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Saturday, June 18, 2011

First Release

Hey, guess what?

Although it's still FAR from done, here's a very early version since it's taking so long.

Castlevania 64 Hi-Res


A bunch of textures have been shrunk to 3x instead of 4x to keep the filesize down. It's just an early version after all.

Constructive criticism appreciated!

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How to install


When using Project64, your folder should look something like this:
\Project64 1.6\Plugin\hires_texture\CASTLEVANIA

I can't help much with the optimal settings for the emulator since I haven't figured out those yet myself.

I will not supply the ROM of the game (for reasons of copyright) and I highly suggest owning a physical copy of the game before downloading it.

For more info (and plugins) please visit Emutalk

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Angry Video Game Nerd's Castlevania Marathon

And now for something completely different. Ever since the Angry Video Game Nerd did his Castlevania 64 review there seems to have been a massive growth in haters for this game, and since I'm doing this Hi-Res mod for it, I've had to deal with a couple of them. So, let's finally get it all over with, I'm going to point out all the flaws I found (some of them nitpicks, I admit) in the Nerd's review of CV64 and while I'm at it I'll tackle the other videos as well.

But let me first point out that I'm well aware that the Angry Video Game Nerd is largely a satirical character. However, a large portion of his fanbase still takes his videos at face value (as I've personally discovered). Furthermore, this video series was supposed to be a tribute (and he admitted these are mostly his genuine opinions) which makes it a bit harder to swallow than his regular reviews. By no means do I post this as a personal attack to James Rolfe though, I just think it's a little unfair that we bash every word the Irate Gamer says but somehow look the other way when the Nerd screws up.

Case in point




Part 1 - Castlevania (NES)



Castlevania
04:00 - The candles represent lost souls that are trapped in Dracula's castle. I don't care for the skits he does with the candles and whipping the wall either. Was that supposed to be funny?

05:18 - It's kinda silly to say falling backwards ruins the entire series when it gets handled pretty well after the NES era.

07:41 - They probably replenish your health because the game continues from the start in a harder setting after you beat the game.

Part 2 - Simon's Quest (NES) & Dracula's Curse (NES)


04:08 - The guy named Error in Zelda 2 has a use. Some guy later in the game asks you to talk to Error.

Other than that I don't have much to say about Part 2, so I'll just congratulate James (and probably Mike as well) on a job well done.

Part 3 - Super Castlevania (SNES), Castlevania: Dracula X (SNES), Castlevania 64


Castlevania 64
Frankly, I think this review is Irate Gamer levels of horrible. He's either lying for humorous effect or way too incompetent to even think about reviewing the game. Either way he's misrepresenting the game. Even if he basically retold the story of how he played the game when he was younger, he could have still explained how all this stuff works.

07:71 - There weren't 2 games with a similar style of gameplay. 'Castlevania' was the early release and 'Castlevania: Legacy of Darkness' was the director's cut with bug fixes, changes in level design and 2 additional characters. He doesn't even mention this.



08:35 - This isn't the first time you play as a girl. Maria Renard and Sypha Belnades came before her. Furthermore Carrie is the descendant of Sypha. Basically he's faulting the game because he didn't know about Rondo of Blood.

08:40 - It's a pretty small complaint but he has a point.

08:55 - Most people agree that the Frankenstein monster (who serves as the gardener of the hedge maze, hence the chainsaw) in this game is one of the scariest enemies in the series. Especially considering he's invincible, chases you around a maze and has 2 dogs that grab you so he can finish you off.

Skeletons on motorcycles is indeed pretty odd considering the timeline, but let's not forget Castlevania is a fantasy world and Dracula obviously has access to more advanced science (which the Nerd would have noticed if he ever got to the Tower of Science or looked around in the Castle Center).



09:10 - He claims the music sucks because there is no music while showing an area where no music plays. This is obviously a blatant lie as parts he shows later obviously have music playing in the background. The only places where there's no music are the parts where it benefits the mood.

09:35 - The camera is a problem indeed but he also doesn't even attempt to center it or use a different view. Then he goes off to randomly jump into the water without looking to demonstrate this???

