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Castlevania

26 January 1999
Castlevania - cover art
Glitchwave rating
2.17 / 5.0
0.5
5.0
 
 
113 Ratings / 2 Reviews
#231 for 1999
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Filter by: All 2 N64 2
1999 KCEK Konami  
Cartridge
XNA 0 83717 18008 1 NUS-ND3E-USA
1999 KCEK Konami  
Cartridge
JP 4 988602 386820 RZ008-J1
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Title
A pesar de las criticas que recibió Castlevania 64, me animé a jugarlo en modo fácil. Al principio me pareció un buen juego pero la parte de la mandrágora y el nitro se me hizo de lo más detestable, encima porque hice el proceso en el modo incorrecto y tuve que repetirlo de nuevo. A pesar de eso, pasé esa parte. Ahora que se suponía que ya estaba en el 78% del juego (aprox.), me meto en el ascensor y el juego me dice: hasta aquí no más llegaste, si quieres jugar más hubieses puesto el modo normal. En ese momento mandé a la mierda el juego.

Yo, que fui de los pocos que defendían este juego me acabo de bajar del barco. Las gráficas para ser del N64 son malas, la cámara no ayuda mucho, los paisajes son muy simples y lo único rescatable es la jugabilidad. Ya veo porqué tardaron tanto en volver al 3D

Si me hubiesen explicado eso del modo fácil le hubiese subido la nota...una lástima porque me estaba gustando el juego. Pero no lo retomaré!
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misterbale11 2022-10-16T02:18:16Z
2022-10-16T02:18:16Z
3.0
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Title
Castlevania's leap to 3D is a flawed one, but it drew me in such that I was compelled to see it through to the end. An action adventure, the game has you select from one of two playable characters and fight your way from the outskirts of, and through, Dracula's castle. Each character has unique melee and ranged weapons, a handful of unique levels and good and bad endings. Interestingly, the latter isn't the only survival horror inspiration here. Items are used via the menu, the HUD features a health status indicator, and the view changes to a cinematic first-person perspective as you travel through doors.

The game's controls are relatively solid; character movement and combat generally feels tight and fluid. I didn't have any issues with the camera, which can be switched between three different modes on the fly, four if you include the stationary first-person look view, and centred behind your character. Platforming, however, is infuriating much of the time, though I feel like it has more to do with the game's odd sense of depth and space that makes it nearly impossible for the player to accurately judge distance.

As useless as it is, one of Castlevania 64's more interesting features is its day/night cycle. Time passes constantly, rolling between day and night, and there are even items which allow you to pass time to dawn or dusk. Unfortunately, the system is obviously half-finished; enemy types and numbers apparently vary depending on the time of day, but I noticed no difference. The clock seemed to have no relevance at all except at one point early in the game where it triggers an event at a particular time of day.

Level design is another area in which the game tends to feel undercooked. Whilst things are decent early on, rudimentary design begins to creep in and some areas are just downright ugly. The second half of the game feels most rushed, much of it consisting of boxy environments filled with obstacles and key-collecting. It's painfully obvious at times that the devs had bigger plans for Castlevania 64 that just couldn't be realised.

Despite some glaring flaws, though, Castlevania 64 is a decent action adventure. Whilst it's not as good as it could've been--or indeed was intended to be, given how much was ultimately cut from the game--I found a lot to like about it. There are a couple of great gaming moments here that have stuck with me for years, such as the encounter with the woman in the rose garden, and the chainsaw maniac in the garden maze.
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ColdVein 2021-11-13T01:28:28Z
2021-11-13T01:28:28Z
3.0
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In the late 90s, it was beginning to seem like 2D gameplay and pixel art might become things of the past. While time has thankfully proven that this was not the case with pixel and voxel games being arguably just as popular as ever today, games media and developers became obsessed with creating three dimensional, polygon worlds. The "Castlevania" series proved to be no exception to the trend with Konami making numerous attempts to adapt the concept to three dimensions before seemingly giving up after Lords of Shaow 2 in 2014, and there isn't much consensus over which of the 3D titles has the most merit. However, most fans seem to be united in hating Castlevania for the Nintendo 64.

