There are quite a few games that have dragons, but normally you either fight them o control them. Scalebound is different, as the player doesn’t control the dragon directly, and Thuban has a mind of his own, as Director Hideki Kamiya told us at Xbox One Fanfest in Tokyo.
According to Kamiya-san, one of the interesting things about Scalebound is that you’re not directly controlling the dragon. You’re asking him to do things, and some times he doesn’t do that. At times he works on his own priorities and does what he wants. Kamiya-san thinks that not knowing exactly what the dragon will do, and trying to understand him, is a really fun part of the game.
Kamiya-san also explained that there are a lot of games that have large fields, dungeons and the player fighting against enemies, but when you throw an autonomous dragon into the mix, who has his own priorities, thoughts and feelings, that makes you “rethink everything,” even beyond the AI, and that was one of the challenges the team faced.