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The Castlevania/Bloodstained Thread: Whip It Good


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9 hours ago, Darc_Requiem said:

Yeah they should.....but they are Konami. I've been really down on Lucasfilm but even they had the good sense to hire the guy that deep faked Luke Skywalker better than they did.

Tbh that art is exactly what the series needs. Full on dark gothic without all the anime influence and true to the characters. I actually think I like that art style better than Ayami Kojima's 

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I'm in the midst of my first legit playthrough of SotN and I gotta say, this game is hands down one of the best games of all time. 

 

But I also gotta say, it's chalked full of old game density. That's not really a bad thing, it's just interesting because it's stuff you'd never see outside of a fromsoft game in the last decade or so. 

 

i.e.: Spells being available from the jump, but the game still lets you pay for them.

Another one I think is really interesting is the wolf form. You pick it up and it just says "Alucard can turn into a wolf now" and that's it. It doesn't even tell you what button to press, or that the wolf has a dash. The game trusts in the players ability to just figure stuff out and doesn't hold your hand at all. 

 

If SotN came out today, you'd pick up the wolf form upgrade and there would be 3 text boxes saying how it works and how to apply it. Then in the next room there would be an immediate application for it and a neon sign that says "USE THE WOLF THING HERE" flashing.  

 

I kinda dig it, cause it encourages the player to backtrack and look for places to use it instead of barreling forward. 

I'm just happy I have the internet and plenty of places to figure out how to get the reverse castle, cause I would never figure out how to do that on my own. 

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1 hour ago, KingTubb said:

I would never figure out how to do that on my own. 

I actually disagree. One of the best designed aspects of Symphony is that as long as you are committed to filling out the map, you'll find everything you need to unlock the second castle. Then it's just a matter of being observant enough to notice the description on the rings. 

 

Basically it's obscure enough to be hidden, but not hidden well enough that you couldn't figure it out with a bit of observation. This ain't like how a random fucking ring on one end of the map unlocks a room on the other end of the map with 0 hint this ring has this effect. That kind of secret is designed to be stumbled upon completely on accident with no understanding of how. 

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1 hour ago, KingTubb said:

i.e.: Spells being available from the jump, but the game still lets you pay for them.

Another one I think is really interesting is the wolf form. You pick it up and it just says "Alucard can turn into a wolf now" and that's it. It doesn't even tell you what button to press, or that the wolf has a dash. The game trusts in the players ability to just figure stuff out and doesn't hold your hand at all. 

 

If I remember right, the manual for the game did give more explanations for some of the spells. You could Google the manual if you want.

Also, you might want look on YouTube how to get the duplicator faster. It's fun to use.

And also areas where to level up Alucard and your familiars faster.

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9 hours ago, RSG3 said:

Then it's just a matter of being observant enough to notice the description on the rings. 

See this is where I know I’d screw it up. You’re explanation makes sense, and makes it seem a lot more obtainable to most players, but I have a tendency to be a little bird brained when I’m playing.

 

I guess I’m trying to say, the fact that I know there’s a second half of the game is enough to make me want to get there, but if it was 1997 and I didn’t have the internet to tell me that, I’d never find it. 
 

not the game’s fault, but I know myself. 

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4 hours ago, KingTubb said:

See this is where I know I’d screw it up. You’re explanation makes sense, and makes it seem a lot more obtainable to most players, but I have a tendency to be a little bird brained when I’m playing.

 

I guess I’m trying to say, the fact that I know there’s a second half of the game is enough to make me want to get there, but if it was 1997 and I didn’t have the internet to tell me that, I’d never find it. 
 

not the game’s fault, but I know myself. 

Im pretty sure you'd be curious about 2 difficult to acquire rings that seemgly do nothing at all. I have faith lol. 

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On 9/7/2021 at 8:45 AM, KingTubb said:

I'm in the midst of my first legit playthrough of SotN and I gotta say, this game is hands down one of the best games of all time. 

