Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

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Sut
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Joined: April 8th, 2015, 4:23 pm

Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby Sut » November 30th, 2018, 6:53 pm

Oh yeah I know it’s a real thing it’s just that he used it without actually knowing what it is.
The Atari ST(e) came with a blitter I believe but not many software companies made use of it because the bulk of the ST’s out there were the ST(fm) models.

Stalvern wrote:the ST can barely scroll a background without coughing and sputtering. Wings of Death is one of the ST's greatest masterpieces of programming just for managing to keep a frame rate that the crappiest teenage homebrew on the Amiga takes for granted


Wings of Death is one of my favourite shooters and I think it’s a console quality title. The Bitmaps always managed to make the ST scroll decent as well, Speedball 2 is a great example but again is not smooth as the Amiga. Ocean France were also very good ST developers with the ST version of Toki (in my opinion) being the best version of the game (oddly the Amiga version has some iffy scolling issues). US Gold never seemed to manage it, all their games had massive sprites the ST just couldn’t throw around at the required speed without tanking the frame rate.

Stalvern wrote:The ST's one graphical advantage over the Amiga is slightly superior 3D performance – both systems handle 3D graphics with the CPU, and the ST's is a bit faster (same model, different clock speed).


Oh yes that was one example we used frequently, that and the fact the ST was the lead platform for a number of years meaning the ST version was usually released first and only minor improvements made to the Amiga version. Most publishers opted for pretty much straight ports due to the shared CPU. ST games usually having a slightly better frame rate due to the faster processor and the ports being straight code conversions meaning all the Amiga scrolling was also being done in software rather than hardware.

Then Shadow of the Beast came along and the tide turned and the ST started getting the naff ports. Interesting times.

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DrLitch
Posts: 203
Joined: July 19th, 2017, 12:57 pm

Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby DrLitch » November 30th, 2018, 7:56 pm

Stalvern wrote:(Also, palette. A pallet is what a forklift picks up.)


:D Much appreciated, my vocabulary is +1

JWK
Posts: 181
Joined: April 30th, 2015, 2:27 pm

Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby JWK » June 23rd, 2019, 9:55 pm

Can’t believe I didn’t see this thread. You know me: I love me some Castlevania. Gonna have to listen to this podcast, for sure.

I think JLH and I were discussing a SCV4 vs Bloodlines a couple years ago and I revealed that I had switched my opinion on the two. Something like 9 years ago, I did mini reviews for most of the series and I firmly believed Castlevania 4 was the best 16 bit game. Now? Not even close. Rondo of Blood is BY FAR the best game in the series from the 4th generation. Bloodlines would be second and Castlevania 4 third. Some are suggesting SCV4 should t be considered a classic anymore. I don’t know if I’d go *that* far. But my love of the game has cooled off considerably in the last 5 years or so. I just find Bloodlines so much more interesting. It’s a gorgeous game that really pushes the Genesis. And for a system not really touted for its color (total and simultaneous colors are quite a bit less than the SNES) Konami really used the available colors to great effect. I still believe Super Castlevania IV is a great game. I really do. But it’s just far too easy. I mean, it’s not like Bloodlines is all that hard, either, and I could beat Rondo with my eyes closed now. But the multidirectional whip is so overpowered that it make much of the game a cakewalk. There are lots of SNES games that I would rank over SCV4; Super Metroid, A Link to the Past, Chrono Trigger, Yoshi’s Island, Mega Man X, Earthbound, etc. But the Genesis only has one game better than Bloodlines and that’s Shinobi III.

Now that I’m thinking about the series, I should really put my thoughts on Bloodstained in the Now Playing. Or User Reviews when I’m done.

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DrLitch
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Joined: July 19th, 2017, 12:57 pm

Re: Super Castlevania IV Retrospective

Postby DrLitch » July 16th, 2019, 1:47 am

I forgot all about this thread. I replayed Bloodlines a few weeks back. Better graphics and general gameplay than SCIV but I did prefer the music and cohesion of SCIV. I guess if I had to choose it would be Bloodlines - SCIV is just too darn easy and the limitations of the SNES they could not put many enemies up on screen either. There was much more going on in Bloodlines and the action was faster. The graphics to SCIV sucked. Grainy, low res, and full of browns. The soundtrack on the other hand was amazing. The Treasury level apart, all the tunes were memorable, particularly the one that plays when you defeat the Grim Reaper and the lights flick on as you make your way to Dracula. Talking of Dracula, what a let down. Easiest end boss in gaming history. Bloodlines got more things right but it still felt like a coin-op title in some ways. Pile your quarters in there, move onto new level, sense of adventure is lacking. Saving grace is the levels were well designed and decently sized. I loved the Atlantis theme of level 2 while level 3 and 5 were a trip. Fun game with reasonable difficulty but it did not prove to be a long lived experience. From this era Rondo of Blood was the most polished Castlevania game by far. I also think I prefer the Castlevania on the Sharp home computer to Bloodlines and SCIV. It came out on the PS1 as Castlevania Chronicles. Hard as nails but somewhat satisfying. Rondo > Chronicles > Bloodlines > SCIV.

Is SCIV no longer a classic? My question is "Was it ever a classic"? I do not recollect it ever propping up lists of classics on the SNES. Sure it was mentioned favorably but it was never held in the same esteem as at least a dozen or so SNES titles.


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