09:55 - Ah, the main problem with the review. It doesn't matter if you pick the Mandragora or the Nitro first. Furthermore he has no clue how to put it down so he keeps going into the menu screens. James, you are halfway the game and we are supposed to believe you don't even ATTEMPT pressing the action button? That just doesn't make ANY sense to me. Even if you try out the menu before anything else, you just played HALF the game using the action button on absolutely everything yet somehow you forget about it here?

A couple of months ago I even made a quick video about how you do this because a lot of people were asking.


10:40 - The statues ARE giving you hints. You don't have to talk to the statues to use anything, making this entire rant pointless. The statues only reveal at what location the small statues need to be in the Observatory.

11:05 - You DON'T have to get the Nitro first, you just need to press the action button ...

11:20 - Why start the game over? Let's say you did need to restart this part. You could easily reset you N64 and reload your save. Even if that didn't work you could have easily just gotten yourself killed by something and restarted the stage.



11:30 - Just a minor thing, but he makes it look like he's picking Normal but you can tell by the 'GOLD -----' on the HUD that he's still playing Easy.

11:45 - You don't have to walk really slow and you are allowed to touch stuff. You just can't jump or get hit. Meaning he is artificially making his running sequence slower (or once again making a critical mistake that could have been solved by reading).



12:25 - Again he wants us to believe he got through half the game twice and still it doesn't occur to him to try the action button.


Part 4 - Bloodlines (Sega Mega Drive / Genesis), Symphony of the Night (PS1)


Bloodlines
1:30 - This part isn't that bad but I find it pretty odd that his mind gets blown because Castlevania considers Bram Stoker's Dracula to be part of the canon. It's both Dracula and practically every other series about Dracula considers the Bram Stoker novel to be part of the canon, so why not Castlevania?

Symphony of the Night
3:25 - Valid complaint but you don't die that often and you can skip the Game Over screen earlier than he shows. Furthermore, if it bothers him that much couldn't het just reset the console the second he dies?

5:10 - SOME RPG elements? That's a bit of an understatement, isn't it.

5:45 - (Just pointing it out, not complaining here) Lament of Innocence and Curse of Darkness for the PS2 were also Metroidvania style games, only in 3D.

5:50 - It wasn't out back then so he couldn't know about it but The Adventure Rebirth is a classic linear style Castlevania. Not to mention the remake of Rondo of Blood for the PSP.

6:10 - No excuse here, Order of Ecclesia doesn't take place in Dracula's Castle until the last third of the game. Portrait of Ruin also goes outside of the castle.

6:30 - That's not the story of Dawn of Sorrow. That's the story of Aria of Sorrow. Also, the castle technically doesn't emerge from a solar eclipse in Japan, Soma is transported to the castle because of the solar eclipse. (Also, there's no Dracula stomping around since he is dead)



In conclusion, if for some reason you want to read more about why Castlevania 64 does not suck, I recommend this guy's post:
http://screwattack.com/blogs/Sagat_Belmonts-Video-Game-and-non-VG-Bloggings/Five-reasons-Castlevania-64-is-a-great-game-Seriously

Also thanks to the guys over at TvTropes.org for linking my video. I was wondering where all the views came from.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Cast

Carrie Fernandez


Rosa


Arachne

Saturday, June 4, 2011

More screens

A couple more I already posted in my thread on emutalk. Hopefully I'll get the early beta pack up soon.


I might still replace the statue with one more similar to the original Sphinx one.


The starry sky might be a bit overkill if you look at the mechanism projecting them, but I wanted to make it look as beautiful as possible. Also, I imagine Dracula's scientific knowledge exceeds that of the time (skeletons on motorcycles, anyone?).



I specifically labeled the Hazardous Material Disposal as such because so many people don't seem to understand what it does. I think we can partially blame the Angry Video Game Nerd for that.



I'm taking a huge creative license on the Underground Waterway Level. I think the original one is just putrid. I'm basing the new one on the looks and feel of the Crystal Cavern stage from Castlevania Judgment.



Tiled the floor in a checkerboard texture to give it more of an unreal Alice in Wonderland sort of feel, seeing as this is the official entrance to Dracula's castle.