Review by Larcen Tyler

"Ever wonder why the moon is circular instead of square?"

When I got my Game Boy Advance, after reading all the praise about the first portable Castlevania game in awhile, I thought to myself, ''Hey, we may have a winner here!'' So I got a chance to try the game for myself, I had to stop and wonder to myself, ''Wait a second, this is really a portable system?'' I tried it again, and confirmed my thoughts, and I knew that if something this good could come out only once in a blue moon, then it ain't gonna get any more blue than this!

Graphics: 10/10
If this is a first-generation title for the Game Boy Advance, then this system definitely has an excellent future ahead for it! The 3-D effect of the backgrounds are superb, and the character animations are excellent! You'll see your character trying to catch his breath when he's low on energy, bosses that are larger than life trying to attack you, and just about everything else that looks like it would be in a PlayStation game, except they fit it into a portable system!

Sounds: 10/10
Creepy music will fill your ears as you challenge every chamber of Dracula's castle, complete with the sound of your whip cracking, candles shattering, and even your character groaning when he gets hit by an enemy!

Controls: 10/10
Castlevania veterans will be right at home, while newcomers should be able to pick it up and enjoy it immediately. The two shoulder buttons allow players to do things such as use magic cards to create new types of attacks, as well as perform various types of special maneuvers such as tackling, etc. An easy to use inventory screen and map screen make things even easier. Couple it with the fact up to eight players can save their files on one cartridge, and you've got yourself something that's easy to pick up, but hard to put down!

Story: 10/10
It's 1830, and a woman is attempting to resurrect the evil one known as (drumroll) Dracula! Of course there are some people who want to stop this, including a man named Morris, his son Hugh, and Morris' student Nathan Graves. The woman conducting the ceremony won't stand for any interruptions, so she sends the two young men into catacombs beneath the castle, while taking Morris with her. It's up to Nathan to find his teacher and stop Dracula at any cost whatsoever!
Standard fare for any Castlevania game, but it gets the job done!

Replay: 6/10
Unfortunately, aside from a few extra modes you can unlock by finishing the game several times, there really isn't much to speak of for new things to try once you've already beaten the game. While it is a rather long quest to undertake, once you've finished it, that's all there is to it, unless you want to try the hidden modes.

Overall: 10/10
For a game like this to come out on a portable system must mean that the moon has turned more blue than one could ever imagine! Even if you've never tried the Castlevania games, try it at least once, you're sure to like it. Veterans will be right at home with this amazing game they can take just about anywhere, even to the moon!

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 07/23/01, Updated 07/23/01

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