Castlevania Community Thread | What is a man?!

Kokonoe

Banned
Oct 26, 2017
7,440


Games
  • Castlevania



    Castlevania (known in Japan as Akumajo Dracula) is the first game in the series of the same title. It depicts the exploits of a vampire hunter named Simon Belmont, who inherited a whip brimming with holy power from his father.

    Because of an ancient blood feud between Simon's ancestors and the vampire, Count Dracula, it is Simon's calling to enter Dracula's Castle and slay its landlord.

    Castlevania was first released in Japan in September 1986 for the Family Computer Disk System. In May 1987, it was ported to the Nintendo Entertainment System and released in North America, and then Europe in 1988. It was released again in Japan in 1993 for the Family Computer. Despite this, it was initially designed as a cartridge game in the first place before switching in the middle of development.

    The series was landmark as it was among the earliest video games to feature a gothic horror storyline while at the same time abandoning the campy elements of similar games of the time, such as Ghosts 'n Goblins.
  • Castlevania II: Simon's Quest



    Castlevania II: Simon's Quest known in Japan as Dracula II: Noroi no Fuin (ドラキュラⅡ 呪いの封印 Dracula II: Seal of the Curse), was developed by Konami in 1987 for the Famicom Disk System. In 1988, it was ported to cartridge format and released in North America for the Nintendo Entertainment System.
    The game features Simon Belmont and takes place in 1698, seven years after the first Castlevania game.

    Simon's Quest's environment differs from the linear castle of the first game, and is instead an open-ended landscape interspersed with towns, cemeteries, manors and dungeons. The passage of time in game causes day to become night and vice-versa. Enemies are stronger at night, zombies inhabit the towns, and the townspeople are nowhere to be seen as they're hiding in their houses from the monsters. New to the series are several RPG-elements, such as an inventory and a leveling system which causes Simon's health to increase whenever he collects a specific amount of hearts. During the day, townspeople offer hints (though player beware: some of these 'hints' are half-truths or outright lies), and merchants sell items, such as whip upgrades, in exchange for hearts. The amount of time it takes to complete the game also affects how well Simon fares at the ending.

    Sub-weapons return from Castlevania. Old weapons include the Dagger and Holy Water, while new ones include the bouncing Diamond and Laurels of invincibility. Dracula's remains also offer stat benefits when collected, such as an immunity to poison.
  • Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse



    Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse (Japanese: Akumajo Densetsu, or Legend of the Demon Castle) is the sixth installment in the Castlevania series, and third to be released on the Nintendo Entertainment System. It was published by Konami in Japan in 1989 and in North America in 1990. In Europe it was published by Palcom Software in 1992.
    According to the game's instruction manual, it takes place in 1476, 215 years before the events in Castlevania and Castlevania II: Simon's Quest. Many characters and elements introduced for the first time in Castlevania III would become mainstays in the series.

    Castlevania III abandons the adventure game elements of its immediate predecessor and returns to the stage based action platform style of the first Castlevania game. Unlike Castlevania, however, Castlevania III is not strictly linear. After completing the first level, and at several other points throughout the game, the player is given a choice of paths to follow. The choices made by the player in these circumstances can have a profound impact on how the game unfolds. There are fifteen levels in total.

    Another key feature is the option to choose other playable characters to use along with Trevor Belmont, who plays exactly as Simon Belmont does in the first game. These additional characters are found in stages after certain boss battles and have distinctive abilities that lend in giving Castlevania III much more variety than the original game. With Grant, players can move quicker than Trevor, climb walls, and change directions in mid-jump; Alucard has the ability to turn into a bat and fly at the cost of hearts; and Sypha has elemental spells that can home in on enemies, freeze them, or burn them with a short range flame attack. Only one additional character can be had at a time, and not all of them can be found on the same path, so it is impossible to encounter all of them in one play-through.
  • Super Castlevania IV



    Super Castlevania IV (known as 悪魔城ドラキュラ Akumajō Dracula in Japan) was the first of two Castlevania games released on the Super NES console. It is a remake of the original Castlevania and Vampire Killer; retelling of Simon Belmont's foray into Castlevania while featuring new levels (several outside of Castlevania), 16-bit graphics, and a soundtrack with remixes of previous Castlevania scores as well as new pieces entirely.

    The controls have been improved from its predecessors. This includes the ability for Simon to now whip in eight directions, as well as keep the whip held out if the player holds the attack button. Holding the whip out lets Simon swing or spin it around, allowing the player to easily block enemy projectiles, or hit enemies rapidly (albeit for less damage than a normal strike)- this would later become a staple for whips in later games. In addition, Simon can latch his whip onto grapples, letting him swing over various obstacles.
  • Castlevania: Rondo of Blood



    Castlevania: Rondo of Blood (悪魔城ドラキュラX ~血の輪廻 (ロンド)~~; Akumajo Dorakyura X: Chi no Rondo - Demon Castle Dracula X: Reincarnation of Blood or, Rondo of Blood) is a Japanese PC Engine Super CD video game in the popular Castlevania series, released on October 29, 1993. It was never released outside of Japan, despite positive reviews from both fans and critics. Rondo of Blood is often considered exemplary as to why the Japanese PC Engine fared so much better than its North American counterpart, the TurboGrafx 16.

