Dirk the Daring (or simply Dirk) is the main protagonist of the popular arcade game Dragon's Lair and its subsequent franchise. He is a valiant knight of King Ethelred that continuously ventures off to save his lover Princess Daphne.
As the main character of the series, Dirk appears in every installment, spin-off and comic in the series.
Appearance and Abilities
Dirk has a well-built body, black hair, large nose and black eyes. He wears gray armor with a red and orange over-shirt, a helmet, scabbard and gray boots. He wields a sword.
Dirk is known well for his keen instinct and sense of direction. He can easily find a way to survive from nearly inescapable situations and events. He also uses this instinct to search out valuable treasures and other useful items.
Dirk is surprisingly strong for his build, as he can hold off the biting force of a huge monster or giant cat, and agile enough to be able to leap great distances. Despite the many death scenes, Dirk is capable of breaking through stone with his body, easily withstanding arrows from angels or even enduring being chewed or swallowed whole (although it varies with whoever he is up against). In Dragon's Lair 3D, Dirk has access to a magical energy called Mana, enabling him to use a variety of powers granted by Essences he can collect.
Dirk is also an expert pilot. With little to no experience, he travels around the world in his flying time machine with the use of his sword. In the comics, Dirk also mentions that he can joust blindfolded while riding on a camel. Across spinoffs, Dirk has been shown to be versatile with more weapons than his sword such as axes, throwing knives and even a crossbow.
In Dragon's Lair, Dirk is a clumsy and somewhat fearful knight that ventures off into a dark Castle in the search for Princess Daphne and rescue her from the clutches of an evil dragon. The player controls Dirk's actions in quick time scenarios, which either sends him to his next challenge or a cruel (or humorous) fate. After fending off countless monsters and deadly obstacles, Dirk would finally find Daphne imprisoned in a magic bubble, upon which she tells him to defeat the dragon with a magical sword and retrieve the key from his neck. With the dragon slain, Dirk frees the princess and they share a passionate kiss, thus ending the game.
For budget reasons, Dirk never speaks in the original Dragon's Lair; however, his voice is heard when screaming, grunting and gasping; these were voiced by the game's film editor Dan Molina.
Dragon's Lair II continues after the events of the first Dragon's Lair. Dirk and Princess Daphne married and have multiple children that presumably live in the house of Daphne's Mother.
Dirk is once again the main character whose gameplay is once again decided by the player's navigation in quick time events. However in Dragon's Lair II, Highlights are much easier to spot which give the player better indication on where to lead Dirk.
He begins his quest running away from Daphne's Mother who alerts him that she has been kidnapped again then threatens to beat him senseless if he doesn't find her daughter. Escaping into a castle, Dirk interacts with a voice coming from a time machine that informs him that Daphne has been captured by an evil wizard name Modroc who was also his brother. He then tells to fetch him a drink from the well while filling him in on Mordroc's intentions. Dirk travels through several time periods and strange dimensions like the Garden of Eden, Alice in Wonderland and Sleeping Beauty.
At the final meeting with the Modroc, he puts an evil ring on her finger and transforms her into a hideous beast. Dirk eventually defeats and kills Modroc, and dispatches of the ring turning her back to normal as they return home to their family and take one more ride into the night on Dirk's time machine.
In Dirk's first ever 3D adventure (along with the first ever game that relies on more than inputs that influence his direction), Dirk embarks on another quest to rescue Princess Daphne who has been captured by Singe and Mordroc. Dirk acquires an amulet that allows him to communicate with Princess Daphne as he journeys through the castle that holds her captive. Daphne explains to Dirk that Mordroc had become much more powerful and needed to be defeated with magical objects know as "Dragon's Essence" that are guarded by the strongest beings in the castle.
Later in the game Dirk defeats Singe and saves the princess which is actually a dark alternate version of himself in disguise. After battling and defeating his evil clone, Dirk acquires magical arrows capable of slaying Modroc much to the ire of Daphne who was actually Mordroc in disguise. Nonetheless, Dirk finally reaches the Wizard who turns into a dragon of his own. Dirk defeats Mordroc once and for all, rescuing Daphne.
In the spin-off television series, Dirk is the main protagonist of the show who is the master best friend of his squire Timothy and a good friend to Princess Daphne opposing to his wife in the original games. Just like the games, Episodes that go to commercial break usually have Dirk encounter a dangerous obstacle that have theoretical events if he had made a bad decision.
Dirk is voiced by Bob Sarlatte.
Before the events of Daphne being kidnapped by Singe, Dirk is known as a legendary knight that has slain countless dragons, rightfully earning the name the Dragon Slayer. One day, Dirk and Daphne were discussing recent events of the kingdom before he tripped and fell off his steed before Daphne followed to help him up. The dragon Singe immediately appears behind the two stating that he wanted to exact his revenge on Dirk for killing his children as the to engage in battle. Dirk is defeated and Daphne is kidnapped by Singe resulting in Dirk returning to the his home castle to learn about Daphne's whereabouts.
The sister of Mordroc known as Mordread seals Daphne and his entire home into an orb in her staff. Dirk who was outside of the house, gets his time machine split into two halves by Mordread as she takes one half to escape while Dirk takes the other half to chase after her.
A full image gallery of Dirk the Daring can be found here.
- Dirk usually yells and grunts in the video games with only one occasional phrase in Dragon's Lair ("Uh-Oh.") and Dragon's Lair II ("Daphne!? YOOHOO!!").
- The Box Art of Dragon's Lair II: Escape from Singe's Castle and Dragon's Lair III: Curse of Mordread show Dirk with his helmet and boots becoming golden while in game, they are still silver and brown respectively.