First Impressions: Is the devil in you?
Like many old school gamers I'm a huge fan of Castlevania. The original found on the 8-bit Nintendo was not your typical Super Mario Brothers-like game for the rather kid friendly NES. The game was a tough 2D action game where you fight the horrors of Count Dracula's castle. Castlevania was actually one of the first Nintendo games I know of that had to be censored. Despite the controversy, the game was a big hit for Konami and the popular series moved on to other systems like the Sega Genesis, Turbo Duo, and Playstation2 - just to name a few. Now the long running series is making its first appearance on the Xbox in the latest (and hopefully the greatest) 3D action/adventure game: Castlevania: Curse of Darkness.
The game's story takes place 3 years after the events in the classic hit Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse. In that game Trevor Belmont had killed the evil Count Dracula and saved all of Europe. Instead of playing one of these traditional Christian Belmont heroes commonly found in most of these games, this time you play as Hector: a former minion of Dracula himself (gee, another anti-hero main character, how original). Hector was one of Dracula's top Devil Forgemasters (a guy who is good at summoning demons) but he left his master to live a normal mortal life. Because Hector wasn't there when the Count got killed, one of your former friends (Devil Forgemaster Issac) blames you for his death and kills your girlfriend. An enraged Hector is ready to take on the rest of Dracula's undead army to get his revenge.
The game should be one of those very easy to pick up and play 3D action games, much like Capcom's Devil May Cry. Hector can run and double jump with ease and he uses various swords for quick melee combat. Like the last Castlevania game for the PS2 (Lament of Innocence) this game has fast paced action/adventure with a lot of good old fashion hacking and slashing, but Konami is also promising new devil catching game play and role-playing elements as well.
Hector knows it won't be easy to kill a bunch of monsters with just a sword, so he is going to be using his old powers to summon demons called Innocent Devils. Some of these unlockable demon sidekicks can be used to help you perform extra combo attacks on enemies, protect you when you get too overwhelmed, and some can help you reach areas Hector normally could not. Hector can also grow stronger the more enemies he eliminates, just like in the cult favourite: Castlevania: Symphony of the Night for the Playstation.