1up Blog #83: Castlevania Retrospective (09/14/2011)
may not be a very timely blog in the slightest, but I’m doing it anyway
dammit! I recently played Castlevania: Symphony of the Night for the
first time, so I decided to write a blog on what I have played in the
series before diving into the latest entry: Lords of Shadow. This list
is by no means a definitive look on the series, but screw it, I’m doing
1. Castlevania: Circle of the Moon
I know this
was my first game in the series, some might believe its placing on this
list is solely due to rose-tinted nostalgia. However, I have beaten the
game probably half a dozen times and I still can’t get sick of it. I
don’t care if IGA says it isn’t canon, to me COTM still has the best
castle design, music, and bosses.
2. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow
has never been known for particularly great stories. AOS however,
actually has a pretty interesting one and a fantastic twist closer
towards the end *spoiler* the main character turns out to be Dracula.
Although most everything else isn’t quite as good as COTM, it still does
a fine job. And hey, at least the game is playable without a lamp!
3. Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
finally played the game that started the whole Metroidvania craze and
it’s... good? To be honest, since many fans still claim this is the best
in the series I was expecting a little more. Most of the bosses were
pathetically easy (especially the final boss) and it was kind of
repetitive exploring the reverse castle. Don’t get me wrong the game is
still really good and a fine Castlevania title, but I think at this
point the Metroidvania design started to wear on me.
4. Castlevania: Rondo of Blood (PSP version)
Metriodvania’s stagnation, based on this game, I still like it better
than the old style of Castlevania. The graphics do look great, but the
new-age visuals can’t mask something that still feels very archaic on
the surface. To be fair, it was an enjoyable game and the bosses were
also really good.
5. Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance
living proof the style of play started by SOTN doesn’t guarantee
success. The music is repetitive, the jumping feels off, and the level
design is so awful, it makes me wonder if the guys who made this even
played Castlevania. Overall, it serves as reason you shouldn’t play
every Castlevania you can get your hands on.