Kamen Rider is one of the longest running and most popular television shows in Japan, in the same genre that brought Power Rangers to the United States. Adapted from the 2002 Japanese show Kamen Rider Ryuki, Kamen Rider Dragon Knight has become fairly popular in America, spawning a line of action figures, role play weapons, and of course, video game tie ins.
Kamen Rider Dragon Knight is a three dimensional fighter. Players choose a Rider, taken straight from the show, and fight against another player or the AI. There's not much variety in the standard attacks to speak of. Your basic kicks, punches, jumps, and a few combinations are how you'll deal most of the damage to your opponent. Special moves like fireballs and weapon attacks are all activated by filling your special move meter. The primary protagonist, the titular Dragon Knight, summons an impressive Dragon as his special. A nicely rendered cut scene shows Dragon Knight jumping into the air, the Dragon flailing around behind him, and as the Dragon breathes flames, Dragon Knight kicks the opponent in a fiery explosion that does a tremendous amount of damage. The animations are spectacular, especially impressive for a Wii title, and fans of the show will love them.
Mirror Mode is the closest the game comes to having a story. After choosing a Rider, a series of challenges are presented on a simple map. Most of these are variations of one on one fights (like defeating an opponent with double health), but mixed in are a few brief brawler levels. The player must defeat wave after wave of enemy "grunt" soldiers without being defeated. The brawler levels are a good way to mix it up a bit, but are somewhat bland. Mirror Mode isn't terribly exciting, but it is the only way to earn more Advent Cards.
Advent Cards give your characters different options in battle. A Guard Vent card, for example, allows the Rider to put up a shield that protects from damage. Players choose which cards to use before any fight. Playing in Mirror Mode allows you to earn new cards, but only for characters you defeat in battle. This really doesn't make too much sense to me. If you want to be better with Dragon Knight, for instance, you'll have to play as another Rider, then hope Dragon Knight shows up. For the intended audience, this is disappointing.
Kamen Rider Dragon Knight is an average game, at best. There are many better fighters out there, even on the Wii. The controls cannot be remapped, and the waggles are iffy; this is a bad thing for a fighting game where precision is needed. Fans of the show will get more out of the game, particularly the nice character models and visually striking special moves. For them, I'd give the game a silver Billy. But for everyone else, Kamen Rider Dragon Knight is really unimpressive.