Castlevania: Harmony of Despair XBox 360 Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Gameplay 7.0
Graphics 6.0
Sound 8.0
Value 7.1
Distributor: XBox Live
Classification:
PG
Review Date:
August 2010
Reviewer:
Kyle Sudukis

7.1


Castlevania: Harmony of Despair

The classic console game, Castlevania arrives on XBox Live with Castlevania: Harmony of Despair and unlike the original game, this title supports co-operative play with up to six players, which is pretty damn impressive. If youíve played this game on either the DS or the PlayStation, than coming back to this universe is like coming home again and although this title shares many of the same elements, there are enough changes to keep this title fresh and entertaining to play. Add in 6-levels of fun (I lied) bone crunching frustrating levels and Castlevania: Harmony of Despair is considerably longer due to its difficulty than other XBox Live titles. Just be warned, the gameplay can be quite unforgiving in this 2D action adventure game but hey... Castlevania has its fans and this is what the developers were counting on.

Before embarking on your Castlevania experience, you need to select a character to play and each of these characters have been taken from previous instalments such as Soma Cruz from Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow or Charlotte Aulin from Castlevania: Bloodlines. Thankfully the characters are not just added for their looks and each has their own strengths and weaknesses, including whether their attacks are based on magic or melee attacks. As the characters are so different, this works well in multiplayer because they balance each other out quite well as you explore this strange world.

The game is not just a sword and sorcery slasher but there is an element of RPG to the game and by finding or purchasing weapons, this will increase your statistics. Apart from fighting enemies, discovering chests and attempting to get through the almost labyrinth like level, another problem for the player is the counter and you have a set number of minutes to finish the level which can make things quite difficult. If you do happen to fall in battle, you can either be revived by another player or come back as a skeleton with basic melee attacks until the next level. Accessing items and equipment is a little clunky though which does hamper the gameplay a little, especially if you're getting attacked as there is no real way to pause the game nor the counter.

Needless to say, once you have played the game a few times, you will know where the bosses are located which does increase the enjoyment factor of the game, especially with other players as you attempt to beat that accursed clock. Just be warned that some bosses do come looking for you. The control system on the XBox 360 is well mapped on the controller, however it doesnít feel as sturdy as similar modern games from this genre but overall, it works but it may take a few people to get use to this. You can't beat the original controls though! Apart from the main co-operative mode, there is also a survival mode which pits you against other players which is okay but is not as enjoyable as the main mode.

Graphically, itís obvious that this current instalment of Castlevania has been ported from another version but overall, it still looks quite acceptable on the XBox 360, although a little too LEGO or blocky at times. The characters are detailed well but the backgrounds are a little lacklustre. Music on the other hand is awesome with rock Goth as are the various sound effects as you explore these castles. In terms of the entire presentation, it is a little pricey for an Xbox Live game.

In conclusion, Castlevania: Harmony of Despair is definitely a game aimed at Castlevania fans and if you are new to the franchise, you might be scratching your head on what on Earth is happening because it does require prior knowledge of the series. Even though the game is excruciating frustrating and difficult at times, when linked with other players, the game really shines, especially if you have a full assorted of gamers to play. With some tweaking of the gameplay, controls and graphics, this could have been better!






 
 



   Games
   PlayStation 4
   XBox One
   PlayStation 3
   XBox 360
   PC
   PS Vita
   Wii U
   Wii
   3DS
   DS
   PSP
   Apple
   Casual
   Android
   Classics

  Movies
   Movies & IMAX
   Blu-ray
   Action
   Anime
   Comedy
   Crime & Thrillers
   Documentaries
   Drama
   Family
   Horror
   Kids
   Lifestyle
   Music
   Romance
   Sci-fi
   Sport

   IT
   PC
   Apple
   Hardware

   Information & Fun
   News
   Interviews
   Articles

   Tara's G-Spot
   Loren's Level
   Comics
   Books
   Mind & Body
   Music
   Competitions
   Community
 








 
 




Impulse Gamer is your source for the
latest Reviews and News on Video Games,
Entertainment, Pop Culture, Hardware &
More!

 


© 2001 - 2014 Impulse Gamer
 

 

About Us | Contact Us