THE NAKED ALUCARD CASTLEVANIA:SYMPHONY OF THE NIGHT CHALLENGE Copyright Acid Angel 13 2003 ver 2.5 ONE MILLION THANKS TO GMAN94 FOR LETTING ME KNOW THAT I MISTAKENLY POSTED THE WRONG GUIDE LAST TIME I UPDATED!!! NO ATTENTIVENESS POINTS FOR ME!!! CONTENTS****************************************************************** i INTRODUCTION ii THE RULES iii FAQ's iv HELPFUL TIPS v THE WALKTHROUGH vi HOPES AND DREAMS vii OPTIONAL STUFF/HALL OF FAME viii LEGAL STUFF ix VERSION HISTORY/AUTHORIZED SITES ************************************ i ************************************* INTRODUCTION A few years ago, I came across a beautiful treasure for the Playstation system. It was called Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. I've been a fan of the Castlevania series since I was like ten, so it was a must-have. And then I played it. Combining elements from my two favorite genres, side-scrolling action and role playing games, it instantly became, and still remains, one of my all-time personal favorites. After playing so many times I'm surprised the disk hasn't melted, it occurred to me that, while laying waste to the minions of Dracula is a good time, once Alucard has the right equipment, it isn't much of a challenge. It just doesn't seem right to be able to calmly walk up to a gargantuan boss like Galamoth, laugh in his face, and then administer him a beating the likes of which are rarely seen (unless you watch the Detroit Tigers play baseball, anyway). So, during my hundredth or so replay, I said to myself "Self, what's a really good way to make this game INSANELY difficult?", to which I answered, complete with `duh' head slap, "Your strength lies in your equipment, so DROP THE EQUIPMENT!!" And why not? This game has a lot of RPG elements, and most of the `challenge' walkthroughs I see for RPGs are "no such-and-such helpful items" walkthroughs. And so it begins: The Naked Alucard Castlevania:SOTN Challenge! ************************************ ii ************************************* THE RULES i: Thou shalt not, AT ANY TIME, EVER, equip any, that means ANY, armor. That's head and body items! No beryl circlets, no walk armors, no blood cloaks. Never!! (EXCEPT in the case of the Gold and Silver Rings, and Holy Glasses) ii: Thou shalt not equip any weapons or shields. The only thing Alucard is allowed to have in his grubby little paws at any time are restorative items such as food, potions, and elixirs. No 'resist' items, either. iii: Thou shalt not use any spells. AT ALL. If you're getting pounded by a boss, suck it up. No Hellfires, no Tetra Spirits, and absolutely, under no circumstances, ever, no Soul Steals. iv: Thou shalt not reap the benefits of any acquired relic, unless instructed to do so. As a side note, in this guide I often say "go into the menu and turn off this relic". That is a personal preference, to avoid, um, `accidentally' using Form of Mist to avoid getting trashed (yeah, that's it.) You don't actually have to take that step, as long as you follow the rules and don't use whichever relic it is. If it is a relic that automatically denotes a benefit (such as the various pieces of Dracula) you must turn it off. ************************************ iii ************************************ FAQS (that I made up) First, let's get "the big one" out of the way: Q: Can this even be done? A: Absolutely yes. In fact, I composed this guide WHILE I played, rather than going off memory and saying to myself `yeah, that could work', like a lot of `challenge' FAQs I find (that is NOT directed or meant to demean, discredit, or offend anyone who publishes any FAQ). Furthermore, it's a lot easier than one might expect (but that might be because I tried to keep my levels super high, out of higher expectations for the boss fights). Q: What about this-and-that location where I have to fly, or pass through a grate? A: This guide will tell you when you have to fly or pass through a grate. Q: What about the Spirit Orb and/or Faerie Scroll relics? They don't boost Alucard's stats. A: The purpose of this challenge is to defeat the game without adding beneficial equipment to Alucard. If you absolutely must know the name of the creature that's kicking your ass, or how pathetic the damage you're dealing to it, by all means, leave them on. Q: Why isn't this guide complete? I don't have the whole castle filled out! A: This guide is for a specific challenge. First off, there are a lot of places in the castle that are inaccessible barring use of certain items. Secondly, this guide assumes you've beaten the game before (I would recommend that), and therefore do not require a complete walkthrough. If you're trying this for your first time playing, good luck, and you're more of a man than I am. NOTE: I tried to make this guide as descriptive as possible, for those of you that are more of a man than I am. Q: Couldn't you make up more than four questions? A: No. ************************************ iv ************************************* HELPFUL TIPS (or, Some Stuff You May Have Forgotten) i: The triangle button (Default controls) makes Alucard slide backward. Aside from looking cool, this skill is incredibly useful in avoiding enemy attacks, especially the Wargs you must kill before you get a chance to level up. ii: Always, ALWAYS, keep a heal item in your secondary hand. You'd be amazed how many enemies can land an attack in the split-second it takes for the menu screen to come up, go back down, and you to hit that button. Also, keep in mind that potion items take time to come into effect, so it may be beneficial to have a food equipped to keep you alive to enter the menu, equip, and use a potion. iii: Save Points are your friend. In case you haven't noticed, save points restore your HP to full. Use EVERY save point you come to. Not only will this restore lost HP, it will save you a lot of time and trouble in the long run. And, for your own good, never assume that, just because you've played 700 times or think you have a 'feel' for the game, that it's a good idea to skip a save. It isn't. (That's your fair warning.) iv: Kill everything you see. Without the Cube of Zoe, the only way to fund your developing potion addiction is to get cash and jewels from the devilspawn you kill. v: Get yourself a turbo controller. In order to make yourself worthy for combat, you'll need to do some serious leveling-up very early on. The best way to do this is the "out to lunch" method, i.e. setting up your controller so that the attack button fires itself, placing Alucard in the path of respawning enemies, and letting the game run for several hours by itself. Unless you've got 30 or 40 hours with nothing better to do, you're going to want this. vi: Finally, most importantly, if you're the "get mad and throw the controller" type (you know who you are...), get your Prozac prescription filled, or get a few extra controllers. The point: You ARE going to die. Probably several times. That's why it's the Naked Alucard Challenge, and not the Naked Alucard Cakewalk. ************************************ v ************************************ THE WALKTHROUGH Let's get down to business, shall we? FINAL STAGE: BLOODLINES You start out as Richter. Walk up the steps. Kill Dracula. No problem, right? Well, we're starting off on the right foot. No special items for Richter, either. Just you and a whip against the Lord of the Undead. Actually, this is still pretty easy. When Dracula teleports, slap him in the head with the whip, then whip the fireballs. Every fourth turn, Dracula will launch shadow balls. Duck the first, jump the second. Hit him if you can. This may take a while, as the vampire's only vulnerable point is his head. When Dracula changes forms to the big demon thing, try to get under it, crouch, and whip like mad. If you can get the transformation to take place in the corner and get under Drac, he will actually just stand there and fire harmless fireballs while you thrash him! (Normally, he jumps around the screen. If this happens, just dodge and hit.) In any event, if you should "die" during this battle, Maria will appear and grant you invincibility, so you can't lose. (I've read in several places that Richter's performance in this fight affects Alucard's initial stats; I don't know if this is true, but if you're interested, check one of the 'complete' walkthroughs located on www.GameFAQs.com) CASTLE ENTRANCE You start off just inside the castle. Open the menu. See all Alucard's nifty equipment? Nice, huh? Yeah. Now, make like a stripper and take it all off. Not so tough now, are you, Billy Badass? Nope, now you're just a guy in a castle full of creepy-crawlies that want to kill you, with a cold breeze blowing up your butt. Well, get on with it. There's a Warg waiting for you in the courtyard. Run in, punch, slide to dodge its lunge, and put it down while it recovers. About 4 hits will kill it. Enter the castle. More Wargs here. Punch, slide, punch. Move on. In the next room, punch the Bats down. 1 hit kills them, and, if you're lucky, they'll drop you a Potion. Bust open the rocks for a Pot Roast, then drop down and beat some Mermen. 