Retrorevisited: Castlevania 1, 3 and Super Castlevania 4 (NES, SNES)

Retrorevisited is a stream series where I revisit a game or a game series I haven’t played in over 10 or 20+ years. I’ll go through to try see what I remember until a game over or I run out of continues. In some cases muscle memory may slowly return, in others probably not. This is a chance for me to revisit games of my youth that I still have or had at one point, playing them with and without nostalgia goggles, and do with mini-reviews of them too. If I decide to play any fully later and do a full review, parts of the mini-review would be incorporated into it. Depending on the playstyle or system, games reviewed will either be mini-reviews or one about all games in this session.

So I’ve always enjoyed the early and recent Castlevania titles from the first one to SOTN, the gba titles and Dracula X Chronicles. Even with the high difficulty of some games and the metroidvania aspect to the titles post SOTN they were always ones i came back to. Castlevania 1 was one my first NES games which I think i still have. I could always at least get up to the area before Death and i learned on my own as a kid and teen how the holy water can lockdown bosses. CV3 i rented a lot as a kid too and loved the improved graphics and music and the aspect of having one of 3 partners. So much in my password notebooks I had passwords for wherever I left off in cv3 with Trevor and Grant, Alucard or Sypha! No idea where the farthest i got was, but maybe around the beginnings of penetrating Castlevania itself. Castlevania 4 I loved and still do to this day as a 1st gen SENS title showcasing the SNES’ abilities. The music is incredible and being able to swing Simon’s whip in any direction was great! The boss fights and levels were incredible to my young eyes and I had a number of passwords for this one written down too!

(Reviews will be of cv1 and 3 together, and cv4 in a separate paragraph due to different system as the other 2.)

GRAPHICS AND SOUND: The graphics in cv1 and cv3 are beautiful and really fit the mood of the game. There’s some areas that are brightly colored, and others that are darker and forbidding. The color schemes really fit the mood, underground areas and forests are what you would imagine them as you penetrate the grounds of Castlevania to fight Dracula himself. All the bosses are big and colorful and look as they should. There is some graphical flicker in cv1, not as much in cv3 though. The music in these games is legendary! Cv1 you hear the classic Vampire Killer and Bloody Tears for the first time and will be pumped up to fight! Music in other areas fit the mood, like the underground you fall into after fighting the Mummies in cv1. Music is even more incredible in cv3 with more instruments to the classic Castlevania tracks, and you’ll like the music in the Clock tower area too! Killing enemies with your whip makes them explode, your hero “oofs” when hit, and the sub-weapons sound as they would in real life such as the sound when you throw the boomerang or break bottles of holy water all over the floors.

Castlevania 4 was one of the first SNES titles and a showcase of what the new 16bit machine could do with better and more enhanced colors and palettes, along with showcasing the mode 7 abilities during some boss fights. Like the NES titles, the graphics and colors fit the mood of the area of the castle grounds you’re in and check out the backgrounds too! First time you hear the 16bit music you’ll love it and want to hear more, from the 16bit renditions of the classic Castlevania tracks to Theme of Simon in the first stage when you enter the castle grounds! Sound effects are cleaner than that of their NES counterparts, though again Simon yelling “oof” when he gets hit will get annoying. The creeking sound when you swing on rings really sounds good!

PLAY CONTROL: In cv1 Simon controls like a brick. He feels quite heavy when it comes to jumping and falling off platforms. You got a whip and jump button, and using the special items involve holding up and your attack button. Cv1 and 3 will require pixel-perfect jumps at times, though it can be for nothing with the pushback if you get hit by an enemy. Trevor in cv3 controls a lot looser and lighter. Jumping feels lighter and he doesn’t seem to feel wet cardboard. Of course both games you can lose control fast if you get juggled badly.

When it comes to your partner sin Castlevania 3, all have strengths and weaknesses. Grant is good for crawling on walls for shortcuts, but he has low range and he’s slippery trying to control him on walls. Slypha’s a glass cannon, but her magic can destroy everything! Alucard has range with his fireballs and can turn into a bat to fly over obstacles.

In cv4 Simon controls a lot better. You can also swing your whip in 8 directions to be able to attack enemies before you jump, along with holding it in front of you like a shield. Jumping is easier and there’s spots in the game where you have to swing your whip on a ring and swing over to farther platforms.

