Review by stncldrwg

"Best 3D Castlevania, but still needs improvement"

Konami throughout their history has been known for many of their original series’. These series’ range from Silent Hill to Metal Gear Solid. Their most well-known series is definitely the Castlevania series. Konami has finally made a Castlevania game for the Playstation 2. This game is Castlevania: Lament of Innocence.

While the 3D Castlevania’s will never be as amazing as the 2D classics, LOI does an amazing job. Konami took their time to give it a great gameplay system to go with the 3D feel. They also gave it decent graphics and an amazing soundtrack like most of the other games in the series. This is easily the best 3D Castlevania to come out, which isn’t saying that much, considering the other 2 3D CV games (Castlevania 64 and CV: Legacy of Darkness on the Nintendo 64) are easily the worst in the series. Overall, Konami did a great job for their first foray on the console.

Gameplay: 8/10: The gameplay in this game was put together very nicely. You have your basic Castlevania gameplay with a whip as your weapon and sub-weapons, such as Daggers and Holy Water. They also gave it a feel that is very reminiscent to Capcom’s Devil May Cry. While, for the most part, the gameplay suits the game well, one problem is jumping. Some of the platforms in the game require you to use your whip to swing to the next platform. In this game, doing that is kind of a hassle. Most of the time, you can’t see what you have to latch onto. Otherwise, the gameplay fits the game very well.

Graphics: 7/10: This is the 3rd Castlevania game to use 3D graphics. Of the 3 games, this one does it the best. The castle and characters are animated very nicely, but some of it looks kind of bland. One complaint I have is that most of the rooms in the castle look identical, which kind of shows that this game was a bit rushed. There are some other nice touches added, such as the FMV sequences, which go very well with the game as it progresses. The graphics in the game are nice, but Konami could have taken some more time to make it even better.

Sound: 9/10: As with most of the other Castlevania games, Lament of Innocence’s soundtrack is simply amazing. Each song brilliantly portrays the area of the castle you are in. While it won’t be SOTN’s soundtrack, which I consider to be the greatest soundtrack ever, it does do the game justice. The other sound effects are also used well. You have your usual CV sound effects for hearts and the sub weapons. Also, each crack of the whip and smash of a torch sound very well. While the sound isn’t as good as other CV games, it is done brilliantly.

Story: 7/10: The story for this Castlevania is similar to others in the series. You have to go to Dracula’s castle and stop him, while rescuing a damsel in distress. This game’s story fits the game well, but it is not as good as other storylines in the series.

Replay Value: 5/10: Its replay value is where the game suffers the most. Unlike other games in the series, this game does not take long to finish. Around 10 hours is all that is required to finish this game. Also, most of the RPG elements found in recent additions to the series, such as Aria of sorrow, are not found anywhere in this game. Also, there are not that much hidden areas to uncover. While the game is very fun, unfortunately you won’t be playing the game over and over.

Overall: 8/10: Castlevania on the PS2 has arrived, and had a decent debut. Konami has added new gameplay elements, while delivering yet another amazing soundtrack. Unfortunately, due to a short replay value, this game will not give you as much thrills as other games in the series. Still, the game is a worthy addition to the series. Hardcore CV fans should pick it up now, others, however, should wait for the price to go down, or rent it first before buying.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 10/27/03

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