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Offline Pfil

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #30 on: September 02, 2013, 10:22:36 PM »
0
...and I like Juste Belmont.
Well, who doesn't?
Oh, right... No one likes him.
At least there are some few people in the Dungeon supporting good Juste, including me and my dreams  :)

(about DoS's soundtrack)... I'll agree the music is good, and it did fit the game, but I guess that's the problem.
That becomes a matter of personal taste. Maybe it fits the game. I like its anime design, but I'll always prefer PoR.

I loved MoF for the whole playthrough. I really did like the game, but once I was done, I quickly grew disappointed at how little was actually in the game, and how easy the journey had been. Double the game's size, and at the very least get rid of all those checkpoints, and I'd like the game a lot, lot more.
I have to recognize that MoF felt felt to me like a step in the right direction for MS when comparing to LoS, but as time passes by, I realize about more mistakes about the game. But that also happened with LoS for me. I have to let some time pass, let the passion cool off and think it better to come to a final conclusion.
Now I'm tired, eternally walking... forever dying, and never stopping. I feel in sorrow, all I see is white. I’m following a blind way beneath a sad sky.


Offline Intersection

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #31 on: September 03, 2013, 02:26:49 AM »
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DoS as it exists should never have been made.
Oh, I certainly wouldn't go that far...
Dawn of Sorrow's story wasn't quite as logical as Aria's, and the whole game was, of course, an excuse to bring Soma back; but here, like in so many other titles, the plot only serves to drive the actual gameplay forward, and in that respect it performs admirably. After all, we're here to play the games, not just to sit back and listen to their story.
If Soma returned, it was because his soul system was one of the most successful Castlevania had seen; IGA took it a small step further for a sequel, and as it stands DoS's gameplay comes remarkably close to being perfect. As for the magic seals, we've all complained about them, and we've all forgiven them -- for what else could we do?

CoD started out ok, but the quick realization of the lack of platforming and no real relation to the other games other than the cameos of Trevor kind of ruins the experience. Again, like with DoS, this game doesn't impact the overall CV storyline what so ever and thus doesn't matter. It's a shame. This game had a lot of potential that was wasted.
Alas, you're perfectly right here. This game has wasted so much of its potential -- yet it has such extraordinary charisma that I still love it for what it is.
But again: whether a game "impacts" the CV storyline or not doesn't matter as much... On its own, CoD's story is one of the best I've yet seen in Castlevania.
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Offline Zannibal

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #32 on: September 03, 2013, 11:06:08 AM »
+1
Well, who doesn't?
Oh, right... No one likes him.
At least there are some few people in the Dungeon supporting good Juste, including me and my dreams  :)

How can anyone dislike him :( Cool long white hair, cool clothes and all. One of my favorites.

I guess I add Bloodlines to this list. So far, it has been my favorite Classicvania, but now I'm at Pisa.. if anyone mentions that tower to me ever again, I will EAT. YOUR. LIMBS. ;_; So frustrating. Oh well, I guess it gets good after this again :D

Offline e105beta

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #33 on: September 03, 2013, 11:47:34 AM »
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Well, admittedly I've never heard this one before. But Castlevania has made quite a name for itself with its characteristically "upbeat" music. And why Dawn of Sorrow, in particular?

Stuff like this:
Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow Wizardry Lab extended
Let's Listen: Castlevania SOTN - Alchemy Laboratory, Dance Of Gold (Extended)

Similar areas, similar games, but the Dawn of Sorrow equivalent ditches a lot of the regalia for some jammin' beats.

Another example:
OST Castlevania Dawn Of Sorrow - The Pinnacle
Let's Listen: Castlevania SOTN - Heavenly Doorway, Castle Keep (Extended)

Hmm. Didn't come off as quite so bland or repetitive to me... If you could elaborate?

What made the Castle-based Metroidvania's so cool was how almost every room felt unique, save for a few hallways.  In Order of Ecclesia, I felt the uniqueness of the rooms was traded out in favor of the novelty of visiting different locations.