    Dracula X has had remarkable impact and is something of a turning point in the series. The following games would be influenced by it graphics wise, with many sprites almost directly taken from the game. It is also one of the last "old-school" Castlevania games, featuring more linear, stage based gameplay, as opposed to the "Metroidvania " style introduced in this game's extremely popular direct sequel, Symphony of The Night.
  • Castlevania: Bloodlines



    Castlevania: Bloodlines is the only Castlevania game developed for the Sega Genesis. It was released in North America on March 17, 1994 and in Japan one day later. The game is notable for being loosely tied to the Dracula novel written by Bram Stoker.

    The game is noteworthy for utilising special effects generated by the Sega Genesis sometimes resulting in unique obstacles that had never appeared in any of the previous titles. Notable examples include the rotating tower of Pisa and the upside down rooms in Castle Proserpina.
  • Castlevania: Dracula X



    Castlevania: Dracula X is the Super NES semi-remake/semi-sequel of Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, which was previously released on the PC Engine (a version never released outside of Japan). Instead of being a straight remake, this title should instead be considered both a remake and a sequel, though most people consider it a straight port. It shares the same gameplay and storyline of Rondo of Blood, but the levels had been completely redesigned, the quality of some graphics was considerably lowered, and many other elements were completely taken out of the game, such as not being able to play as Maria at all when you rescue her on Stage 4.

    In Japan, this title is known as Demon Castle Dracula Double X (悪魔城ドラキュラXX Akumajō Dracula XX) as the original release title, to be presented as like a sequel to the PC-Engine game. On the other hand, Europe and Australia has a completely different title known as, Castlevania: Vampire's Kiss to make it more of a regular standard sequel to Super Castlevania IV in it's presentation.
  • Castlevania: Symphony of the Night



    Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (fan commonly abbreviated SOTN/SotN, KONAMI abbreviated SoN), released in Japan as Demon Castle Dracula X: Nocturne in the Moonlight (悪魔城ドラキュラX月下の夜想曲 Akumajō Dracula X: Gekka no Yasōkyoku), was developed by Konami Computer Entertainment Tokyo and published by Konami for the PlayStation in 1997. It was re-released the following year for the Sega Saturn exclusively in Japan. In 2007, it was re-released in America for the Xbox 360's Xbox Live Arcade. The original PlayStation release was released for download on the PlayStation 3, playable on both that system and the PSP. Lastly, it was also included in The Dracula X Chronicles for the PSP. It is a direct sequel to Castlevania: Rondo of Blood for the Nippon Electric Company PC Engine.

    Symphony of the Night introduced a more fluid control scheme for its protagonist. Unlike his predecessors, Alucard can back-dash with a single button, and attack with a downward kick while jumping. Alucard can also use Magic Spells learned through incantation scrolls and activated with specific button combinations. Some spells damage enemies, such as Hell Fire, while others heal Alucard, like Soul Steal and Dark Metamorphosis.

    Symphony of the Night is the first Castlevania title since Simon's Quest to use RPG-like elements. Alucard can progress in levels, after gaining a specific amount of experience points. Every time Alucard "levels up", statistics such as attack power, defensive strength, and luck will increase. He can also find special items called "Life Max Ups" to increase his maximum hit points and "Heart Max Ups" to increase the number of hearts he can carry. Alucard is able to restore his health or normal status using various potions and foodstuffs found in the castle as well.
  • Castlevania: Circle of the Moon



    Castlevania: Circle of the Moon, known in Japan as Akumajō Dracula: Circle of the Moon and as Castlevania in Europe, was released for the Nintendo Game Boy Advance in 2001. The game was the first Castlevania game for the system. It was the last game in the franchise to bear the "Akumajō Dracula" title in Japan until Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow was released. Subsequent entries adopted the "Castlevania" moniker.
  • Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance



    Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance (commonly abbreviated HoD) was created by Konami for the Nintendo Game Boy Advance system. It was originally released in Japan in 2002 under the title Castlevania: Concerto of Midnight Sun (キャッスルヴァニア白夜の協奏曲 Castlevania: Byakuya no Concerto (Kyōsōkyoku)), and is part of the Castlevania series. Harmony of Dissonance is set in 1748, and stars Juste Belmont, a member of the legendary Belmont family of vampire hunters.

    Gameplay in Harmony of Dissonance follows the model established in the series' "reinvention" with the release of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. At heart the game is a 2D action-RPG with level design based on similar principles to the Metroid series. The player collects new equipment and skills by exploring the game's castle setting and fighting increasingly powerful enemies and bosses, leading up to a climactic encounter with the castle's master.
  • Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow



    Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (commonly abbreviated AoS) was released for the Game Boy Advance in 2003, and it closely follows the new franchise gameplay and features established in Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. Its Japanese title is Castlevania: Minuet of Dawn (キャッスルヴァニア暁月の円舞曲 Castlevania: Akatsuki no Minuet (Enbukyoku)).

    The game takes place in the year 2035 and stars Soma Cruz, a high school exchange student in Japan. While visiting the Hakuba Shrine with his friend Mina Hakuba, Soma is transported into Castlevania (Dracula's castle) along with her. There he meets Genya Arikado, who defeats a group of attacking enemies and explains Soma's ability to absorb monsters' souls. Genya also tells Soma to go to the Master's Chamber quickly, so Mina doesn't die an excruciantingly painful death.

