Although many arcade games were designed to be difficult in order to get all your money, at least they were subtle about it. Advancing through Dragon's Lair was purely a trial and error effort. The arcade version of the game had a habit of taking you to the next scene when you die, so there's no real opportunity to memorize sequences when they came up again in "mirror" mode. The game was certainly attractive enough and the Disney-like animation stood out against other cabinets, but the experience just wasn't as fun or exciting as the Attract Film made it look.
Despite all the justified criticism against the game, I admit that I've got a bit of a soft spot for it. I'm a fan of Don Bluth, so I really enjoy the animation and some of the death sequences are funny and imaginative. Playing the game for this feature, however, made me feel incredibly old. See, when I originally owned the game on Sega CD and, more recently, my iPod, I could get through the game easily and with minimal loss of life. I guess my reflexes and reaction time aren't what they used to be!