 

But I also gotta say, it's chalked full of old game density. That's not really a bad thing, it's just interesting because it's stuff you'd never see outside of a fromsoft game in the last decade or so. 

 

i.e.: Spells being available from the jump, but the game still lets you pay for them.

Another one I think is really interesting is the wolf form. You pick it up and it just says "Alucard can turn into a wolf now" and that's it. It doesn't even tell you what button to press, or that the wolf has a dash. The game trusts in the players ability to just figure stuff out and doesn't hold your hand at all. 

 

If SotN came out today, you'd pick up the wolf form upgrade and there would be 3 text boxes saying how it works and how to apply it. Then in the next room there would be an immediate application for it and a neon sign that says "USE THE WOLF THING HERE" flashing.  

 

I kinda dig it, cause it encourages the player to backtrack and look for places to use it instead of barreling forward. 

I'm just happy I have the internet and plenty of places to figure out how to get the reverse castle, cause I would never figure out how to do that on my own. 

The spells thing was always interesting to me because the game came out before looking up hints on the internet was a thing, so you'd likely have had to go to a gaming mag to find them out if you didn't buy them. They're super powerful though, they're absolutely game breaking some of them. But I like that they have stuff like that. Richter's moveset is similar, he has a ton of abilities and a lot of them have odd, fighting game-like motions you have to do to pull them off (his dash move has a more complex motion than most fg specials lol)

 

There are only a few things in the game that are truly important enough that they really give you strong hints about it. In a weird way it's kind of like a sandbox game where you can really do what you want to do and there aren't  whole lot of "you must do this here" outside of boss fights and such obviously. That's one of the things that's so great about that game is that you could kind of make builds in it, focus more on magic, more on strength, there are a million weapons in the game, the Duplicator let's you use Use items infinitely, etc. 

 

I don't know that the wolf is ever a necessary item, it's just cool. The Mist is probably the only must have transformation relic but the Bat is better on MP and lets you do some cool stuff too. 

 

I think that's one of the things that makes SotN the best of the metroidvania CV games in that it really does let you do what you want to do and gives you a ton of different ways to do it. Yo udont even have to beat all the bosses or areas if I remember right, so  you can even blaze your own path too. There are a ton of Easter eggs in it too; it's one of those games you can really tell they were excited about making and thus there are aspects of it that are a little rough around the edges, but there's a lot of love and cool ideas within it. Some of the subsequent MVs are more evened out or streamlined, but the ones that measure up have a degree of self awareness to them SotN doesn't that, imo, takes away from the experience a bit. Glad you're enjoying the game! 

Edited by DoctaMario
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3 hours ago, DoctaMario said:

I don't know that the wolf is ever a necessary item, it's just cool. The Mist is probably the only must have transformation relic but the Bat is better on MP and lets you do some cool stuff too. 

You deffinitly need Mist and Bat to see the whole game. 

Edited by RSG3
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1 hour ago, RSG3 said:

You deffinitly need Mist and Bat to see the whole game. 

To get through the whole game, yeah for sure. 

Spoiler

If you just want to do the first castle you could probably skate by with just mist. 

 

 

I should run through that game again, it's been awhile. I love watching speedruns of it. 

Edited by DoctaMario
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SotN earned its place for sure. Was one of the main reasons I bought a PSX with my paper route money, have probably played through it two dozen times over the years. I even bought the import soundtrack- not something I normally did (FF6 was the only other exception). All that said, I do find it pretty boring now. The game is way too easy unless you self inflict a ridiculous challenge, filling out the map (especially in the inverted castle) is super tedious and annoying, and honestly the inverted castle itself is largely boring thanks in large part to Final Toccatta playing for 85% of its duration. I absolutely agree that it's a classic and a cornerstone, just one that has been eclipsed by its successors. I doubt anyone well versed in modern "metroidvania" games playing it for the first time could ever have the overwhelming wow factor we had when it came out in '97. 