CHALLENGE: The challenge in all 3 Castlevania games is about the same: hard. Memorization is the key – memorizing where enemies spawn from and how they move, including bosses. Another key is the aforementioned pixel-perfect platforming at times, and the knockback when you take damage, which can leave you in trouble fast. Whip and explore everywhere to find hidden hearts, treasures, and wall meat! Knowing how and where to use the sub-weapons is another key. In cv1 you can use the holy water to lock some bosses in place, and just pelt them with holy water and attacks from your whip to achieve victory with little damage. Bosses range from mummies, cyclops, dragons, and even Death himself before fighting the big man Dracula.  Thankfully all 3 games have unlimited continues, and cv3 and 4 having a password to return to where you left off. Cv3 also has three partners you can take with you: Grant, Sypha, and Alucard. Each has their own abilities and skill set. Grant can climb walls, Sypha with her destructive magic skills, and Alucard can turn into a bat and fly around and over obstacles. Castlevania 3 also has multiple paths on your journey to and into Castlevania itself, with different enemies, landscapes and bosses to fight, and partners to find.

I GIVE CASTLEVANIA 1 AND 3 (NES) 4 OUT OF 5 HOLY WATERS!
I GIVE SUPER CASTLEVANIA IV (SNES) 4.5 OUT OF 5 HOLY WATERS!

VIDEO:

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Retrorevisited: Ninja Gaiden Trilogy (NES)

Retrorevisited is a stream series where I revisit a game or a game series I haven’t played in over 10 or 20+ years. I’ll go through to try see what I remember until a game over or I run out of continues. In some cases muscle memory may slowly return, in others probably not. This is a chance for me to revisit games of my youth that I still have or had at one point, playing them with and without nostalgia goggles, and do with mini-reviews of them too. If I decide to play any fully later and do a full review, parts of the mini-review would be incorporated into it. Depending on the playstyle or system, games reviewed will either be mini-reviews or one about all games in this session.

I love the Ninja Gaiden trilogy, from the action, the bosses, and the story itself! I have a long history with NG1 it being one my first NES games which i still own. 2 and 3 I rented a lot as a kid and a teen. NG1 I could normally on a good run make it somewhere to Stage 5, and never had much luck fighting my way through Stage 6. NG2 I had gotten to the final 3 bosses a few times but never finished the game after spending a lot of time with it one Summer, with help from the awesome Nintendo Power guide. NG3 not so much due to its difficulty, hard to find, and limited continues compared to its Japanese counterpart. So this is gonna be a fun time seeing how much i can remember with these! The mini-review will be of all 3 games combined, if I play and decide to review one of these on its own, parts of the mini-review will be incorporated into the full review.

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Retrorevisited: Super Star Wars Trilogy (SNES)

Retrorevisited is a stream series where I revisit a game or a game series I haven’t played in over 10 or 20+ years. I’ll go through to try see what I remember until a game over or I run out of continues. In some cases muscle memory may slowly return, in others probably not. This is a chance for me to revisit games of my youth that I still have or had at one point, playing them with and without nostalgia goggles, and do with mini-reviews of them too. If I decide to play any fully later and do a full review, parts of the mini-review would be incorporated into it. Depending on the playstyle or system, games reviewed will either be mini-reviews or one about all games in this session.

So since May 4th was Star Wars Day I decided to devote some streaming to Star Wars content.  For a recent Retrorevisited I decided to do the SNES Super Star Wars trilogy (which happened late thanks to a series of events). For this Retrorevisited, I ran through each game till I hit a game over/continue, and sometimes kept going for a little longer, and used passwords to jump around a few levels in Empire and Jedi. I don’t have much history playing these as a teen, mostly renting or playing them with friends. Never owned this trilogy of SNES games until recently when I’ve been on a Star Wars kick as of late. XD And i know it’s August when I finally did this and posted this, I know I’m late. 😛

 

(Review is gonna be for all 3 games together seeing they’re all about the same.)
GRAPHICS AND SOUND: The graphics in all three games are beautiful and high quality! Your heroes look like who they’re supposed to be as do the various aliens and villians of the Star Wars galaxy. Explosions are very large and colorful. Many of the backgrounds on the planets and places you travel to are quite detailed and beautiful. Jabba’s palace in particular in Jedi has a lot going on in the background and foreground between where you are. Same with Hoth in Empire. Cinema scenes of important events are great for 16bit! All the music is straight from the movies so you can experience the John Williams orchestra in full 16-bit glory from the Imperial march to others.