    Aria of Sorrow has several possible endings, depending on the course taken by the player.
  • Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow



    Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow (commonly abbreviated DoS, although the correct abbreviation would be DS or CDS) is a game for the Nintendo DS, part of Konami's popular Castlevania franchise. The game was first released in August 2005 in Japan. It should be noted that "Dawn of Sorrow" is a play on "DS", the system that this game has been released on, (a subtitling structure that has been used for other games released for the system). This game is known in Japan as Demon Castle Dracula: Cross of the Blue Moon (悪魔城ドラキュラ 蒼月の十字架 Akumajō Dracula: Sōgetsu no Jūjika). The subtitle is also based on "Aria of Sorrow", known as "Minuet of Dawn" in Japan.

    The game is a direct sequel to Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow, with Soma Cruz as its protagonist; other characters from Aria of Sorrow also appear in the game, including Genya Arikado and Julius Belmont. It takes place one year after Aria of Sorrow and deals with an enigmatic cult (unrelated to the cult led by Aria of Sorrow antagonist Graham Jones) who seeks to kill Soma and revive the dark power of Dracula sleeping inside him, as a sort of retribution for Soma 'denying his destiny' in becoming the Dark Lord incarnate in the previous game. In the cult's mind, Dracula represents the ultimate evil that must exist for there to be an ultimate good, and with the Dark Lord sealed, that cannot happen. Instead of running from this new threat, however, Soma decides to take the initiative and confront his foes head-on, eventually discovering a castle and monsters similar to those owned by Dracula, supposedly constructed by the cult as the scene for the ritual required to sacrifice Soma and revive the vampire lord.
  • Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin



    Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin is a game in Konami's Castlevania series of video games. The game was released on December 5, 2006 for the Nintendo DS.

    Portrait of Ruin gives the player control of two different characters: vampire hunter Jonathan Morris and the young sorceress Charlotte Aulin. Jonathan and Charlotte were childhood friends both descended from legendary clans devoted to the protection of mankind against the forces of evil. Jonathan Morris is the son of Castlevania: Bloodlines' hero, John Morris. Unlike the Belmont family, to whom they are related, the Morrises cannot use the full power of the legendary "Vampire Killer" whip by default. Charlotte Aulin is descended from the Fernandez/Belnades clan, a bloodline known for their magical prowess.
  • Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia



    Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia is the third Castlevania title released for the Nintendo DS handheld platform. Though developed by the same team that created Portrait of Ruin, it has dropped the anime inspired artwork of its two predecessors in favor of a more traditional Gothic style with character design by newcomer Masaki Hirooka. It is also notably the first canonical game to feature a woman in the lead role, who is known as Shanoa.

    The basic gameplay is like all other "Metroidvania" style games. The system for this game is known as the Glyph System. Shanoa is able to absorb the powers found in glyphs found throughout the castle and within enemies. These glyphs give her magical weapons and abilities and consume her magic meter, which automatically replenishes itself. She can equip a glyph in her right hand, her left hand, and on her back, marking a return to the two-handed weapon style only seen in Symphony of the Night. Each usage of glyph absorbs magic meaning simple attacks use magic.

    However, equipping certain glyph combinations in each hand will give the ability to activate a "Glyph Union", which will execute a powerful special attack that consumes hearts instead of magic. Glyphs can be found in certain locations on the map, or can be dropped by enemies; at which point, Shanoa can absorb the glyphs simply by holding the up button. Some enemies also use Glyphs to attack; you may interrupt their attacks by absorbing their Glyphs. Additionally, there are Glyphs that affect the environment; Shanoa will have to absorb these in order to proceed. Besides from attacking, there are also glyphs that will boost skills, increase speed, transform Shanoa into an enemy creature, and so forth.
  • Castlevania: Lords of Shadow



    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow is the first Castlevania game for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. It was developed by Mercury Steam and published by Konami. Hideo Kojima, who produced the Metal Gear series, works as an advisor for the Japanese version, taking the Castlevania series into a new horizon according to the E3 Press Conference.

    The game is a self-contained re-boot of the series, and thus not canon to the previous games.

    According to a recent IGN interview, the game is currently running on a proprietary Mercury Steam Engine and has been described as a third person action adventure title with combat, platforming and puzzle elements. The combat is that of Castlevania: Lament of Innocence resulting in combat that feels similar to later games that were also inspired by combat from Castlevania: Lament of Innocence such as Rygar and God of War. The combat is mainly focused around utilizing a retractable chain whip called the "Combat Cross" using Lament of Innocence' system of quick strong attacks and long range area attacks, in addition to other items in the player's inventory such as knives, stakes, holy water.
  • Castlevania: Harmony of Despair



    Castlevania: Harmony of Despair (a play on "HD") is a multi-player Xbox Live Arcade and PS3 PlayStation Network game featuring characters, sprites, and locations from several different Castlevania titles.

    The story, such as it is, involves a cursed book called the Grimoire, in which the story of the evil citadel Castlevania is recorded. However the castle comes to life within the pages of the book, taking various forms from previous incarnations, and the heroes of the past, also recorded in the book and coming to life within its pages, must once again fight to put an end to the curse. This story allows characters from eras ranging from 1691 to 2036 to come together in the same castle to fight evil.

