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The Castlevania Thread

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Cool.. just bumped my percentage on SOTN to over 220. Got outside the castle in the eastern wing where the medusa heads float around and the eleevator can take you up multiple floors. I got there by falling down from the screen just above the bottom floor, and kept using heart refreshes.. about 100 times! But hey, it worked. Maybe if I can do the "dive jump" as I drop down the screen I can use less heart refreshes. Will give it another shot elsewhere later.

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I got another DS Lite system last week, so I ended up continuing my game of Dawn of Sorrow through the Julius Mode. I hadn't made it very far before selling my last DS system, but I ended up finishing it this time around. To my surprise, you get Alucard as a playable character! That really surprised me, and what shocked me even more is that he acts a lot like he does in SOTN, right down to being able to attack diagonally (why they didn't give this ability to Soma in the main game is beyond me!). The new last boss (evil Soma) was pretty challenging as well, which was refreshing.

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Ugh.. the areas I can get the most percentage completion on Symphony Of The Night are areas I get stuck in. There's a trick with using the 2-handed sword after changing from the wolf and then being able to use a library card to get out of there but it doesn't seem to work for me.

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As an adult, I can get to the Grim Reaper, but have yet to defeat him - ONE DAY!!! I will have Victory :twisted:

 

 

 

Holy Water makes it all too easy

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As an adult, I can get to the Grim Reaper, but have yet to defeat him - ONE DAY!!! I will have Victory :twisted:

 

 

 

Holy Water makes it all too easy

 

Grim Reaper is a tough SOB, but I always had success by using the Axe or the Cross and keep throwing them while moving rapidly around the room, doding and getting in those whip cracks when you can.

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I went through all of this Castlevania 1 madness last year, trying to beat it (the GBA port). In spite of the efforts of StanJr, Austin and others, I never got past Frankie. I will try to find that thread; it has some walk through videos made by some folks here.

 

EDIT: Just realized that you guys are talking about CV III. That one is much harder!! I never made it past the two mummies.

Edited by toptenmaterial
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To answer the OP's question, I think that the original Castlevania is the best. All of the titles I've played in the series with the exception of the first Game Boy port are top notch, but the very first game has a mix of arcade action and strategy that stands out above the rest IMHO. I've played DXC, Rondo of Blood, SOTN, Castlevania II, and the one Game Boy cart which I think was called the Castlevania Adventure of something like that.

I'd say that after the original, DXC is my second favorite (the 3D remake part of it, that is), then SOTN, and Castlevania II. I haven't played enough of Rondo to know if I really like it or not.

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The original for NES is my favorite, and now that I have Chorus of Mystery and Blood Moon, they're right up there....

C. III is a monster of Epic Proportions!

 

Come 16 bit iterations and my head esplodes :P

 

 

The Playstation versions (the two of them) are too amazing for words. All 3 GBA and all 3 DS iterations are also, too amazing for words.

 

 

 

 

 

Part 1 on the NES is probably my favorite Platformer of all time. I received a NES for X-mas in '86, and Castlevania I was one of my first games. As a kid, I couldn't get past Frankensteins Monster. As an adult, I can get to the Grim Reaper, but have yet to defeat him - ONE DAY!!! I will have Victory :twisted:

 

There's too much to say about the series - it has to be one of the most pivotal Platforming series of all time.

 

Grim Reaper just takes practice. The best advice I can give is to go to the last section of stage 5 where the red skeletons appear just before the stairs. You can scroll them on and off screen by walking left and right. There's a cross and plenty of heart nearby. Once you get that cross flying and three or four skeletons on screen, the points rack up fast. When you roll the score the formula changes. Kill skeletons until you get the cross and triple shot, then go fight the Grim Reaper. If you pick up the Axe by mistake, just keep on truckin' over to the Grim Reaper.

Try to retain the cross+triple shot, though, and keep the crosses flying during the battle. They'll thin out the snakes for you and score some hits on the Reaper as well. Keep that morning star flying as well. If the reaper is close, throw crosses his direction, but if he's at the other side of the screen, throw them the opposite way so they don't turn around too quickly to hit him.