Obviously the maps alone don't demonstrate fully, but there were a lot of flat, largely platformless hallways, and the larger rooms were pretty repetitive in design elements. I never found myself looking back on the game going "Oh, remember that one room with the _____ in it?" because all of the rooms felt very sameish. Tymeo Mountains was pretty bad about it, IIRC, though to the game's credit, Kalidus Channel has some neat elements to it.

As for the "boatloads of damage", it's a decent way, among others, to scale up the difficulty; it forces you to be more mindful of your position, to minimize taking hits. And in Castlevania it's almost always been that way -- frustratingly so!

But in older Castlevania's enemies served an instrumental purpose in the level design, moved with purpose, and you could kill them just as quickly as they could throw you into a pit. And from my experience, a lot of the time getting thrown into a pit tended to be more of a threat than the damage from actually getting hit.

Metroidvania's have never really had that, it's always been "here's a room, here's a bunch of enemies, have at it". Thus, you get those "floating ball" enemies that just kind of swirled around you in circles in a "come at me bro" mentality, or suits of armor that just kind of run at you. I usually have no issue with high damage in games, but in OoE it just felt like a cheap way of increasing the difficulty, rather than designing a difficult game.

Offline Dark Nemesis

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #34 on: September 03, 2013, 02:58:07 PM »
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How do I delete posts?

You can't, only moderators or Jorge can do that. Ask one of them to have it deleted for you.
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Offline JILost

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #35 on: September 03, 2013, 10:17:08 PM »
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I'm probably going to be shunned for this, but...

Super Castlevania 4. That's right, I said it.

Even when I first played it, as much as I loved the music ("love" isn't even a strong enough word), I was just on the heels of Castlevania 3 and 4's level designs just screamed "get the CV3 designers". I soon grew used to the levels and started to love the game for what it was - but maybe a little too much. I played it from the beginning so many times that now, I all but refuse to play it from the beginning because even when I get nostalgic, as soon as I go through that first door in the fence, a feeling of "ugh not this again" washes over me and 9 times out of 10, I stop playing before the first stage is through. If I make it through that, the feeling persists until stage 4 - at which point, the wall skulls that watch you and other awesome level design quirks win me over. The only stages I can consistently enjoy and claim as my favorite Castlevania stages these days are 4, 6, 7, 9, and the Dracula battle (although 7 just makes me want to play SotN's Long Library). The one time I was able to play the whole game beginning to end and enjoy every minute was on the game's 20th anniversary - and only because I was playing it for that very reason. I still have a lot of respect for the game and what it did for the series, listen to the soundtrack regularly, and get giddy with any new CV with whip-swinging or whip-dangling (I'm looking at you, Portrait of Ruin), but it just lacks in replay value.

I have a very hard time playing the first level of Castlevania for the same reason, only worse: Back in the summer of 1991, I spent hours trying to one-life the game, resetting it every time I died regardless of how far I was. I grew to hate hearing the first few notes of Vampire Killer and playing that first stage because it inevitably meant I'd just been killed by a Medusa head in stage 2 and had to reset after having died on Dracula the reset before.

I was never too big on Adventure to begin with, but every time I play it, I'm less tolerant of its slow speed.

I was madly in love with Rondo the first few times I played it. I was so used to XX and Rondo was bigger, better, and even more in keeping with the ClassicVania spirit. Unfortunately, now that I've played DX Chronicles, going back to Rondo is like trying to play Ocarina of Time after a long session of Twilight Princess - it's just ugly and potentially nausea-inducing. I got the same sensation trying to play it after beating Castlevania 4 on the above 20th.

Circle of the Moon - or "CircleVania", if you will. I bought it with my Gameboy Advance (the first one) and it was the first Castlevania I'd played since 64, so I was pretty excited about it and it felt fun. Over time, I'd get to a certain point in the game that I couldn't get past (usually not very far), stop playing for a few months or years, delete my file and start over, get to another impassible point, stop, start over in another few years, etc. Now whenever I start it up, it's the same "ugh I've done this 1000 times" feeling as above, combined with either "Why am I playing this? I'll only get so far" or the inevitable hard part actually happening and stopping me yet again.

