ILX Plays: Castlevania (for the NES)

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i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:29 (one year ago) Permalink

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:30 (one year ago) Permalink

I don't think I ever actually played this one, this is gonna be rough...

nerd shit (Will M.), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:31 (one year ago) Permalink

it's tough! I tried replaying recently and got hung up early.

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:31 (one year ago) Permalink

i will give this a shot later this afternoon

Karl Malone, Monday, 16 November 2015 18:33 (one year ago) Permalink

<3<3<3<3

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:35 (one year ago) Permalink

music at the first boss ftw. about to join yall in a game. usually i lose all my lives in the level w the jumping fleamen.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:36 (one year ago) Permalink

oh how i hate those fuckers

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:37 (one year ago) Permalink

best to aim and kill them as soon as they touch the floor.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:38 (one year ago) Permalink

has anyone beaten it before? i haven't even come close

Karl Malone, Monday, 16 November 2015 18:38 (one year ago) Permalink

i think i beat it when i was a kid just out of sheer time and repetition but i honestly don't remember anymore

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:40 (one year ago) Permalink

i beat it once wo savestates but it took forever and was years ago. nowadays i have to use save states.

if u can hold onto the holy water u can cheese the last bosses, including the grim reaper, who is insane to fight wo it

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:41 (one year ago) Permalink

Are we skipping Zelda? I've been playing some of that lately.

I've never tried any of the NES Castlevanias. This should be interesting.

jmm, Monday, 16 November 2015 18:41 (one year ago) Permalink

i sorta arbitrarily picked castlevania; we can certainly do zelda next

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:42 (one year ago) Permalink

Dont want to ruin my current good will toward DS castlevanias by playing this much more difficult game

the grimes of claire boucher ('90s on) (Sufjan Grafton), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:43 (one year ago) Permalink

I have never beaten this without save-states. I always get frustrated by the Monster+Igor boss fight then turn it off, even if I beat them. I'll try it with only saving at continue points today.

aaaaablnnn (abanana), Monday, 16 November 2015 18:48 (one year ago) Permalink

this is fun

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 01:52 (one year ago) Permalink

never played 1, big fan of 2

brimstead, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 01:54 (one year ago) Permalink

y'all really are going to seduce me into buying a USB controller and kissing my productivity for the next few months goodbye. but not yet! this game is hard as shit and i feel satisfied with my great experience of nearly, but not quite beating it circa 2004. those who haven't played this are in for a beating, but also a treat - if nothing else the music will do a number on you.

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 02:18 (one year ago) Permalink

Castlevania NES composer Kinuyo Yamashita
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kinuyo_Yamashita

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 02:43 (one year ago) Permalink

interview w Kinuyo Yamashita
http://gamikia.com/interview-with-game-composer-kinuyo-yamashita/

Satoe Terashima composed the famous "Vampire Killer" and the other half the soundtrack
http://castlevania.wikia.com/wiki/Satoe_Terashima

more in-depth chart of who composed what
http://www.vgmpf.com/Wiki/index.php?title=Castlevania_(NES)

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 02:47 (one year ago) Permalink

both women were credited as James Banana

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 02:47 (one year ago) Permalink

Stairs are tricky in this. I keep wanting to jump onto them and then falling in a pit.

Medusa heads: it seems like the easiest thing is to go over or under and not try to kill them. The Castlevania game I remember most is Circle of the Moon, and I don't think they had the same amplitude in that.

Sometimes I can make enemies disappear at the edge of the screen if I back up a little so that they fall out of the frame.

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 03:06 (one year ago) Permalink

Gotta get those double boomerangs

calstars, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 03:17 (one year ago) Permalink

what did people decide was the best nes emulator for pc?

thwomp (thomp), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 03:26 (one year ago) Permalink

nesticle

brimstead, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 03:29 (one year ago) Permalink

I am abashed to have never realized that the Castlevania composers were both women --- "James Banana," indeed. In my high school keyboard elective I received assignment credit for basically working out "Vampire Killer" and "Wicked Child" from listening, though I was lazy with one-note left-hand parts. Love those songs.

