Review by Rej72380
"The best Castlevania game is the Series!"
The Castlevania series is one of Konami's trademark franchises. It made it's debut on the NES in 1987 and hasn't stopped yet. The biggest Castlevania game was 1997's "Symphony of the Night" for the Sony Play Station. It's vampire story line has drawn at least a million fans to this series. At some points, Konami keeps raising the standards bar of all 2D adventure games. So it's only fitting that millions of fans can't be wrong. Now, a Castlevania game is released for the Game Boy Advance. One called "Castlevania: Circle of the Moon". How does this installment stack up with all the other Castlevania games on the market? Read my very long review, my friends, as we find out the answer to that question.
My oh my, are the graphics in this game amazing. The backgrounds in this game are the same as the Play Station Castlevania title "Castlevania: Symphony of the Night",-- Very Gothic colors and lots of variety. The sprite animations are top notch, given the fact that this is a first-generation Game Boy Advance game. Your character shows many different colors as well. When he's poisoned, he flashes green, when he's cursed, he flashes dark colors and when he has a DSS card combination in effect. The DSS cards are like works of art. And the Introduction screen whey begin a new game shows a castle in the middle of a thunder storm gives the game a very eerie look and feel. The colors of this game are excellent, making use of the Game Boy Advance's 32 bit CPU. Overall, the graphics are excellent.
The sounds are excellent. You'll hear the crack of your whip when it's being used. You also hear your character grunt and groan when he jumps or uses a weapon. Whe you run with the Dash Boots, you'll actually hear foot steps. The enemies also have some sounds as well, like when you kill a heat shade, you'll hear a woman screaming. The best aspect of the Sound department in this game is the music. You'll hear many different tunes from old ones like the First Stage Theme from the original "Castlevania" game for the NES, to new ones like when your in the Catacombs. The music consists of orchestra music and also haunted house music that makes use of the organ. Overall, the sounds and music are excellent. Let's hope they'll make a soundtrack CD out of this game.
The controls are excellent as well. When you start a new game, you have the standard castlevania controls. But the moment you find the Dash Boots, the controls get even better. Not only can you jump, use your whip and use Sub-Weapons, you can also run, fly in the air, push steel crates, twirl your whip around to protect your self and cast magic spells. With the DSS system, some card combinations you actually discover by just pressing B (Fire Whip, Thorn Sword, etc.), while others you cast by doing a Street Fighter-style motion with the controls (Thunder Bird, Black Dog, etc.) while quite a few others are casted by touching an enemy (Absorb Fire damage). The controls are very responsive and are perfect for Castlevania veterans. This the same controls you've used to know, now only better. Overall, the controls are excellent.
This is an interesting story line. The evil Camilla has resurrected Dracula, the Prince of Darkness an he kidnaps your instructor. your job is to go through Dracula's castle and defeat him and save your instructor. The story line has a lot of twists and turns, keeping you on the edge of your seat for the entire game. This would make a great story line for Halloween. The story line is very chilling, gothic and very interesting.
Amazingly, you get a lot of game play for your hard-earned dollar. Just because you beat the game once doesn't mean you've beaten it for good. There are also four other modes which you can unlock. The Magician Mode has you very weak but gives you all the DSS cards at the start, while Fighter Mode has you very strong, but don't give you any DSS cards at all. The Shooter Mode have your Sub-Weapons very strong, while Thief Mode has you to rely on just luck alone. The game keeps you interested with lots of secret rooms which you find by destroying walls of certain areas, thus adding to the fun factor. Best of all, you can save up to 8 games onto one cartridge. Overall, the game is a lot of fun.
If your looking for a Game Boy Advance game to kill some time with, this is the game for you. Not only is the game fun, but it also will keep you hooked after you've beaten the game. Like I said in the intro, millions of fans can't be wrong. This is, by far, the best game in the Castlevania series. I had a lot of fun with this game, and you'll have a lot of fun as well when you play this game.
Reviewer's Rating: 5.0 - Flawless
Originally Posted: 07/13/04
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