Aria of Sorrow. It had its moment in the sun and I got about 75% through the game (and then lost interest or got distracted) when it was new, but then I played Dawn of Sorrow; now playing Aria is the same "Ocarina after Twilight Princess" effect and I just can't look at it.

Legacy of Darkness. It was a neat little additional quest to 64, but give me the original any day.

Offline Pfil

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #36 on: September 03, 2013, 10:37:41 PM »
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Nice read again, but there's some things I don't agree, personally...

The only stages I can consistently enjoy and claim as my favorite Castlevania stages these days are 4, 6, 7, 9, and the Dracula battle
Five favourite stages from the same game, to me it sounds like a game you love.

The one time I was able to play the whole game beginning to end and enjoy every minute was on the game's 20th anniversary - and only because I was playing it for that very reason.
I don't quite follow you on this one...

Unfortunately, now that I've played DX Chronicles, going back to Rondo is like trying to play Ocarina of Time after a long session of Twilight Princess - it's just ugly and potentially nausea-inducing.
To each his own, but Rondo features some of the most beautiful sprites and backgrounds I've seen in a 2D game.

Aria of Sorrow. It had its moment in the sun and I got about 75% through the game (and then lost interest or got distracted) when it was new, but then I played Dawn of Sorrow; now playing Aria is the same "Ocarina after Twilight Princess" effect and I just can't look at it.
I understand your comparison because I LOVE Twilight Princess. I LOVE IT! I still like and respect Ocarina a lot, however.
But I believe Aria is better than Dawn in every aspect. That's my personal PoV, though.
Now I'm tired, eternally walking... forever dying, and never stopping. I feel in sorrow, all I see is white. I’m following a blind way beneath a sad sky.


Offline JILost

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #37 on: September 03, 2013, 10:57:16 PM »
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Five favourite stages from the same game, to me it sounds like a game you love.
Castlevania 4 still holds a special place in my heart and it's not as if I've grown to hate the game or anything; I just can't go through the whole thing in one sitting without skipping things because I've grown tired of them. Let's just say it's a game I loved at first but have grown to love less.

I don't quite follow you on this one...
What I meant there was I enjoyed every minute of the game when I played it on its 20th anniversary, but the reason I enjoyed even the more "tired" parts is because it was the 20th anniversary and I was filled with nostalgia. It felt like playing it in 1993 again.

To each his own, but Rondo features some of the most beautiful sprites and backgrounds I've seen in a 2D game.
I'm not saying there's anything wrong with the game. Heck, it looked gorgeous after years of playing the SNES game; it just loses some of that beauty after playing DX Chronicles or SotN for hours and then going back to it. I still have some of my fondest Castlevania memories with Rondo, though. Again, just take this all as games I've grown to love less, not hate.

But I believe Aria is better than Dawn in every aspect. That's my personal PoV, though.
Yes, and I've seen you express that a few times and I respect your opinion. I do agree with you that the character portraits are better in Aria, the music would probably be better in Aria if both games used the same sound hardware, Aria's plot is less corny, etc. but the feeling I got while playing (not during the cutscenes...eww) was a lot better in Dawn. There were quite a few "THIS is Castlevania" moments in Dawn (like in the Alchemy Laboratory) that I just didn't experience with Aria - especially when I started Julius Mode with "Beginning" blaring in the background. THAT was Castlevania. In my eyes, minus the cutscenes and plot, the actual experience of Dawn rivals SotN as far as "Castlevania feel" - but I know I'm in the very small minority here and everyone has a different point of view, and I respect that and am not meaning to start an argument with anyone. :)
« Last Edit: September 03, 2013, 11:01:15 PM by JILost »

Offline Bloodreign

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #38 on: September 04, 2013, 03:06:23 AM »
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Symphony of the Night, yes a lot of people love this game, I did too at one time, till I felt like I played the shit out of  it to the point of overplaying. Once I collected everything in the game, that was it for me, didn't collect everything at once, just used the save file and chased items down for ages. When it got re-released on PSP with Drac X Chronicles (and Rondo) I speed ran my way through the game as Alucard, did it again with Richter, then took my time a bit with Maria to see what she could do. Once I beat the game with her, that was the end of the line for that game on PS1 and PSP for me. Don't see myself going back to either one now (and no, I don't sell any game in my collection :P).