Following not long after Symphony of the Night, a game that spawned a genre and needs little explanation, there were certainly high expectations for Castlevania. However, the two titles have very little in common. While both have action adventure elements, Castlevania has a much greater emphasis on platforming and a more linear structure, not to mention a 3D perspective. N64 owners had hoped to get their own Symphony, and it was undoubtedly a disappointment in that regard. Critically, the game received decent reviews at the time, but it never seemed to resonate with fans due to just not being what was wanted.

For myself, though, I didn't have the same expectations that the general public did. While I did have some familiarity with the "Castlevania" titles for the NES, the only game I had actually owned and played extensively was Castlevania: The Adventure, which is a much reviled game in its own right. Still, I knew that the series was generally well regarded, and when I saw Castlevania 64 at the secondhand shop at a rock bottom price, I figured it was a safe enough bet, and ultimately I didn't regret spending my allowance on this. The game immediately drew me in with its opening titles featuring a montage of the castle followed a mysterious boy playing a haunting violin ballad (which I would later learn was a reworking of "Bloodlines" from the "Dracula X" sub-series), and this remains a captivating introduction even now that I've played most of the games in the series. From there, what I found was a game that ambitiously aimed to combine elements of Super Mario 64, Ocarina of Time, and Resident Evil.

Castlevania gives the player the choice of playing as either Carrie Fernandez, a spell-caster, or as Reinhardt Schneider, who is said to be a descendant of the Belmont clan and accordingly wields a whip. Ultimately, there isn't much difference between the two characters, but Carrie's homing attack does make the game slightly easier. The player traverses through various parts of Dracula's castle, and while progression between areas is strictly linear, there is a degree of exploration within each area, and each character has several unique stages, which gives some extra incentive to play through both quests. Generally, combating monsters is the main obstacle for the player to overcome as they explore the levels, but there is also a focus on platforming, and as the game progresses, there are occasional puzzles to overcome. In addition, the game has a day-night cycle that affects the strength and spawn rate of enemies, and the time of day can also sometimes unlock doors or otherwise impact the puzzles. The jumping controls are not the most intuitive, particularly when it comes to grabbing ledges, and the camera controls could be better, as well. The player has no direct control but can cycle between a static camera, a more dynamic camera that follows the player, or a camera that focus on enemies. Beyond these oddities, though, the game still plays fairly well, if you can adjust to its quirks.

While it is not usually important in a "Castlevania" game, the story of Castlevania is more detailed than what we usually would see in this series with many cut scenes and also more NPCs. As mentioned, the game seems to have been influenced byResident Evil, and this is showcased especially in the story and atmosphere. Castlevania can't really be called a survival game, but it feels much more in touch with its horror roots than many of the other games in its series, and this aspect of the game is arguably what most distinguishes it from previous titles and was very enjoyable for me at the time.

Aesthetically, Castlevania holds up surprisingly well. Both the player characters and enemies are fairly detailed for a game of its time, and the character designs often seem inspired. Many characters, such as the bone pillar, Cerberus, flying Medusa's head, and Frankenstein's monster, return from earlier titles and there are also a few new enemies with the most memorable being an anachronistic motorcycle-mounted skeleton. With the play mechanics representing a departure in many ways, the inclusion of familiar enemies does help a lot to keep the game grounded in its series' roots. However, the backgrounds feel a bit more basic with excessive use of bland colors, particularly when outdoors, and while this can somewhat be excused given the setting, it feels typical of the era and does age the game somewhat.

The sound, likewise, is something of a mixed bag. It may be due to cartridge limitations, but with the story-driven nature of the game, the lack of voice acting feels like a huge oversight. The sound effects that are present, though, are generally decent. Then there's the soundtrack. Some of the music, such as the title music, is truly outstanding, but all of the most memorable tracks are lifted from Rondo of Blood with some barely even having been changed at all. Most of the original music has more of a minimalist flair than what is typical of the series, trading the typical bombast for something more cinematic. Some areas, such as the opening area, barely feature any music at all beyond the occasional cue, and instead rely mainly on ambient sound effects. This was a bold choice for a a series so renowned for having catchy tunes on its soundtracks. In contrast, there isn't much here that you would choose to listen to outside of the game, but the soundtrack does a good job with matching the atmosphere, especially considering the game's more story-driven nature.