With the axe it's a bit harder, but you can target the Reaper directly even if he's high in the air. You'll need to rely on the morning star to kill the snakes.

 

Either way, keep moving a little at a time and try not to fall under the platforms on either side of the screen. Once each snake begins to move, I don't think it'll change course until it has stopped, so you can wait a bit for them to move, then adjust your position so they barely miss you. If the crosses don't get them, you can whip at them as they pass by. It's a tough battle, but very winnable.

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If you can save triple holy water, IIRC Grimmy lands on the far right platform. Just before he makes an appearance you can start lobbing waters onto that platform and just keep doing it. He may not even be able to move at all!

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If you can save triple holy water, IIRC Grimmy lands on the far right platform. Just before he makes an appearance you can start lobbing waters onto that platform and just keep doing it. He may not even be able to move at all!

 

This. Pure and simple. Once you start in the with the HW, Death is locked in place and just turns to ash. So easy. No fear.

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great thread, i really liked Castlevania on the SNES (IV) so i will throw in my vote for that being imo the overall best... BUT I cant believe no one has mentioned Castlevania Rebirth it's awesome.

 

Meh. I'm with you on CV4 being awesome, but CV Rebirth feels poorly and haphazardly assembled to me. It's not as bad as Gradius Rebirth, but it still seems half assed.

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Can anybody give me some advice on which handheld CV games I should get? I have a Nintendo DS so I can play GBA and DS games.

 

I love Portrait of Ruin. I'm probably in the minority on that one.

 

I've tried getting into one of the GBA ones and the DS one before PoR, the ones with the white haired guy which are supposed to take place in 20XX or something. They just don't click with me. They're nowhere near as entertaining as I found PoR.

 

I'd just recommend staying away from Order of Ecclessia. It's bad.

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I love Portrait of Ruin. I'm probably in the minority on that one.

 

I've tried getting into one of the GBA ones and the DS one before PoR, the ones with the white haired guy which are supposed to take place in 20XX or something. They just don't click with me. They're nowhere near as entertaining as I found PoR.

 

I'd just recommend staying away from Order of Ecclessia. It's bad.

 

I didn't mind Order of Ecclesia. As the third Castlevania DS outing, however, the whole thing was starting to get a little long in the tooth. The three games just kind of blend together for me. I did like the character illustrations in Ecclesia. Each character kinda had this look on their face where you could immediately read their personality and what they were thinking. It was a refreshing change from the cute anime style that creeped into the Castlevania series. About the only 2D Castlevania game I don't like is Harmony of Dissonance. That one felt completely uninspired. I've probably already mentioned it in this thread somewhere.

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I had one annoyance with CV III. And that was the multiple paths / characters. Because once you pick one, THAT'S IT.

 

So this being the NES and getting through a level being a hard-fought achievement.. it always left me wondering if I chose the "harder" path or if I picked a bad character for the level. It just got frustrating for me with all the second guessing. :lol:

Edited by NE146

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Holy Water makes it all too easy

 

Hmmm, I've never even tried that weapon...

 

Grim Reaper just takes practice. The best advice I can give is to go to the last section of stage 5 where the red skeletons appear just before the stairs. You can scroll them on and off screen by walking left and right. There's a cross and plenty of heart nearby. Once you get that cross flying and three or four skeletons on screen, the points rack up fast. When you roll the score the formula changes. Kill skeletons until you get the cross and triple shot, then go fight the Grim Reaper. If you pick up the Axe by mistake, just keep on truckin' over to the Grim Reaper.

Try to retain the cross+triple shot, though, and keep the crosses flying during the battle. They'll thin out the snakes for you and score some hits on the Reaper as well. Keep that morning star flying as well. If the reaper is close, throw crosses his direction, but if he's at the other side of the screen, throw them the opposite way so they don't turn around too quickly to hit him.

With the axe it's a bit harder, but you can target the Reaper directly even if he's high in the air. You'll need to rely on the morning star to kill the snakes.

