Castlevania – Retro Wednesdays Episode 43

imgresIn this haunting episode we look at Shaun’s cursed Castlevania cartridge!

Yes I know this is a bit of a departure from our usual “we’re playing [insert generic mediocre game title] but hey it’s our game stream and if we want to play an actual good game we will! So this time we chose one of our (and basically everyone elses) favorites Castelvania.

I’m not sure what you can really add to the Castlevania narrative that already isn’t out there. It’s one of the flagship games for the NES and one that is deservidely so. You play as Simon Belmont who has to go into Dracula’s castle and kill him. In between Simon and Dracula are a bevy on enemies from floating medusa heads to zombies, to the Death himself. You’re armed with a whip which you can upgrade and some optional weapons such as holy water and a dagger.

There’s not much to complain about with the gameplay here it’s a great action platformer. You quickly notice the controls are good as well and the music and graphics are just awesome. I still remember the first time I made it to Death and it creeped me out then (still does today).

I guess the only knock you can really put on the game is just that: the knock back. When you get hit you go flying back in the opposite direction. I get it’s for dramatic purposes and in some cases you can use it to your advantage, but when you get hit just once and fall to your death you can’t help but feel like you got a little cheated.

The other thing that’s not a pro or a con, but just different is the playstyle. The more I play this game, and it’s a game I play a lot, I’m learning it’s about being much more aggressive than defensive when going through each level. The medusa head section is a great example of this. When I first played this game I always held back waiting for just the right opportunity to move forward and that’s the exact opposite of what you want to do. You want to just charge ahead because that way you face less of them. It is a drastic departure from my normal playstyle, but once I embraced it I really was able to rip through levels much more efficiently.

This game is also interesting to me because I believe my copy of Castlevania is haunted. My copy of the game acts very weird every time I play it. This time the first level had no music which has happened in other levels before. I also got a whip upgrade off of a bat which I’ve never ever seen, and as usual my Dracula fight has lots and lots of trap spawns compared to others. Trap spawns are when Dracula spawns literally on top of you making it super difficult to avoid getting hit. We still did manage to beat it which is awesome.

In the end, if you don’t own this game I don’t know what you’re thinking. It is a great game and one that really spurred my love of video games. If you haven’t played it before I very very strongly recommend it, and if you haven’t played it a while play it again!




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