So, the new Lords of Shadows 2 is out and walkthroughs have hit youtube as well as interviews and reviews showing the improvements that the new Castlevania has over the other Lords of Shadow games. I still wonder what will be next for the Castlevania series.
Before we go on, I’m going to assure everyone here, the old platformers will always be around, no question about. Whether they are the Metroidvanias or the classic platformers, they will always be around, be they really bad like Mirror of Fate or pretty exellent like The Adventure Rebirth and Order of Ecclesia, because that is how Castlevania started and what it will always be about, an action platformer where some guy or girl whips Dracula a new one!
With that in mind, I’m wondering what will happen next to the 3D scene of Castlevania, which is why I’m making this post. What will be the next 3D Castlevania game, how it will be handled and will the fans love it? Before Lords of Shadow hit, we had the fighting game by IGA and 8ing, Judgement.
As we all know, that didn’t go well with neither the fans nor the critics…at least here in the west, I have yet to find any evidence of it being a “kuso-ge” in Japan. As for the previous games…the 64 ‘Vanias had some good atmosphere but the rest was trash. The PS2’ Vanias were actually pretty decent to actually good games but people seem to either don’t care for them or just don’t like them “because it’s 3D / not enough Gothic / God of War(yet nothing is said about Lords of Shadow…irony)”, which is a bit of a shame but it seems these 3D games are fated to be obscure like that(like the Shinobis, the Altered Beast, the Rygar etc).
Despite all the success and budget that went behind the Lords of Shadows games and how Casltevania thanks to that went out of the B-tier game development and finally got upped to the A or even AA(?) tier of gaming budgets and successes, MercuryStream said that this will be their final Casltevania because they want to move on to other projects, since they have told the story they wanted and made the remake / alternate universe they wanted. Absolutely respectable but who will get their position now? KONAMI’s top hats now consider KONAMI the MGS company as far as major gaming goes and when it comes to their secondary games like the ‘Vanias, Contras, Rocket Knight and Silent Hills, they seem to prefer western devs over the japanese ones, even dissing IGA completely out of the ‘Vania cycle of developments. I’m not saying IGA is the best or anything but when the guy that has a passion for a series has a better ego control, perhaps done by a co-producer(preferably pass IGA, Michiru Yamane and Ayami Kojima to the people that made Over Zenith and we are gold), he can do miracles with the license. So, with that in mind, what would the next 3D Castlevania be like?
I’d like to say that I will see a Judgement 2…even just in Japan but I don’t think that will be possible. 😦 But something that is possible and I’d like to see in the future would be a “sequel” to both Lament of Innocence and Curse of Darkness. I make this distinction for a reason that I will explain down the road but not without getting this out of the way. MAKE THE GAMES WORK AT 60FPS! It is very important and while KONAMI had programming problems during the PS2 era since even games like Over Zenith had unfortunately this problem, despite trying to perform higher than that which leads me to believe that in-house engines had problems before the PS3 and Wii hit the dev kits, because Castlevania Judgement run just fine. Here we go :
01.)With Lament of Innocence, Castlevania did away with the super excessive acrobatics and super spells and even RPG elements, focusing on action first, that was perfect for the old school Belmonts, before Ralph / Trevor married Sypha from the Belnades family to get his ancestors to have these awesome super-powers and magic prowess. The way he had to unlock moves by playing more, using more moves and mastering them to keep unlocking, was pretty neat. More games that focus solely on action for old school Belmonts will be awesome. More moves and more styles while keeping the fighting fairly tactical and defensive but stylish, like the Ninja Gaidens. If I had to add anything substantial to the forumla, it would be a lock-on button and remove the double jump, instead replacing with more whip moves that can be used for travelling.
02.)With Curse of Darkness the RPG elements returned with a vengeace but the combat also became more hectic, more option based and more acrobatic / stylish. With the proper additions and proper direction the gams that follow can be pretty awesome for Belmonts that follow after Ralph / Trevor, by making them pretty acrobatic and stylish. This can be pretty much the actual 3D Castlevanias and they can be really good.
And there is another option that can be done if KONAMI puts their mind to it. This can be the Devil May Cry 3 of Castlevanias :
03.)By taking the Curse of Darkness formula, adding lock-on commands along with on-the-fly weapon type switching and more acrobatics and cancels that come with these types of acrobatics. This type of game will be perfect for the third-type characters like Alucard, Soma and the other third vampire hunters that can have whatever crazy powers. This can be exellent for hardcore players and people who want to experience beyond the Belmonts. After all, as much of Resident Evil the first Devil May Cry carried over, it had a gothic Castlevania feel over the atmosphere. Why not have Castlevania do that too?