Castlevania for the NES – Whips the evil out of undead!

Developper : Konami

Publisher : Konami

Year : 1987

Type : Full game and maximum score

Game description

Castlevania is a game released on Konami on May 1 1987 in North America and December 19, 1988 in Europe. It came much later on the Famicom, as Vampire Killer, on February 5 , 1993. However, the game first came out on the Famicom Disk System on September 26, 1986. Although it was the first game for the series in the North American and European market, the MSX Vampire Killer, came a few months before. Although very similar, it is distinct from the NES Castlevania and not a port of it.

Around 1691, Transylvania enjoyed a century of peace after the defeat of Dracula. Unfortunately, if the legend holds true, he would awake again each century, take the castle back and reign over the country.  In that specific case, a group of evil men and used black magic to bring him back to the mortal world.

Simon Belmont, part of the legendary clan of the same name is the current wielder of the Vampire Killer Whip. Now that Dracula is spreading its evil influence, he takes on the duty of his clan and venture to Transylvania in order to destroy him once again. Entering the castle, he faces a wide variety of undead, demons or evil entity before taking on the Count himself.

You play as Simon Belmont venturing through 19 stages, split into 6 distinct levels. You start with the Vampire Killer Whip, but you soon get its more powerful forms as soon as you destroy a fire tower. As you enter the castle, you will face off against zombies, bats, fishermen, hunchback, medusa, bone dragons and knights, along other enemies. At the end of each level, you face a boss or a pair of bosses (with Dracula being the last boss of the game).

Simon attacks by striking his whip toward the front. He can also do it while in the air and while going around the stairs. Beside that, he can acquire a second weapon. To use them, you must collect small or big hearts in the level. It cost 5 heart for the stopwatch and 1 heart for all weapons.

The boomerang, which can be thrown in front before coming back to its owner, or the opposite of the screen if not caught.

  • The knife, which is a horizontal projectile hitting once
  • The stopwatch, which freezes enemy movement for a few seconds, but Simon is not affected, allowing him to strike without retaliation.
  • The axe, which is a weapon thrown high in an arc, hitting enemies high in the air before going down the screen.
  • The Holy Water, which is thrown on the ground, creating some kind of fire that last for a few seconds. This weapon does multiple hits, being able to stun lock enemies with a lot of HP or bosses if thrown at the right time.

Simon can only carry one sub-weapon at a time. It is also possible to collect the multiplier. Multiplier allows to throw more than one sub-weapon at once. With the highest multiplier, you can throw as much as 3 at once.

Beside these, it is possible to get a cross that clear the screen of enemies, or the magic potion that give you invulnerability for a short period of time. If you are low on health, roast hidden on the various walls of the castle will bring you back in full health.

Finally, you can collect treasures to increase your points. This can be useful to gain new life, as the game give an extra life for each 25000 point.

Castlevania playthrough

The playthrough use the USA PRG1 version of Castlevania. The main goal is to beat both the first loop of the game and the more difficult second loop without getting hit once. It also aims to collect every secret treasure in both loops and get the highest possible score before overflowing.

All weapons are shown in the game, but on the second loop, the holy water weapon is the preferred weapon due to its powerful multi-hit property that can stun lock most bosses and high hp enemies.

No cheats were used in this run, TAS tools were used to make a high-quality playthrough.

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