Review by Fin_Obelius

Reviewed: 11/15/07

And the verdict for another classic Castlevania is...? Not bad!

Super Castlevania IV is a port of the original that was put up for sale on the Wii's Virtual Console. It is just one of several ports for the VC to be done to the Castlevania series. Although this is a classic Castlevania, complete with ridiculous difficulty, it proves to be a fun game.

What?! There was a story in SCIV? In all seriousness, this is a game with a cliche Castlevania storyline. An example would be <insert Belmont or other extraordinary human> enters Castlevania to defeat Dracula, who has been resurrected for the umpteenth time. In this case, the protagonist is Simon Belmont who is, as always, armed with the Vampire Killer. If you have not picked up my subtle hints, I am implying that there is nothing new in the story.

The gameplay of SCIV is almost exactly the same as the original Castlevania. It is simply a super addicting linear crawl towards Dracula- with a few extra features. This time, Simon can swing the Vampire Killer in eight different directions. This can be used to your advantage by deflecting upcoming projectiles. This is quite a improvement to the usual hit n' duck tactics used in the classic Castlevania games. The subweapons are usable as well. You get subweapons by destroying candles. (It's amazing what kind of things Dracula's minions stash away in candles!) Unfortunately, the Belmonts' signature move, Cross Crash, has not been introduced to the games. Instead, the most powerful subweapon is the throwable holy cross. In this game, since it is so linear, there are no save points. You input passwords at the menu screen to return to the same dungeon you were exploring previously. In my own opinion, I love the gameplay of Castlevania, be it Castleroid or classic.

Ah, the element of the classics that Castlevania was most notorious for, in my own opinion. In this game, there is no actual difficulty. It is only difficult if this is your first time playing in a certain dungeon. The key to beating this game is how well you remember the traps and monsters that lie ahead.

I particularly like this area in SCIV, because of the variety of the traps, the landscape, and the monsters, Some areas leave me with a feeling of paranoia, while others leave me with emotions of amazement at their detail. The variety in the geography of the path to Dracula's dark castle is partially the reason why I kept playing this game again and again. The diversity in design of the monsters also impressed me, they were particularly welcome after seeing the reused sprites of monsters in the Castlevanias of late. From disemboweled horse heads to mysterious masses of seaweed. If you thought you've seen them all in terms of monsters, I invite you to play this game. Lastly, the traps. Indeed, traps are cunning and well concealed. Imagine my surprise when I was approaching the end of a stage and a stalactite impaled Simon! Thus afterward I was warier of such traps. All in all, the graphics are impressive for such a old game.

Actually, I enjoyed this game in all of its simplistic glory from the days of the NES and SNES. Its merits were the varied blend that were the graphics. The gameplay was improved with the advent of the ability to swing the Vampire Killer while retaining the glorious gameplay of Castlevania. I was disappointed with the lackluster difficulty but I had fun with this game nevertheless. If you are a big fan of the Castlevania series, you should consider getting this game. If you aren't, you shouldn't even bother as this game would just frustrate you. I enjoyed this short but good game.

Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Product Release: Super Castlevania IV (US, 12/25/06)

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