Review by sarevokmb
"Fun, but far too easy"
After playing Super Castlevania 4 on Nintendo's Virtual Console, I was dying to play the NES Castlevania games. Castlevania 4 was a challenging game, but I would have preferred if it was a bit harder, and I was sure the older ones would be near impossible, considering how hard some of the old NES games can be. When I found that the first Castlevania game was available for the VC, I went online and bought it right away. After playing it for about five hours, I completed it, and felt a little disappointed, both by it's length and difficulty.
The gameplay is very similar to that of Castlevania 4, but a bit primitive. Your whip can only be swung straight in the direction you are facing, unlike the great whip that allowed you to swing wherever you wanted in SC4. The level design is better in this game though, and there are less areas that force you to make a tough jump, while being attacked by monsters. Things like this did add a lot to the difficulty in SC4 though. Enemies in Castlevania, though sometimes buggy and often get stuck in walls, are placed well, and put up a good fight. My biggest problem with the gameplay is that the game is just too easy up until the level before the last. Bosses are disappointing too. Most of them require no strategy, and are easily defeated by standing in front of them and using the whip.
GAMEPLAY SCORE: 8/10
The game's sound is, overall, pretty good. It does suffer from the bad NES-era sound effects (bleep, bloop). The music is just as good as always though, and really fits the game's theme.
SOUND SCORE: 9/10
It's hard to judge a NES game's graphics, but this game looks pretty good. The colors aren't very bright or vivid, but that is not something you normally find in a Castlevania game. Enemies look good, and I never had a hard time telling what they were, but Simon doesn't look very good at all. Very little detail is put into him, which is surprising, as he is the main character, and always on-screen.
GRAPHICS SCORE: 8.5/10
Overall, Castlevania is a good game, but suffers because it is not as difficult as it should be. A higher degree of difficulty would also make it longer and add to the fun, but the game is still quite good despite this.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 05/29/07
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