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 03:48 (one year ago) Permalink

I'm at Frankenstein now, just past the stretch where you have to fight through a swarm of flea dudes being dropped by birds. Those guys are hard. You have to anticipate where they're about to jump.

That whole stage looks really pretty. The level of detail is great for 1986.

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 03:57 (one year ago) Permalink

Frankenstein's monster, whatever

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 03:58 (one year ago) Permalink

Frankenstein stage was my impassable stop point all through my childhood. Not that they themselves were SO tough - but it was just so unlikely that I would get there without having lost a life or two to Stage 10, with bats and stalactites knocking you backwards off the damned raft in the underground river, and then if you're down even a bit on your life bar from the skeleton dragon, Igor's fireballs will just rip you apart.

I always really loved the one 'aboveground' section in between though, crossing the ruined castle grounds... I mean, I hated the Fleamen and there's nothing to it at all in terms of level design, but I just liked the sense of epic scope it added to the game somehow. This interlude, stepping back outside for a bit.

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 04:27 (one year ago) Permalink

Rondo of Blood is when they fixed stairs. you can jump on/off at any point as long as you hold up. SOTN may have finally fixed them by taking them out altogether, except for background artwork.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 04:41 (one year ago) Permalink

lol @ nesticle, when your cursor could be a bloody cut-off hand and no one would comment on it. try bizhawk.

Did anyone find the glowy treasures by themselves, other than the merman one in stage 2? I had no idea this game had one-ups. Here's a video with them all:

aaaaablnnn (abanana), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 09:18 (one year ago) Permalink

it's right around stage 11, 12, 13 or so when i start to break controllers. So early.

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 09:26 (one year ago) Permalink

Anyone played Vampire Killer on MSX? It sounds like it has a lot of the same content as Castlevania, but closer to Metroidvania style as opposed to linear levels.

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 14:45 (one year ago) Permalink

Watching some footage of that now, it's so weird. Very recognizably Castlevania but the 10-15% that's different makes it a totally different game. Kind of baffling to really understand it. It's definitely a set of levels encountered in order, but within each level you do move back and forth between screens to get keys and stuff, it seems... more like the first Goonies game. The second board (the one ending with Medusa) wraps screens left to right which I think is supposed to indicate that you're ascending the outside edge of a circular tower - that's kinda cool. There are also what look like NPCs but the person in this youtube video isn't doing anything with them. They're also not bothering with the subweapons, but I believe they must exist, because you do collect hearts. Weird.

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 15:06 (one year ago) Permalink

tried playing Vampire Killer but got confused and gave up. one of these days i plan on it but ive been too lazy

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 16:34 (one year ago) Permalink

even moreso than with mario, the imprecision of a generic SNES USB controller really makes this near impossible to play. you've GOT to hit every whip crack and jump just so.

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 17:26 (one year ago) Permalink

The early bit with the medusa heads ... I must have died there as a kid so many times. So much suffering has occurred in this place...

polyphonic, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 18:05 (one year ago) Permalink

getting flashbacks of simon crumpling to the ground as the tips of his knuckles were brushed by those rising and falling spike-stamp things. really not that hard in the grand video game scheme of things but i seem to have died a lot in fairly indefensible ways in old games.

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 18:07 (one year ago) Permalink

The spike stamp things ... I'm not getting the timing right on them. I died on them three or four times in a row and gave up.

polyphonic, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 18:08 (one year ago) Permalink

There's a nasty part in stage 9 or 10 where you have to kill a bone pillar while also dodging medusa heads. My ways of dealing with those two enemies are not compatible.

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 18:15 (one year ago) Permalink

The second spike stamp you can duck midway. The third you just have to move as soon as it starts lifting.

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 18:19 (one year ago) Permalink

most of my stuff is still in storage which means no pc no emulator no fun

this is gonna be reel tuff when you guys get maniac mansion

LEGIT (Lamp), Tuesday, 17 November 2015 18:24 (one year ago) Permalink

I still haven't gotten past Igor and the monster. My working strategy is to focus on avoiding Igor while attacking blindly in the monster's direction when I can. Doesn't work super well.

