Konami used to care about fans. For proof of this just look at the 16-bit era. Castlevania during this period was THE game to get if you were into action, adventure and hard as nails gameplay. The cool thing about this era is that every console or handheld that received a Castlevania game got an ORIGINAL Castlevania game. From the PC Engine Super CD-ROM Rondo of Blood (Japan exclusive on this format) to the Super Nintendo’s Super Castlevania IV (slight retelling of the first game) to the Sega Genesis’ Bloodlines game. They were all different. Even the port of Rondo of Blood to the Super Nintendo in North America was different enough to warrant fans purchase of it. It is sad that Konami doesn’t make games like this anymore, or at all really for that matter.
Castlevania – Bloodlines is not your “Nintendo” game. No, this is the Sega Genesis and things are going to get dark. Right off the bat, in the intro area that most Castlevania games have, you encounter a decaying, half eaten, body lying on the ground. This sets the mood quite well, even if that ball is sort of dropped later- you probably wouldn’t have noticed if I had said nothing.
Castlevania – Bloodlines constantly pushes the Sega Genesis in new ways. This is particularly true in the boss battles. Bosses here are not your normal “giant” monster that you see in other games. No, the bosses here are multi-jointed monstrosities composed of many sprites working together. This style was popularized by Treasure in their game, Gunstar Heroes on the Sega Genesis. Some say that Castlevania- Bloodlines and Contra: Hard Corps were Konami’s way of saying “we can still do that stuff without you” to Treasure’s former Konami employees.
We covered Castlevania- Bloodlines in issue #1 of our magazine, available here.
We have not seen a digital re-release of this game so head to Ebay to grab your copy of Castlevania – Bloodlines.