1 or 2 hits takes them out, and you'll gain a few levels pretty quickly. Don't be afraid to sacrifice the Pot Roast and potion to survive and level up. -MERMEN TACTICS- These are fairly easy to kill, and give quite a bit of EXP early on. Not only that, but aside from the usual array of hearts and money bags, they also occasionally drop zircons, which can be sold to the Master Librarian at 150 gold a pop. The only danger Mermen pose is their tendency to gang up and try to overwhelm you with superior numbers. To avoid this, go to the far left side of the room (under the bats), and back against the wall in the bottom of the room. From this position, the enemy has only one avenue of approach. The Mermen will jump onto the ledge and advance; Let them come to you. When you step out to collect items, slide back as fast as you can. If you get severely outnumbered, jump up to the stairs above. There are three kinds of Mermen, each with its own unique trait. -Yellow: There seem to be the most of these. Their specialty is a slide move, where they jump forward and slide at you, and it covers a good distance. Like all Mermen, they also launch fireballs. One of their favorite tactics is to double up with another Merman, and slide while the other launches fireballs. -Pink: These guys only shoot fireballs, but their land speed is twice the rate of the others. They try to catch you from both sides and close in, which will juggle you between them for at least two successful hits. -Red: Slow moving and relatively rare (NOTE: that's `relatively'. There's still plenty of them.), these guys are nothing to worry about. Their only effective attack is their giant fireballs, which are more powerful than the others'. They tend to wait until you're outnumbered and distracted to attack. NOTE: All fireballs can be destroyed with a punch, so you don't have to dodge everything. When the Mermen stop giving you more than 1 EXP, move on to the next room on the right. More Wargs here. Punch, slide, punch. Be careful when the lights come on, Zombies start rising from the floor and can box you in pretty quick. You'll find a Turkey in the block at the bottom of the far right stairs. In the next room, Death appears and swipes all that cool equipment you weren't using. Let him think it bothers you and move along. Go right into the tower, climb up and left across the hole in the bridge. Back in the castle, you'll kill a Skeleton who drops a Short Sword. Go ahead and pick it up... But don't you dare equip it!! Same goes for the Red Rust the next Skeleton drops. Use the Save Point, second door up on the left, and continue up. Grab the Cube of Zoe if you want- Then go into the menu and turn it off. -"But how am I supposed to get any money?" you ask? The Cube of Zoe only makes candles drop items. Enemies will drop stuff no matter what. You want money? Kill, kill, kill! Go through the hallway to the left and enter Alchemy Laboratory, then turn around and come back. Entering the Lab, even for a second, removes the Wargs from the rooms below. Go down and right to the hole in the bridge, above the room where Death took your stuff, and drop through the hole in the floor. Hold left while you fall, as Slogra and Gaibon are waiting in Death's place, and you don't want to take them on just yet. Dive through the door to the Zombie room ASAP. Remember up in the Tips and Hints section (if you read it), I told you to get a turbo controller? Now's the time to put it to use. Set the primary attack button (whichever button you use for Alucard's sword normally) to auto- fire, or turbo and use a rubber band to hold it down, then step down off the ledge and let the respawning Zombies walk into Alucard's fist. Now, go out to lunch. Mow the lawn. Take a bath. Call Taiwan for an hour. Do whatever you want for as long as you want. Al will be okay (I let my game run like this overnight), and he'll gain a sick amount of EXP. This is probably the best room to do this in, and you might as well start early. NOTE: Sometime during or after this process, you may want to go collect some cash. If you do, head back to the Merman room and kill Mermen for money bags and zircons. Don't forget to kill the Bats for a couple of potions to hold you through the first couple boss fights before you get to the Library. After you reach level 17 or so, which will put you in triple digit HP, you should be able to proceed if you like (This took my game about 4 hours). Personally, I let my system run overnight; This put me at LV 26 with 150 HP at just under 15 hours game time. When you head back through the room where Slogra and Gaibon are, take your licks and get by them into the tower. They have the advantage in this room, plus you have to fight them later whether you fight them now or not, so save the HP. Hit the Save Point on your way back up to... NECROMANCY LABORATORY Head left across the first room. There's a Hide Cuirass in the globe; Take it if you like, but don't equip it. Go up the ledges to the next room. Head left again. In the candle or burner or whatever-it-is you'll find a Leather Shield. Take it if you want, but don't... Oh, you get the picture. Go up and out the left. Both the floor and the left wall of this vertical chamber will break away; To the left is a Heart max up you can collect if you want, and below is a Life Max up... but I haven't found a way to break floors bare-handed. UPDATE!!: Bladesmaster9 points out that the kick attack can break floors. Being foolishly unaware that this attack could be used without the Gravity Boots, I never tried it. And I quote: "To perform this attack, simply jump as high as you can (that includes your second jump), and when you are near the top of the jump (before\ or after doesn't matter), press a downwards direction, like diagonal forward or straight down, and press X. Be aware that if you succeed in connecting with an enemy you are sent back up into the air, but if the foot of Alucard doesn't hit the enemy first you will get hurt and have to recover from the hit. This technique can be performed at the beginning of the Alucard section of the game, and can used even if the passage is no more than a head taller than Alucard. You just have to be quick about it." Go up and out the top left. There's a Resist Thunder in the burner if you like. Up and left again. Kill the Spittle Bone running around the ledge and go left. Watch out for the spikes. Now, if you took the time to level up, you should be able to take the Axe Knight out with a single hit! Bide your time (this ain't a speed run, people), wait for an opening, and throw your punch. Kill both Axe Knights and head out the left. NOTE: Occasionally, Axe Knights will drop an axe special weapon. No, you can't use it. If you feel temptation will overwhelm you, stand in a corner somewhere so you can't hurt anything and use up all your hearts. Todd Parker (firstname.lastname@example.org) suggests that if you pick up an Axe, you may want to trade it in for a Cross weapon (this requires you to know where the Cross is, of course, then switch on the Cube of Zoe, get the Cross, and turn the Cube back off). Since the Cross draws obscene amounts of hearts, your temptation will soon be sated. Be careful of the Spittle Bones as you drop down and climb up the vertical chamber. They spit out little droplets that will poison you (Note: This is bad.). The first door up on the left is a Save Point. SAVE! Go up to the top of the vertical chamber and to the right. Prepare for combat! SLOGRA AND GAIBON If you boosted your levels, this is nothing. Move into the room until they start chasing you, then slide back to the left. You can duck under the horizontal fireballs the both bosses fire, and Gaibon's (that's the flying one) diagonal fireballs aren't hard to avoid. The key here is to get them to chase you left until Slogra (that's the other one, with the spear) is below the lowest platform. Jump on the platform, run across, and drop in behind him. Do your best Bruce Lee scream and level him with your fists of fury. If you're lucky, Gaibon will try to come after you by diving under the same platform. Get behind him while he's trapped in this tiny space and fold him before he knows what hit him. Seriously, I beat him so quickly he didn't even turn red! He just laid down and died! Collect a Life Max up for that little bit of work. Head out the right side door, kill the skeletons in the hall, and climb up to the second door in the vertical part of the chamber. Save Point. Use it!! From here go up and out the top right. Be careful in this corridor, the Bloody Zombies can be pretty tough customers against a naked half-vampire. The next room contains Axe Knights and Spittle Bones. Take a leap of faith off the platform and kill the Axe Knight, then break the globe in the lower left corner for a potion. Go right, kill another Axe Knight, climb up, and exit stage right. MARBLE GALLERY Only one way to go in the first room. Keep moving right and time your punches to hit the Axe Knights on the run; If you keep moving, they don't even toss their axes. Same goes for the Axe Knight waiting just inside the next room. Kill him and drop off the ledge. Go right, kill the Quija Table, and use the Save Point. Go back out, kill the table again, and go up and right to the first clock room. Kill the annoying Flea Men and go to the central clock room to meet Maria. When she's done flirting with you, go right through another clock room (what does a vampire need so many clocks for anyway?). Kill another Flea Man, and continue right through the Gallery. Head up and right through the next room, right, and, in the X-shaped room, down and right. Kill the Diplocephaluses (about 4 hits apiece) in the long room with the creepy floating eye in the background and continue right. Watch out for the Stone Rose seeds (they turn you to stone), kill the plants, then exit right to... OUTER WALL As soon as you enter the Outer Wall there's a vase to smash. Destroy a priceless antique, gain a zircon. Go up the stairs. The only way out of this room is left, so go. The blue Axe Knights in this room are tougher than the green ones (around 3 hits to kill). Just get in there and lay the smack down. Go left through the next room to another Save Point. Do I need to tell you to use it? Didn't think so. Go up and right from here to face... DOPPLEGANGER 10 This guy's a pushover. Jump in, attack, slide, repeat. Pressing diagonally down and toward while jumping and hitting the attack button causes Alucard to kick instead of punch, giving you a much better attack range. If the Doppelganger jumps onto you or backs you into a corner, crouch and get a free punch on him, then start the pattern over. I dropped him with about 10 hits. Your prize is another Life Max up. NOTE: You have to go back to the center of the room to collect the Life Max up. If you leave it, you lost it. Go right and grab that Gladius sword you'll never use, and on out to the wall again. If you time your jump right you can get the vase; Inside is a Life Max up. Head up, past the door. Take out the various enemies(the Spear Guard is easy if you jump over him while he thrusts and hit him from behind)- that just sounds wrong..., and keep going up to the next door you find. Step through to the teleporter and warp down to the Entrance. CASTLE ENTRANCE Step on the switch to lower the wall, get the Heart Max up, and head right. This room's familiar... Go up to the Save Point, use