 

Either way, keep moving a little at a time and try not to fall under the platforms on either side of the screen. Once each snake begins to move, I don't think it'll change course until it has stopped, so you can wait a bit for them to move, then adjust your position so they barely miss you. If the crosses don't get them, you can whip at them as they pass by. It's a tough battle, but very winnable.

 

I truly appreciate you taking the time to share your 'play by play' strategy with me. :thumbsup:

 

This. Pure and simple. Once you start in the with the HW, Death is locked in place and just turns to ash. So easy. No fear.

 

I am going to boot it up this week and attempt all that has been suggested to me. Thanks, fellas... I really appreciate it! :-D

 

My biggest issue with that stage isn't just the Grim Reaper, but the stage iteslf.... usually by the time I make it to Death, I'm at half health or a smidge above half way. I suppose if it's as easy as StanJr states it, then it shouldn't matter if I only have half health.

 

 

I'm sure most of you have much bigger gaming titles under your belts, but for me... defeating C. 1 on the NES would be one of my biggest gaming milestones. Perhaps that isn't saying much, but in my little world... it'd mean a lot to finally meet and defeat the Dark Prince. ;)

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Ah.. finally I can start to rack up the percentage points on SOTN. There were a lot of areas where when you do the heart refresh trick to slip under the floor of the next room, it doesn't register as a white area on the map. For each new white area you intend to make you have to use another heart refresh while in free fall under the floor. Then you have .01% more on the map! So as of now I am over 223%.

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Can anybody give me some advice on which handheld CV games I should get? I have a Nintendo DS so I can play GBA and DS games.

 

The first of the three GBA Metroidvanias, Circle of the Moon, is quite a good, long, and even challenging game of this style. While it lacks the sprawling inventories and sheer variety of collectibles of SOTN, Aria of Sorrow and others, it's rather a quality effort and my vote for best game among the early days of the GBA. If you do give it a spin, try to resist using the glitch that lets you equip card combos you shouldn't have access to yet, it's (obviously) not as rewarding a play that way.

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I love Portrait of Ruin. I'm probably in the minority on that one.

 

I've tried getting into one of the GBA ones and the DS one before PoR, the ones with the white haired guy which are supposed to take place in 20XX or something. They just don't click with me. They're nowhere near as entertaining as I found PoR.

 

I'd just recommend staying away from Order of Ecclessia. It's bad.

 

Hm, interesting, I'll make sure to check out some PoR gameplay first. What is it you like about PoR so much? I really like a straight forward CV game. While I love SotN-type Castlevania, I really appreciate the level design more than the RPG gameplay element.

 

 

I didn't mind Order of Ecclesia. As the third Castlevania DS outing, however, the whole thing was starting to get a little long in the tooth. The three games just kind of blend together for me. I did like the character illustrations in Ecclesia. Each character kinda had this look on their face where you could immediately read their personality and what they were thinking. It was a refreshing change from the cute anime style that creeped into the Castlevania series. About the only 2D Castlevania game I don't like is Harmony of Dissonance. That one felt completely uninspired. I've probably already mentioned it in this thread somewhere.

 

Character illustrations do look a bit darker, indeed. I don't care that much about the DoS anime style that you see in some other DS games. Although it doesn't bother me either. It's still Castlevania, you know ;-)

 

I had one annoyance with CV III. And that was the multiple paths / characters. Because once you pick one, THAT'S IT.

 

So this being the NES and getting through a level being a hard-fought achievement.. it always left me wondering if I chose the "harder" path or if I picked a bad character for the level. It just got frustrating for me with all the second guessing. :lol:

 

The branching paths in CV III offer a great replay value IMO, especially for and NES game, and even more so if you're a Castlevania fan. Even after 3 playthroughs you will play levels which you have never played before. I think that's really cool. :-)

 

The first of the three GBA Metroidvanias, Circle of the Moon, is quite a good, long, and even challenging game of this style. While it lacks the sprawling inventories and sheer variety of collectibles of SOTN, Aria of Sorrow and others, it's rather a quality effort and my vote for best game among the early days of the GBA. If you do give it a spin, try to resist using the glitch that lets you equip card combos you shouldn't have access to yet, it's (obviously) not as rewarding a play that way.

