Thanks to the Harmony of Dissonance site for the use of some of these pictures.
Before Harmony of Dissonance came out in Japan, Konami of Japan's website posted an interview between Koji Igarashi and MANA, the Japanese pop star from the band Malice Mizer. Although it was in Japanese, many gamers suspected that Mana was actually composing the soundtrack. The credits list the name "Soshiro Hokkai", who did not appear to have worked on anything else other than Harmony of Dissonance (and later, Aria of Sorrow.) Many suspected that the name was merely a pseudonym for MANA. However, this is most likely not the case. MANA did compose a promotional cell phone melody for the game, called "La nuit blanche" - however, this was never used in the game, nor released at all outside of Japan. Thanks to KENTAR for this information.
The multi-eyed giant skeletons in the Den of Skeletons look remarkably like the lava monster from Super Metroid - close enough that it's probably a homage to the series that inspired the more recent Castlevania games. Thanks to Vortex for the picture.
The second form of the Grim Reaper is awfully reminscent of the first level boss in Capcom's Strider - the multi-segmented boss that climbs around the screen. Even the claws are similar. Thanks to Deuce for pointing this out.
Also in the Den of Skeletons, you'll find a statue that looks exactly like Dracula's final form in Castlevania 3.
In the Den of Skeletons, you'll find the skeletons of fallen foes Sloga and Gaibon (from both Super Castlevania 4 and Symphony of the Night).
Keep a look out for various references in the Den of Skeletons, including the three-eyed skeleton from Dracula X (and future Castlevania games), Carmilla's mask from Castlevania 2, and Medusa.
There is a monster later in the game called the Simon Wraith - it's dressed as the original Castlevania hero and wields a whip. However, in Japanese, it's name was "Shimon" - which is how you write "Simon" in Japanese. The kanji literally means "Gates of Death" - this is a type of pun unique to the Japanese language. You'll also see the whip-wielding skeletons referred to as the "Gates of Death" in the English Castlevania 3 manual.
There are a few items that refer to characters from older Castlevania games. Sypha's Crystal will increase your magazine, while Christopher's Soul is a whip attachment that will let you thrown fireballs when you're at full health (like the old Gameboy games.) Unfortunately, these were changed for the American release.
The menu screen music is a remix of the name entry screen in the Famicom disk version of Castlevania. The Game Over music is also from the first two Gameboy games.
The warp rooms in Harmony look an awful lot like the portals that the Doppelganger emerges from in Symphony.
The wind and bible Spell Fusion will give you shields just like in the Gradius games.
The strange enemies known as "King"s bear a slight resemblance to these strange pink creatures from the 1988 arcade game Kitten Kaboodle. Sure, they're a lot cutesier, but it's probably not a coincidence. Thanks to Yifan Sun for the tip.
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Castlevania Games - Harmony of Dissonance - HoD Weirdness