it, then go back to the teleporter and warp back out to the Outer Wall. OUTER WALL Time to get that elevator working. Step out of the teleporter room and go up. Dodge the Medusa Heads and the Sword Lord (or kill him, about 4 hits) and go up the stairs to the right, then left across the platforms to the hanging switch. Punch it a few times (until the "Elevator Activated" message appears) and the elevator is yours to command. Go back down to the elevator and grab the Soul of Wolf relic. There, now you can transform into a bluish-purplish wolf-dog critter. Enjoy the moment, then open the menu and turn the relic off. No wolves in this game, guys. Stand on the elevator platform and press down to got to the door you passed before. Go through it to... LONG LIBRARY Head left, killing the Dhurons as you go. Try to jump kick them, as they can do decent damage. Ignore the left doorway in the next room and go up the stairs. Kill the Ectoplasms. They give you 'curse' if they touch you, but 'curse' only affects weapons use, and we aren't using weapons, are we? Your bare fists are just as effective as they always were, so use them to show these "tortured souls" the true meaning of pain. Continue up and thrash the Spellbooks while you glow pretty colors (if you got 'cursed', anyway). Go all the way to the top right and collect the Faerie Scroll. All it does is display enemy names, so leave it on if you want (see, I'm not so mean after all). Kill the three Magic Tomes (about 4 hits apiece), and all the Spellbooks (about 3 hits), as they randomly drop the 1000 gold bag item. Once you've got the Scroll, it's back to the left and down. Enter the bottom left door and go left into the Master Librarian's chamber. Sell the crazy old bastard any gems you picked up, then pay him some of your hard earned cash. You're going to need that Jewel of Open, 500 gold or not, so you may as well suck it up. After that, pick up any Potions, High Potions, and Elixirs you might be able to afford, but, whatever you do, don't waste that 103 gold on the map!! If you MUST have a map, Eastpaw has done an excellent job of mapping castle 1, and J. Mason's Richter castle map shows outlines of both castles. Both of these maps are available in the In-Depth FAQ's section for Castlevania: SOTN at www.GameFAQs.com. When you're done here, head back out to the Outer Wall and ride the elevator up to the teleporter. Warp back out to the Entrance. CASTLE ENTRANCE Use the Save Point here and go back to Alchemy Lab. ALCHEMY LABORATORY Go back through the Lab as you did to get to Slogra and Gaibon. When you get back to the vertical chamber with the two Spittle Bones and the Save Point (remember to use it), climb up and exit through the top left door. Pass through the glowing blue door and talk to Maria again, then go left to the... ROYAL CHAPEL I know it doesn't seem like you've gone far, but use the Save Point on the left anyway. Humor me. Leap up into the Chapel and go left. Smash another priceless vase for an Aquamarine, then head right, up the steps. To fight the Bone Pillars, jump in, punch, and jump or slide back before it fires off its flame (the slide move puts you just outside of the flame's range. I told you it was useful.). When the bottom head is destroyed (about 3 hits), jump over the top head as it tries to roll over you. When you get to the Corner Guard, jump in to taunt it into sliding at you, then beat it down while it recovers. Go all the way up the stairs and exit right. Pass through this room to the next, large room with the Spectral Sword. The Spectral Sword can hit hard, so it's your choice if you fight or flee. Go through the top right door and across the next room to the confessional. Take the time to sit in the chairs and let the ghosts talk, occasionally you'll receive a Grape Juice for your trouble. Be careful, some of the ghosts will try to kill you. If you sit in the left chair and a blue priest appears, you're good. If the priest is white, MOVE!! If you sit in the right chair and a pink ghost appears, you'll be fine. If she's blue, GET OUT!! When you're done here, go up past the Skelerangs and climb the bell tower. The Winged Guards here are easy to avoid or kill, but the Crows can be nuisances. Be prepared to take some damage from them. At this point, you'll probably want to avoid the Hunting Girl and continue on your way. At the very top of the tower you'll find a Life Max up, a Str. Potion, and a Silver Plate. Get them all, if you want, even though only one of them is of any use. In the next room, be careful of the Bone Halberds. You can duck under their attack, but they can hit an undefended Alucard pretty hard if they catch you unaware, plus they have good range and can move extremely fast. About 2 hits kill these guys. Also, kill as many of the Bats as you can, maybe they'll drop you a potion. Fight through these creeps to the next tower and climb it. At the top is a zircon. Get it and move along. Another hallway full of Bone Halberds and Bats. Take them out and prepare to fight... HIPPOGRYPH No problems here. Start the fight by boldly jumping in and landing a kick to its head. Yes, you will take damage from this maneuver. Don't worry about it. Jump to hit the Hippogryph on the fly (which will also damage you most times), or play it safe and wait for him to land. When the beast is on the ground, run in and pummel it. Sometimes it will charge from this position, but most often it will rear back and charge its flame attack. When it does this, take a cheap shot at its exposed belly and slide, which will put you just out of the flame attack's range. If the Hippogryph lays any eggs, smash them immediately. Keep the heat on and the beast will fall quickly. Collect another Life Max up and have a flashback with Maria (if you're a long-time Castlevania player, this round of dialogue, particularly the little thought bubbles, are kind of amusing.) Exit right to yet another hall full of Bone Halberds and Bats. Show 'em who's boss and cross the bottom of the next bell tower to the Save Point. Get back any HP you lost in the Hippogryph fight and climb the tower. Smash the vase at the top for a potion and grab the Cutlass if you want, then go through the door to the right. CASTLE KEEP Beat your way through the Axe Knight and walk the length of the room. WALK! If you jump, the annoying little Flea Riders will dive in on you. Kill the rest of the Axe Knights and enter the room with the floating platforms. Cross the room to the door and go through to another teleporter. Warp down to the Entrance, save, and return. Ride the floating platform up and go left. Now you HAVE to contend with the Flea Riders, but at least you've got more space to do it in. Kill as many of them as you can, they drop Turkeys. Head all the way left for the Leap Stone. Double jump, yay! Jump up to the ledge and get the Turquoise and punch out the wall for a Turkey. There, now that I've given you two freebies, enter the menu and turn the Leap Stone off. No, you don't need it to get out of this room. Go back the way you came. Now might be a good time to warp back over to the Outer Wall and visit the Librarian for some more potions, but, if you feel lucky... Head back to the Marble Gallery, and go to the X-shaped room. Go to the top right this time, through the blue door. Step on the platform until you hear a bang. This opens the pink blocks in the floor of the Gallery. Head back out the upper left door and go to the newly opened passage in the floor. Go down and through the door to... UNDERGROUND CAVERNS Where else would you expect to find a cavern, in the sky? At any rate... Be wary of the Spear Guards waiting for you and head down a few platforms until you come to doorways on both sides of the screen. Take the left door first, and go past the Spear Guard and Bone Archer to the hole in the floor. Drop down through the next room until you find another leftward doorway. Go through it and climb up to the Life Max up in the ceiling, then retrace your steps back to the room with the two doorways. Go through the right door this time, save if you like (use this one or the next, or both), and drop all the way down into the cave. There's another Save Point on the right, use it if you skipped the other one. From here, drop down and enter the doorway to face... SCYLLA WYRM Slide into the lower left corner of the room. When the Wyrm stretches toward you, jump and punch. When it's dead, go through the right side door. Head right and keep moving. This room fills with water that hurts you if it gets high enough. Jump through the hole in the ceiling and go right to a vase containing a Pot Roast. Get it and go all the way left to fight... SCYLLA Stand just to the right of the first column, at the water's edge. Crouch and punch anything that comes your way. When the three Wyrms are defeated, jump across the platforms and hit Scylla's body with all you've got (which is, of course, your fists). Keep an eye on your HP and be ready to fall back and heal if you need to, then get back in there. Keep the pressure on and bury her. Grab that Life Max up you earned. Go into the room behind Scylla for a Crystal Cloak you can't wear, then go back the way you came. Make your way out and up to the Save Point and save. Leave the save point and go west, young vampire (that's left for you non-magnetic types). Grab a Shiitake 'shroom (why would you put anything beginning with the word 'shiit' in your mouth?) and kill some Toads. Push the wooden box all the way to the left and watch some Spear Guards drown. That was cruel, but it felt good, didn't it? On the ledge to the right is another Shiitake. Grab it and continue to go left. Keep going to the waterfall and jump down. Hold left as you fall and try to get the two mushrooms on the left wall. At the bottom, brave the water and go through the semi-hidden doorway on the right to a room containing a Frozen Shade and a Life Max up. Kill the ice queen and grab the goods, then go back out and left. Thaw some more Frozen Shades and go up through the ceiling (you can ride the boat if you want, but there's no real point). Another shiitake in this room. Get it and go left through the door to the Castle Entrance. CASTLE ENTRANCE Grab yet another free Life Max up and stand on the lever to lower