 

I definitely like the art direction. I think I'll pick this one up when I come across it.

 

Thanks to all of you for the advice!

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I'm seeing some interesting takes on the DS Metroidvania games. I am pretty sure I already stated my feelings on them somewhere earlier in the thread, but for me, here are my current feelings after recently visiting all three of these games back-to-back. I should note that I had never played Order of Ecclesia until recently, liked Dawn of Sorrow but wasn't thrilled by it, and had some serious disdain for Portrait of Ruin prior to this recent revisitation.

 

 

(tl/dr - all of these games are pretty awesome.)

 

 

Order of Ecclesia

Having never played it before, I was hooked pretty much immediately. I loved the new art style, and the animation and visuals were just as solid as anything that came before. The music immediately caught my attention, and it remained pleasing to my ears for the entire game (some tracks are more memorable than others still, of course). It's easily one of my favorite Castlevania soundtracks now.

 

Gameplay-wise, I particularly like the attacking system where you solely use your MP meter and it recharges when you stop attacking. Along with being able to equip multiple weapons at once and quickly attack back and forth with them, it offered a fresh way to hack and slash your way through the game. The sectioned map was also a welcome addition, where some areas visited are short "levels", while others (like Dracula's castle) are large and sprawling, sometimes with multiple exits. Because of this map system, I didn't feel I was wandering around aimlessly, failing to solve some kind of cryptic puzzle like I would in say, Dawn of Sorrow, and this was a nice change of pace. To mix things up even further, the optional quests were another welcome addition. Sure, you had a similar kind of thing in Portrait of Ruin, but the quests there were so vague (or pointless), that there was no desire to actually complete them. It's different in Ecclesia, as speaking to the townspeople often provides missions that make more sense, as well as an added layer of humor on top of the darker, well-written main plotline.

 

Now, after rolling through all three DS games again (multiple times), I can say that the only downside to Order of Ecclesia is its replay value. With the more linear map design, it's easier to sort of "max out" the game, leaving you little to do after finishing it and gathering all the items the first time around. Yeah, there are harder difficulty modes, but one ("Hard Level 1") is pretty much impossible. The Albus mode also feels tacked on (unlike the Julius mode in Dawn of Sorrow), and the boss rush mode is the same kind of fare as the other DS games (i.e., nothing terribly special).

 

In the end, I don't understand some of the overly negative comments regarding this game ("Order of Ecclesia just sucks, stay away from it" :?). I actually feel that Order of Ecclesia is the BEST one for the FIRST time through: The game felt intriguing, addictive and was just plain fun, making for a fantastic first time through. With the smaller level structure though, it might not have as much staying power in that regard as some of the others. Still, this will be a must-play that I will have to come back to every couple of years.

 

 

Dawn of Sorrow

This was the first one I chose to "revisit" of the two I had already played before. I wasn't expecting to enjoy it more than I had in the past, but this time around things just "clicked" and I stormed through this game. I had a blast, although as mentioned above, there were some moments where I had no idea where to go, and I had to revert to a FAQ online.

 

The soul system is the meat of the game and was the main draw for me once I really dived in. With loads and loads of abilities available to you in the game, on TOP of the regular weapons and items you can find, there's a lot of reason to keep playing the game even after you finish it. But that's not all--you can even stack the amount of souls you have for further stat boosts, something Aria of Sorrow did not do.

 

Another great addition that further extends the life of the game is the Julius mode. In Symphony of the Night, you could play again as Richter (and in the Saturn one, as Maria). These felt tacked on though. In Dawn of Sorrow, there is an extended, alternate story that goes along with it, and there is even a different final boss (I won't spoil things completely!). The best part about it is that you meet up with Alucard, and he becomes a playable character in your party, The great thing is that he looks and feels mostly like he does in Symphony of the Night, with many of the same moves (including his downward slash). It's awesome. :)

 

Art-wise, I didn't mind it much this time around. I focused more on the story, which is relatively cut and dry and just gets to the point (the way I like it). And speaking of which, the art style is relatively misleading, because there are some genuinely screwed up things that happen later on in the game. Don't let the cutesy cartoon look mislead you!