    There is up to six-player online co-operative play, and while it is beneficial to stick together, as characters can perform powerful combo attacks together, players have the ability to wander the castle freely, regardless of the location of the other players. There is no local co-op for the 360 version, but the PS3 version does have 4-player local co-op. Downloadable content includes new characters and stages.

  • Full List Of Castlevania Video Games

    Castlevania - Famicom and NES
    Vampire Killer - MSX
    Castlevania II: Simon's Quest - Famicom and NES
    Haunted Castle (Akumajo Dracula) - Arcade
    Castlevania: The Adventure - Game Boy
    Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse - Famicom and NES
    Super Castlevania IV - Super Famicom and SNES
    Castlevania II: Belmont's Revenge - Game Boy
    Akumajo Dracula X: Chi no Rondo - TurboGrafx CD
    Akumajo Dracula X68000 - The Sharp X68000
    Castlevania : Bloodlines - Sega Genesis and Mega Drive
    Castlevania: Dracula X - Super Famicom and SNES
    Castlevania: Symphony of the Night - PlayStation
    Castlevania Legends - Game Boy
    Castlevania 64 - Nintendo 64
    Castlevania: Legacy Of Darkness - Nintendo 64
    Castlevania: Circle of the Moon - Game Boy Advance
    Castlevania: Chronicles - PlayStation
    Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance - Game Boy Advance
    Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow - Game Boy Advance
    Castlevania: Lament of Innocence - PlayStation 2
    Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow - Nintendo DS
    Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin - Nintendo DS
    Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles - PlayStation Portable
    Castlevania: Order of Shadows - PDA
    Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia - Nintendo DS
    Castlevania: Judgment - Nintendo Wii
    Castlevania: Harmony of Despair - PS3 and 360
    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - PS3 and 360
    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Mirrors of Fate - 3DS
    Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 - PS3 and 360

Music
  • Kinuyo Yamashita and Satoe Terashima NOTE: No image for Satoe Terashima

    The music for the first Castlevania game was composed by Kinuyo Yamashita and Satoe Terashima. Yamashita was credited under the pseudonym James Banana on the Famicom Disk System version of the game. Satoe Terashima composed Vampire Killer.


  • Michiru Yamane

    Michiru Yamane worked on Bloodlines, Symphony of the Night, Aria of Sorrow, Lament of Innocence, Dawn of Sorrow, Curse of Darkness, Portrait of Ruin, Order of Ecclesia, and a few tracks in Harmony of Dissonance and The Dracula X Chronicles.


  • Kenichi Matsubara

    Kenichi Matsubara worked on Simon's Quest and Haunted Castle.
  • Mikio Saito

    Mikio Saito composed Castlevania: Rondo of Blood


  • Sōta Fujimori

    Sōta Fujimori is responsible for all of the arranged songs in Castlevania Chronicles.


  • Taro Kudou and Masanori Adachi

    Taro Kudou (aka Souji Taro) and Masanori Adachi composed Super Castlevania IV's music.


  • Sotaro Tojima

    Sotaro Tojima composed Circle of the Moon.


  • Yuzo Koshiro

    Yuzo Koshiro (Ys, Streets of Rage and ActRaiser) worked on Portrait of Ruin.


  • Óscar Araujo

    Óscar Araujo composed the soundtrack for Lords of Shadow.

    http://i.imgur.com/U27ZRMQ.jpg

 
Last edited:

Kogasu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
76
Hi!! Yes I love the Castlevania series to death! One of my most favorite series of all time! Thank you for doing this one because I was thinking about just starting it myself tbh lol! So for my first post, as is tradition I guess. Bloodline's Simon's Theme is underrated!! ;)

 

Tfritz

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,864
It's really distressing to look at the release dates of Castlevania games and see how frequent they used to be.

I know a lot of people were down on Order of Ecclessia because the level design was generally lacking, but I loved the character art.
 
OP
OP
Kokonoe

Kokonoe

Banned
Oct 26, 2017
7,440
Hi!! Yes I love the Castlevania series to death! One of my most favorite series of all time! Thank you for doing this one because I was thinking about just starting it myself tbh lol! So for my first post, as is tradition I guess. Bloodline's Simon's Theme is underrated!! ;)

That OST is really solid and it's no surprise the same composer, Michiru Yamane, worked on SOTN.
 

Monado Blade

Member
Oct 25, 2017
62
Kuala Lumpur
Great thread, Kokonoe! Reminds me I'm due for a replay of SOTN. I've got a freshly restored SCPH-1000 perfect for this.

I'm one of the backers for Bloodstained so I'm also looking forward to playing that. I miss the time when we used to get a Castlevania almost every year but I've since made my peace with that. I don't think we'll see a return to classic style or metroidvania style Castlevania any time soon.
 

Kogasu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
76
People, I'm sorry... I don't get to talk about Castlevania often...lol

It's really distressing to look at the release dates of Castlevania games and see how frequent they used to be.

I know a lot of people were down on Order of Ecclessia because the level design was generally lacking, but I loved the character art.
Yeah, I miss the series dearly! Hoping Konami could come to their senses or let some company who really cares take a crack at it. Go the Sonic Mania route even.

OoE gets a lot of praise too. I hear it's the best of the three DS ones frequently of course that's all opinons but still. I've never played it myself yet though.

