Yeah... not counting remakes, this was the last Castlevania game with the classic gameplay, and I have to say that, although I understand that many people are fond of it because it was part of their childhood or because they believe that having a female protagonist saves it, on the other hand, this game sucks and I think nothing justifies it.

Without exaggeration, this game feels like a prototype of Castlevania II Belmont's Revenge (the second GB game, released in 1991), which for some reason 6 years later Konami decided to release to get some easy money. Everything is a big step backwards from Belmont's Revenge, the gameplay feels slower and clunky, the graphics are less detailed, the level design is bland and boring. There's no challenge in the game, sure, you'll die a couple of times, but when you do it will be in the most boring way possible, because the enemies are positioned in ways that are simply annoying, but not challenging. It's too easy, and yet it's extremely tedious to play.

The game has some interesting concepts and mechanics, like for example, to unlock the true ending, you have to get the classic sub-weapons of the series (which for some strange reason you will NEVER be able to use), which adds that exploration factor to the game. The bad thing is that exploring in this game is annoying because of two things. The first is that there are a lot of paths that lead you to dead ends and don't reward you in anything, feeling like a waste of time, and besides that, there are also traps that lead you to some sort of arena where you have to defeat waves of monsters as punishment, and that's not the worst thing, the worst thing is that many times the enemies are positioned on a very small platform where it's hard to attack them since when you defeat them they reappear in the only places from where you can attack them, making you always take damage. They are a real nuisance, as they don't add anything of value to the experience. Secondly, if for some reason you went down the wrong path and forgot one of these special items, you block the possibility of accessing the true ending with no other option but to start from the beginning.

The true sub-weapons in the game are weird, these are powers which are obtained every time you defeat the boss of a level. What I like about this is that you have at your disposal the ability to swap sub-weapons on the fly by simply accessing the menu, however, these powers are very broken, the first one you get freezes time, and there is another one that wipes out all enemies on the screen.

You can also enter a “hyper-powered” mode if you press A+B, in which you are invulnerable to all attacks and greatly increases your movement speed. With this you'll defeat the bosses in no time.

Somehow, I feel that the developers put all those “interesting” elements as a way to “correct” a flaw in the game's design. For example, the powerful sub-weapons serve to compensate for the game's mediocre and annoying enemy positioning. The alternate paths “compensate” for the blandness of the level design. The hyper-powered mode compensates for the slow character movement. But to me, these additions more than fix the game make it much worse, because it implies that the developers knew the game wasn't that good and still decided to keep going.

Yes... I would talk about the story, but it's not worth it, it's sappy, it's nonsense and it's not even canon.

Conclusion
If Castlevania The Adventure was an admirable attempt to adapt the series to the GB (failing in said attempt), 8 years later, Castlevania Legends arrived to give it competition, but this also being the most unnecessary game of the franchise. I wish it was funny, but it's just sad.

At least Castlevania The Adventure is somewhat justifiable because it came out when the franchise was just starting, but this game? it came out after Symphony of the Night, after the classic formula had peaked more than once. Nothing redeems this bad game.

Reviewed on Jun 03, 2024


3 Comments


1 month ago

And yet it's still easily my favourite game of the GB trilogy though I admit I don't like any of them...

1 month ago

@FallenGrace, yeah, haha, I wish Castlevania on GB had been better. My favorite of the Game Boy Castlevania's is Belmont's Revenge. It's not great compared to the best games in the series, but it was more fun than The Adventure and Legends

1 month ago

It's like choosing which bit of Lego to step on bare feet, you lose either way XD