the wall. In the next room, you can hang out and slaughter some more Mermen if it makes you feel good. When your business is done, go up and out to the right. Make your way back through the castle to the Marble Gallery. MARBLE GALLERY Go back to the main clock room, where you first met Maria. Turn your Leap Stone back on and wait for the left statue to move, then double-jump up through the opening. Turn the Leap Stone back off and grab the Life Max up, then go through the door to... OLROX'S CHAMBERS Climb up, killing the Skelerangs as you go. Try to get onto the platforms and inside the arc of their boomerangs as they throw them to avoid taking a hit. Go up to the main room and head right first. Punch out the wall and go into the long room on the other side. At the end of this room are more antiquities to break for a cheese, an onyx, and a Broadsword. Take them and go back to the main room, then go left, under the Spectral Sword, to the left door. COLOSSEUM Drop down to the room directly below the entrance and save. Go back up and left through a room full of Blade Soldiers. Go up when you come to the grate, and left through the long room. The Blade Masters here are your greatest threat. They deal out decent damage and take about 4 hits. Kill everything and keep going left to the wall by the Knight Shield. Step on the button to lower the wall and get the shield if you want it, then drop down to the Save Point below. DEFINITELY use it. Go back up and right, into the shadowy corridor. Grab the Library Card on your way by and enter the main arena to do battle with... MINOTAUR AND WEREWOLF After Richter finishes babbling his nonsense, get ready for a TOUGH fight. These guys are here to make up for all those easy boss fights you've previously done. They are fast, precise, and hit HARD! As soon as the battle starts, get in close to the Werewolf (that's the little guy on your left, in case you can't tell the difference between a werewolf and a minotaur) and pound him. Do your best to ignore Minotaur for now, the goal at this point is the remove the pair's devastating combo-attack ability by removing one of the variables, namely the weaker Werewolf, from the equation. Dodge any of the dual attacks and stay on the Werewolf until he falls. When Werewolf dies, it's time to get stupid. Get in close to Minotaur and hammer him! Keep an eye on your HP- This guy hits HARD!! He's too tall to jump over unless he charges, and his axe has an incredible reach. This is basically a battle of attrition; The up side is you have the capability to restore your HP. Just keep hitting him and healing until he goes down. Collect a Life Max up for winning this tough fight and head right. Jump over the switch in the floor and grab the Form of Mist. Mist through the grate (wasn't that neat?), then go into the menu and turn the relic off. Head right and down to the Save Point. SAVE!! You don't want to do that fight over, do you? Go up and exit the Colosseum back to Olrox's Chambers. OLROX'S CHAMBERS In the main room, jump up past the Spectral Sword and go right. Go through the upper right door to a long room containing two enemies, a Hammer and a Blade. You'll encounter Hammer first. When you see him, slide backwards and let him come to you; This way, you can take him on without Blade joining the fight. Hammer is almost like a boss. He hits hard, has great defense, and a long reach. Duck in, strike, and slide out. Be as aggressive as you dare. When Hammer goes down, continue right. Blade is shorter than Hammer, so you can jump over him and keep going. Move right through the next room to the door, and use the teleporter to warp back to the Outer Wall. OUTER WALL Use the elevator to go down to the Library entrance. LONG LIBRARY Make your way back through the Library. Go out of your way to kill all the books for the chance at a 1000 gold bag, then go to the far left stairway. If you can afford it, visit the Master Librarian; If not, stop at the ledge just above the two Spellbooks. Turn the Leap Stone on and jump up to the platform. Kill the Corpseweed and turn the Leap Stone back off. Head left through the doorway to a Save Point. Save. Go through the left door and enter a room full of Dhurons and Flea Armors. Advance slowly and try to take them on one at a time. In the next room, drop down and take out the Flea Armor. Go left and fight... LESSER DEMON Jump in and hit him with a kick to start the fight. Lesser Demon will take to the air. Jump and punch. Lesser Demon will summon other, weaker enemies into the battle. Keep in mind that, while he is summoning (he's surrounded by a column of light), he is invulnerable to attack. Kill the smaller enemy and turn your attention back to the Demon. Collect a Life Max up and continue left. Go down the stairs to more antiques. Smash them for a Takemitsu sword, an onyx, and a Frankfurter. Turn the Form of Mist on and mist through the grate for the Soul of Bat. Now you can turn into a bat. Then, you can turn the relic off. Mist back through the grate and enter the menu. Turn the Form of Mist off and the Leap Stone on. Climb back up to the Dhuron/Flea Armor room and fight your way back to the Save Point. Turn off the Leap Stone, save, and go back down to the Master Librarian. Sell your onyx and buy any potions you can afford. Exit the Long Library and go up the Outer Wall to the teleporter. Warp to the Castle Keep. CASTLE KEEP Enter the floating platform room and ride the platform up. Stand on the upper left side of the room, below the hole in the ceiling, and activate the Soul of Bat. Fly up into the next room, turn the Soul of Bat back off, and ride the swirly-color platform up to light the lion-head torches. Go to the Save Point on the right and save. Drop back down in the lion-torch room and go through the door. CLOCK TOWER You've just stepped into a boss fight against... KARASUMAN Jump in and drop a kick to his head to start off on the right... 'ahem'... foot. Try to stay directly under him when he's flying. If he shoots his blue spears, you'll be in the perfect position to avoid them. If he launches shadow balls, do your best to dodge. Karasuman's most common attack, though, is to summon shadow crows and launch them. This attack fans out from Karasuman's body, blanketing one side of the screen... But, if you're below him when he calls the crows, you can move behind him while he launches them. Not only are you in no danger, you can beat him senseless while he's locked in this animation! Collect a Life Max up for your superior fighting form and go right. Go straight through the next room. You can break down walls for items you can't use if you like. Head right and down through the pendulum room. You'll find Sword Lords in this room, and, when you kill them, they'll turn into semi-invisible Vandal Swords. The Vandal Swords are fast, but their sword is always visible, so they're easy to track. Kill them all and head right, into the actual clock tower. Try to avoid the Medusa Heads as you carefully cross the room to the upper right wall. Punch the wall out and pass through the opening. Kill Flea Armors as you go right and up. Jump up into the roof peak. A Cloaked Knight guards a Heart Max up and a Life Max up. Avoid him or kill him and collect the Life Max up on the left. Jump back down and go back out, across the tower, and back into the pendulum room. Fight your way back past the Sword Lord/Vandal Swords, climb up, and swing on the pendulums to reach the door. Go left back to the Keep. CASTLE KEEP Ride the lion torch platform back up and save, then go through the left door to the broken stairs. Activate the Soul of Bat and fly left. Dodge the Flea Riders and go to the stone outcropping below Dracula's throne room. Collect the Power of Mist relic... And turn it off. Fly back across to the Save Point. Use it. Drop down to the teleporter and warp back to the Outer Wall. OUTER WALL Ride the elevator all the way down. Go down the stairs and drop through the hole next to the vase. In this room, go down the stairs. Take the door back to the creepy-eye corridor of the Marble Gallery. MARBLE GALLERY Kill the Stone Roses and Diplocephaluses and head left. Go through the X-shaped room and exit the upper left. In the next room, drop down through the hole and head down to the Underground Cavern. UNDERGROUND CAVERN Avoid the Spear Guards' attacks and go down through the room until you come to a hole in the floor. Turn on the Soul of Bat and step through the hole. Take bat form and fly right through the door. Turn the Soul of Bat off and proceed right. In the next room, smash the vase for a Claymore sword if you want it, then drop down and exit. The bottom right vase in this room contains the Moonstone; The rest hold Meal Tickets. Collect all the Meal Tickets, and the Moonstone if you want, then go through the bottom LEFT door to find a Save Point. Do your business and exit, this time, go through the right door to find a strange, glowing purple Save Point. Use it to enter... NIGHTMARE The game takes over for you here. Watch Alucard talk to his dead mother (Norman Bates, anyone?), then prepare to fight... SUCCUBUS Jump in and hit her as soon as you can. When she flies up to the top of the screen, enter the menu and turn the Leap Stone on. Succubus spends a lot of time at the top of the screen, and double jumping is the only way to reach her. Stand under her while she decides what to do. She will either extend spears from her wings (which you can avoid by standing below her), or create a row of clones. If she clones herself, you must dodge the pink energy balls the clones all fire and attack each one until you find the real Succubus. Succubus will also launch pink flower petal things in an attack that mirrors Karasuman's shadow crows, and you can avoid and counter this attack exactly as you did with him. When she falls, you return to the castle. Turn the Leap Stone off, collect the Gold Ring, and use the Save Point. Climb back up and left, and fall down the vertical shaft into the cave. Head left all the way to the waterfall. At the waterfall, activate the Soul of Bat and fly left to the door. Enter the room and push the switch. A Skeleton Ape appears and breaks open the floor, allowing you to get the Herald Shield if you want. Kill the Skeleton