That OST is really solid and it's no surprise the same composer, Michiru Yamane, worked on SOTN.
I remember reading she had a fairly limited time to compose everything too! It's a testament to how amazing she is that this OST is pretty ace and even got some tracks rearranged and used in later titles! Good stuff!

I'm one of the backers for Bloodstained so I'm also looking forward to playing that. I miss the time when we used to get a Castlevania almost every year but I've since made my peace with that. I don't think we'll see a return to classic style or metroidvania style Castlevania any time soon.
I didn't get to back Bloodstained but man I can't wait to see how that game turns out. The return of Iga will hopefully be glorious but most of all, just something almost officially Castlevania... If O could get a new Classicvania like too, that'd be pretty nice!

Rondo of Blood for life, baby.
Yusss! Love Rondo a lot! It's right up there as one of most favorite Classicvanias for sure!
 

brandonh83

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,409
If I had the money I would buy Castlevania from Konami, sell it to Nintendo for free and throw the rest at however they want to produce it.
 

Kogasu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
76
If I had the money I would buy Castlevania from Konami, sell it to Nintendo for free and throw the rest at however they want to produce it.
Yeah!! Way Forward or maybe Yacht Club would be a reach but they could probably do something too. With Nintendo, give it to Retro I guess. That would guarantee a Belmont and Castlevania stuff in Smash and that's even better. I would also explode lol!
 

brandonh83

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,409
Well, I like to look at it like a filter.

If Nintendo had it, maybe they could give it to Yacht and fund it. They certainly understand game design of this caliber.
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
THE RESET
ERA HAS

VANQUISHED
THE HORRIBLE
NIGHT.


Here's hoping the usual suspects are reborn in a new era, though with the way the series has been treated there's not much to do but retread the same old discussions like which game is the best (Spoiler: it's Bloodlines) or how bad the Lords of Shadow games are (first one is solid, Mirror and Lords 2 are salty garbage). At least there's a Netflix series to generate interest, the NES and SNES Classic to hopefully introduce people to good and proper ClassicVanias and the potential for the Switch's Virtual Console to keep the memory alive until the next resurrection.
 

Kogasu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
76
Well, I like to look at it like a filter.

If Nintendo had it, maybe they could give it to Yacht and fund it. They certainly understand game design of this caliber.
Yes most definitely! Anyone that will do something worthwhile with it. Nintendo and all their second parties are the best case!

Here's hoping the usual suspects are reborn in a new era, though with the way the series has been treated there's not much to do but retread the same old discussions like which game is the best (Spoiler: it's Bloodlines) or how bad the Lords of Shadow games are (first one is solid, Mirror and Lords 2 are salty garbage). At least there's a Netflix series to generate interest, the NES and SNES Classic to hopefully introduce people to good and proper ClassicVanias and the potential for the Switch's Virtual Console to keep the memory alive until the next resurrection.
Heyyy I 'member you! :)

Yeah still not much new to say as it was on the old site. I'm just hoping to keep it going as long as possible I guess. That Netflix series was hype as hell and I remember wanting to scream it from the roof tops lol!

PS: I <3 you for loving Bloodlines!
 

Spyhunterzero

Member
Oct 25, 2017
31
Dallas, TX
THE RESET
ERA HAS
VANQUISHED
THE HORRIBLE
NIGHT.


Here's hoping the usual suspects are reborn in a new era, though with the way the series has been treated there's not much to do but retread the same old discussions like which game is the best (Spoiler: it's Bloodlines) or how bad the Lords of Shadow games are (first one is solid, Mirror and Lords 2 are salty garbage). At least there's a Netflix series to generate interest, the NES and SNES Classic to hopefully introduce people to good and proper ClassicVanias and the potential for the Switch's Virtual Console to keep the memory alive until the next resurrection.
Yeah, I will agree that there is not much else to talk about. Also, Super Castlevania IV is the best one out of all :D
 

Tizoc

Member
Oct 25, 2017
19,015
Oman
I plan on playing thru super castlevania 4 in coming days as it is on sale on 3ds eshop
I hadnt played all catlevania games but will aim to in the future esp with various mods and hacs that improve them
 

Spyhunterzero

Member
Oct 25, 2017
31
Dallas, TX
I've played all main line games and some spin offs. Really wanted to try the arcade game but I never ran into it. I'm actually replaying Lament of Innocence right thanks to watching a boss rush video a few days back of it
 

Xeonidus

Member
Oct 28, 2017
348
Awesome! Thanks for doing this. One of my favourite series. Eagerly anticipating Bloodstained but I hope Konami decides to revisit the Belmonts one day (not holding my breath).
 

StarErik

Member
Oct 27, 2017
272
I always liked Castlevania as a concept and I even bought some soundtracks back in the day (Aria & Dawn of Sorrow, Lament of Innocence, Curse of Darkness and even Castlevania 64), but I never got around to playing them, heh. I finally played through Super Castlevania IV on the SNES Mini with some friends and liked it, even though it was hard as shit (bless the lord for save states.) We started playing SotN after that and I am hooked. I need to play more.

Too bad Konami hates their previous success and lord knows when we will get a new, and a real Castlevania game. Bloodstained is the closest thing but I am really not impressed. It looks bad and bland.
 