Offline Pfil

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #39 on: September 04, 2013, 03:40:16 AM »
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Again, just take this all as games I've grown to love less, not hate.

Yes, and I've seen you express that a few times and I respect your opinion. I do agree with you that the character portraits are better in Aria, the music would probably be better in Aria if both games used the same sound hardware, Aria's plot is less corny, etc. but the feeling I got while playing (not during the cutscenes...eww) was a lot better in Dawn. There were quite a few "THIS is Castlevania" moments in Dawn (like in the Alchemy Laboratory) that I just didn't experience with Aria - especially when I started Julius Mode with "Beginning" blaring in the background. THAT was Castlevania. In my eyes, minus the cutscenes and plot, the actual experience of Dawn rivals SotN as far as "Castlevania feel" - but I know I'm in the very small minority here and everyone has a different point of view, and I respect that and am not meaning to start an argument with anyone. :)
Oh no, I'm not trying to argue, I just like to talk  :)
I respect everyone's opinions provided they respect mine, and you've been very respectful.

I know how it is to be in the minority, my favourite game ever is Portrait of Ruin.

And when it comes to Castlevania feel, I understand you. To some people Lords of Shadow is a Castlevania experience, while to me it was almost non existant, and I love Portrait of Ruin while many dismiss it as a CV.

Symphony of the Night, yes a lot of people love this game, I did too at one time, till I felt like I played the shit out of  it to the point of overplaying. Once I collected everything in the game, that was it for me, didn't collect everything at once, just used the save file and chased items down for ages. When it got re-released on PSP with Drac X Chronicles (and Rondo) I speed ran my way through the game as Alucard, did it again with Richter, then took my time a bit with Maria to see what she could do. Once I beat the game with her, that was the end of the line for that game on PS1 and PSP for me. Don't see myself going back to either one now (and no, I don't sell any game in my collection :P).
I've played it like 5 times in PSX, 2 of them collecting everything, then played it for Saturn once and for PSP another, always with all available characters.
I know what you mean. It's probably the best Castlevania, but I just like PoR more than SotN, and maybe the reason is the same. I just know the game too much. I still reckon what it is and how important it was for the best franchise ever.
But it's just not the one I like most. I would put it fighting for the 2nd place in my favourites, despite everything, together with Aria of Sorrow and Order of Ecclesia.
Now I'm tired, eternally walking... forever dying, and never stopping. I feel in sorrow, all I see is white. I’m following a blind way beneath a sad sky.


Offline Intersection

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #40 on: September 04, 2013, 12:23:48 PM »
+1
Similar areas, similar games, but the Dawn of Sorrow equivalent ditches a lot of the regalia for some jammin' beats.
Ah, I see what you mean. But even Symphony had its own jammin' beats (think Tragic Prince, for one). And Dawn had many of its own solemn melodies (Condemned Tower, After Confession). And most of its other, more lively tracks are in fact quite enjoyable, if you can look past the prominent beat. But I'll admit DoS had its particular musical style -- one that also isn't a favorite of mine. Yet they're different games, with different musical influences, even if they're both from the same composer. But of all Castlevania games to compare it with, Symphony certainly had one hell of a sountrack!
Yet I still don't understand why you're singling out DoS. Almost every modern game in the series had its own share of upbeat music. How about Invitation of a Crazed Moon in PoR? An Empty Tome in OoE? And to take it to the extreme, how about Anti-Soul Mysteries from LoI?