The best way I've found to kill the skeleton dragons is to crouch and attack from as far as I can. That blocks most of their fireballs, and if you do it right you can keep them stunned in one spot. The dragon at the exit of stage 10 you can just run under.

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 22:11 (one year ago) Permalink

*stage 11, I mean

jmm, Tuesday, 17 November 2015 22:14 (one year ago) Permalink

Aha, holy water is pretty useful against Igor/monster.

Now stuck on this damn room. Is there a way to kill the armours using the whip?

jmm, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 02:11 (one year ago) Permalink

maybe the hardest room in gaming. the ultimate gauntlet. last time i made it through i was just charging again, jumping over medusa heads, whipping the armours, jumping over their axes, etc. u can kill them w the whip but it takes a few hits each.

crazy thing is there is a New Game+ and New Game++ and maybe even more modes. meaning if u beat the game the next time through will be HARDER. and the time after that. i wonder if that was a normal thing for Japanese players, to master this game and then need more of a challenge. cos just beating it normally is insane.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 02:15 (one year ago) Permalink

just now realizing medusa heads spawn there. you could possibly take out the armors and then farm the medusas for hearts and weapons.

of course if i tried that i would probably die shortly after getting up the stairs.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 02:17 (one year ago) Permalink

Ah, so armours do take damage when you attack them head on with the whip? It makes a misleading ping sound.

jmm, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 02:49 (one year ago) Permalink

Yeah iirc it's... six hits? Def does not require a special weapon.

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 05:00 (one year ago) Permalink

I think the key here is to just keep things moving forward. You should hop the Medusas, but keep the armored guy at about a whips length when hitting him (I think this gives you better odds of neutralizing the axes he throws).

Having the axe as a secondary is useful on this part; it only takes two axe hits to kill the armours if they land from above.

I made it through barely and then immediately was killed by a grim reaper.

jmm, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 18:45 (one year ago) Permalink

grim reaper is insane. hardest NES boss ever? dodging those scythes is even more difficult if u attack in mid-jump cos u just fall like a rock.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 18:53 (one year ago) Permalink

good to know about the axe! the grim reaper completely manhandles me every single time!

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 18:57 (one year ago) Permalink

IIRC it was all about the boomerang for me against the reaper, but I guess holy water is the preferred method?

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:28 (one year ago) Permalink

Holy Water stuns most bosses.

gonna give this another run in a few minutes.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:31 (one year ago) Permalink

maybe all bosses, actually.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:31 (one year ago) Permalink

this extremism thing has been going on for a long time. very true. u mostly hear the same theory over and over about what they really want and what we can do to stop them. if people really knew the former maybe they could do something about the latter.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:33 (one year ago) Permalink

oops. wrong thread. lol

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:34 (one year ago) Permalink

probably better here than the other way around

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:40 (one year ago) Permalink

This is going to take a while.

jmm, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:41 (one year ago) Permalink

omg this is such a great idea for a thread!!! I want to join in next game!!! I wish I'd started one when I just played through Super Mario 64 last month :(

Ina-Garten-Da-Vida (Stevie D(eux)), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:41 (one year ago) Permalink

there's so much I wanted to talk abt w/ other ppl

Ina-Garten-Da-Vida (Stevie D(eux)), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:41 (one year ago) Permalink

y'all really are going to seduce me into buying a USB controller

I did p extensive research on USB controllers a few yrs ago and unless much has changed, it seemed like the de facto best bet was the *wired* Xbox 360 controller. It's cheapish, the buttons are great, and most importantly it's got well-placed analog joysticks which make playing N64 games a breeze. My only gripe is that with my weird stiff fingers, it's tricky to comfortably hit the L1/R1 bumpers and the L2/R2 buttons are squishy triggers

Ina-Garten-Da-Vida (Stevie D(eux)), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:45 (one year ago) Permalink

I was thinking about buying this guy - http://videogamesnewyork.com/pc-mac-nes-usb-controller/

Sharia Law and Lambchop (The Yellow Kid), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:57 (one year ago) Permalink

damn made it to stage 10, underground, and then just lost my flow. kept getting knocked into the water. still played for 10 minutes on a single life. this game is harder than dark souls.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:58 (one year ago) Permalink

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002YVD3KM?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o06_s00

this is what i got. its like $1.99 used. feels really close to an original NES controller too. there is a stiffness and quality of build factor to those controllers that Sega and other competitors could never match.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 19:59 (one year ago) Permalink

sorry if huge. there is one going for $1.96 new!

