Review by videogamer1030
"Time to kick some vampire ass."
Castlevania 4 was perhaps the best of the old Castlevanias. It may have been the first SNES game that pushed the graphics of the system. It's a title that still looks good and plays reasonably, even after all these years have passed.
Story (3/10): Dracula needs to be stopped....again.....
Audio (10/10): One of my favorite parts of the game. The music arranged here is magnificent, each theme is enjoyable to listen to, yet gives the feeling of a Castlevania game- haunting, yet catchy. Sound wise, the game isn't as good, but I almost never prefer sound to music, unless the music is downright awful. Simon's whip does make a cool crackling sound though, so added points for that.
Gameplay (8/10): You play as Simon, a Vampire Killer. He has access to many different weapons. His main weapon is the whip. Simon can swing his whip in all eight directions, to attack enemies and to stop their attacks. The sub weapons include the Cross Boomerang, the Axe, the Holy Water, and the Knife. The Cross Boomerang is by far the most useful, and since you can only equip one sub weapon, try not to pick up the other ones, because they replace the weapon slot.
I may be exaggerating here, but Simon can sometimes feel like a pile of rocks. More than half the player deaths in the game involve Simon's clunkiness. Sometimes, Simon's jump doesn't quite make it, because Simon jumps through stairs, or moves too slow.
Aside from that though, the game is well designed -having reasonable enemy and pitfall placement. Simon whips through 11 different stages, each noticeably different from the last (except for the fact that candles are in them.....even in a forest -_-).
Visuals (9/10); Super Castlevania IV pushes the SNES to it's full capacity. Some scenes in this game are especially incredible, specifically the spinning room with falling blocks, the drawbridge into Dracula's castle, the spinning gears of the clock tower, and the room where you fight dracula, with lightning that is blood red. Simon's animation is a bit off, but the visuals in this game are still pleasant to look at. This game has a large attention to background detail and really plays with some neat Mode 7 effects.
Bosses are also amazing in appearance (and battle), from the boss that changes size, the knight inside the glass, the 3 minions of Dracula, (especially Death with his epic entrance), and the Count himself.
Replay Value (6/10) It really depends on whether or not you like replaying games. The game is easily replayable, it is a lot of fun. However, there is no added content or extra areas to explore. The only extra is a slight boost in difficulty after you beat the game.
Overall (8.5/10). I never mentioned that Super Castlevania IV is a remake of the original game. But Super Castlevania IV is infinitely superior. For only 300 additional Wii points, you are getting more levels, better music, better gameplay, pretty much an improvement in every single area except nostalgia and maybe difficulty. But Super Castlevania IV has a harder quest after you beat the game, or if you wish to start with it, skipping Quest 1, simply look up the password for level 1 on hard mode. And yes, that brings me to another point- this game uses a password system. But fear not, you can use the Wii's save feature for Virtual Console games.
The main flaw with Super Castlevania IV is that it has an absolutely amazing presentation but offers only decent gameplay. Gameplay wise it is similar to past games in the series bar some cool whip tricks. The game would be better if Simon didn't move like a turtle. Despite these flaws, Super Castlevania IV is a very good SNES game and is a great addition to any Virtual Console library.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 07/28/08, Updated 06/15/09
Game Release: Super Castlevania IV (US, 12/25/06)
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