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Castlevania Curse of Darkness -New PS2/Xbox game


Romier S
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This months Play Magazine has an exclusive look at the latest PS2 Castlevania title. The article includes an interview with Castlevania main man Igarashi as well as some Beautiful artwork. A few parts of the feature include an intro (Info taken from the IGN forums):

 

Three years have passed since Trevor Belmont

and his companions vanquished Dracula.

But the magic power of the curse Dracula

Unleashed upon his death began inflicting all of

europe. Pestilence, mob violence and heresy

became rampant, and people continued to fall

deeper into darkness...

 

Amidst all of this, Hector - a Devil Forgemaster

who had once refined his skills under

Dracula - has fled in pursuit of a peaceful

life as a human. He never imagined that his

old friend Issac, the other Devil Forgemaster,

would suddenly appear and implicate his wife

in a deadly conspiracy. As vengeance for his

beloved wife, Hector pursues Isaac back to

his former home, now completely morphed by

Dracula's dark magic...

 

A snippet of the Igarshi interview:

 

On 2D & 3D

IGA: "Oh yes, 2D is my favorite game style too! I want to keep working on 2D games. However, my current goal is to make a better 3D action game, so that's taking a big part in me right now."

 

Main Characters: Hector and Issac - not Belmonts

IGA: "This time, the game is themed with 'revenge.' It may sound unusual for Castlevania; in that sense, it may be darker. Belmont? Yes, there will be. But how? Please look forward to how the Belmonts interact with the story."

 

Timeline and Alucard

Play: "This installment takes place three years after Trevor defeated Dracula, making it 1479, around the same time Alucard was introduced. Might their paths intersect at some point?"

IGA: "Alucard rests in magic sleep right after he defeated Dracula in 1476. I'm sure the Hector and Alucard timeline tells that there is some intersection between them, but in this game, there will be no episodes on them.

 

GOTTA CATCH THEM ALL

Play: "This ability to cultivate and mature Innocent Devils to do Hector's bidding sounds incredibly intriguing. Is this a main mechanic in the game?

IGA: "Yes, this is the main mechanic in the game. Innocent Devils will function to assist your battles and movement." *there is art showing how a little innocent devil evolves*

 

Experience points?

IGA: "The player is introduced with experince points. Also, weapon variation is set. Equipped items such as swords and spears can be switched. The core part of the adventure element is basically the new Innocent Devil feature."

 

Snippets:

-Hector uses a sword and other weapons

-Based on a newly created graphic engine

-Lament of Innocence team is working on it

-Says he wont be putting the lost levels of 'Ressurection' as a bonus

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However, my current goal is to make a better 3D action game, so that's taking a big part in me right now.

 

I'm hoping that by "better", he means better than the last two subpar 3D Castlevanias. I really don't understand the fixation with making Castlevania 3D. There is little chance of topping Ninja Gaiden and DMC, whereas a 2D or 2.5D Castlevania would be easier to make and would turn out better.

 

I don't even remember LOI selling all that well, so money can't be the motivating factor. SOTN is pretty much a shoe-in to be on a top 5 PSX games list, yet Konami keeps taking the series in a different direction. There are plenty of mediocre Devil May Cry clones, the market doesn't need another.

 

Future, do you have any sales numbers on SOTN, LOI, and the 3 GBA Castlevanias?

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Future, do you have any sales numbers on SOTN, LOI, and the 3 GBA Castlevanias?

 

Symphony I would have to do some digging on (I'll check for you but since it's a PS greatest hit you can bet on it selling more than 400k) but LOI sold over 200k copies in the US alone about 2-3 months after release. Wasn't a huge seller but decent. The three GBA games have been great sellers, especially the first game "Circle of the Moon". Haven't seen recent numbers on Aria but I remember it selling well over 200k+ shortly after release.

 

I'm in agreement that I would love to see a new 2D Castlevania on the main consoles. It's always been a dream to see a 2D Castlevania with hand drawn animation at the level of a Guilty Gear for instance. :drool

 

Lament of Innocence had a great fighting engine IMHO, an out of this world soundtrack and some nice visuals. Despite that it really suffered in terms of level design (a complete lack of level design in fact) and the removal of the experience system was a terrible design choice as it negated the need to fight respawning creatures. Most of the time you just ran by them making them a nuisance more than anything else. Given that, I still don't consider it anywhere near the disasters that were the two N64 Castlevania's.