Namiks

Permanently banned for usage of an alt-account.
Banned
Oct 28, 2017
274
Everyone better be playing Symphony of the Night this October.

If you're not, well, start.
 

Rackham

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,654
SOTN still one of the greatest games of all time. Needs an HD remaster. Not a remake. They'd fuck it up.
 

StarPhlox

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,712
Texas
I did a nearly full series playthrough in the last year (just need to finish up the two canonical 3D games) and it's become a favorite of mine. Order of Ecclesia to me is the encapsulation of everything I love about the series and represents the peak in my eyes. Looking forward to Bloodstained!
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
Yeah, I will agree that there is not much else to talk about. Also, Super Castlevania IV is the best one out of all :D
SCIV has dropped a bit for me lately, playing it on the SNES Classic recently reminded me of the various flaws it has. The biggest one in my opinion is that it's a bit longer than it needs to be, to the point that it kind of drags on in places. I know it seems absurd to complain about too much game, but I feel like Castlevania works best when it's a tight, taut experience. To that point, I also think the 8-way whip makes it a bit too easy in comparison to the rest of the series, and the difficulty in general feels a little lower (don't get me wrong though, it's still a tough game). The two together makes it sag in places, not to the point that it's boring, but it just feels like a level or two could have been cut and the game wouldn't suffer for it. Still a damn fine soundtrack and great visuals, and I'd still suggest that where people start their Castlevania experience if they're new to the series (where the lower difficulty does help).

Still an amazing game, though. You don't run into any truly bad Castlevania games until Igarashi took over.

Everyone better be playing Symphony of the Night this October.

If you're not, well, start.
I make it a point to play through SotN every autumn, not only because of Halloween (though that's certainly fitting) but because it released stateside on October 2nd 1997, so all of my first memories with the game are in autumn too. I did my yearly playthru in September though since I knew this month would be busy. Did my usual X-X!V''Q code and threw the Drac fight to get super low stats, and tried to use only fist weapons. Pretty fun, but I think next year I'm gonna try some goofy "assassin" build with only super short blades, throwing daggers only, skip HP up pickups and wear lighter armor.

SOTN still one of the greatest games of all time. Needs an HD remaster. Not a remake. They'd fuck it up.
I'd settle for a Switch port, as PSP owners can attest the only thing that can make SotN better is playing it portable.

I did a nearly full series playthrough in the last year (just need to finish up the two canonical 3D games) and it's become a favorite of mine. Order of Ecclesia to me is the encapsulation of everything I love about the series and represents the peak in my eyes. Looking forward to Bloodstained!
To hell with the canon, it was an arbitrary decision made by Igarashi after he took over the series and you'll be missing on some great games. Circle of the Moon is a great Metroidvania (much better than Harmony of Dissonance) and the N64 games are still the best 3-D version of classic Castlevania gameplay that we've gotten. Don't sleep on Legacy of Darkness, it suffers from flaws common of early 3D games (bad camera, confusing level design, etc.) but it's one of the more atmospheric games in the series and actually has some survival horror-like elements and legitimately horror-like parts. I believe LoD also includes all the content from CV64 (LoD was more of an expansion pack than a full game), so you don't need to play both. Here's a post from That Other Forum I wrote up about the 64 games;

In my opinion, Castlevania, or at least Classicvania, can be boiled down to three distinct elements;

High-commitment Platforming:
Setting aside Metroidvanias, no Castlevania protagonist could ever be accused of being fast nor graceful. You generally have one speed (angry walk) with no momentum and very little if any control over your character any time their feet leave the ground. Platforming in Castlevania is so much less forgiving than its peers that you can't help but hold your breath until you reach the other side, even for stuff that looks fairly safe.

Limited Combat:
You have a whip with a relatively short range and with few exceptions, it only attacks in one direction (and it's worth pointing out that the difficulty level of the games with multi-direction whipping is much lower than those without). You have a few sub-weapons which grant you a longer range (dagger and cross) or vertical reach (axe), but for the most part you're fighting enemies when they're close enough to affect you, and they often have you at a disadvantage in terms of positioning. Enemies also occasionally have more speed and mobility than you (Medusa Heads and Fleamen especially), but rarely take more than a single hit to dispatch, so even if you're not moving through the game quickly due to the intentionally slower pace, you're still generally moving forward without spending too much time on the rank and file baddies.

Gothic / Horror Atmosphere:
Castlevania is all about spooky forests, dark graveyards, crumbling castles, haunted swamps and eerie caves. Menacing eyes watch you from the shadows. Stages are foggy or stormy and rarely lit by anything but flickering candles and moonlight. There's corpses and ghastly statues everywhere. The enemies you meet are literally spawned from hell, and the bosses you encounter often have deep literary or even mythological context.


So how do those apply to the 3-D Castlevania games?

Right off the bat (lol), Lords of Shadow is out. The platforming, if we can really call it that, is mostly "hit button when sparkly thing appears to auto-attach whip" with a dash of "press button to grab ledge." Very rarely are there legitimate platforming segments. Likewise, the God of War-esque combat has you just flailing the whip around, executing multi-hit combos on multiple enemies at once. I'm not saying it's bad, but it's not Castlevania. Likewise, Lords of Shadow plays a little loose with the setting; Agharta and Pan's Temple are just too brightly lit and feel like something out of Lord of the Rings, and I'm not even gonna talk about the city setting in LoS2 (that said, the actual castle sections in Lords of Shadow are amazing).

