playing the game makes me feel like I’m being headlocked by high school, assaulted by a curious world in which Nirvana has yet to exist and President Bush has initiated a war in Iraq. Well, OK, not that different, then.

I know classic collections can be a hard sell for younger gamers who didn’t experience the arcade originals first-hand, but I think this is the first compiled game I’ve ever seen that is actively antagonistic toward them. Needless to say, I highly recommended it. Damn kids these days.

1. Not to be mistaken for CCCP, which only appears in Strider.

21 thoughts on “I’m gonna paint quiz my wagon dragon

  1. Quiz & Dragons is probably the strangest and most wonderful trivia game ever. Man, you really haven’t lived until you’ve pummeled a kobold into submission by answering obscure questions about the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

  2. I wouldn’t know about it at all if not for the Capcom Design Works book. (Do I have to point out they’re the same characters as the two D&D arcade games?)

  3. i deeply loved the capcom D&D games, and have actually played quiz and dragons before, but i dont know what a PCB is.

  4. As a kid, I always hoped George Wendt and John Goodman were somehow related. I always mistook one for the other and thought that I wouldn’t need to feel ashamed of it if they were brothers or something.

  5. When a TECMO compilation comes with Rygar and arcade Ninja Gaiden I’ll be happy. The only Capcom game in that compilation that I actualy used to play as a kid was Black Tiger and I thought it was magical back then. I thought no videogame could be better and I thought that videogames would never ever have better graphics. I also used to think that the Genesis was the console to end all consoles. But now that I think about it, maybe the Genesis not having 3D doesn´t make it “worse” than an XBOX360. Maybe, for me, it was the console to end all consoles. Its just different. Some people like realist painters like Jeffrey Gold, I prefer stuff like Monet. And, yes, Lightening Force is as beautiful as Water Lily Pond… graphicaly.

  6. So was Quiz & Dragons based on D&D, or at least sort of? If it really is, and bears the license, then maybe there is a glimmer of hope after all of the 2 AD&D brawlers to be included in a future collection later on.

    Oh, and did I already say that getting to play Black Tiger outside of an arcade is awesome?

  7. dude, magic sword owns for free. i found a place that still had it in tokyo and played that son of a bitch for at least 2 hours.

  8. ” i found a place that still had it in tokyo and played that son of a bitch for at least 2 hours.”

    Arcades: The ghetto for geeks

  9. Oh man.

    There was a Q&D arcade cabinet, tucked away in a dingy corner of the arcade in the Menlo Park Mall in Edison, NJ that I used to play ALL THE TIME.

  10. Not just a quiz! Not just dragons! Quiz AND Dragons, all in one convenient package!
    I’d played this game long, long ago, being a huge D&D nerd anyway. The game is set in the Kingdom of Capconia, for sakes!
    But Manna, the characters aren’t the same from the Capcom D&D games. The Fighter looks the same in the Japanese version, and the Amazon bears a resemblance to the Elf, but the Wizard looks totally different and the Ninja wasn’t in D&D at all.

  11. So I guess that would mean I’m the only one who’s never heard of Quiz & Dragons, then.

    Magic Sword is possibly my second-favorite thing about CCCR. Mainly because I always wanted to explore the full tower in the arcades but didn’t have the $20 it would have taken to do it.

  12. “Gonna’ paint your dragon
    Gonna’ paint it fine
    Gonna’ use oil-based paint
    ‘Cuz the dragon is divine!”
    Yeah, that was really bad, I know, but I had to get the Simpsons reference in somehow.

  13. Magic Sword is actually not very good. Monkey Erik and I finished that during our epic time-killing MAME session on the flight back from Japan. If you’ve played, like, a dollar’s worth, you’ve pretty much played the whole game. Got an unfortunate tendency to repeat itself.

    If this collection has MERCS, though, that game fucking rules.

  14. What we need now is an arcade-perfect console/handheld version of Cannon Dancer. But I doubt “Mitchell Corp.” is going to be putting together a compilation any time soon.

  15. Oh god, my girlfriend and I played Quiz and Dragons at a Pinball Pete’s before. It’s probably our favorite game there besides the broken Puzzle Bobble machine.

    There’s also a review of this arcade machine on the internet: http://www.sydlexia.com/quizanddragons.htm

    The true gem is the quiz at the end though – can YOU answer 25 questions from popular quiz game Quiz and Dragons? I could get more than half of them!

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