 

I'm willing to give this new game a shot. Igarashi is also working on Nano Breaker which is looking like a decent hack and slash. I'm hoping the break he took to make that game helped him get his bearings in terms of making a good 3D action game. I'm hoping Curse of Darkness shows major improvement in terms of level design and I'm happy to read that they have readded the experience system. It's going to have some stiff competition with Devil May Cry 3 hitting shelves in March and looking really damn good to boot. In the end, if the game ends up sucking there is always Castlevania DS to look forward too. ;)

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One of my favorite series. That said, I never did get too far into LoI. Almost dull. I'll try and finish that up soon. I have heard of a PSP CV, witrh the traditional 2D, as a sequel to Aria of Sorrow. I'll keep an eye on these. I'm a CV completist :)

 

Thanks for the news. Is the artwork Kojima?

 

Take care,

Chuck

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I have heard of a PSP CV, witrh the traditional 2D, as a sequel to Aria of Sorrow.

 

That is actually the Nintendo DS Castlevania. You an read a bit more on it here .

 

For those interested in more info on the series as a whole, I'm always up for pimping the "Castlevania Dungeon" or "The Realm" as it's referred to now. They have a great timeline for the series you can read through here .

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  • 3 months later...

It looks as though Xbox fans will also be enjoying the Castlevania love as Konami has announced that Curse of Darkness will be making its way to the Xbox alongside its PS2 counterpart. You can read more here:

 

http://www.gamespot.com/news/2005/05/17/news_6125274.html

 

Konami today announced plans to bring the latest installment in the Castlevania franchise, Castlevania: Curse of Darkness, to the Xbox. The game had been previously announced for the PlayStation 2. Both games will be released this coming fall.

 

Some new screens along with a fantastic piece of artwork:

 

vania.jpg

 

Castlevania Curse of Darkness screen

Castlevania Curse of Darkness screen

Castlevania Curse of Darkness artwork

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  • 4 weeks later...

I bought it the day it came out, and finally hunkered down and beat Lament of Innocence yesterday. E3 reminded me of my love for the series, and I finally sat down and revisited the game, after a 19 month hiatus :) I had played a bit of it, and put it aside for other games. Never did get back to it...until last week. About an hour into the game, the hook of exploring everything and beating the bosses took over, and I spent the better part of my free time for a few days finishing the game off (to be ready for CoD and DoS). I forget what else was released when LoI was in 2003, but it took me away, and then life took over (a move, a child, etc). Glad I revisited it. Excited about CoD. I'll get to work on my (long ago purchased) GBA titles.

 

Take care,

Chuck

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  • 3 months later...

Some new screenshots of Curse of Darkness. Looks like the game is FINALLy coming along in the visual department after some less than attractive showings the pass. My only complaint would be the HUD/GUI which looks very low resolution and well..ugly. Take a look:

 

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Some new screenshots of Curse of Darkness. Looks like the game is FINALLy coming along in the visual department after some less than attractive showings the pass. My only complaint would be the HUD/GUI which looks very low resolution and well..ugly. Take a look:

 

Yikes, how bad were the earlier screens? These new ones have all the detail and charm of a typical Dynasty Warriors game, minus the hundreds of onscreen enemies of course.

 

Perhaps they could spice things up by adding more gray.

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Yikes, how bad were the earlier screens?
.

Pretty damn bad.;) I personally think some of those screenshots above look pretty decent (I especially like the birds eye shot of the Dragon). They certainly are not pushing any boundaries, but they are an improvement over Lament. Hopefully the developers actually learned something about variety in terms of level design this time around.

 

If not, there's always the new DS Castlevania.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Looks like I'll have little time to work my way through the DS Castlevania adventure as Konami has announced the final release date for Curse of Darkness. That date is November 1st! So in a short two and half weeks or so, we'll be returning to Dracula's castle once more in 3D. Curse still isn't the most attractive game out there, but I hope the gameplay shines through and makes for a compelling experience.

 

You can take look at the report from IGN:

 

Curse of Darkness dated for November 1st, 2005

 

Some new screenies to give you hope:

 

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  • 4 weeks later...
So has anybody picked this up? Does it suck as bad as a majority of critics and gamers alike are saying? I've been hearing about repititive, unchallenging combat, the same environments over and over with poor textures, and a general lack of anything interesting to do. Not that I'm surprised.

 

EGM game it a 7.0, a 7.5, and something...they said it was a bit better than the last one (Lament)

 

http://www.metacritic.com/games/platforms/ps2/castlevaniacurseofdarkness

 

72 on metacritic.

 

I'll stick with DMC3 for my devilish monster bashing needs for now.

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A good friend picked this up for me this weekend in exchange for an old video card I had for the PC. Got to play through some the early going and my opinion of it swayed from outright bad to somewhat decent as I moved on. I will be diving into the game more during the week and I'll throw up some impressions as soon as I have something to give you guys. Thus far, I'd say to definitely stick with Dawn of Sorrows if you're looking for a new Castlevania.

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