 

Overall, I think this is the best DS Castlevania game for someone that simply wants a lot to do. The castle is huge, there are a ton of abilities, and there's a lot of reason to just keep playing.

 

 

Portrait of Ruin

This is the last one to play during my stint, and the second of the two I needed to "revisit". I wasn't expecting to enjoy it much at all, and in some ways I didn't--at first.

 

The biggest reason for this is that I was using one character at a time, much like every other MetroidVania title I had played before it. This actually makes killing enemies to be a chore. I found that you are really supposed to use both characters at once, either by bringing them out for stronger magic attacks once in a while, or just leaving them out to do their own thing (usually attack), while you do so at the same time. This allowed me to mow down enemies soooo much faster, and it made the game a lot more fluid as a result. Once I stopped relying on a single character, the game was a ton of fun. I no longer felt the need to rely on the slow, hulking swords and hammers, and was able to revert back to the cool, varying whips I obtained throughout the game.

 

Map-wise, I like the idea of the portraits. It's like having multiple castle maps in one game, without using the "reversed/mirrored" castle gimmick. I especially like how there is another main castle to explore as you progress through the game, with the usual warp rooms, save spots, etc.

 

Now, I do still have a few issues with this game, and they definitely need to be noted:

 

First, the story. It feels very convoluted, and there is a lot of mostly pointless banter between the main characters. Unlike Dawn of Sorrow, the story in this actually amplifies the kiddy vibe you get with the anime visuals (that's of course not to say all anime looks kiddy, but I think you understand what I mean). It just felt unnecessary, and it went on, and on, and on. In Order of Ecclesia, the story was short and sweet, and well done. In Dawn of Sorrow, the story wasn't as easy to follow as Order of Ecclesia's, but it didn't clutter things with unnecessary chatter.

 

Second, the game just overstays its welcome, period. When you get to what you think is going to be the the end of the game, you are greeted to, oh, guess what--FOUR more paintings (basically, maps you have to play through). And what are they? Pallette-swapped versions of the paintings you already visited, with different level structures and a couple of new enemies. Had these been completely new stages through and through (backgrounds and all), I might have been more accepting of this, but they are simply redundant as-is. One of my least favorite ways to extend the life of a game.

 

Third, the missions are pretty damn cryptic. Unlike Order of Ecclesia, I was barely able to complete any of them.

 

Still, overall I had fun with the game. It has your quality Castlevania visuals, some great tunes, and fun boss fights. There's unfortunately not quite as much to do in terms of item collecting, but all in all, there's a lot to explore here and overall a pretty fun game. I think I still put it at the bottom of the three DS titles, but it's definitely good fun.

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I finished Castlevania II: Simon's Quest on the NES this weekend.

 

Despite the fact that the game's riddles are WAY too cryptic to figure out without a walkthrough (for me at least), I actually really liked many other aspects of the game, like the music, the graphics, the overall dark and desolate atmosphere, as well as the items and weapon upgrades.

 

If they would have built in a map screen and made the riddle a bit less vague, this would have been a kick-ass Castlevania game. The few boss "fights" could use a remake as well :-)

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I finished Castlevania II: Simon's Quest on the NES this weekend.

 

Despite the fact that the game's riddles are WAY too cryptic to figure out without a walkthrough (for me at least), I actually really liked many other aspects of the game, like the music, the graphics, the overall dark and desolate atmosphere, as well as the items and weapon upgrades.

 

If they would have built in a map screen and made the riddle a bit less vague, this would have been a kick-ass Castlevania game. The few boss "fights" could use a remake as well :-)

I wasn't crazy about Simon's Quest. The music, however, is great and some tunes are reused in other CV games. I also liked the castle levels (where the boss/Drac body part is).

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