Castlevania Anniversary Collection games Reviews

Review: Castlevania Anniversary Collection – Hardcore Gamer

Review: Castlevania Anniversary Collection - Hardcore Gamer

Castlevania is among the longest-running video game franchises with beloved titles spanning several console generations. The popularity of 1 title within the collection and the next titles that followed its format even led to the subgenre time period metroidvania. Previous to this, the collection was recognized for being a extra linear affair with a high degree of problem. Castlevania Anniversary Assortment seems back on the vampire killer’s roots, earlier than giant open ended maps and 3D worlds. This can be a collection of eight titles from the Eight-bit and 16-bit eras, proving that Dracula’s citadel has all the time been a horrifying place.

Castlevania Anniversary Collection accommodates the NES trilogy Castlevania, Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest, Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse, the Recreation Boy titles Castlevania: The Adventure, Castlevania II: Belmont’s Revenge, the SNES title Tremendous Castlevania IV and Sega Genesis’s Castlevania Bloodlines. The one barely misplaced title is Kid Dracula, which was initially released in the States as a Recreation Boy title, however in this collection we’re treated to the Japanese solely NES/Famicon model. It has been introduced that in a later replace there can be some Japanese versions of some titles that may have some content material differences because of the strict Nintendo of America policies at the time of the unique releases.

Along with the eight video games, this assortment includes a digital bonus ebook that has the box artwork from totally different variations and some other idea art work and history of the games. It’s fascinating for followers and convenient to to have all the knowledge obtainable inside the software program, though a TV display has by no means been the perfect option to read a number of the lengthier text. This collection consists of some trendy touches but they’re minimal and some design decisions have been questionable. I can only converse of the PlayStation four model however the button format in questionable. On Super Castlevania IV and Castlevania: Bloodlines the X button is leap and Sq. is attack, and with these video games the control enter could be adjusted in the options menu. The opposite video games management input can’t be custom-made, with X and Triangle assault and Square and Circle bounce. Giving video games with equivalent gameplay reversed motion button input is baffling, sort of like how us previous players can keep in mind the confusion when a NES recreation had B leap and A attack. It might have been excellent to permit button customization, however failing that stored a uniform input configuration.

Child Dracula

Some other trendy conveniences embrace the choice to have boarders on the display or regulate the facet ratio. Private experience, the graphics look greatest within the Pixel Good choice although the display is lowered to a small window on 16:9 facet ratio TVs. Another choices embrace unique 4:three, 16:9 stretch and variations of these ratios with retro scanlines. The Recreation Boy titles have numerous choices for different monochromatic filters with or with out scanlines. The participant can save any of the video games at any level, which is a aid for anybody who remembers when passwords have been mandatory for these games with the Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest passwords being notably nightmarish. Now, I can’t converse for different consoles, however the best way to access the choice menu with these trendy tweaks on PS4 is to hit the share button. So any time you need to save progress or modify a show setting the sport will pause and load up a screenshot to share, and once you cancel out of the screenshot sharing the menu might be accessible, which isn’t a deal breaker for this assortment however an odd determination nonetheless. A more upsetting selection is there there can only be one save file per recreation, which could be problematic if multiple individuals use an account or should you’re making an attempt to complete Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse with each character in probably the most time environment friendly approach potential.

The video games contained in Castlevania Anniversary Collection are only missing a pair titles which forestall it from being the entire assortment of the Eight-bit and 16-bit era of Castlevania, with a number of titles being seen on many best of lists for his or her respective consoles. These video games aren’t the open ended metroidvania type that was launched in Symphony of the Night time and the next handheld video games, but are far more linear and are where Castlevania received its fame for having such unforgiving problem and its reputation. The emulation of every recreation is nicely executed because the video games play how I keep in mind, though in some uncommon instances the NES experience was somewhat too authentically recreated with some recreation crashes, though in the course of the evaluation course of this solely occurred within the unique Castlevania. To assist inform our readers about this assortment, here is a record of the included games with their unique North American yr of release.


Castlevania (1987): The original title that introduced us to the Belmont clan. Set within the yr 1691, players lead Simon Belmont by means of eighteen levels of Dracula’s citadel, preventing famous and subsequently recurring iconic foes resembling Frankenstein’s monster and the Grim Reaper. The game itself is short, however its problem will tremendously prolong the time it takes to see the autumn of Dracula.

Castlevania II: Simon’s Quest (1988): This is probably probably the most divisive title in the collection and the exception to the sooner claim about video games on this collection being linear. Happening in 1698, Transylvania is cursed after Dracula’s defeat. Simon wants to collect Dracula’s scattered physique elements to resurrect Dracula in order that the curse may be broken by destroying him again. Abandoning the linear progressive of its predecessor, Simon’s Quest is an open world adventure the place the execution falls in need of its ambition. The primary problem comes from counter intuitive options to puzzles and cryptic clues, which might be debated as being because of poor localization translation or deliberate makes an attempt to mislead the participant. It’s a recreation this reviewer has all the time had a gentle spot for and it did lay the groundwork for the later nonlinear Castlevania titles, but this is greatest accomplished with some type of information.