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:00 (one year ago) Permalink

expensive, but if you have a ps4 anyway, the controller works very well with emulators.

Karl Malone, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:03 (one year ago) Permalink

i've been using the one adamvania mentioned. it's great, works like a dream

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:06 (one year ago) Permalink

I mentioned this before, but if you really want a retro controller, get the late-gen NES bone-shaped controller instead of the original square one. Feels a million times better in your hands.

http://www.amazon.com/Retro-Dogbone-Controller-Nintendo-Entertainment-System/dp/B0034ZU72E

polyphonic, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:10 (one year ago) Permalink

Whoops, that's the real one. This is the USB one:

http://www.amazon.com/Retro-Link-NES-Dogbone-Controller-Wired/dp/B00HJXQNJ8

But yes, I also recommend getting a current-gen controller instead since it has more uses.

polyphonic, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:11 (one year ago) Permalink

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:18 (one year ago) Permalink

thats my run just now

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:18 (one year ago) Permalink

I believe people prefer the Xbone controller over the XB360 one, because it has a d-pad that works.

I beat the game today. 3 sessions, only saving at continue starts. Afterwards I tried the Easy mode in the Japanese version -- it can be beaten in around 20 minutes. The best part is no push-back when you get hit.

The level that starts out in the underground swamp is brutal. Plus if you die against the Monster you pretty much need to restart the whole level because you're stuck with the dagger, which is poor against him.

The bridge with the bats is one of those NES-hard memorization exercises. Luckily the continue point is right before it. The pattern I used was: on the first bat, if he swoops at you, bad luck, just take the hit; for the bats below you, jump so that you'll land on the very edge of the current platform; for the final bat, if he swoops, you can rightwards jump over him; otherwise always be walking left.

Drac took me too many tries. I'm terrible at avoiding him when he teleports on top of Simon, and he seems programmed to do that all the time. 2nd form is comparatively easy once you figure out to stun him with the holy water -- the cross at the beginning of the stage can be used to get 2 hits when Drac first appears, but then you've got to give it up.

aaaaablnnn (abanana), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 20:21 (one year ago) Permalink

the dagger sucks. probably the word sub weapon.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 21:04 (one year ago) Permalink

bridge with bats is easier for me than bridge w birds. they have such a weird movement pattern, they hover for a bit, then swoop in an arc, and move around the screen kind of randomly. u can glitch them out i think since they spawn while idle for a second. if they are up top on a perch then they are at the right place for u to whip them at the top of a jump. u may have to hit the button at you arc up, but im not sure. timing the whipping is basically the entire game. one solid, strong mechanic vs. dozens of unique engagements

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 21:07 (one year ago) Permalink

well maybe not dozens.

http://strategywiki.org/wiki/Castlevania/Enemies

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 21:10 (one year ago) Permalink

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 21:11 (one year ago) Permalink

hey banana, any tips on beating the Grim Reaper?

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 21:15 (one year ago) Permalink

really enjoying this thread

are you guys using the save state option in your emulators? seems critical for this game

calstars, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 21:45 (one year ago) Permalink

it must be because i am not and i keep dying at the world 10-13 run!

i made a scope for my laser musket out of some (forksclovetofu), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 21:48 (one year ago) Permalink

grim reaper: I used the cross and got multipliers from the medusa heads + knights hallway. Jump and throw the crosses and don't catch them. Whip Death repeatedly when he's low enough to hit without jumping -- jumping and whipping is too slow.

aaaaablnnn (abanana), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 22:03 (one year ago) Permalink

the dagger sucks. probably the word sub weapon.