PLAY CONTROL: The controls are quite tight and you can shoot your blasters in 8 directions. Spears and lightsabers can only go in 4 directions unless you’re spin jumping. You can lose your control for a few seconds due to enemy pushback when you get hit by them or a projectile, or if you lose control when you’re trying to spin jump. Controls can be a little slippy when you’re trying to navigate small platforms or jumps in all 3 games.

CHALLENGE: Oh boy, all three of these games are hard and require a lot of practice and hoping you hit enemies perfectly and making jumps correctly. Pushback from enemies and projectiles can ruin your day and find you losing more health than you want or push you into a pit. Enemies do drop hearts to replenish life, and sometimes drop point bonus and a health sword to make your life bar longer. Some stages are side-scrolling and following the plots of the movies depends on who you play as, sometimes being able to choose. The vehicle stages will require practice since you can get janked around a lot. It’s also ridiculous Jedi starts out with a driving level on a speeder with no weapons to avoid the rocks, and the last level escaping the 2nd Death Star makes no sense. Boss fights can be frustrating as well. You only have 3 lives and 4 continues total in all 3 games. Super Star Wars has no passwords, but Empire and Jedi do have passwords for each level and difficulty setting.

I GIVE THESE GAMES 4 OUT OF 5 LIGHTSABERS!

and the gameplay video:

If you enjoy reading any of my content and hearing of my nerdy adventures, feel free to share my posts on social media or leave me a comment. I would be forever grateful if you supported me via my Cash App or buy me a coffee via Ko-Fi. All donations are very welcomed and appreciated. I earn no income from this blog and this will help me continue in providing content and fulfilling my dreams. Thanks!

RetroRevisited: MUSHA, Task Force Harrier EX, Silpeed (Sega Shmups)

 

Retrorevisited is a stream series where I revisit a game or a game series i haven’t played in over 10 or 20 years. I’ll go through to try see what i remember until a game over or I run out of continues. In some cases muscle memory may slowly return, in others probably not. This is a chance for me to revisit games of my youth that i enjoyed have or had at one point and bring more to the retro community with mini-reviews of them too. If I decide to play one later and do a full review, parts of the mini-review would be incorporated into it. Depending on the playstyle and graphics of the games the review will either be mini-reviews or one about all games in this session..

So one night I decided to do a night of Sega shumps that i grew up with. I’ve never been that big on shmups or Sega games but these 3 are ones I’ve played or had at one point: M.U.S.H.A, Task Force Harrier EX, and Silpheed. Still wishing M.U.S.H.A. wasn’t going for so much or else I’ve make another run for it on ebay. I had a blast with them once I started remembering the controls and some muscle memory began to kick in. So here’s the video of it, Some mini-reviews follow.

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RetroRevisited: Tecmo Super Bowl (NES)

Retrorevisited is a stream series where I revisit a game or a game series I haven’t played in over 10 or 20+ years. I’ll go through to try see what I remember until a game over or I run out of continues. In some cases muscle memory may slowly return, in others probably not. This is a chance for me to revisit games of my youth that I still have or had at one point, playing them with and without nostalgia goggles, and do with mini-reviews of them too. If I decide to play any fully later and do a full review, parts of the mini-review would be incorporated into it. Depending on the playstyle or system, games reviewed will either be mini-reviews or one about all games in this session.

Tecmo Super Bowl was released on the NES in 1991. It’s a suped up version of the classic Tecmo Bowl. Now with all NFL teams (at the time), all players on teams, and great graphics, gameplay and music! This game means a lot to me. I don’t play many sports games and to this day hate the Madden series. Tecmo Super Bowl you can pick up easily, play a game, and go right back to it later. Setting defensive and offensive plays, changing players are all options along with playing full seasons and playoffs. I used to play this a lot as a kid and a teen and was happy to get a new copy some years ago. What’s also great is there’s a hacking team that updates the teams and rosters yearly! Continue reading