But in older Castlevania's enemies served an instrumental purpose in the level design, moved with purpose, and you could kill them just as quickly as they could throw you into a pit. And from my experience, a lot of the time getting thrown into a pit tended to be more of a threat than the damage from actually getting hit.

Metroidvania's have never really had that, it's always been "here's a room, here's a bunch of enemies, have at it". Thus, you get those "floating ball" enemies that just kind of swirled around you in circles in a "come at me bro" mentality, or suits of armor that just kind of run at you. I usually have no issue with high damage in games, but in OoE it just felt like a cheap way of increasing the difficulty, rather than designing a difficult game.
You're perfectly right here -- but you've missed an important point. In earlier games, often because of technological limitations, you were assorted with a comparatively shallow moveset, with little possibilities for attack and movement. This meant each of these possibilities came under careful scrutiny, something which allowed the game's creators to create a consequent level design, to optimize enemy patterns, and plan their positions, all taking into account the actual options you had to defeat them.
But in more modern Castlevania's, where you're given considerably more freedom in your movements, and where you're granted a far richer set of abilities, this isn't possible anymore: the methods you can use when defeating an enemy, the ways you can jump, kick, dash, attack with myriads of different weapons -- there are far too many of them to be planned. Enemies could no longer be given fixed, set patterns to follow. Instead, they were given freer modes of attack; they became more agile, more numerous, more varied. Hence the "come-at-me" patterns you'd noticed. There wasn't exactly any other option.

Super Castlevania 4. That's right, I said it.

Even when I first played it, as much as I loved the music ("love" isn't even a strong enough word), I was just on the heels of Castlevania 3 and 4's level designs just screamed "get the CV3 designers". I soon grew used to the levels and started to love the game for what it was - but maybe a little too much. I played it from the beginning so many times that now, I all but refuse to play it from the beginning because even when I get nostalgic, as soon as I go through that first door in the fence, a feeling of "ugh not this again" washes over me and 9 times out of 10, I stop playing before the first stage is through. If I make it through that, the feeling persists until stage 4 - at which point, the wall skulls that watch you and other awesome level design quirks win me over. The only stages I can consistently enjoy and claim as my favorite Castlevania stages these days are 4, 6, 7, 9, and the Dracula battle (although 7 just makes me want to play SotN's Long Library). The one time I was able to play the whole game beginning to end and enjoy every minute was on the game's 20th anniversary - and only because I was playing it for that very reason. I still have a lot of respect for the game and what it did for the series, listen to the soundtrack regularly, and get giddy with any new CV with whip-swinging or whip-dangling (I'm looking at you, Portrait of Ruin), but it just lacks in replay value.
I agree with Pfil; it sounds like you actually love SCIV, but have played it so often that its charm has begun to wear off on you. Don't play it for a while, then come back to it -- it'll feel so much more enjoyable.

Circle of the Moon - or "CircleVania", if you will. I bought it with my Gameboy Advance (the first one) and it was the first Castlevania I'd played since 64, so I was pretty excited about it and it felt fun. Over time, I'd get to a certain point in the game that I couldn't get past (usually not very far), stop playing for a few months or years, delete my file and start over, get to another impassible point, stop, start over in another few years, etc. Now whenever I start it up, it's the same "ugh I've done this 1000 times" feeling as above, combined with either "Why am I playing this? I'll only get so far" or the inevitable hard part actually happening and stopping me yet again.
It's almost the same problem with Circle of the Moon: it's not that you don't appreciate the game in itself, it's that you've tried to play it so many times that it has begun to irritate you. Have you, by any chance, been trying to defeat Carmilla before fighting Death and the twin dragons? That happens to be extraordinarily difficult. So remember to take the right path. And stop deleting your file. That is absolutely idiotic. So my best advice? Come back to it after a long break, and, well, as terrible as it sounds... try again. The game's hard, but beatable -- I've beaten dozens of times. Read strategies. Increase your level. Be victorious. I'm confident you'll learn to love Circle of the Moon again. I certainly did.