Ape and fly back across the gap. Turn the Soul of Bat off and go back the way you came. In the room with the wooden bridge, you will now find another Skeleton Ape. You'll have to kill him and continue right to the next room, then turn around and come back. Kill the Frogs and Toads, then SLOWLY go left until you see the Skeleton Ape, then slide back. Wait until the Ape is on screen again, and slide. Do this until you're standing on the wooden bridge. Let the Skeleton Ape throw his barrel, destroying the bridge, and drop down to the Heart Max up and Life Max up. Collect them and drop down to the door. Enter... ABANDONED MINE Drop to the bottom of the gold room and save on the right. Use the Leap Stone to get back onto the lowest platform, turn it back off, and climb up to the dog-head door. Enter and go right to face... CERBEROS Run in and punch him. Move in as he backs away and keep hitting him. He will shoot fireballs, either one at a time or several in rapid succession, all of which can be ducked under. When you back him into a corner, he will try to jump on you. Just do your best to avoid his attacks and heal when necessary. Beat him to earn a Life Max up. Go right and drop through the green room. The next room is only one screen tall, and you might fall clean through it! Get back into this room if you fall through and head right. Kill the Gremlin and his fires (you can wait a few seconds for the fires to burn out) and go through the door to the last teleporter. Warp up to the Entrance, save, and return. Head left from the teleporter, kill the Gremlin again, and drop down to the bottom of the next room. Exit to the right and go down to the door to... CATACOMBS Drop down through the first room and go left to the Save Point. Save and go back to the right. The Wereskeletons in this room have great reach. They throw bones, and whip their necks. Kill them and the Bone Ark, which must be approached with caution, as it will fire lightning balls when you get close. Head right. More Gremlins in this room. Proceed carefully to avoid their fires and drop down to the lower left door. Enter a room full of sarcophagi (that's stone coffins). Walk casually through and keep your hands to yourself, like a museum. If you punch the coffins, they will release Skeletons and Blood Skeletons... So don't! In the next room you'll find a Heart Max up and a Life Max up. Grab them and go back past the sarcophagi to the Gremlin room. Cross the bottom of the room and enter the lower right door. Keep going until you come to a large room with a floating platform. You can kill the Slimes in this room with your fists (about 3 hits for the Green Slimes, about 5 for the Large Slime), but be careful of the Bone Ark. Climb up to the door on the upper right and enter a dark room. Open the menu and activate the Form of Mist and Power of Mist relics. Turn into a cloud and float blind through the dark room (roughly, go right, up, righ just a little, down, right, up, and right). Try to zig-zag a little, as there are several tiny ledges to get hung up on, and it's almost impossible to tell if you're moving at all once you get to the center of the room and have no point of reference. Materialize on the light platform to reveal the spikes lining the walls of the room. Turn off the Mist relics and go right. Kill the Wereskeletons and pass through this room. Drop down into the next room and kill the Bone Ark. There is a hidden Pork Bun in the lower right corner of this room. Grab it and go left past several Wereskeletons to a long room, at the end of which you will find the Spike Breaker armor. Don't equip it yet. Go back, past the Wereskeletons, to the hole in the ceiling. Turn on the Soul of Bat, fly up, and deactivate the relic in the next room. Head left. In the spike room, equip the Spike Breaker and turn on the Leap Stone. Make your way left to the end of the room, then remove the armor and turn the Leap Stone off again. Go left through the Slime room and head back to the Save Point. Save and go up and out of the Catacombs. ABANDONED MINE Equip the Leap Stone and climb up through the green room. Collect two Shiitakes on the way if you missed them coming down. When you exit the room, turn off the Leap Stone and go right to the teleporter. Warp up to the Entrance. CASTLE ENTRANCE Go up to the Save Point and save. Continue up to Alchemy Lab. ALCHEMY LABORATORY Go back through the Lab to the Royal Chapel. ROYAL CHAPEL Head through the Chapel to the first bell tower. Climb the tower to the platform with the Hunting Girl. Fight the Hunting Girl if you think you can take her, or continue up, over the bottom bell, and drop down to the door on the Hunting Girl's left. Enter the room and equip the Spike Breaker and Form of Mist relic. Go all the way left, past the blue door, and break the bad news about Richter to Maria. After she goes into denial and leaves, grab the Silver Ring behind where she was standing and go back to the bell tower. Turn off the Form of Mist and remove the Spike Breaker. Drop down to the bottom of the tower. Go left, back to the room with the Spectral Sword, drop straight down, and use the lower right door to enter the Colosseum. COLOSSEUM Use the Save Point directly below the door. Climb back up and head right. If you're feeling brave, go down the shadowy corridor, through the empty arena, and step on the button in the floor to use the elevator. Ride down one floor and go right. Take out the Hunting Girls, and climb up to the Save Point. If you're more conservative, or less lucky, climb up above the arena and cross through the Blade Soldier/Blade Master room, and down to the Save Point. Regardless of the path you chose, save and climb up to the door to Olrox's Chambers. OLROX'S CHAMBERS Head right and sneak under the Spectral Sword. Drop down and kill the Skelerangs. If you're fast enough, you can hit them before they see you coming. Go down and through the door. MARBLE GALLERY In the room where you picked up the Heart Max up and Life Max up, equip both the Gold and Silver Rings. Go right and fall down into the main clock room. The clock should react to the Rings. You'll see a flash, then the clock hands spin around, point straight down, and the clock chimes 13. Scary... Drop down through the new opening and go right for a Heart Max up/Life Max up combo. Go back and ride the spooky elevator down to the room below. Fall down to the bizarre room within a room. Fall down off the top of the inner room and go under it to the hieroglyph decorated platform in the floor. The platform will raise you up into the inner room, where Maria will move from denial to acceptance, and give you the Holy Glasses. When the cut scene ends, turn on the Soul of Bat and fly back up to the elevator. Ride it up and use the Save Point on the left, then fly up to the main clock chamber. Turn the Soul of Bat off and go right. Head back to the Outer Wall. OUTER WALL Go up and left, along the same path you took to fight Doppelganger 10. Use the Save Point and go up, right through Doppelganger's room, and back out to the Wall. Go up the stairs and ride the elevator up to the Long Library. If you can afford it, visit the Master Librarian (even if you can't, you can try killing Spellbooks for the chance at a 1000 gold bag); Otherwise, continue up to the teleporter room and warp to the Castle Keep. CASTLE KEEP Step out of the teleporter room, ride the platforms up, and use the Soul of Bat to fly up through the hole in the ceiling. Ride the swirly color platform up in the lion head torch room and use the Save Point on the right. DO NOT SKIP THIS SAVE!!! Follow the red carpet left to the broken stairway and fly diagonally up-left to the door. Turn the Soul of Bat off and equip the Holy Glasses. Stand near the tall candle holder, jump, and punch the lower left corner of the wall to reveal a stairway. Climb it and start breaking stuff! The antiques on the left contain a Frankfurter, a Pot Roast, a Turkey, and a Sirloin. There's no real point in going right, since you have no use for a Resist Stone, a Resist Dark, a Resist Holy, or the Platinum Mail, but get them if you like. Go back down the stairs and left. Break open the vase on the table for a Heart Max up if you want, and enter Dracula's throne room to fight... RICHTER BELMONT NOTE: If you are consistently losing this fight, it might be a good idea to go back down to the zombie room in the Castle Entrance and level up. A lot. I first attempted this fight at LV 28, with a total of 252 HP, and lost in a matter of seconds. After several more tries with similar results, I decided this isn't just a good suggestion, it's pretty much a necessity. After 23 hours of killing Zombies, I was at LV 35, with 318 HP. Actually, you're not here to fight Richter at all. See that little green ball floating above him? It's controlling Richter. That is your target. Of course, the possessed Richter isn't going to just stand there... The legendary vampire hunter will initiate battle by using the Cross item crash. This surrounds him with flying crosses and eventually fills the screen with holy light. No matter what, this attack will hit you. Richter possesses amazing speed and power. He will employ his whip and the Holy Water, Axe, and Boomerang Cross items in a no-holds-barred effort to destroy you. In addition, he has an arsenal of special moves, including the Uppercut and Whip Dash. You, on the other hand, have only the benefit of a single point added to your Defense rating and a handful of potions and snacks that will only postpone the inevitable. Unfortunately, luck is the greatest factor in this fight. Richter has a definite advantage in speed, power, and weapons. Even after hours of leveling up, your Defense is only going to be 3 or 4, with the Holy Glasses equipped. However, all that leveling up WILL grant you enough HP to survive more than a few attacks, and boost your Attack to shorten the fight. Richter will set the pace for the battle. If he unloads on you with constant attacks, you're going down no matter how fast you can heal. There's no nice way to say that. If he hangs back and tries to be strategic, you stand a chance. There's no real strategy I can offer, but this is how I ended up beating him: Run up on Richter, don't jump (or he'll toss axes and