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Castlevania II: Simon's Quest (NES)

76
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3.6
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Written by  :  Bregalad (917)
Written on  :  Feb 21, 2006
Platform  :  NES
Rating  :  2.25 Stars2.25 Stars2.25 Stars2.25 Stars2.25 Stars

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Summary

This title doesn't deserve its good reputation at all

The Good

Simon Quest is the second game in the Castlevania series, and it is noticeable especially by the fact that is isn't similar to other Castlevania games. It plays like an unlinear adventure game rather than a single linear action game. You have to collect parts of Dracula's body in mansions, then get back to an altar to defeat him "forever", to leave Simon's curse.

Now, the good. The game has very good music and pretty good sound effects too. Also, the fact to have an unlinear Castlevania game is really exiting.

The Bad

About everything else.

Even if it slightly differs from other Castlevania games, the gameplay isn't that original. You basically travel from town to town and talk to people, and fight monsters outside of towns. Quite like any Zelda game, and this one was especially copied from Zelda II. The graphics are quite odd, very dark, everything seem black and you cannot distinct objects and backgrounds. Each piece of town, overworld area or dungeon looks just reused from another similar place with palette swapped background and palette swapped monsters. This is extremely annoying.

Additionally, you'll need to use special items during your adventure, but without using a FAQ you won't be able to make through the game, because the information that people give to you in towns is in most case useless crap (stuff like "I'd like to have a boyfriend like you") or unusable quest info that tries to get a poetic style (like "With your crystal make through the ruins") to say that you need to use some crystal in ruins, but without mentioning about which crystal, and which ruins (this is just an example).

Overall, they just re-used maps and make all dialogs with other people fit in one small window, making the game design pretty much ruined. Wait, it isn't everything.

When playing through the game, the screen will scroll too slowly making you pass through walls, but then you get screwed inside the wall. Maybe you'll dead just by pushing the down arrow button, which is supposed to make you sit and not to kill you. Maybe you'll fall when climbing stairs, but you'll still be climbing stairs making you climbing an nonexistent stair. Sometimes, while walking, your hero suddenly falls into an invisible hole and dies. When the screen scrolls and when a monster is supposed to appear in its borders, very often two or three copies of it will appear at the same place, they'll flicker and make the game slows down. When monsters walk along one border of the screen, they blink and come back inside a wall, then tries to move in the wall very quickly, making a shaking monster in a wall.

In other words, glitches in Simon Quest are as countless as stars in a moonlight sky. I think words cannot say how glitchy is the game, you cannot believe it without having played it yourself.

Finally, the game control is not fair, the gameplay is incredibly repetitive due to the fact that each place is just like another one, and all monsters and all their attacks constantly glitches, and the game slow downs a lot.

The Bottom Line

Conclusion ? This makes an incredibly over-rated game. Konami really put all the crap they could in that game. I cannot believe it is possible to input so much glitches and re-used stuff in a game, which are possibly the two worse flaws of gaming. Also, mediocre over-repetitive graphics (that actually are worse than the original Castlevania) and quests that are impossible to complete without a FAQ because you just cannot guess what you have to do doesn't bring anything good to the game.

The game could have be good if programmers wouldn't be so lazy, tough. I think the design part of the game is good, but the realization is pure crap.