Aria of Sorrow. It had its moment in the sun and I got about 75% through the game (and then lost interest or got distracted) when it was new, but then I played Dawn of Sorrow; now playing Aria is the same "Ocarina after Twilight Princess" effect and I just can't look at it.
Why would you be losing interest in a game like Aria of Sorrow? It had pulled out all the stops -- its visuals were stunning (even on GBA); its gameplay was fast-paced, varied, addictive; its ability system is one of Castlevania's best; even its plot was interesting... what is there not to like about it?
There were quite a few "THIS is Castlevania" moments in Dawn (like in the Alchemy Laboratory) that I just didn't experience with Aria - especially when I started Julius Mode with "Beginning" blaring in the background. THAT was Castlevania.
I never liked what DoS did with Julius. He became slow, heavy; he lost his signature ability; and he felt... old. And of course, he is, but in AoS he was quick, powerful, effective... it felt good to use him. DoS also took away his extraordinary theme -- it was replaced with Beginning, which didn't fit anywhere near as well.
And are you telling me that playing as Julius in AoS with Heart of Fire as his theme doesn't feel like Castlevania?
« Last Edit: September 04, 2013, 12:34:09 PM by Intersection7 »
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Offline JILost

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #41 on: September 04, 2013, 04:21:27 PM »
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I agree with Pfil; it sounds like you actually love SCIV, but have played it so often that its charm has begun to wear off on you. Don't play it for a while, then come back to it -- it'll feel so much more enjoyable.
That is EXACTLY it. I played the hell out of a game I love, and as a result, I can't play most of it without feeling the fatigue that comes with playing it for the 3179th time. I guess what I was trying to get across isn't that I don't like the game, just that it makes me feel that fatigue rather than nostalgia when I play it. You're probably right about just not playing it for a long, long time and coming back to it to bring it back to its glory.

Try again. The game's hard, but beatable -- I've beaten dozens of times. Read strategies. Increase your level. Be victorious. I'm confident you'll learn to love Circle of the Moon again. I certainly did.
Again, you're probably right. I don't get nearly as far as what you're talking about - I think the farthest I've gotten is the Audience Room the first time, though I do remember fighting that giant ram's head in the wall in the background. Yes, I'm terrible.

Why would you be losing interest in a game like Aria of Sorrow? It had pulled out all the stops -- its visuals were stunning (even on GBA); its gameplay was fast-paced, varied, addictive; its ability system is one of Castlevania's best; even its plot was interesting... what is there not to like about it?
I think I just had my expectations set too high the first time I played it. I really wanted to like it, but the graphics were too cartoonish, I couldn't wrap my head around the soul system and it just confused me (at least initially), and I overall expected it to be a lot more like the old games than it was. I eventually gave it a chance and got pretty far, but I just kept wishing I was playing SotN instead. I'm not really sure what exactly it was, but the game just didn't "click" with me.

I never liked what DoS did with Julius. He became slow, heavy; he lost his signature ability; and he felt... old. And of course, he is, but in AoS he was quick, powerful, effective... it felt good to use him. DoS also took away his extraordinary theme -- it was replaced with Beginning, which didn't fit anywhere near as well.
And are you telling me that playing as Julius in AoS with Heart of Fire as his theme doesn't feel like Castlevania?
I didn't like Julius a lot in DoS either, for the reasons you list. As far as the Heart of Fire question: I can't really speak to that because I never beat AoS and thus, never played Julius Mode in it.

Offline e105beta

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #42 on: September 04, 2013, 07:46:06 PM »
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Ah, I see what you mean. But even Symphony had its own jammin' beats (think Tragic Prince, for one). And Dawn had many of its own solemn melodies (Condemned Tower, After Confession). And most of its other, more lively tracks are in fact quite enjoyable, if you can look past the prominent beat. But I'll admit DoS had its particular musical style -- one that also isn't a favorite of mine. Yet they're different games, with different musical influences, even if they're both from the same composer. But of all Castlevania games to compare it with, Symphony certainly had one hell of a sountrack!
Yet I still don't understand why you're singling out DoS. Almost every modern game in the series had its own share of upbeat music. How about Invitation of a Crazed Moon in PoR? An Empty Tome in OoE? And to take it to the extreme, how about Anti-Soul Mysteries from LoI?

