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PAX Prime 2012: Castlevania: Mirror of Fate Hands-On

Castlevania, Castlevania: Mirror of Fate, 3DS, DS, Castlevania Portrait of Ruin, Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow, Castlevania Order of Ecclesia, PAX Prime 2012, PAX Prime, PAX,

It’s been too long, TOO LONG, since we’ve seen a traditional side-scrolling Castlevania. Konami has finally reconciled that fact by creating Castlevania: Mirror of Fate which will yet again tell the tale of the Belmont clan and thrust another family member (Trevor Belmont) into Dracula’s lair. Sporting a pseudo-3D look with depth in the background, and action in the foreground, Mirror of Fate is looking to deliver that 2D style, with a new dimension. Ask anyone who owns a Nintendo DS and 3DS and let them implore to you why the Castlevania DS titles are 3 of the best games available not only on that system, but of all time! Konami were one of the few teams and companies that saw the prospects of the dual screen design and capitalized on it. Dawn of Sorrow, Portrait of Ruin, and Order of Ecclesia broke new ground for the Castlevania series, but unfortunately we haven’t seen much from the 2D Castlevania series for years.

Castlevania, Castlevania: Mirror of Fate, 3DS, DS, Castlevania Portrait of Ruin, Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow, Castlevania Order of Ecclesia, PAX Prime 2012, PAX Prime, PAX,

This big ol’ guy is simply a mini-boss, but he’s a hell of a customer!

Mirror of Fate aims to help the 3DS reach the same level as its predecessors and other games in the series, but quite frankly, they’ll need to get the whip cracking if they aim to do so! My brief playtime with Mirror of Fate raised more eyebrows than excitement for me. Too many times my actions felt unresponsive and lacked the weight and impact I’ve come to expect from Castlevania. There was very little fluidity to my moves, and trying to navigate the corridors, I occasionally felt off.
It was not the Castlevania I was expecting or am wanting…

Castlevania, Castlevania: Mirror of Fate, 3DS, DS, Castlevania Portrait of Ruin, Castlevania Dawn of Sorrow, Castlevania Order of Ecclesia, PAX Prime 2012, PAX Prime, PAX,

This kind looking gent is the big daddy of this area!

Mirror of Fate might be a new direction for the series; possibly it’s what Konami are prepping the series to become, but if so, they’ll be hard pressed to get me on board.
I miss the old 2D sprites from the DS titles and although the sprites are more detailed and more dynamic, the cost it seems to put on the engine just doesn’t seem worth it. Not to mention, turning on the 3D with the 3DS; it practically brings the game to a slower pace than I even thought possible. I’m definitely in the camp of “I don’t need/want 3D in my games” and usually switch it off as soon as I can. Mirror of Fate even includes those incredibly irritating “80’s 3D moments” where they literally throw stuff at the screen! I can’t share the look my face had upon seeing this happening, but it wasn’t a pleasant one, I’m sure of it!

With Mirror of Fate setting out to hit 3DS come next year (still simply 2013) and so much work already complete, I doubt most of my complaints will be addressed. While that is indeed a bummer, I’m still willing to check it out, but I hope vampire killer doesn’t suck upon release.

  • smikey1123

    This isn’t the first time I have heard these complaints about the game. They started around E3 and haven’t changed since. Unfortunately it looks like this may end up being the final product, and if so this will be a disappointing entry into the series.

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