Sunday, February 24, 2013

The problem with Castlevania Judgment

If you followed my progress you might have noticed that I have taken a fair share of influence from Castlevania Judgment for the Wii. Tonight I would like to take the opportunity to talk about Castlevania Judgment itself. Mainly the biggest problem I have with the game.

You see, screw the complaints about the odd fighting engine, the characters being redesigned by artist of Death Note (which resulted in Shanoa looking like a nun and Dracula sporting udders), the good guys being bigger jerks than the forces of evil, alternate costumes just being palette swaps and the overall game not feeling overly polished. Those things didn't bother me and being given the opportunity to play as Cornell from Legacy of Darkness made up for a great deal.  No, the greatest evil in this game isn't represented by Dracula, Galamoth or the Time Reaper, but by Maria Renard.

Yes, 12-year old Maria Renard from Rondo of Blood.

Her character design (what's that supposed to be anyway? Pink BDSM loli?) and voice acting alone make me want to scratch her entire existence from the disc, but then there's her moveset. Most of the time she's just randomly flying around the screen, being lunged at her opponent by the owl in her staff. Her special attack has her falling to the ground so her owl can do all the work for her. Every hit she makes sprinkles Microsoft Clip Art all over the screen, and she NEVER SHUTS UP.

So it's a fighting game and in true fighting game fashion there's a story mode which details the motivation of why the character in question is there. We are introduced to newcomer Aeon who provides the plot device as to why people from different time periods can interact, and from there they just kind of have a go at each other until the most powerful warrior is chosen who will attempt to defeat the Time Reaper.

Now Simon Belmont takes the opportunity to test his abilities against the legendary three warriors from Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse. Shanoa just wants to get out of the Time Rift as fast as possible to continue her mission to hunt down Albus. Cornell seeks someone to help him control the werewolf form. Dracula obviously seeks revenge for his many defeats (yet because of the greater threat of Galamoth he also seems to be the most reasonable of the playable characters).

Maria Renard's story and motivation? Beating up the other Castlevania girls because they have larger breasts than her. No, really, that's her story mode. We have the most annoying 12-year old on the planet running around seeking fights with both allies and enemies because she is insecure about her body image.

I mean seriously? Who thought this was a great idea? Did we really need to ruin a beloved Castlevania character (... even more) just so we could have extreme close ups of Sypha and Carmilla's boobs?

There's a lot of Castlevania characters that I would have liked to see in this game and it didn't have a ton of features anyway, but I would have seriously preferred not to have Maria at all.  

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