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1 hour ago, Camacho said:

SotN earned its place for sure. Was one of the main reasons I bought a PSX with my paper route money, have probably played through it two dozen times over the years. I even bought the import soundtrack- not something I normally did (FF6 was the only other exception). All that said, I do find it pretty boring now. The game is way too easy unless you self inflict a ridiculous challenge, filling out the map (especially in the inverted castle) is super tedious and annoying, and honestly the inverted castle itself is largely boring thanks in large part to Final Toccatta playing for 85% of its duration. I absolutely agree that it's a classic and a cornerstone, just one that has been eclipsed by its successors. I doubt anyone well versed in modern "metroidvania" games playing it for the first time could ever have the overwhelming wow factor we had when it came out in '97. 

I think it still holds up even after all this time. Are there games that are better paced, have less bloated item lists, are more challenging? Sure. But the vibe and atmosphere SotN has kills a lot of games imo and that's something that's hard to really nail the way Symphony nailed it. From the castle, to the OST, the voice acting (even in the redo) it has an x factor that I think is lightning in a bottle. Bloodstained is probably the only game that I think has eclipsed SotN and even that doesn't quite have the vibe Symphony does even if it does almost everything better. 

Edited by DoctaMario
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I think Hollow Knight is much better then Symphony with the only complaints i could muster at it being that its really long and that might burn some people out. I need to play through Bloodstained a few more times to really decide but I think its surpassed Symphony in just about every catagory as well.

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8 hours ago, DoctaMario said:

I think it still holds up even after all this time. Are there games that are better paced, have less bloated item lists, are more challenging? Sure. But the vibe and atmosphere SotN has kills a lot of games imo and that's something that's hard to really nail the way Symphony nailed it. From the castle, to the OST, the voice acting (even in the redo) it has an x factor that I think is lightning in a bottle. Bloodstained is probably the only game that I think has eclipsed SotN and even that doesn't quite have the vibe Symphony does even if it does almost everything better. 

SotN definitely has the atmosphere on lockdown, particularly for those who experienced it back when it was new. It's among the most memorable and impactful in that category for me- other standouts being Super Metroid, Tenchu (1), and Bloodborne.  I'm just saying I have more fun playing SotN's successors (minus HoD) these days.

 

HK is great, though I don't think its atmosphere, aesthetics, and music stand up to SotN. I definitely have a lot more fun playing it, though admittedly I've only played through it twice.

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28 minutes ago, Camacho said:

HK is great, though I don't think its atmosphere, aesthetics, and music stand up to SotN. I definitely have a lot more fun playing it, though admittedly I've only played through it twice

I think it equals it in atmosphere and aesthetic it's just a matter of how HKs art style resonates with you. 

 

I agree on the music but only in listejability outside the product. HK s going for a real different vibe with its music, there are many times where is no music at all. SOTNs music is more about filling that emptiness with something nice to listen to because it's always playing music and as listenable as Sympnies music can be it can also grate as mentioned in the reverse castle. I never need to hear Final Tocatta again. Why couldn't they reprise Prologue or something? 

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4 hours ago, Camacho said:

SotN definitely has the atmosphere on lockdown, particularly for those who experienced it back when it was new. It's among the most memorable and impactful in that category for me- other standouts being Super Metroid, Tenchu (1), and Bloodborne.  I'm just saying I have more fun playing SotN's successors (minus HoD) these days.

 

HK is great, though I don't think its atmosphere, aesthetics, and music stand up to SotN. I definitely have a lot more fun playing it, though admittedly I've only played through it twice.

I haven't played HK, but people in the metroidvania subreddit believe it's the best MV game of all time. I have it on my ps+ so I'll get around to it at some point, but it and Super Metroid are on my to play list for sure. 

 

Bloodborne is one of my top 5 favorite games of all time so I can absolutely cosign the atmosphere in that game being amazing, and also fuck the circus themed crap in PoR. I enjoyed that game but those levels were a bucket of yuck. 

