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Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (Game Boy Advance)

Posted: May 28th, 2017, 6:13 pm
by Retro STrife
Shantae and the Pirate's Curse was a letdown, so I've ditched that handheld game and started Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow for GBA.

It's been a long time since I've found a game that I've had trouble putting down, and even longer since I've found that on a handheld. But Aria of Sorrow is doing that so far, after about 3 hours into it.

This is only the 2nd Castlevania game I've ever played. About 10 years ago, I bought Symphony of the Night when it was re-released on Xbox Live for the 360. I loved it and it easily entered my Top 10 all-time. Then recently I realized that it's pretty stupid of me to like SotN so much and never play another Castlevania game. So I researched which one to try next... it came down to this game and Dawn of Sorrow for DS...both games seemed equally well-regarded, so I eventually choose to start with Aria since it was released first. (Anyone have a preference between Aria and Dawn? And how about compared to SotN?)

I sense that I'll ultimately prefer SotN, but this is really close. SotN has the benefit of being my first, and being bigger in scale, and having my all-time favorite game soundtrack (although Aria has a great soundtrack by GBA standards). I enjoy the Metroidvania style of gameplay too, so that helps. (Though I definitely prefer the Castlevania games much more than the Metroid games..especially because of the added RPG elements.)

Anyone else tried this? What do you rank as your favorite Castlevania games? I own several others in my collection, so I'll be sure not to wait another 10 years for my next one.

Re: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (Game Boy Advance)

Posted: May 29th, 2017, 12:37 pm
by CaptainCruch
Yes, I played Aria of Sorrow when it was released.... I have it in a 'Double Pack' cartridge with Harmony of Dissonance (which was mweh), but I agree with you: I was addicted to that game back in the days!

Re: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (Game Boy Advance)

Posted: May 29th, 2017, 9:17 pm
by Rev
Played the three gba Castlevania games a while ago, all of them are a lot of fun. Honestly, I prefer Circle of the Moon but I'm definitely in the minority there. Aria of Sorrow was IMO very easy... SotN I think is a lot more fun. I think there is a sequel to this game on the DS although I've never played that one. Kind of cool that there is actually a sequel as that doesn't happen too often with the Metroidvania style games/

Re: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (Game Boy Advance)

Posted: May 30th, 2017, 1:00 pm
by ESauce
Aria of Sorrow is good but it's my third favorite of the metroid style castlevania games. My second favorite is Symphony and my favorite is actually the sequel to aria of Sorrow on the DS, Dawn of Sorrow. It has an annoying touch gimmick to draw a pattern to seal bosses, but other than that I think it is really the epitome of the metroidvania games.

Re: Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow (Game Boy Advance)

Posted: June 1st, 2017, 3:07 pm
by Retro STrife
Update... so I just completed the game last night, about a week or less after starting it. That says a lot...I think high school was the last time I beat a full-length game that quickly! Took me just over 10 hours on the game clock, and probably closer to 13-15 hours in actual time on the game. I'm a slow gamer; many people could finish this in 7-8 hours. (Side note: 10 hours truly is a great length for a game. 6-8 would be even better. Tired of professional critics that want a 20+ hour quest in order to give a good review, which forces developers to comply.)

The game dragged out a little for me toward the very end, but I still really enjoyed it. Well worth a playthrough for any Castlevania fans. The Critic gave this game an A grade. I agree: an A is exactly what I'd give it. The only significant improvement it could use is a better story, and then I'd bump it to an A+. The story is almost nonexistent and not very interesting, other than the nice little twist at the end (which I won't spoil).