Lair was to be a new generation of game that worked exclusively with the PS3 Sixaxis control pad, and now the Dualshock3.
The general idea is, that the user holds the control pad in there hands straight out infront of them, and tilts the pad in respective directions to turn you dragon the way you wish it to go as if holding on to the dragons reigns. Whilst pressing the different control buttons to produce certain actions.
For example, whilst tilting the control pad slightly to the left will make the dragon turn to its left, and whilst tapping the 'X' button will make the dragon flap its wings. Other buttons will make the Dragon breathe fire or attack in other ways.
I was eager to buy this game when it was released in late 2007, but was overwhelmingly put of by the negative reviews from games sites and magazines. So, i didnt bother buying it.
Fast forward a full year, and i found the game on offer at a low price. During this time, a free update patch off the PSN store became available, which for the first time allowed the player to actually turn and control the Dragon fully by using the control sticks, instead of the Sixaxis tilting control, which was previously the only way to control your beast, and was the main gripe in every review the game had got previously. So, with the update out and the game being cheaper, i decided to give it a go.
At first i dived straight in with the tutorial (which you MUST do if you are to play this game and appreciate it properly, and clearly most reviewers didnt bother learning), and decided to actually try the original motion controls, and found it a little awkward. Instinct told me to move the control sticks and not tilt the controller. When my brain finally got over this fact, i started to enjoy it more. It took probably a good hour on the tutorial before i was comfortable enough to go and play the game, and i must say, I absolutely loved it.
Its fresh and new, different, like the Wii might control a Dragon but this is better. Such a shame not everyone took the time out to learn its controls properly.
I really do not get for the life of me what everyone was going on about with the control system, it works perfectly, and is totally responsive. As i already have said, I had downloaded the controller patch, which makes the game completely accessable to everyone now that you dont have to use the sixaxis tilting, but its the Sixaxis controlling for me that makes this game so brilliant. The controls were never broken in the first place, just peoples patience with them.
Lets get one thing clear, that a small few reviewers pointed out but the majority decided to ignor. This game IS MADE FOR THE SIXAXIS, that was the whole point of it. So, when the odd few picked it up, they expected to be able to play it straight away like a racing game, and Lair was not designed to do that. It is not a game you can just pick up and play, and thats a good thing.
Ignor the reviews, i didnt and eneded up waiting 10 months for this because i listened to them, and i really should not have. Since its update, it has had some new reviews taking its score from the 5/10 mark to around 8/10, due to the ability to control the dragon with the sticks, which really goes against what the game was aimed at doing, and which should never have got the bad reviews from people who didnt take the time to get into the game, but then thats impatience for you.
Not the best game ever made, but it is a beautifully original underrated masterpiece. A very very good game that i would happily give 8 out of 10 to.