Review by Ali_X_Rexus
The birth of the whip
Castlevania is one of those long-running series that struck off, and this is where it all started. Graphics and audio are really primitive as is the case with any NES games, so now that's out of the way, let's talk about the birth of the Castlevania gameplay.
Being an NES titles, the game has only six levels. You play Simon Belmont on a quest to rid the world of Dracula after awakening from his slumber. To do so, you have to use your whip to go through six levels. The game takes itself from horror movies, featuring bosses such as a vampire bat (dracula), Medusa, mummies, Frankenstein's Monster/Igor, and Death (the Grim Reaper). This is a plus, since I'm a fan of horror movie staples, and having to face them as bosses is always a good thing for me.
The enemies are varied, and from the beginning of the Castlevania series, though it might not be quite apparent yet, pattern forming and memorizing was essential in finishing the challenging game. You have to stay in focus so as not to lose plenty of health and whip your opponents to death.
The game features platforming alongside the action--jumping gaps that would otherwise lead to your ultimate death. It's all basic platforming and action, but the game does have charm: with its bosses, its whip, and its sub-weapons. Ask any Castlevania fan about a favorite in the series, and chances are plenty of answers would point at subweapons.
Throughout the game you collect hearts to use in conjuction with sub weapons--dagger, throwing axe, holy water, cross, and a stop watch. As you'll come to realize, certain subs prove beneficial in certain encounters. For example, if you're up against an aerial foe, an axe would prove very helpful.
Scattered throughout the walls of the game are secret meat, health items, and power ups for you to collect, and that's pretty much the game: scroll through levels taking down enemies with your whip/subweapons and take on famous horror celebrities. The game is challenging and fun while it lasts, and for a Castlevania fan, this game should be tried out to see where it all began.
+ It started with this
+ Basics of the fun Castlevania mechanics we all love today
+ Memorizing patterns and item locations is satisfying
+ Secondary weapons add some fun
+ Nice bosses
- A bit primitive
- May prove challenging for some, compared to the satisfaction it brings
Story - 8
Visuals - 4
Audio - 8
Gameplay - 7
-FUN Factor - 7
-Controls - A
-Difficulty - Challenging
Lifespan - 4
Overall - 7
Try it out for a trip down Castlevania lane.
Rating: 3.5 - Good
Product Release: Castlevania (US, 05/31/87)
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