knock you away), and, if you're lucky, when you get too close for his comfort, he'll use his Whip Dash. If you're quick enough to jump this attack, Richter will fly across the screen. Meanwhile, the little green orb will slowly follow him. Hammer the green ball while it is separated from Richter, who is its only defense. If your Attack is high enough, you can destroy it before it gets back above Richter and end the fight. Pat yourself on the back and watch the cut scenes. Alucard will automatically warp to the Inverted Castle. REVERCE KEEP Equip the Soul of Bat and fly up out of the teleport chamber. Don't bother to turn it off, unfortunately (for the purpose of this challenge, anyway) the Inverted Castle requires you to fly just about everywhere. Leaving the relic on, however, does not entitle you to employ the bat form special moves, so don't think you're getting away with anything. Go left and smash the vase hanging from the table to get a zircon, then drop down below the stairs and smash more antiques. To the right you will find a Life Max up, a Heart Max up, another Life Max up, and a Bastard Sword. To the left, a Heart Max up, Life Max up, Heart max up, and a Royal Cloak. Fly up out of this room and go left. Drop down outside the castle and go left. Kill the Yorick skeleton and enter the room. According to the rules, technically you can only collect the High Potion in this room. Go back out and fly straight up from the doorway to the red carpet door. Go inside and left to save. Fly up to the door and go left to the Reverse Clock Tower and fight... REVERSE CLOCK TOWER DARKWING BAT The greatest threat here is Darkwing Bat's slow speed. Often, you will crash into the flying turtle during attacks, and you will take a lot of damage from this. Jump in and punch the bat as he slowly flies around the room. When he positions his body vertically, get below him to avoid his wing flap attack, which causes a gust of wind that will throw you against the wall. If the mechanics of this attack seem familiar, the method of counterattack should, also. Get behind the bat and pound it while it's locked in this animation. Darkwing Bat will also fly down and try to catch you between his wings, but this attack, like the rest of his movement, is slow and easy to avoid... Unless he catches you in midair as you jump. Defeat the bat for the Ring of Vlad, a relic that would grant you a +10 bonus to your Intelligence rating, if you were leaving it on. Turn it off and return to the Save Point. Head back through Darkwing Bat's room and left. When you reach the room with the Bomb Knights, jump to avoid their bombs and kill at least the closest of the two (about 5 hits), and ride the spiked platform to get over the second. Keep going left until you reach a vertical wall, and use bat form to fly up to the stone platform with a Bomb Knight and a small spike platform. The Bomb Knight cannot hurt you, he's too close to the ceiling. Avoid the spike platform and kill him, then run over the top of the platform. Go left to the broken stairs. You will see a Bomb Knight directly below you; You can engage him or hold left as you fall through the hole in the stairs. Get onto the stone platform directly above a large spike platform. Drop down onto the spike platform and ride down. Kill the two Bomb Knights, then ride the second spike platform up halfway or so, and jump left to the stone platform. Jump up and right to the next stone platform, then fly through the hole in the stairs. Continue left through the door. Go straight across this room, ignoring the Cloaked Knight, and punch out the left wall. Go through the hidden room and drop down into the Clock Tower attic. Avoid the Cloaked Knight and grab the Life Max up on the left, then fly back up into the hidden room and go back to the main Clock Tower. Go right back through the door and make your way back past the Bomb Knights to the vertical wall. Fly up and continue right and down to the door. Go back to the Save Point in the Reverse Keep and save. REVERSE KEEP Fly up through the hole in the ceiling and ride the platforms up to the door. Go to the teleporter, then turn around and come back. Head through the right doorway. Run up to the Tombstone and punch, then slide to avoid being jumped on. Hit it again while it remains stationary; You should be able to destroy it (5 hits) before it jumps again. If the Tombstone hits you, you will be cursed, but big deal, right? Continue right to... ANTI-CHAPEL Fly up the bell tower to the Save Point on the left. Save. Fly across to the hall on the right. Rapidly punch the Balloon Pod to break it open and destroy its poisonous seeds. Avoid the Black Panther by throwing a punch at it as it runs toward you; It will turn into a puddle and flow past you. Keep moving so it doesn't run up behind you. Go through the pink-tinted door to fight... MEDUSA Jump in close to her at the beginning of the battle , duck, and hit her a couple of times. She will back away; Follow and keep hitting her until she backs into the corner. Get right next to her, duck, and start tapping the attack button. The hardest part of this fight is the amount of time it takes to wear Medusa's 1100 HP down with only your fists. By ducking, you will avoid her sword slash and stone gaze attacks, so you can actually win this fight with no damage incurred. Collect the Heart of Vlad, which gives you the useless ability to avoid curse. So turn the relic off. Head back left and fly across the bell tower to the Save Point. Save. Go back right, through Medusa's room, and down another hallway full of Balloon Pods and Black Panthers. Fly up the next bell tower and go through the door on the right. There are several Black Panthers in this hall, and you're bound to get boxed in. Just keep moving and ignore them. Drop into the roof of the last bell tower and smash the vase on the right for a Life Max up, then fly up the tower. When you reach the door to the spiked hallway, duck inside. Step back out and fly left under the wooden platform, then around the left side and above it, back to the center, and straight up. If you do this quickly enough, you can void damage from the Snipers of Goth. Fly up into the Chapel and dodge around the Snipers to the door on the left to enter... DEATH WING'S LAIR Go left to the hall with the Flying Zombies and Cthulu. Be careful; Somehow, I managed to break through the floor in this room, and the only purpose this seems to serve is so the Cthulu can knock you backwards through the hole, which resets all the enemies in the room. If you break the floor, you might as well die and come back. Kill the Flying Zombies by throwing a standing punch or two to destroy the upper body, then crouch and punch the legs to death. Get past this room to get another Life Max up. Continue left past more Flying Zombies and another Cthulu. Try to lure the Zombies away from the Cthulu, who will fly harmlessly back and forth until you get too close to him. Exit the room and drop down past the Medusa Heads to the broken platforms. Cross to the left and enter the Save Point. Save. Go back right across the broken platforms. Drop down off the right platform and run under the Karasuman through the lower right door. Head down the hall. When you reach the blocks on the ceiling that you can't walk past, use bat form to fly below them and continue through the gold door to fight... AKMODAN II Akmodan II is a hard hitter and can be a difficult boss to get in close to. Unless you know what you're doing, this will be a tough, frustrating fight. The key lies in your speed. As soon as you enter Akmodan's chamber, run straight across and crouch in front of the coffin as it opens. The Alucard sprite should be directly in front of the coffin's lid. This should put you within punching range as soon as the mummy appears. Start punching like mad. When the mummy starts taking damage, he will lapse into his "ouch, I got hit!" animation and be unable to recover, and will simply stand still until he dies or you stop punching him. Simple. If you lose any HP in this battle, you did it wrong (well, I guess it's not wrong if you win). Collect the Rib of Vlad (CON +10) and turn it off. Leave Akmodan's chamber, avoid or kill the first Karasuman, and fly up to the broken platforms. Go left to the Save Point. Drop down to the lower left corner of the main room and fall through the hole in the floor. Smash the vase for an Aquamarine and head left. When you come to the spikes in the floor, wait on the platform for the Ghost Dancer, kill it, and fly left to the next platform. Kill another Ghost Dancer, fly left. Keep doing this until you reach the hole in the ceiling. Fly up through the hole to the top, then take the door on the left and teleport back to the Reverce Keep. Save and return. Go right form the teleporter. In the room where you encountered Hammer and Blade in the `normal' castle you will find Ghost Dancers and Malachais. Kill the Ghost Dancers, duck below the Malachias and let them fly over you, and keep going right to the main chamber. Fly up and left. Break down the wall and enter the hidden room. There are a Malachai and two Ghost Dancers in this room; Kill the Ghost Dancers and ignore the Malachai. Go all the way left and stand on the ledge to jump and break the vases for an opal, Sword of Hador, and a high potion. Leave this room and fly up through the hole in the ceiling. Go left, then take bat form and zig zag around all the platforms as you proceed up to the door. Go left to... BLACK MARBLE GALLERY Go left and fly up to the central clock. Drop down the long center shaft to a room full of glass cylinders holding the subweapon items (stopwatch, knife, etc.) Ignore them and head right for a Life Max up. Fly back up to the central clock and head left. To my knowledge, there's no way you can take on the Guardians in this room in Alucard's current state, so hug the ceiling and fly across. Continue left through the next room. As soon as you enter you encounter a Jack O' Bones. Carefully time your jump to kick him, and jump immediately afterward to avoid the spike trap on the floor. Go down the stairs. Another Jack O' Bones waits in another spike trap, but the real threat is the Nova Skeleton. Take them both out and go right. Another Nova Skeleton waits