DGC Ep 172: Castlevania SOTN (part two)

Welcome to Dev Game Club, where we are continuing our Castlevania discussion with the beloved PlayStation classic. We talk about how the structure encourages a natural and player-led exploration as well as some deep diving into weapon mechanics, among other topics. Dev Game Club looks at classic video games and plays through them over several episodes, providing commentary.

Sections played:
Up to Olrox (in theory)

Issues covered: bosses that feel optional, getting health or heart-ups, the tightness of the Metroid structure vs the more explorative Castlevania, feeling like your order is the natural and correct one, picking your rabbit holes, looking at the map and combing over spaces you weren't able to get, being unable to figure out a room, warp points and mysteries of the game, fighting area fatigue by warping other places, avoiding wall levels/missions, hitting a rough area and returning to it, the shared lineage with the Dark Souls games, difficulty differences, the depth of gearing up your character, the depth of some weapons and surprises, analysis/paralysis, picking the obvious dumb thing, respec-ing, flexibility of approach, streamlining combat in Diablo vs this, getting so pulled in, seeing why the Metroidvania term exists, little enemy surprises, comparing play time and level, rock-paper-scissors combat in Metroid vs Castlevania, leveling/grinding for health and heart-ups, having specific constraints you know will be true of the player or not, comparing Metroid to a Rubik's Cube and Castlevania to a jigsaw puzzle, the Librarian and the training videos, grinding resources or not, not looking at the numbers, caring about your goals and not caring about XP, always hitting the candles, the inherent fun of the play, blowing your time constraints for this game, software emulation and memory mappers, cartridges and emulation, cut-away buildings, adding three-dimensional depth to a two-dimensional game, nuance in level design, an easier entry in the series due to character controllability, grounding a character's animation, reading the effing manual, callbacks in the TV show, Easter eggs, the confessional, the grave keeper, feeling a connection with a real place vs a fantasy place.

Games, people, and influences mentioned or discussed: Metroid (series), Day of the Tentacle, Dark Souls (series), X-COM, Mario and Rabbids Kingdom Battle, Diablo III, PlayStation, Steam, Nintendo Switch, Rubik's Cube, The 2nd Quest, Pokemon, Castle (book by David Macaulay), Scott Schneider, Tomb Raider, Alex Neuse, Choice Provisions, Bit.Trip (series), Gaijin Games, Warren Ellis, Bloodstained, Dragon's Dogma.

Next time:
Up until the flip

https://twitch.tv/brettdouville, @timlongojr, and @devgameclub