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1 hour ago, DoctaMario said:

I haven't played HK, but people in the metroidvania subreddit believe it's the best MV game of all time. I have it on my ps+ so I'll get around to it at some point, but it and Super Metroid are on my to play list for sure. 

 

Bloodborne is one of my top 5 favorite games of all time so I can absolutely cosign the atmosphere in that game being amazing, and also fuck the circus themed crap in PoR. I enjoyed that game but those levels were a bucket of yuck. 

Man, you haven't played Super Metroid? That game still holds up really well, and it's not a massive time sink either. 

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8 hours ago, Camacho said:

Man, you haven't played Super Metroid? That game still holds up really well, and it's not a massive time sink either. 

I actually started it a long ass time ago and got stuck and never finished it. This was probably like 10-15 years ago too. I've played through the original a ton though, but seeing as how SM is on the switch online SNES emulator, I don't have any excuses, and I might get to that after I finish Dark Souls and Katana Zero. 

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On 9/8/2021 at 9:59 PM, RSG3 said:

I think Hollow Knight is much better then Symphony

Season 4 Agree GIF by The Office

 

SotN is a masterpiece, but it keeps doing things that I find obtuse, and honestly it needs some QOL stuff to compete with HK. 

 

On 9/9/2021 at 12:10 PM, Camacho said:

Man, you haven't played Super Metroid? That game still holds up really well, and it's not a massive time sink either. 

Imma say it, SM holds up better than SotN. 

 

But I ain't here to just shit-talk SotN, cause that's disingenuous. SotN does exploration so incredibly well, the music, art direction, and overall presentation is a 10/10. I mean, just look at the wereskeletons, hands on the hips all sassy and shit. The enemy variety alone makes this game outstanding. 

 

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Made it to the Reverse Castle. 

 

This place is BONKERS. 

 

I can't decide if it's a masterclass in game design or a wack-ass idea that works. There's lots of cool stuff and then some parts of it seem so slapped together and rough compared to the rest of the game. 

 

At the end of the day, the reverse castle is intriguing and fun, if not occasionally confusing and frustrating  

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I totally see that, the one thing I'd say is that it really shows the seams in the reverse castle. 

 

A big reason is that you have all the traversal tools available to you as soon as you walk in, so finding the natural progression of where you should go is... kinda off?

 

The normal castle guides you more or less to where the next thing you are suited to handle is going to be imho. It's obviously an open exploration thing, but it does a great job of subtly pointing you in the right direction.

 

The RC isn't really doing that. So I was thinking that it would be more like a darksouls thing where you go to where the enemies are the weakest and where you can handle yourself, but SotN ain't about that shit. They throw damage sponges and glass cannons in the same room.

I'm not sure if that's the point or not, or if I'm missing some context clues 🤷‍♀️

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5 hours ago, KingTubb said:

I totally see that, the one thing I'd say is that it really shows the seams in the reverse castle. 

 

A big reason is that you have all the traversal tools available to you as soon as you walk in, so finding the natural progression of where you should go is... kinda off?

 

The normal castle guides you more or less to where the next thing you are suited to handle is going to be imho. It's obviously an open exploration thing, but it does a great job of subtly pointing you in the right direction.

 

The RC isn't really doing that. So I was thinking that it would be more like a darksouls thing where you go to where the enemies are the weakest and where you can handle yourself, but SotN ain't about that shit. They throw damage sponges and glass cannons in the same room.

I'm not sure if that's the point or not, or if I'm missing some context clues 🤷‍♀️

Each replay will reveal more seams. Like when you replay you'll be that much more aware that the games difficult is upside down. The beginning is the hardest the game ever gets and it just snowballs down the difficulty scale with each passing second lol. Challenge runs are even difficult because its hard to create a challenge in the game. The games littered with loot items and shit, but almost all of it is useless and probably shouldn't be there outside the novelty of it.

 

Symphony is wonderful, but we've learned a lot since lol.

.

 

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14 hours ago, RSG3 said:

Challenge runs are even difficult because its hard to create a challenge in the game.