on the platform. Kill it and get to the floor to take out the Jack O' Bones; If you wait on the platform, he will throw his bouncing bone cross up and can shave off your HP pretty quickly. Go left past another spike trap and into the next room. Drop down onto the spike trap as soon as you enter the room. Carefully cross the spike trap and kill the Nova Skeleton. Fight your way past more Jack O' Bones and go left into the X-shaped room. Get to the center platform and fly up and left. Go under the pink opening, through the spike trap, and exit left. The Stone Skulls in this corridor are invulnerable; Ignore them and go left. Deal with a few Jack O' Bones and keep going. After the room's halfway point, you'll only encounter Thornweeds. Keep going left to the door and enter... REVERSE OUTER WALL Drop down off the end of the platform and go right, across the hole in the floor, to a room full of Paranthropi. Fight or jump over them and go right across the next room to the Save Point. Drop down outside the Save Point and go through the left door to face... THE CREATURE All the Creature does is roll around a lot, and occasionally swing his hammer at you. Unless he actually hits you, he's pretty harmless. When he rolls, just jump over him again and again until he stops (he rolls 5 times). Try to be behind him when he stops and hit him repeatedly until he turns around. Stay in the center of the room to give yourself space to clear him when he rolls, and keep up the jumping/hitting pattern until he dies. Collect the Tooth of Vlad for a STR +10 bonus that you're turning off as a reward for this easy (but time consuming) battle. Go left, grab the shield potion, and go through the door. Jump over the Jack O' Bones to the platform and smash the vase for a high potion. Fly up and go right, back through the Paranthropus room to the Save Point, then backtrack and fly up to the door to the Black Marble Gallery. Since you're flying up, and going to be right next to it, smash the vase across for the door for a Life Max up, then go back to the Gallery. BLACK MARBLE GALLERY Go right, past the Thornweeds, Stone Skulls, and Jack O' Bones to the X-shaped room. Go right and down. Get past the spike trap and Jack O' Bones in the next room, kill the Nova Skeleton and fly up through the pink door in the ceiling. Go left and fly up the next room to the door. REVERCE CAVERNS Smash the vase for a zircon and head up. Use the door on the left to save, then go right. Kill the Jack O'Bones and Nova Skeleton and go through the right door for a Life Max up, then break down the wall for a diamond. Go left back to the main room and head up until find the door on the left. Go through it and left past more Jack O' Bones and Nova Skeletons. In the next room, kill the Jack O' Bones and smash the vase for a Heart Max up if you want, then fly up, carefully navigating past the Balloon Pods, and go through the upper left door. All the vases in this room contain Meal Tickets. Collect them all and go to the top of the room. To the right is a Save Point. To the left, in the room where you found Nightmare in the `normal' castle, you will find peanuts hidden on the floor. But these are no ordinary peanuts. Grab them, leave the room, and come back to collect them again...And again...And again. Stock up on peanuts to your heart's content (or until you get 99, all you can carry). NOTE: To use peanuts, equip them and push the button to throw the peanut high into the air, then get under it and press up to eat it for 50 HP. Not bad for a little thing! Head back out to the main chamber. Fly straight up into the cave and go left to the Save Point. Go right from the Save Point. In the next room, stand in the doorway and wait for the Jack O' Bones to jump at you and fall down through the hole in the floor, then fly across and grab the Shiitake. Head right and drop down and left for another Shiitake, then continue right. Deal with the Rock Knights as you did the Bomb Knights in the clock tower (dodge the rock, run in, and punch; 11 hits kills them). Lure the Rock Knights left as far as you can to kill them, then run right and hammer on the Venus Weed as it opens. When it dies, slide and lure the Rock Knight back to kill it, then run right and kill another Venus Weed. Continue right. There are more Rock Knights, but that was the last Venus Weed you'll be seeing. Exit right and fly up through the hole in the ceiling of the next room to the door. CAVE The first thing you'll hear in this room is the telltale flapping of Gaibon's wings. Go to the center of the room and jump to make him come after you. Kill him and fly up from the center of the floor to the first platform. When the next Gaibon appears, return to human form and fall back to the floor (he will chase you), then kill him as well. There are two more Gaibons above; Kill them in the same manner and use the upper left door to save. Drop down from the Save Point, dodge the Gaibons, and enter the dog head door. There are two Slogras in this room; Take them on separately and go through the left door to face... DEATH Death fight in two forms, so I'll address each separately. Form 1 This is the standard form you've likely seen in previous Castlevania titles: He flies around the room and spinning scythes appear to attack. The scythes are easily dodged, but if you get cornered you can kill them with a punch. Keep moving back and forth across the floor to avoid being cornered and punch Death when you get an opening. After taking a certain amount of damage, Death will hover in place and summon two energy balls. Pound him relentlessly while he's motionless and then dodge the slow moving energy balls and scythes while you hit Death until he hovers in place again (If you're fast enough, he will skip the floating energy ball part I just described and go to this). Pummel Death while he hovers again, until he summons either two large, red scythes that float near him or two giant pentagrams that produce fast, ghostly skulls. If you get the skulls, you're probably going to see the Game Over screen soon, but not definitely. Get in another hit and Death will call the red scythes. When he throws the red blades, back off and avoid them until they fly back up to Death, then run in and hit him until he throws them again. Repeat this until he changes form (you should level up from killing the first form). Form 2 Death turns into a big flying skeleton thing with two scythes. Try to stay as close to him as you can, running back and forth directly below him. When he raises his arms, run under and behind him. He will drop and swing his scythes down, and you can pound him. When he begins to recover from this attack, slide and start the pattern over. Jump occasionally to keep Death flying high enough for you to run below him unharmed. If he throws his scythes, jump to avoid them (they boomerang, so you need to dodge twice). Collect the Eye of Vlad (LCK +10) and turn the relic off. Exit left and fly up slowly to avoid the bats hanging from the ledge. Carefully navigate this room and go out through the top. In the next room head left to the door and use the teleporter to warp to the Reverce Keep. REVERCE KEEP Leave the teleporter and drop down to the Save Point. Save and head right below the red carpet. Fly back across to the inverted throne room and go all the way right to the teleport tower. Drop into the tower and press up to warp back to the `normal' castle. Head right to the teleport room and warp down to the Outer Wall. OUTER WALL Drop down to the elevator and ride to the door to Long Library. LONG LIBRARY Head back through the Library and sell your gems to the Master Librarian, then buy some potions. After you stock up, head back up to the teleporter and choose your destiny. You now possess all the pieces of Dracula, and can open the path to him and engage in the final battle; Or you can warp back down to the Entrance and level up. NOTE: There's a third option available for you at this point: Cheat. My wife says if you came this far, you've earned it. Since there are only two bosses left, and you probably don't have a week or so to sit around while your system levels Alucard up, go ahead. If you have a Gameshark, use the following code to level up fast: 80097bec ffff Now or then, when you're ready to face the Lord of the Undead, warp up to the Castle Keep and go left to the throne room. Use the warp tower to return to the inverted castle. Use the teleporter in the Reverce Keep to warp to Death Wing's Lair. DEATH WING'S LAIR Go left to the main chamber and fly up to the Black Marble Gallery, then up to the central clock. The clock should react in the same way it did to the Gold and Silver Rings in the `normal' castle. Fly up through the ceiling and go right to save, then ride the spooky elevator up. Fly around the room within a room and drop into the chamber where Maria gave you the Holy Glasses to fight... SHAFT There isn't much strategy here. Pound on Shaft's flying machine as fast and often as you can. Shaft employs six green orbs that attack in pairs. The first two glow rainbow colors and bounce around the room; They're fairly easy to dodge and you can continue your assault while they make their rounds. The second two fly down and fire flame bursts; To avoid them, crouch in the corner. The last two spread out to either side of the room and fire lightning between them, then move up and down. You can't avoid this, so ignore it and hit Shaft if you can. When he falls, the path to Dracula opens! DRACULA The battle begins with some dialogue. As soon as the dialogue ends, get in the lower left corner of the room and crouch as Dracula moves into the foreground, then mash the attack button as fast as you can. You will avoid most, if not all, damage from this position, and you can put a few good hits on the Lord of the Undead in the process. When Dracula flies into the background, he will create an energy ball and fire it forward. Stay put until the last possible second and jump over the energy ball, then get back into the corner before Dracula moves back up. Dracula's three dragon heads will take turns trying to hit you, but they can't reach you. When the dragons stand straight out, they create a triangular energy field that will break up and hit you. Let it. You'll take