I just mentioned because it was the first one that came to mind, I'm not trying to "single anything out". It's also probably the first one that comes to mind because it stood in fairly large contrast to AoS, which aside from Castle Corridor or Clock Tower, wasn't quite as energetic, or at least didn't seem as much to me. I mean, PoR stopped caring, what with how silly the game got (Not that that's a bad thing) and by OoE I was used to it, though the music in OoE was really awesome, and had this great adventure game feel to it.

I do want to point out that I'm not criticizing the music, I like DoS's music. It just...as a soundtrack it didn't do it for me.

Also lol at Anti-Soul Mysteries. I never played all the way through LoI, but that level better have had flashing colored lights and a disco-ball.

You're perfectly right here -- but you've missed an important point. In earlier games, often because of technological limitations, you were assorted with a comparatively shallow moveset, with little possibilities for attack and movement. This meant each of these possibilities came under careful scrutiny, something which allowed the game's creators to create a consequent level design, to optimize enemy patterns, and plan their positions, all taking into account the actual options you had to defeat them.
But in more modern Castlevania's, where you're given considerably more freedom in your movements, and where you're granted a far richer set of abilities, this isn't possible anymore: the methods you can use when defeating an enemy, the ways you can jump, kick, dash, attack with myriads of different weapons -- there are far too many of them to be planned. Enemies could no longer be given fixed, set patterns to follow. Instead, they were given freer modes of attack; they became more agile, more numerous, more varied. Hence the "come-at-me" patterns you'd noticed. There wasn't exactly any other option.

I haven't missed it, and I agree that there's a technology aspect involved. I disagree that it has to do with player character complexity. Megaman X, or more recently Mark of the Ninja, are games with incredible character mobility and attack options, but the games still feel incredibly planned out.

In my opinion, the real issue is the focus on large, sprawling environments and myriad enemies with an emphasis on backtracking (i.e. non-linear gameplay) that results in simplistic enemy and level design. That's why the issue first started showing up in Simon's Quest (which had a very similar character ability set to its predecessor) because instead of creating planned obstacles to be attacked from a limited number of angles, environments and enemies had to be simple enough to be retread through multiple times without incredible frustration.

Probably why I didn't like the difficulty in OoE. It was more getting smacked and dying by some offhand enemy after walking through a level than it was messing up a jump in an obstacle course. IMO, Metroidvania's should stick to focusing on exploration and becoming a juggernaut of destruction, than trying to create difficulty if they're just going to do it by upping the enemy damage. I'd rather see fewer, more thought out enemies, and fewer, more thought out areas in a game than a bunch of less thought out ones, but that's just me.

That's why I thought Symphony of the Night had a good balance, because while there were plenty of long hallways with repetitive occurrences of flea-men to smack (i.e. space-filler) there were definitely still those instances of planned out level design and enemy placement, and you could see the effort that went into planning everything out and designing the difficulty. It's probably why the Inverted Castle seemed to so tacked on, because the design was completely flipped upside down in a way that it wasn't originally designed to be traversed, which lent itself to "cheaper" enemy layout.
« Last Edit: September 04, 2013, 08:00:44 PM by e105beta »

Offline Lelygax

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Re: Castlevania Games that you liked at first but soon grew to dislike.
« Reply #43 on: September 08, 2013, 08:26:21 PM »
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@e105beta: reading your post made me think that maybe they need to learn more with Super Metroid. In this game we have a lot of abilities at our disposal but we still have challenges, even when we gain a ability to fly or a stronger beam.

Maybe it also have something to do with less save rooms, IDK. OoE seemed to be in the right track with the amount and distance of save rooms in a way that we can almost beg to reach one in Hard Mode (at least when using Albus).
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