Lament of Innocence has very little platforming as well, and the combat is similarly full of enormously flashy, multi-hit, room-wide flailing whip attacks. Nails the atmosphere, though.

Curse of Darkness, as far as I can recall, has no platforming to speak of. The combat is a little better, being more melee-oriented due to the character not using a whip, but it's still very heavy on whacking the shit out of enemies for a while until the explode. The atmosphere was alright (though for large stretches it tends to feel very generic).

And then you get to Castlevania 64 and it's "expansion pack", Legacy of Darkness. There's a ton of platforming going on here, and none of it is of the 'automated' variety you find in the above games where you're just pressing a button to 'snap' to an object. You're making jumps across moving platforms, shimmying down cliffs, the whole nine yards; legit platforming. Combat makes a similar transition; the whip is extremely narrow and while there is a lock-on feature, it actually feels like a 3-D version of the 2-D gameplay. Similarly, the game's atmosphere is fantastic, full of dank waterways, haunted hedgemazes (with a legitimately scary enemy chasing you through it), spooky villas and plenty of Castlevania locales (the clock tower is especially memorable).

That said, there's a ton of legitimate issues with the game; annoying puzzles (The Magic Nitro/Mandragora bit especially), a plethora of bugs, some odd design choices (motorcycle skeletons!) and an especially awful camera. But considering this was the transitional era from 2-D to 3-D some growing pains are expected, and despite those issues the game still manages to absolutely capture what I consider the essence of Castlevania to be and move it into the third dimension, in a way that the later 3-D games simply haven't. That's not to say they're bad games by any stretch (in fact, they're quite good), just that they're not really carrying the spirit of the series forward. At worst, they're simply character action games with a healthy coat of Castlevania paint applied. But you really do have to go back almost 20 years to find the formula's best 3-D outting.
 

StarErik

Member
Oct 27, 2017
272
To hell with the canon, it was an arbitrary decision made by Igarashi
I recently read that, according to Igarashi, the directors of these games wished to not be included in the timeline because they saw them as spin-offs and not "real" Castlevania/Akumajo Dracula games. But I can't for the life of me remember where I read it.
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
I recently read that, according to Igarashi, the directors of these games wished to not be included in the timeline because they saw them as spin-offs and not "real" Castlevania/Akumajo Dracula games. But I can't for the life of me remember where I read it.
The point still stands though, whether they're spin-offs or not they're still games worth playing.
 

Rich

Member
Oct 28, 2017
259
England
Hey!

Thought some people here may be interested in this patch for Symphony of the Night:

https://www.romhacking.net/hacks/3606/

It removes the black bars/border from the game to enable a true full screen display. I've given it a playthrough on real hardware and it works great.




Full changelist:

Main features:


  • Removed black bars on the top and bottom of the screen (ingame, menu, final scene);
  • Updated the tile maps of all locations to increase the visible area of the screen;
  • Unlocked and finalized rooms under the hatch (at the entrance to the usual and reverse castles);
  • The positions of some menu items have been changed (expanded backgrounds & frames, etc.);
  • Impossibility to leave the castle through the gate by playing for Richter;
  • Impossibility to keep the initial equipment of Alucard (avoiding a meeting with Death, using the trick with a wolf, is no longer possible);
  • Impossibility of going outside the castle in the location of “Royal Chapel” (in the form of a bat);
  • The loading rooms on the global map are now highlighted in white;

Changes in v1.1:


  • Adjusted vertical position of HUD (for Richter, Dracula and Alucard);
  • Adjusted vertical position of Alucard in the final scene (bad ending);
  • Adjusted height of the magic pillar in the opening scene (when Maria restores Richter);
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
Of course, I will get around to playing Legacy of Darkness at some point.
Right, but my comment about canon wasn't directed at you, and wasn't really aimed at anyone in particular. Igarashi's tinkering with the series is just an annoyance of mine and I never miss an opportunity to gripe about it =)
 

palazuelos

Member
Oct 27, 2017
29
Spain
I’ve only played the first game on my NES mini and I love it. I want to play another but I don’t know if I should play Castlevania II pr go direct to IV.
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
I’ve only played the first game on my NES mini and I love it. I want to play another but I don’t know if I should play Castlevania II pr go direct to IV.
Simon's Quest is kind of... um.... not so great by default. It has some translation issues and a lot of nonsensical puzzles that are almost impossible to solve without a guide. I'm a huge Castlevania fan and about as anti-strategy guide as they come and I wouldn't have even attempted to beat the game without help.... and save states, there's a lot of items you need to buy but the currency is wiped out if you die and there's some pretty dicey jumps and stuff on the way to those purchases. It's not impossible, but it's kind of unfriendly and annoying in spots.

