Castle in the Darkness is a 16-bit platform game, released last February 5, 2015, published by Nicalis, Inc and Matt Kap, the lead artist behind The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth.
At first sight from the screenshots of the game, I’ve imagined it’s another Castlevania remake, but I was wrong! This game is just full of references to other games, but the mechanics are quite different.
You are one of the knights in the royal kingdom of Alexandria. One night, an evil sorcerer and his minions attacked the kingdom, tearing down the royal guards one after another to protect the king and the princess. However, you are still alive and fallen unconscious from the battle. With your sword in hand, you set on your journey to save the princess and bring peace to the kingdom by all means.
Castle in the Darkness is like Castlevania minus bloated stats, gears, and the absence of a map. Yes, you read it right! No. Maps. Here. It does share some multiple references but I only knew Castlevania due to the CD transition area (see below)
You only have a single weapon and a single magic spell, which you can only change when you arrive at the save point. Speaking of save points, they can heal your health, save your game and change pieces of equipment. Interestingly, it frequently appears on every difficult platforming area you’ve passed through.
For me, the platforming is both annoying and challenging. I’ve died like 176 times as of this writing and it’ll still increase later. For every platforming challenge I came across, I died like 15-30 times before I can successfully reach the next save point. Just like Megaman, you’ll also die instantly on spikes – and this game is full of spikes.
Of course, dealing with bosses also takes a challenge such as battling frogs, skeletons, a big knight or even a crustacean, and while you progress in the game, you get durable armours to actually reduce damage from them. However, you have to hunt them down.
The first stages are painful enough to take it seriously, but I always scream for it and keep moving until it’s completed. Defeating a boss drops a lot of coins and a boss heart. Like Castlevania, it grants you an increase in max health, but then the increase varies as you can get a boss heart that only increases your max health by 1.
Castle in the Darkness seems to reward you with some secrets when you reach a certain number of deaths. I won’t tell the secrets so start getting the game. 😛
You can also talk to the citizens here for some lore or tips in the game. Some offer you gears to buy with gold and others will ask you to save other citizens.
Is it worth it?
For a game that costs Php 199.00 (or almost USD 4.00), it is a great game for you to play! While I don’t have any good patience, I have to train myself to be more patient. That would mean… more deaths! T_T
What do you think that should improve?
Not that much aside from a MAP! I need a map T_T but other than the map, it keeps me busy and tests my patience too hard. 😛