Yeah, I was an absolute monster by the end of the normal castle. 

 

And there's still rooms in the early goings of the RC that are pretty easy to breeze through. 

 

But then there's the occasional bullshit room or boss.

 

One thing that I hated at first and now sort of enjoy is that every weapon has a unique mechanic, but it's up to you to figure that shit out. Like I found a short sword that you can just THROW like a boomerang. Now every time I pick up a weapon I spend 3 minutes just trying stuff out lol

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9 hours ago, KingTubb said:

Yeah, I was an absolute monster by the end of the normal castle. 

 

And there's still rooms in the early goings of the RC that are pretty easy to breeze through. 

 

But then there's the occasional bullshit room or boss.

 

One thing that I hated at first and now sort of enjoy is that every weapon has a unique mechanic, but it's up to you to figure that shit out. Like I found a short sword that you can just THROW like a boomerang. Now every time I pick up a weapon I spend 3 minutes just trying stuff out lol

Yeah there are a lot of little Easter eggs like that in the game that make it really fun 

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8 hours ago, JGreen said:

I remember enjoying Circle of the Moon

I played that game a lot as a kid and had no idea what the hell was going on. 

 

But I remember you could get a literal glock 9 and shoot dudes, which blew my mind as a kid. 


I know that's in a lot of Castlevania games, but as a 10 year old I thought it was hilarious and so freaking cool. 

 

Also, is it the only Castlevania with an American protag?

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15 minutes ago, Camacho said:

I really wish they would release a rebirth collection- Castlevania Adventure rebirth is unobtainable outside of piracy now.

Agreed, that game is better than I remembered. 

 

This guy here sai something about a confirmation of the Advance Collection, tho I don't know what he's talking about, but it's hard to imagine it would be just a rumor at this point 

 

 

 

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On 8/15/2021 at 2:09 AM, DoctaMario said:

Huh. I wonder why they're doing this and if they'll actually finish the game or if they're going to just throw what they had up on Apple Arcade as is. 

 

That reminds me, Grimoire of Souls was on the Google Play Store but they took it down 😑 Rumor says the .xapk ROM can still be found online, about 263MB. It would be playable with a PC emulator called BlueStacks. It's what I've heard 🙄

 

 

 

Edited by AriesWarlock
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54 minutes ago, AriesWarlock said:

 

That reminds me, Grimoire of Souls was on the Google Play Store but they took it down 😑 Rumor says the .xapk ROM can still be found online, about 263MB. It would be playable with a PC emulator called BlueStacks. It's what I've heard 🙄

 

 

 

I wonder if you could still log in to the server with the android version or if they killed that. 

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Finished SotN last night. 

 

I was essentially a walking wood chipper by the end. I think my final play time was somewhere around 18 hours or so. 

 

I was using the Crissaegrim and just melting everyone. Combo that with a near max level Sword Familiar and the screen would essentially clear when I entered a room. 

 

Shaft and Drac where both 10-30 second boss fights lol.

 

It's probably insane what someone actually trying to min/max this game could do

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7 hours ago, KingTubb said:

Finished SotN last night. 

 

I was essentially a walking wood chipper by the end. I think my final play time was somewhere around 18 hours or so. 

 

I was using the Crissaegrim and just melting everyone. Combo that with a near max level Sword Familiar and the screen would essentially clear when I entered a room. 

 

Shaft and Drac where both 10-30 second boss fights lol.

 

It's probably insane what someone actually trying to min/max this game could do

Now Equip the Shield Rod and the Alucard Shield, press Circle + Square at the same time, hold out the shield and walk into Dracula.

 

Report your findings.

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34 minutes ago, misterBee said:

Why would they call it Castlevania Advance Collection and then add Dracula X, which isn't even on GBA? 😩

It could be a canceled/unreleased port of the SNES game. 

Also the Advance collection is on all 3 consoles, not just on the Switch

Edited by DarkSakul
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