I assume Konami made the dagger weak to contrast with Capcom's Ghosts n' Goblins where the dagger is the best weapon.

aaaaablnnn (abanana), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 22:07 (one year ago) Permalink

I'm saving whenever I quit, so that I don't have to replay everything every session.

jmm, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 22:17 (one year ago) Permalink

If I were playing I'd definitely second abanana's "save state only at the continue points." Anything else is not playing Castlevania IMHO, but I'm a hardass, and also would be WAY too tempted to use it to get past hard points or whatever. This game demands that you get good at its core mechanics and if you don't it basically says fuck you.

Looked at the store today for a USB controller but they only have like, Dual Shock style ones - guess I'll be ordering something online shortly...

haha i had just typed and somehow lost a post where i had the same theory about the dagger vs. Ghosts n Goblins! Never actually played the latter enough to say for sure but I remember AVGN making a big thing out of it ("Rule #1: Get the knife. Rule # 2: Get the knife.").

Frump 'n' Dump (Doctor Casino), Wednesday, 18 November 2015 22:22 (one year ago) Permalink

The worst thing is when you lose one of the good secondary weapons because a killed enemy drops a dagger which you can't avoid picking up. I was having a really good run in the hall leading up the grim reaper when that happened.

jmm, Wednesday, 18 November 2015 23:18 (one year ago) Permalink

i beat it w save states last year, now i play a single credit each time to see how far i get can. i want to get good at this game.

AdamVania (Adam Bruneau), Thursday, 19 November 2015 00:23 (one year ago) Permalink

the stress level is really far down compared to being a kid. back then if you were playing with people, and died, you'd have to wait at least a whole turn. falling off a cliff, being killed by the Grim Reaper, basically life or death when you had to give up the controller. now it's just play, do whatever, use save states, or not, that's cool

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Thursday, 19 November 2015 03:11 (one year ago) Permalink

Fuck, so close with the Reaper. I was able to kill him, but his last two scythes didn't die along with him.

I'm going in with multiple boomerangs and firing them off before he's even appeared. After that it's chaos.

jmm, Thursday, 19 November 2015 03:38 (one year ago) Permalink

These red skeletons are interesting to me. They're not super tough enemies: they can't be killed, but they're slow. The crucial thing is where they're placed, often above or below staircases in such a way that you can't easily pop your head up to the next floor, or so that you have to race to reach the bottom of a staircase before the skeleton gets to that spot. The designers were aware of how awkward the game's stair mechanics are and built these little challenges around it.

jmm, Thursday, 19 November 2015 03:51 (one year ago) Permalink

Alright, progress! I'm now on to dying a lot in the clock tower. The fleamen have learned to climb walls.

jmm, Thursday, 19 November 2015 21:20 (one year ago) Permalink

while I love the design of this game, it's just a tad too difficult to be 'enjoyable' imo

calstars, Thursday, 19 November 2015 21:45 (one year ago) Permalink

Finished! The game's one act of mercy was to make Dracula's chamber a continue point. I was all set to be replaying the clock tower endlessly.

Once you get the hang of Drac's first form it's fairly mechanical. On the second form I used the same holy water method as abanana. I'll try it with the cross too.

This game was a blast. Definitely a new favourite.

jmm, Thursday, 19 November 2015 22:47 (one year ago) Permalink

finally beat Grim Reaper, shout out to Mikeyspike200 for describing how to beat him with holy water, getting totally crushed in the next level

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Friday, 20 November 2015 00:22 (one year ago) Permalink

er, Mikeyspikey200

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Friday, 20 November 2015 01:03 (one year ago) Permalink

I tried a single credit run just now and made it as far as the reaper. I could have beaten him too dammit.

jmm, Friday, 20 November 2015 03:35 (one year ago) Permalink

New game: ILX Plays: Mike Tyson's Punchout for the NES

Eugene Goostman (forksclovetofu), Sunday, 22 November 2015 00:27 (one year ago) Permalink

i did end up beating this but i used an unconscionable amount of saves

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Sunday, 22 November 2015 00:54 (one year ago) Permalink

three weeks pass...

playing castlevanja tonight

rap is dad (it's a boy!), Friday, 18 December 2015 00:23 (one year ago) Permalink

uncle vania

Karl Rove Knausgård (jim in glasgow), Friday, 18 December 2015 00:25 (one year ago) Permalink


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