Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

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JustLikeHeaven
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Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby JustLikeHeaven » October 22nd, 2018, 4:46 pm

Just wanted to let anyone interested that we're back with our final horror themed podcast episode of Dracula's Arcade. We decided to take a look back at the incredibly popular Super Castlevania IV on the SNES. It's a game that tends to get hyped up quite a bit and plenty of people push it towards the top of all time great Castlevania games. Find out what we thought about the game and how it holds up in 2018. Plus, we try and figure out where Super Castlevania IV ranks in terms of non-Metroidvania style Castlevania games.

You can find the episode here: https://draculasarcade.podbean.com/e/su ... ospective/

The podcast can also be heard on iTunes, and Google Play.

If you've never listened to Dracula's Arcade before it's a two dudes chatting about videogames style of podcast. Expect swearing, silly jokes, and a deep love of videogames. We try to stay focused on the topic at hand and we keep the length of our episodes in the 25-40 minute range. If you wanna hear two guys talk about wall meat, 16-bit music, manly men and short shorts then check out our Super Castlevania IV episode! We've also done retrospectives on Super Ghouls 'N Ghosts (SNES) as well as Friday the 13th (NES). Feel free to check those out too!

What does everyone hear think of Super Castlevania IV? Does it deserve the accolades and admiration that it's garnered over the years? What is your take on the infamous "whip wiggle"? Do you play it during the Halloween season or do you stick with other horror themed videogames instead?

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ptdebate
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby ptdebate » October 23rd, 2018, 2:48 pm

I am in the camp that Castlevania IV is an awkward middle sibling and probably not worthy of its status as a classic.

The multidirectional whip is a nice feature, but the game is just too darn slow! It really chugs in comparison to Bloodlines or Rondo of Blood. And I don't mean just the performance, but the sluggish movement speed. IV is especially hard to go back to once you've gotten into the Metroidvania side of the series. That's just my two cents though.

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JustLikeHeaven
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby JustLikeHeaven » October 23rd, 2018, 3:12 pm

Yup. I pretty much 100% agree with you.

It's a good, but not great game. It's far too easy, doesn't have any real memorable boss fights, the music is sub-par for the series, and the gameplay is sluggish. In terms of 16-bit games, Bloodlines completely destroys it in every way. I've never been a huge fan of the game, but while replaying it for the recording of this episode it shocked me at how borderline boring the game is. It offers very little challenge thanks to the improved eight direct whip controls and you almost never need to use sub-weapons. I do like how the game takes place outside of Dracula's Castle. It feels right fighting your way to Dracula's Lair of evil. I wish later Castlevania games kept that idea.

Overall, it's a perfectly fine platformer and you could certainly do way worse if you feel like playing a SNES game. However, it's legendary status is completely overblown. While most 2D Castlevania games easily rate as "A" games, this one feels like a "B". If you're ranking it strictly against other Castlevania games it's probably closer to a "C". It's funny because we recently did an episode on Super Ghouls N Ghosts and I was floored at how much more I enjoyed that game compared to Super Castlevania IV.

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Gentlegamer
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby Gentlegamer » October 23rd, 2018, 4:13 pm

I always thought Castlevania IV was a disappointing follow up to Castlevania III (the best Castlevania).

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JustLikeHeaven
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby JustLikeHeaven » October 23rd, 2018, 5:01 pm

Gentlegamer wrote:I always thought Castlevania IV was a disappointing follow up to Castlevania III (the best Castlevania).


Totally. As a kid I remember being really pissed off that the series completely got rid of all the excellent improvements from Part III. No more branching paths or being able to get alternate characters? It felt like a giant step BACKWARDS!

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ptdebate
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby ptdebate » October 23rd, 2018, 5:03 pm

JustLikeHeaven wrote:
Gentlegamer wrote:I always thought Castlevania IV was a disappointing follow up to Castlevania III (the best Castlevania).


Totally. As a kid I remember being really pissed off that the series completely got rid of all the excellent improvements from Part III. No more branching paths or being able to get alternate characters? It felt like a giant step BACKWARDS!


They were too fixated on showing off the SNES's hardware tricks and missed the point about what makes a great Castlevania game. Agreed that 3 is the pinnacle of the form when it comes to OG Castlevania.

Den
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby Den » October 23rd, 2018, 5:24 pm

The music is subpar?!? I consider it to be the single best video-game soundtrack I've ever heard!!!

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JustLikeHeaven
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby JustLikeHeaven » October 24th, 2018, 9:45 am

Den wrote:The music is subpar?!? I consider it to be the single best video-game soundtrack I've ever heard!!!


Let me clarify my original statement. It has sub-par music for a Castlevania game. It's a series that is renown for it's legendary music. The three NES games, Rondo of Blood, Symphony of the Night etc... they all have incredible soundtracks that make Super Castlevania IV's seem bland by comparison (to me anyways).

Don't get me wrong, the main track, "Theme of Simon Belmont" is brilliant. It's a great song that gets stuck in your head for days on end. However, the rest of the soundtrack doesn't come close to that track's greatness IMO. And for as good as "Theme of Simon Belmont" is I don't think it holds a candle to "Vampire Killer" or "Bloody Tears" among others.

Hagane
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby Hagane » October 24th, 2018, 1:20 pm

What? The music is fantastic on Castlevania 4, maybe the best thing about it, typical genesis fanboy having a dig at SNES games, it's a great game imo, one of the best in the series, better than the forgettable Blandlines.

Alucard1191
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Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby Alucard1191 » October 24th, 2018, 3:23 pm

I'm playing this right now for the first time and I love it. I don't think it is better than SOTN which is probably my favorite/most nostalgic Castlevania game, but it is damn good.


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