Castlevania Bloodlines


Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 7

Sound: 6

Gameplay: 9

Overall: 8


The world needs more games like Castlevania. Actually, it needs more Castlevania's period. The first and only Genesis entry to the classic and beloved franchise is one of the best. Featuring loads of gore, multiple paths, and two playable characters, Castlevania fans have a lot to be happy about.

From the start, players choose from either John Morris and the classic whip, or the spear wielding Eric Lecarde, arguably the better of the two. Eric can use his spear in multiple directions and has a pole-vault like leap enabling him to reach higher ledges. There are those gamers out there though that will feel obligated to use John however, simply for the whip as it is a preferred choice in the vast majority of Castlevania games.

The games six stages aren't exactly the most challenging ever devised and it is quite short for a Castlevania game. This is a definite change from Konami's other franchises on the Genesis (Like Contra Hard Corps). Inhabiting these stages are some familiar faces from the Ax throwers, blood skeletons, and of course the skull statues. Some of these enemies die a pretty horrible death and the games "GA" rating is surprising. The game features numerous mid-level bosses and you're never quite sure if you're fighting the final boss of the level or not. The addition of a password system isn't really necessary due to the games short length, but it is a welcome addition.

Konami was one of the few companies willing to go all out with each of their Genesis titles and it shows. Every known effect that a 16-bit console can pull off is used. The Leaning Tower of Pisa (stage three) is especially notable with it's ever-ascending platforms that wrap around the famous landmark. Although they lack the brilliant color of SNES games, the drab shades set the tone of game.

From a musical standpoint, the game is just oozing with that classic Castlevania goodness. There is even a code to unlock classic Castlevania music buried within the game. It's the sound effects that ruin the experience. Everything has a scratch-the-chalkboard type feel, especially when doors open.

While it may not be the hardest or longest game in the series, it's a worthwhile addition. Everything is done superbly and the gore right from the start is pleasing to the eye. Genesis owners have been treated fairly and have a game to be proud of.


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Last updated: Friday, September 23, 2005 11:40 PM