DragonForce was formed in 1999 from the remnants of the band Demoniac under the name of DragonHeart, but they changed their name to DragonForce before releasing any commercial albums due to possible issues with Brazilian band Dragonheart. Their career began with the publishing of their early songs on the first incarnation of MP3.com, claiming the top of the site's heavy metal charts. The hit song "Valley of the Damned" reached over 500,000 downloads in the first few months. Two of the original members, Steve Williams and Steve Scott, left the band to form the power metal outfit Power Quest. Sam Totman also started a side project called Shadow Warriors featuring himself and ZP Theart. Sam has confirmed many times that Herman Li was not involved with Shadow Warriors.
The band's first successful song was "Starfire" off of their debut album, Valley of the Damned. It was most noted because it starts off with a light piano intro, which is atypical among DragonForce songs. DragonForce have released three albums and toured extensively while supporting Helloween, W.A.S.P. and Iron Maiden. Their 2005 tour in support of the Sonic Firestorm album included support from Angra and Mendeed during their passage through the UK. On October 28, 2005 bassist Adrian Lambert announced his departure from the band in order to focus more time on raising his young son Less than a month after Lambert's departure, on November 23, 2005, DragonForce were signed to Roadrunner Records in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Australia and New Zealand, who released their most recent effort, Inhuman Rampage on January 9, 2006. Lambert was replaced in 2006 by Frédéric Leclercq, who was made an official member after a performance on tour.
The song "Through the Fire and Flames" is featured in the video game Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock and is generally considered to be the most challenging track in the Guitar Hero series. The developers used the song to demonstrate the game at E3. After Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock was released, the band's music sales reportedly increased dramatically. Their song being featured in the game has successfully placed the band into mainstream performances although at the same time, some controversy has begun over the speeding up of the album versions of DragonForce's music, mainly the guitar solos. This sprouted from the live performance at Graspop and elsewhere, when several members of DragonForce were under the influence of alcohol and the shows weren't near as produced as the recorded versions..
A new DragonForce album, titled "Ultra Beatdown" has been announced to be released for August 26, 2008. This will be followed by an extensive United Kingdom tour through October with Turisas and then followed by a tour of Australia.
July 4th saw the release of DragonForce's next single, "Heroes of Our Time" released only on their MySpace page and is available on iTunes. The video for it was released on the band's official YouTube channel on July the 9th.
- Herman Li - Lead and rhythm guitars, backing vocals
- Sam Totman - Lead and rhythm guitars, backing vocals
- ZP Theart - Lead vocals
- Vadim Pruzhanov - Keyboards, backing vocals (2001-present)
- Dave Mackintosh - Drums, percussion, backing vocals (2004-present)
- Frédéric Leclercq - Bass guitar, backing vocals (2006-present)
- Adrian Lambert - Bass guitar, backing vocals (2004-2005)
- Didier Almouzni - Drums, backing vocals (1999-2003)
- Diccon Harper - Bass guitar, backing vocals (2001-2003)
- Steve Williams - Keyboards, backing vocals (1999-2000)
- Steve Scott - Bass guitar, backing vocals (1999-2000)