My advice would be to go to Castlevania III (I'll echo Rich's comments and suggest the Japanese version, CV3 is nastier in places than the original and the JP version dials it back slightly) or if you're not able to find it on a virtual console or don't want to emulate, go to SCIV. If you find yourself a fan of the series, you can circle back and play Simon's Quest.
 

qq more

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,732
Yay! Glad to see this thread back. I've been meaning to play the series more as I'm still relatively inexperienced (only played very few games)

I've been playing Super Castlevania IV again thanks to the SNES Mini. It's a solid game that can be frustratingly tough sometimes (but for good reasons!). I'm at Stage 6 at the moment. How many levels are there in this game? 12?
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
Yay! Glad to see this thread back. I've been meaning to play the series more as I'm still relatively inexperienced (only played very few games)

I've been playing Super Castlevania IV again thanks to the SNES Mini. It's a solid game that can be frustratingly tough sometimes (but for good reason!). I'm at Stage 6 at the moment. How many levels are there in this game? 12?
Eleven stages total, though it labels 10 and 11 as "Stage A" and "Stage B," respectively.

I thought Lords of Shadow and even the N64 one aren't that bad.
Lords of Shadow is a solid enough game, but if you strip the name and direct Castlevania references out of it I don't think anyone would remember it. You'd be left with a pretty bog-standard action game.
 

qq more

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,732
Ah, I see! Thanks, so I'm about a bit more than halfway then :)

Hi!! Yes I love the Castlevania series to death! One of my most favorite series of all time! Thank you for doing this one because I was thinking about just starting it myself tbh lol! So for my first post, as is
tradition I guess. Bloodline's Simon's Theme is underrated!! ;)

OH MY GODDDDDDDDD this is beautiful. I had no idea Simon's SCIV theme were in other games
 

Ashodin

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,163
Burlington, NC
Eleven stages total, though it labels 10 and 11 as "Stage A" and "Stage B," respectively.



Lords of Shadow is a solid enough game, but if you strip the name and direct Castlevania references out of it I don't think anyone would remember it. You'd be left with a pretty bog-standard action game.
It's actually one of my favorite titles in the franchise, if only for Jason Isaacs + Patrick Stewart
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
Ah, I see! Thanks, so I'm about a bit more than halfway then :)
Yeah, like I said upthread, SCIV is just a tad too long for my tastes. I always feel like there's too many sort of generic castle sections, Stage 4 (Death Tower), 5 (Castle Entrance) and 6 (Main Hall) all sort of fit the same theme. I also think the Treasury is kind of superfluous.
 

Dreamboum

Member
Oct 28, 2017
14,688
Treasury is such a good level. I don’t find it too long, and it all makes sense when you consider all of it as the product of Dracula’s maniacal mind in his domain. The journey of SCIV has always been a visual exploration of Deacula’s psyche. Ghost dancers, a treasury level, warping rooms...it’s a huge tonal shift from earlier CVs
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
I didn't say it wasn't a good level, just that SCIV is already packed to the rafters with stages. The three areas I mentioned seem kind of redundant in theme to me (especially when the Castle Keep shows up later and nails it anyway, and has the better music to boot), and I think a treasury is sort of an oddly narrow theme to devote an entire stage to.

Don't get me wrong, SCIV is a great game, I'm just nitpicking, and there's not much else going on. If you guys would rather talk about the latest news from Konami, we can discuss... um.... hmm..... no.... ah.... wait.... hmm... Erotic Violence? =p
 

Kogasu

Member
Oct 25, 2017
76
OH MY GODDDDDDDDD this is beautiful. I had no idea Simon's SCIV theme were in other games
Yuss! When that bass kicks in... All the chills! Love it!

Don't get me wrong, SCIV is a great game, I'm just nitpicking, and there's not much else going on. If you guys would rather talk about the latest news from Konami, we can discuss... um.... hmm..... no.... ah.... wait.... hmm... Erotic Violence? =p
I like SCIV though it just oozes gloomy atmosphere, I'm used to the newer CV atmosphere at this point. lol also Erotic Violence....
let's not...
I don't wanna cry today.. :/

Dracula X has some rockin' tunes
Yeah! Assuming you're talking of the SNES game. I really like some of the Snes-ified renditions of Rondo songs a lot! Some arrangements even moreso than Rondo itself. I'll say I like Beginning in it more than Rondo for sure. It's got Opus 13 but No Cross a Fear though so that's a miss! :( Still great though!
 

Pascal

The Fallen
Oct 28, 2017
4,367
I love Castlevania so much! Aria of Sorrow and Order of Ecclesia are two of my favorite games of all time. I hope Bloodstained ends up being good. It's the first (and only) game I've backed on Kickstarter.

I recently played the original Castlevania for the first time on the NES Mini and I loved it, but I'm ashamed to say that I quit before I could beat it. I made it to the level with all of the birds that drop fleamen on you in the long corridor and I just couldn't figure out a good way to bring down the boss. I plan on going back to finish the job sometime though.
 
OP
OP
Kokonoe

Kokonoe

Banned
Oct 26, 2017
7,440
We really need a modern port of Castlevania: Harmony of Despair. It's not the most traditional game but man is it really damn fun.
 

Retro

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,634
I like SCIV though it just oozes gloomy atmosphere, I'm used to the newer CV atmosphere at this point.
Heh, what even constitutes "Newer CV atmosphere" at this point, the godawful Animu stuff from DoS / Portrait? I don't think Ecclesia counts as a new style since there's just that one game and nothing after it that matched that style. Were it not for Harmony of Despair, the latest mainline Castlevania style would be Judgement's godawful redesigns... blech!
 

Htown

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,107
Reminds me, I need to pick up Rondo of Blood before Wii Virtual Console goes down for good.