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Castlevania Curse of Darkness aka Akumajou Dracula Dark Curse

version: usa (xbox), jp (ps2) - year: 2005 - developer: konami - publisher: konami - format: xbox, ps2, dvd - condition: mint - rarity: common

The XBOX version is superior from each and every angle you look at it when compared to the PS2 version. Clearer graphics, higher definition support, faster loading times. The Xbox version was never released in Japan though.

 

The jp PS2 version. The PS2 version includes an extra healing item (Moai) when save games from Castlevania Lament of Innocence are found in the memory card.

 

Curse of Darkness Promo OST includes b/w comic book

 

Boss fights are the highlight of the game and are much better than the actual levels which despite the fact that they take place in several different locations (indoor and outdoor), they all look the same!

 

Some bosses will require the clever use of Innocent Devils to be dealt with effectively

 

Julia is one hot shopkeeper...

 

Trevor Belmont can be unlocked as a playable character upon completion of the game.

 

Ayami Kojima artwork at its finest

Review - The artwork by Ayami Kojima, the outstanding soundtrack which ranks among the best in this long running series and the glorious boss battles shouldn’t lead you to believe that Castlevania finally managed to blossom also in the polygon world.

The problem?

Repetitive filler-levels with carbon-copy design and layout, murky and uninspired textures and robotic lead character on-screen animations keep this 4th 3D Castlevania adventure in the shadow.

It is really unfortunate because the potential to make a great game was there: the weapon system which allows to steal precious materials from enemies and bosses to make your own ultimate weapon is clever and entertaining while the Innocent Devils (I.D.s) companions are little helpers which are extremely useful, and can evolve into more powerful creatures and acquire new powers and abilities.

Even the CG sequences which serve to advance the story are wonderfully directed and acted, but all of these positive aspects are let down by monotonous locations and level design which consists of a series of rooms which almost look identical and totally uninspired. Levels are repetitive, although the fighting system itself is entertaining enough to be endured before getting to the real meat of the game: the glorious boss fights.

The last series of boss fights are particularly inspired and the final battle against Dracula is both elegantly executed and extremely entertaining. The bad news is that only true hardcore Castlevania fans will be willing to invest about 14 hours of their precious time to witness it…

Bottom line: With so much going for it, it’s sad to see that the ruinous level design put this game firmly into mediocrity. A missed opportunity. 6,5/10


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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