With all of this in mind, it's fair to say that Castlevania is a good game, but does not excel at any of the disparate elements that it included. Furthermore, it is not especially long or difficult. A patient player could easily finish it in one sitting. At the same time, it is at least competent at all the things that it attempts, far from the mess that many would have you believe. With the influence drawn from the survival horror genre, it was and remains a unique and enjoyable take on this series. While it certainly could have stood a bit more polish, Castlevania deserves credit for attempting to take the series in a new direction and largely succeeding.
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MoeHartman 2016-04-16T12:41:39Z
2016-04-16T12:41:39Z
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Originally written for Glitchwave on 4/23/2020
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Catalog

DaggerDraven Castlevania 2024-02-20T10:02:40Z
N64 • XNA
2024-02-20T10:02:40Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
DaggerDraven Castlevania 2024-02-20T10:02:24Z
2024-02-20T10:02:24Z
1.0
1
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hevykofe Castlevania 2024-01-04T06:25:00Z
N64 • XNA
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OnTheTap Castlevania 2023-11-29T19:51:04Z
2023-11-29T19:51:04Z
3.0
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cupninja Castlevania 2023-11-24T03:22:12Z
2023-11-24T03:22:12Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
freeziez Castlevania 2023-11-07T05:32:49Z
N64 • XNA
2023-11-07T05:32:49Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
duglfugl Castlevania 2023-11-01T07:12:44Z
2023-11-01T07:12:44Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
The18th Castlevania 2023-10-09T11:25:17Z
N64 • XNA
2023-10-09T11:25:17Z
0.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
aliasnarrow Castlevania 2023-10-06T16:09:24Z
N64 • XNA
2023-10-06T16:09:24Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
JoahannisBaerStrysl Castlevania 2023-09-27T23:20:26Z
N64 • XNA
2023-09-27T23:20:26Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
xaver2 Castlevania 2023-09-26T07:09:11Z
N64 • XNA
2023-09-26T07:09:11Z
1.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
ironexposure999 Castlevania 2023-09-13T08:13:03Z
2023-09-13T08:13:03Z
4.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Content rating
ESRB: T
Player modes
Single-player
Media
1x Cartridge
Franchises
Also known as
  • Castlevania 64
  • Demonic Castle Dracula: Apocalypse
  • 悪魔城ドラキュラ黙示録
  • View all [3] Hide

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  • Previous comments (4) Loading...
  • DavidthePearce 2021-09-28 00:23:57.943236+00
    I like this game so much that I earnestly don't understand why it receives so much hate. I've heard the reasons, I just don't see it.
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  • jokyaku 2021-10-13 13:44:15.864635+00
    Why is the rating so low? Oh... wrong Castlevania.
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  • fakeredshoes 2021-10-19 09:38:38.76057+00
    it doenst play well but it's pretty creepy and has good atmosphere imo
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  • MoeHartman 2021-11-07 14:44:09.773153+00
    It plays fine if you use the camera appropriately.
    reply
    • Bskeezer 2022-11-30 07:45:43.37172+00
      That’s waaaaay easier said than done.
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  • Bagman 2022-05-31 06:22:39.487906+00
    This is an ice skating game.
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  • _Arcueid_ 2022-06-27 18:25:01.434271+00
    I kinda like it, but maybe that's because I've been playing it since release and got used to the controls. I think this is still much closer to the original Castlevania than any of the 3D games in the series that followed.
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  • MisTurHappy 2022-10-15 10:04:05.699019+00
    Y'all gotta reconfigure your rating standards if this counts as a 1.0 or lower. It's not a very good game, but it's nowhere near the unplayable mess it's always treated as. At its worst it's just boring and annoying.
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