more damage trying to avoid it, so ignore it and keep hammering on Dracula. Dracula also conjures up bosses you've faced and smashes them into a gory mess. This is only for effect and really does nothing. Just keep pouring it on, use any heal items you have if you need it (there's no reason to save them now), and Dracula will fall in time. CONGRATULATIONS!! You just completed the Naked Alucard Challenge! ************************************ vi ********************************** HOPES AND DREAMS Though I seem to be the first to have made a guide for this quest, I'm in no way stupid enough to assume I'm the first to complete it. Nor do I claim to be a great gamer. Probably not even a good one. For those that have been here and done this already, or for those that are inspired to undertake the task by this guide, I have this list of things I would like to add to the guide. Any submissions will be given due credit and be greatly appreciated: 1) Any additional strategy, for any boss covered in this quest, or any not on the path I set (provided, of course, you can get to the boss and combat it without breaking the rules). Which leads me to: 1b) A battle strategy to fight and BEAT Galamoth (if such a thing is possible; I can imagine the arguments already). Come on, guys. There has got to be some uber-gamer out there with the skillz and the cajones to pull this off. 2) Level suggestions for any particular area/ boss. If you can conquer this at LV. 47, say so. I'm the kind of guy who still maxes out my character stats before I fight Sephiroth for the thousandth time. 3) A way to navigate any part of the inverted castle without relying on the Soul of Bat/Leap Stone so much. I feel like a dirty cheater, flying around that castle so much. (On the other hand, if nobody can tell me otherwise, it'll ease my conscience some.) 4) Any items (especially HP Max ups) that I couldn't get to but you can. 5) Can anyone tell me why Alucard bears such a striking resemblance to Setzer from Final Fantasy III/VI (3 on the SNES, 6 on PSone)? Look at the Castlevania manual art and Setzer's sprite and tell me I'm wrong! ************************************ vii ************************************ OPTIONAL STUFF/HALL OF FAME Let me know about any side-quest you devise, complete the quest in record time, or show off your sick skillz in some other way, and I'll immortalize you in print! IT'S FINALLY HERE!!! This is it, THE strategy for the hands-down baddest-ass boss in SOTN. That's right. So you took on Dracula with nothing but a loincloth. You beat Werewolf and Minotaur with 1 measly HP left. You even spanked Richter with a mere 4 points added to your DEF rating. But I ask you, can you make Galamoth beg for mercy with no one and nothing but the gods on your side? gman94 (email@example.com) did, and here's how: (NOTE: I'm George W. Bush, and I approved this strategy...)* Ok, when you get to where Galamoth resides, go to the checkpoint to the left of his room. Before you save make sure everything is on that you need, which is the gravity boots, the leap pendant, and you will want alot of elixers/high potions/heal apples if they're aloud, not sure. (NOTE: They are) A couple of shitakes or peanuts are good cuz you will probubly have time to heal during the thunderball attack. Ok, save and enter his room. now it becomes fun. Walk up to him so he stands up and the scary music plays (which will become annoying in about five minutes, if you got a big tv I would suggest doing this in PIP) back up. He will usually initiate battle by throwing his magic wand up into the air and calling his thunderball friends. Ok are you watching? STAND OUT OF THE WAY OF THE THUNDERBALLS!!! Good, and he will quit. Now he usually will lean over you and make some jolt lightning, just waiting to shock you. Well, when he tries, super jump into the air, and get ready to kick him in his head. Now, the only thing that hits you is his giant horn, so don't touch that. After you hit him once, you will careen upwards, jump, and kick him in the back of his head. Then, once again you'll be flying upwards, and the faster you do this kick, the better chances of you getting in a fourth kick. You better experiment and get your own rhythm, that way you can always get that fourth kick in. Now you'll either have to go over his wand or underneath, and I would recommend over. Now, usually if you go over he will send the shockwave thing at you. Just don't jump and you wont get hit by it. Rinse wash repeat until Galamoth falls. The only thing to watch out for is to always get on his side farthest away from the wall. So if he pins you into the wall, you will die. And thats about it. "TO ALL I SAY THIS, *Galamoth fall down and go BOOM*" * Yes, I realise I stated clearly that NO relics were allowed, however, I'm letting the Leap Stone and Gravity Boots slide for anyone with the guts to try this out. It's Galamoth! He's two friggin' screens tall! How much of a 'hole do you think I am? ALTERNATE GALAMOTH STRATEGY Hubert Cumberdale (firstname.lastname@example.org)offers this alternative: I have an easier way to beat Galamoth with only your fists. Its a bit cheap, but so is galamoth, and pulling if off to begin with is quite tough anyway. Its basically a variant of the whiplash method, only somewhat tougher because your fists have no reach. Galamoth has to be in just the right position for this to work, and lucky enough, he starts out in such a position! He'll usually use his continous lightning bolt attack first(otherwise, he'll do it second, after the black lightning ball attack). Get over and around Galamoth somehow(if you can do this without gravity boots, kudos to you!) and onto the platform above on the right side of the room. After he finishes his attack, he'll back up. Here's the tricky part: the SECOND he turns around, you have to jump into the air and hit him in the head, and then fall back on the platform. If you do this right, his head will jerk back. Now you have to do it again, without wasting a fraction of a second, before he recovers. Fortunately, you don't have to jump in circles like a maniac forever. After a good 4 or 5 hits, he'll usually be within range of your fists, so just land as far to the edge of the platform as you can and just mash the punch button repeatedly. If you can get this far, you're likely to win. That's a big "if" though. There's a split second window of opportunity to get that first shot in. However, he can break free, and if he does you'll have to resort to kicking him in the head while he's doing his lightning attack, because its almost impossible to get him into the right position to repeat the whiplash strategy. A TWIST ON THE CHALLENGE Nicholas Sculley <email@example.com> suggests that, if you should find the Naked Alucard Challenge not quite enough of a challenge, begin the game with the 99 Luck code (enter name as X-X!V''Q) to reduce your stats to ridiculously low levels and make it incredibly hard to gain levels. Then, have your head examined. ************************************ viii *********************************** LEGAL STUFF Castlevania, Alucard, and all related terms are copyright Konami. Castlevania: Symphony Of The Night copyright Konami 1997. This guide is copyright Ryan Goss (Acid Angel 13), 2003. If you want to post this guide or parts of it, send me an e-mail for permission first. It'll only take a minute, and it's not like I'll say no. Well, I might... Also note that if you choose to do something stupid, like steal MY property (this guide), keep in mind I have this on my hard drive, as well as the handwritten original, and I WILL make your life hell over it. This guide may be distributed freely, in whole or in part, by any means. Any portion of this guide taken from the complete version must be credited to me. This guide is for FREE distribution, which means nobody (except me) may get any amount of money for it. Unless you sell it to your little brother for a penny- I guess I'd let that pass. To contact me for whatever reason, e-mail me at: Angel_Hammer13@hotmail.com Use Castlevania as the subject, or I'll toss it along with all the spam I get. Any corrections, revisions, additional strategy, or whatever, will be greatly appreciated and, if relevant, posted in further versions of this guide. What's more, I love getting e-mails about my work. If you send me a mail, even a nasty one, you WILL get a reply. If you don't I didn't get it. Check back with GameFAQs and look at the newest version of this guide to make sure you have my current address, and try again. ************************************ ix *********************************** VERSION HISTORY (or, Some Stuff You Probably Don't Care About) 6/13/2003- Ver 1.00: Finished copying the hand written quasi-guide I made while actually playing onto the computer. Made up some FAQs, and a few lame jokes. 6/10/2004- Ver 1.05: Slight changes. Added Authorized Site list. 5/17/2005- still Ver 1.05: had to change e-mail carriers. Yahoo blows... 9/2/2005- Ver 2: Added Galamoth strategy by gman94, revised Site Authorzation policy, added contact message 9/30/2005- Ver 2.2: Due to an incredible influx of mail about the guide (yes, three mails in a couple day's time IS incredible), yet ANOTHER update, as well as fixing some formatting errors I missed in revision 2 12/21/05- Ver 2.5: Added alternate Galamoth Stretegy, Nicholas Sculley's challenge suggestion... I guess that's it. 2/22/06- Still Ver 2.5: Actually POSTED this version, after having it pointed out to me that I've had not only the WRONG guide, but an INCOMPLETE guide, hanging out on GameFAQs in its place. gman, I can't thank you enough. Yes, I am a stupidass. AUTHORIZED SITES (or, People Who Didn't Rip This Off) The last time I got asked for this from a site other than GameFAQs, I got jerked around by said site and was utterly unable to register, let alone actually upload my work. Since I have a real life, and DON'T have time to waste trying to get this onto a site when I could seriously care less if it's there or not, from now on I will remain completely loyal and suservient to the site that introduced me to online gaming strategy. www.gamefaqs.com is the ONLY site that will ever carry my work. If you find it anywhere else, it's stolen, and I'd like to know about it.