Review by rareidea

"A Masterpiece, that must be played."

Now I have been a fan of Castlevania games my whole life. I've been through the classics, played all of the newer versions of the game. This game in particular is top-notch. This game is a complete enhancement of the original, but I can guarantee it is a lot funner, and easier to play for newcomers. The game is fairly difficult when you come to the end stages, but any player could join in on the fun. That is why this Castlevania is probably the best of the series. It has a medium difficulty tone, that invites any player to come in and play without having to bust out their Game Genie, or bust out their garbage bin. With all of that said, let's jump right into the review.

Castlevania IV is a typical side-scroller. You move from left to right and try to reach the end of the level. Although you don't completely go left to right in this one, it's the main concept. You'll be doing spins, and rotating believe it or not. You control Simon Belmont. Now you might be familiar with fairly stiff controls. This time it's better. When you whip, you can whip in 8 directions, instead of the one you are facing. You also can hold the attack button, and spin the whip around in any direction you please giving the whip a lot of flexibility. Also, you have your special weapons, which are pretty much the same as in previous games. The cross comes very handy, especially when you have the ability to throw two at once. Most of the time, you use your instincts to play and react, but sometimes it can be difficult when there are armies of enemies trying to take you down.
[rating: 9 / 10]

The story is the same as the original. Dracula has resurrected and you have to go out and stop him and destroy his castle. The story is told in a very spooky way if you watch the intro. It sets a dark, cold tone for a game that has that tone in each single level. Even though the story is recycled from the first, it doesn't make it any worse. I think this time around the story is portrayed a lot better than it was in the original.
[rating: 9.5 / 10]

The graphics in this game are almost flawless. Everything looks so detailed and it really shows the Super Nintendo's graphics at their best. There are so many colors, but most of them are fairly dark, but that doesn't hurt the game, since you are playing Castlevania, not Kirby. The music in this game is flawless. Each track is pleasing to hear. From the opening Simon Belmont theme which is a blast to hear, to the calm underground cavern tones in the third stage, you will hear everything. The soundtrack is flawless, and with that said, it gives this section a perfect 10.
[[rating: 10 / 10]

Replay Value
This is where the game sort of falls. Even though when you beat the game you are given a chance to play it through on a harder difficulty. There isn't really a point of it since it would take a long time and the average player probably wouldn't be able to go through the game twice without taking a break or a rest. You can use passwords you get from completing a stage, to continue at a certain level, but still. The game is fun to play, and when you beat it, you will feel satisfied, but not enough to give it a few runs in a week. Maybe if you play it once every few days or more, you will get a kick out of it, but other than that, there isn't much more you can do in the game. Maybe find secrets? Try to challenge yourself by not using certain weapons or power-ups? It's up to you.
[rating: 8.5 / 10]

Final Recommendation
This game is simply amazing. It is almost flawless. There are many of people who would agree, and a handful who would disagree, but in my opinion this game deserves a 9. Turn the lights off, on a cold October night, only one Super Nintendo game to play, what am I playing? This game. I think this is the best out of the series. If you are looking to rent this game, good luck because I don't know anybody around that allows you to rent Super Nintendo games these days, but if you are looking to purchase it, you must at all costs. This game is way too good to give up, and I can't see a Nintendo fanatic who has never touched this game. If you are a fan of Castlevania, buy this game. If you are a fan of Nintendo, buy this game. If you are a fan of Konami, buy this game. Heck, if you aren't a fan of video games, become one by playing this game.
Final Score: 9.7/10

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 01/19/10

Game Release: Super Castlevania IV (US, 12/31/91)

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