Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse


After two back-to-back Castlevania games, Konami learned what does and doesn’t work for their seminal horror series. The first Castlevania featured great game design, but treated the plot too flippantly, whereas Castlevania II pivoted too heavily on the storytelling and was brought down by sloppy execution.

With the third game in the series, Konami offers the perfect balance of plot and straightforward action. Castlevania III is actually a prequel starring the ancestor of Simon Belmont, Trevor, in his quest to exterminate Dracula two hundred years before the events of Castlevania. As Trevor, you can now recruit one of three new support characters to join you on your adventure: the thief Grant, sorceress Sypha, and half-vampire Alucard. Depending on which character you choose, you may end up with vastly different gameplay experiences as each character has their own unique abilities; Grant scales walls and ceilings, Sypha casts magic spells, and Alucard transforms into a bat. Castlevania III abandons the open-world concept of its predecessor and returns to the stage-based progression of the first game, only now you have control over the order in which you complete the stages. Like Simon, Trevor is able to upgrade his whip by collecting power-ups, and he can use secondary weapons. Some support characters can use them, too. Not only has the gameplay been broadened, but production values have been ramped up as well. The character models are more detailed, the stages more varied and interesting, and the soundtrack, which has always been a staple of the series, is even more energetic. It’s a difficult game, but well worth braving because this is the ultimate Castlevania title on the NES. With the expanded plot and gameplay, and improved visuals and music, Castlevania III is an 8-bit tour de force.

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Author: wyldephang
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Parent Category: Nintendo
Category: NES