This doesn’t mean Aria of Sorrow isn’t bursting with amazing songs– one only needs to listen to Heart of Fire to understand that– rather, it’s Aria’s way of keeping a mature, sorrowful tone throughout. Juste Belmont looks like Alucard, there’s a variation of the Inverted Castle twist, and the game was designed with the explicit purpose of capitalizing on Symphony of the Night. CotM deserves some slack for generally doing its own thing and remaining the most unique Metroidvania in the series to date, but Harmony of Dissonance plays itself too safe, ultimately just winding up a worse version of Symphony of the Night. For such an all-encompassing opening, Aria actually kicks off with little fanfare. Frankly, it’s the only tasteful way to use Alucard in a post-Symphony of the Night context. Contested Sequel: Both Aria and Dawn are well regarded, but which game is better is up for debate. @2020 Goomba Stomp - All Right Reserved. As Dawn of Sorrow is a direct sequel to Aria of Sorrow, it uses its predecessor fantastic Soul system, giving the game plenty of combat depth to fuel multiple playthroughs. The series was good, not great, and every new release was only shining a spotlight on how good Symphony of the Night was, not on how its successors were following it up. Instead of being set in Europe at some historical point, the game was set in 2035 Japan and followed a prophecy made in 1999. They’re always used as a means to either flesh out the game’s backstory, or build-up to the confrontation between Soma and Julius. Castlevania was always about the eternal struggle between Dracula and the Belmonts, so it’s only fair an ending offers a scenario where the cycle simply repeats. As if to signal a return to form, however, 2001 saw Konami release two fairly noteworthy titles: Circle of the Moon for the Game Boy Advance and Castlevania Chronicles for the PlayStation. Igarashi and Kojima would work together again on both Chronicles & Harmony of Dissonance, but Yamane’s other work kept her from Castlevania between 1997 & 2003, and none of them would work on Legends, Legacy of Darkness, or Circle of the Moon. Take your favorite fandoms with you and never miss a beat. The end product is the end result of the series living in Symphony’s shadow for years. Aria of Sorrow might not have had the same cultural impact of Symphony of the Night, but it’s exemplary of Castlevania at its best. Instead of calling attention to itself as a successor to Symphony of the Night– something the game admittedly could’ve gotten away with given its production team– Aria of Sorrow does everything it can to assert its individuality asap. Ready to address Harmony of Dissonance’s criticisms, Koji Igarashi set the stage for the game that would breathe new life into Castlevania– Aria of Sorrow. Regardless of which ending players find most appropriate, Michiru Yamane’s use of Bloody Tears in the track Epilogue makes one thing clear: Aria marks a new chapter for Castlevania. As previously mentioned, Aria of Sorrow features an ending where Soma goes full-Dracula. The Falconeer Is A passion Project That Faces... Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla is a grand open-world saga, Game & Watch: Super Mario Bros. Is Wonderful, Warner Bros. Will Bring Its Entire Lineup of Eagerly Anticipated 2021 Films to Theaters and HBO Max on Day One, ‘Tokyo Mirage Sessions #FE’ – One of the Most Refreshing RPGS, Ranking the World of Warcraft Expansions, Talk AEW Podcast: Sting and the Pros and Cons of Crossover Events. It sold more than 15,000 units in its first week in Japan and 164,000 units in the United States during the three months after its initial release. Aria goes beyond wanting to replicate the greats and instead chooses to be great in its own right. The game is the sequel to Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow and incorporates many elements from its predecessor. How is a franchise meant to follow-up a game like Symphony of the Night? Soma has an even broader selection of weapons available this time. Due to the success of Aria of Sorrow, the production of Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow, a rare sequel in the Castlevania series, was announced on January 6, 2005. Koji Igarashi went beyond parroting himself, and instead entered production prepared to take Castlevania to the next level with a tried and true team. The game serves as a sequel to Curse of the Moon after the good ending (recruit everyone and beat Nightmare mode). 8 CLASSICVANIA: Castlevania There’s no going wrong with a classic like the original Castlevania. These three characters thematically represent the main fixtures of Dracula’s life: Mina, the love that ties Dracula to humanity; Genya, the son who in spite of his father’s evil, loves him enough to ensure he can truly rest; and Julius, the final descendant of the Belmont clan and perhaps the strongest man alive. It’s morbid and cuts off right before Julius begins his fight with the dark lord, but it only makes sense. Castlevania often shuffled around its development teams, but Symphony of the Night managed to land a team that in retrospect is on-par with the likes of Chrono Trigger’s legendary development team. Aria goes beyond wanting to replicate the greats and instead chooses to be great in its own