Castlevania: The Adventure (1989): That is Castlevania’s first foray into the world of handheld platforms, and given how fashionable the franchise has been in that format, that is in all probability the weakest recreation on this collection. Happening in 1576, players take on the position of Christopher Belmont in a simplified tackle the format with no subweapons and a high problem. Through the assessment the emulation quality was brought into query because the recreation looks like it is continuously dealing with minor slowdown, however further research indicated that is simply how the sport is. Value testing for followers if they need to experience all the basic titles, but that is nothing to put in writing residence about. I don’t assume it’s potential to buy it anyplace these days, but an improved colorized remake referred to as Castlevania: The Journey ReBirth was obtainable as WiiWare as soon as upon a time.

Bonus Guide

Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse (1990): Set a century earlier than the original Castlevania, players take control of Trevor Belmont. The gameplay has more in widespread with the primary entry than the second, but there are branching paths within the linear degree progression to Dracula. A noteworthy function on this title is there are three further characters that Trevor can meet and have accompany him on his quest. There’s the pirate Grant Dynasty, who has the power to climb partitions. The spell throwing Sypha Belnades who can control hearth, lightning and ice magic. And of course there’s Alucard, son of Dracula who can eat hearts to vary into a bat. The problem of this title virtually makes the unique appear straightforward, but the dev workforce confirmed some mercy and left in a ten life code within the type of getting into HELP ME as the player identify.

Castlevania II: Belmont’s Revenge (1991): If at first you don’t succeed attempt again was the angle Konami took with bringing Castlevania to the hand-held market. Happening in 1591, gamers as soon as again tackle the position of Christopher Belmont coping with Dracula who decided to wreck a family occasion and switch his son into a demon. This title is an enormous enchancment over its predecessor and arguably the most effective of the monochromatic handheld Castlevania trilogy. Castlevania II: Belmont’s Revenge is worthy of being performed for its personal deserves.

Tremendous Castlevania IV (1991): One of the initial SNES titles and remained considered one of its most iconic. The plot is actually a retelling of the story of the unique Castlevania, however this can be a model new recreation and by no means a remake. The graphic high quality is leaps past what was proven in the NES title, which included things like rotating backgrounds and spinning rooms, and for its time had a few of the most impressive boss monsters round. Sure modifications made this recreation easier than its predecessors, similar to the power to whip in eight instructions and the power to vary jumping course in midair, however even with these upgrades this journey to Dracula’s citadel is not any walk within the park.

Tremendous Castlevania IV

Kid Dracula (1993): In all probability not title that instantly involves mind when Castlevania comes up however it’s related to the identical universe, which is far more apparent with the unique Japanese title Akumajō Supesharu: Boku Dorakyura-kun which ties in to Akumajō Dracula, the original Japanese title for Castlevania. Players take control of Dracula, or at the very least a youthful and cartoonish model of him. This title appears extra geared in the direction of a youthful viewers, with more lighthearted and cutesy design decisions for the characters, at the least as cutesy as reanimated rotting corpses may be. There are stylistic similarities beyond the tonal shift, with environmental Castlevania belongings making appearances and a few major key renditions of some Castlevania riffs displaying up within the soundtrack. It’s not fairly the dark gothic horror the collection is understood for but a enjoyable platformer nonetheless. Initially this recreation was solely obtainable on Recreation Boy in North America, but what we’ve here is an NES model that was previously only obtainable in Japan.

Castlevania: Bloodlines (1994): Castlevania made its debut on the Sega Genesis late in the 16-bit era. This title was not initially launched to a thunderous reception and is usually missed when individuals talk about Castlevania titles, but this is truly pretty good. Happening in 1917, gamers can select between the whip cracking John Morris (descendant of Quincy Morris) or spear wielding Eric Lecarde. The plot ties Dracula’s resurrection to World Conflict I because of some unholy ritual carried out by Elizabeth Bathory Bartley. This title has the player trekking across Europe, preventing the military of undead in a more industrialized setting than earlier entries within the franchise.

Closing Comments:

Castlevania Anniversary Collection incorporates nearly all of basic Castlevania titles, a few of which are thought-about among the greatest games for his or her respective consoles. The standard of video games included converse for themselves and this actually is a must personal for any Castlevania fan or fan of retro action and platforming games. Now as for the precise collection as an entire, plainly extra care might have gone into it to make it more engaging because the youngest recreation in the assortment is 25 years previous. A few of the button mapping decisions appear strange and management enter customization must be a simple factor to incorporate. The Bonus Ebook has some fascinating stuff included, however some more extras would have been nice to assist justify the purchase if you have already got access to these video games.



Chris Shive

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Castlevania Anniversary Assortment