right. Symphony of the Night, Circle of the Moon, and Harmony of Dissonance all open with spectacle, but Aria of Sorrow keeps itself subdued, understanding that while Symphony’s spectacle was indeed an important part of its identity, it’s the gameplay that ultimately won audiences over. Utilizing the Metroidvania format SotN popularised, Circle of the Moon was met with near universal acclaim at release due to its difficulty curve, tight platforming, and a gameplay loop catered towards old school fans. This is all information conveyed in the opening title crawl, but less than a full minute into gameplay and audiences are already introduced to the Soul mechanic, a system that allows Soma to absorb enemy Souls in order to use their techniques. Aria of Sorrow has an almost overwhelming amount of content, but that’s exactly why it’s so accessible. While visiting the Hakuba Shrine with his friend Mina Hakuba, Soma is transported into Castlevania along with her. Following the revolutionary success of Symphony of the Night, Castlevania almost immediately fumbled as a franchise. Aria of Sorrow goes beyond wanting to replicate the greats and instead chooses to be great in its own right. Soma Cruz is the protagonist of Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow and the sequel Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow. Areas are more interconnected than usual, ensuring that fewer areas end up in dead ends, and the castle’s settings are visually grounded for the most part. And now Bloodstained clearly carries the torch. Which alone is enough to make Circle of the Moon less a Symphony sequel, and more a Castlevania stuck between the Classicvania and Metroidvania model. That said, while it’s always beneficial to keep characters who fill similar roles antithetical to one another, Graham’s personality is more layered than that. Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate, Castlevania Requiem: Symphony of the Night/Rondo of Blood, Konami Collector's Series: Castlevania & Contra, Pachislot Akumajō Dracula: Lords of Shadow, Demon Castle Dracula: Curse of Darkness -Prelude to Revenge-, Akumajō Dracula: Akuma no Chi Chi no Akumu, The Devil Castle Dracula: The Battle of Old Castle, The Legend of Satanic Castle: The Vampire Hunters, Worlds of Power 4 - Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, Fan translation by danceofgold in Castlevania Dungeon Forums (Partial Translation), Fan translation by Shiroi Koumori in Castlevania Dungeon Forums (Full Translation), https://castlevania.fandom.com/wiki/Akumajō_Dracula:_Kabuchi_no_Tsuisoukyoku?oldid=294794. To Konami’s credit, the series had regained its legitimacy between both Circle of the Moon and Harmony of Dissonance, but neither game captured Symphony’s inventiveness. Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow and it sequel Dawn of Sorrow. Fast-forwarding far into the future, Aria of Sorrow establishes Dracula’s demise, a grand battle that took place in 1999, and the last Belmont– Julius– the man who killed Dracula for good, but lost his memory in the process. Aria of Sorrow feels like the end of everything Castlevania represents. Not just that, Mina proves that Dracula could have adjusted to a normal life had mankind not killed Lisa. Play Dawn of Sorrow (just get the patch that gets rid of the magic seals, no one feels like doing this shit). If you’ve already cleared the original but can’t get enough of the castle-crawling action, creator Kseptuple offers Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow Alter. The game takes place in the year 2035 and stars Soma Cruz, a high school exchange student in Japan. Type Doubles Down on Being a Clever Doggo Adventure, Immortals Fenyx Rising Has Two Inspirations, But Both Are Pulling It Apart, Spirit of The North Will Warm Your Heart But Might Leave You…, Hyrule Warriors: Age of Calamity is a worthy companion to Breath of…, Sordid Cinema Podcast #562: Airplane! Japanese title Where Harmony of Dissonance comfortably followed a “bigger is better” mentality to its castle’s design, Aria of Sorrow shows a considerable amount of restraint. But my point is that Alucard should return to a Nintendo platform taking on a lead role. Speaking of sequels, the Castlevania series makes another appearance on our list, this time with Dawn of Sorrow.The creative sequel to Aria of Sorrow is set in the more contemporary era rather than medieval, and continues both the platforming and RPG elements that made the initial games so great and also even brought along Aria of Sorrow’s tactical soul system. The Game Boy Advance was full of fantastic sequels for classic franchises. 6. Publisher As far as navigation goes, this is the best castle in the series. No Dracula means that a new villain can rise up in the form of Graham Jones, and while he’s not that compelling, he ends up representing everything Dracula claims to despise in humanity. Normal Mode is also more forgiving than usual, with Hard Mode better designed for series veterans. It's a sequel to Aria. Their dialogue shows how deeply they care for one another, and Soma’s Dracula-related insecurities end up tainting their dynamic at the end of the game, cutting Soma off from his only source of genuine affection and love.
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