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Joystiq presents

New Castlevania, awful art style confirmed


That's what comes to mind when I look at the art style for the now confirmed Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin. The title seems awfully appropriate now, what with the series' stunning gothic art heritage being ruined in the wake of something more along the lines of "Yu-Gi-Oh" and "garbage". Is this some sort of reverse Prince of Persia phenomenon, where a beloved franchise is actually lightened up in order to appeal to a broader group of gamers?

I'm sure it'll still play wonderfully, but I have trouble believing that an androgynous, saucer-eyed blondie wielding half a jump rope will be able to convey the atmosphere of melancholy that permeates the rest of the series. Poor Dracula - imagine getting bested by someone like that.

New Castlevania called Portrait of Ruin? [Update 1]

A while back, we all assumed that Konami was on the brink of announcing a brand new Castlevania adventure for the DS. It was a fairly solid assumption based on the evidence at hand, but information since then has been scarce or, worse yet, completely fake. That's why we're a little dubious about an article on Orange Lounge Radio (who?) that claims the game in question will be called Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin and will be released in November.

As great a title as that is (certainly three steps up from Waltz of Discontentedness), the article raises a few suspicions and references no sources. It states that Konami has "quietly announced a few titles" that are meant to be released this year. What an excellent strategy to employ--by quietly announcing new entries in popular franchises to a select number of obscure websites, Konami will minimize the danger of people actually finding out about these games, becoming interested and possibly purchasing them. Yeah.

I also happen to be on Konami's press release mailing list, and the spot reserved for them in my inbox is currently as empty as a cinema showing Bloodrayne. The article also mentions a DS Death Jr. game, one which has been previously rumored but never confirmed. Am I right in being cautious, or am I being overly paranoid? And how stupid will I look if this turns out to be true? (You don't have to answer that one.)

[Via 4cr]

[Update: 1up is reporting that the same list of titles and release dates were leaked (and not quietly released) to retailers. Portrait of Ruin on 15 November it is, then! Thanks Mike!]

New Castlevania DS game to be revealed soon

If a suggestively worded blurb at the back of this month's Nintendo Power magazine is to be believed, the next issue is set to unveil a brand new Castlevania game for everyone's favorite touchy-feely portable. Under the "World Exclusive" banner, the text reads:

As mysterious as a new moon, the follow-up to one of 2005's best DS titles is a whip-smart adventure that you won't want to miss.

Perhaps we just haven't been spending enough time outside, but those words instantly conjure up the loving image of an androgynous hero traipsing through a musty, upside-down castle and whipping evil bats to shreds. They also match up with Konami's previous promises that there would be another entry into the series following the spectacular Dawn of Sorrow, this time incorporating Nintendo's Wi-Fi service. Oh yes.

Though the mag's mention of a moon might imply a sequel to the GBA's Circle of the Moon, would a port of Symphony of the Night be too much to ask for? If so, how about we suggest some other appropriate titles:
  • Castlevania: Dirge of Despair
  • Castlevania: Polka of Purgatory
  • Castlevania: Elegy of Regret
  • Castlevania: Waltz of Discontentedness
  • Castlevania: Whine of Irritability
  • Castlevania: Ditty of Unhappiness
[Thanks Deep.Grave!]

Typo shame hits Castlevania

Castlevania typoThere is no clearer indication of human folly than the keyboard typo. Not content with exposing the shocking state of spelling affairs in the Mario Kart DS manual, we've now got our microscope aimed at Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow. You see, no matter what kind of game it is, a keyboard and a human being will undoubtedly be involved at some point during its creation, with the latter most frequently causing the biggest problems. In this case, somebody's fingers didn't hit their intended targets and cobbled together this on-screen sentence:

That Celia woman... Not only was she after me, shie tried to harm Mina too.

? Who? Hell? She? This makes no sense. Why is she, assuming that Shie is, in fact, a she, trying to harm dear Mina? Well, obviously the game is completely unplayable now. Thanks a lot for destroying the English language, Castlevania.

[Thanks, Daniel S!]

Metacritic's best games of 2005

Metacritic Screen Grab
Everyone's a critic, right? Well, we know you are, since you just voted Mario Kart DS as the best DS game on the planet, and the beings of Polymutania IX would be hard pressed to disagree as their planet only got Burnout Legends as an alternative. It really does suck to be them.

It is Metacritic's goal to gather the reviews from all the critics in the universe and provide a single point for you to view them and decide whether or not a game is worth your time. Using the information they've managed to gather this year, Metacritic has unleashed their list of the best video games of 2005. Here are the completely unsurprising DS winners:

Game of the Year: Mario Kart DS
Dud of the Year: Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects
Best Action Adventure: Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
Best Fighting: Jump Superstars (According to those who imported it, anyway)
Best Platformer: Kirby Canvas Curse
Best Adventure: Animal Crossing: Wild World
Best Racing / Driving: Mario Kart DS
Best Puzzle / Rhythm: Meteos
Best RPG: Mario & Luigi: Partners in Time
Best Sports (Traditional): Fifa Soccer '06
Best Sports (Alternative / Extreme): Tony Hawk's American Sk8land
Best Strategy: Advance Wars: Dual Strike
Best Simulation: Nintendogs

Agree? Disagree? Apathetic? Frightened?

[via Joystiq]

Gamespot's Best and Worst of 2005 Nominees

Charlize TheronGamespot has kicked off their Best and Worst of 2005 awards extravaganza by announcing a list of all the nominees and the awards they are eligible for. Of course, the DS wormed its way into several of the categories, only getting truly snubbed in the "Best Use of Sweat" section. Come on developers, get your act together! We want sweat!

DS Nominations:

Funniest Game -
Animal Crossing: Wild World (What? No Mario & Luigi?)
Best Multiplayer Game - Mario Kart DS (duh)
Most Innovative Game - Trauma Center: Under the Knife, Trace Memory
Flat-Out Worst Game - Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects, Peter Jackson's King Kong (note how both of these games lack realistic sweat)
Best Action Adventure Game - Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
Best Platformer - Kirby Canvas Curse, Sonic Rush
Best Adventure Game - Trace Memory, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney
Best Driving Game - Mario Kart DS
Best Puzzle/Rhythm Game - Meteos
Best Strategy Game - Advance Wars: Dual Strike
Best Nintendo DS Game - Advance Wars: Dual Strike, Animal Crossing: Wild World, Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow, Mario Kart DS, Nintendogs

There you have it. What are your predictions? Is there a DS game you feel got left out or didn't deserve a nomination?

Castlevania leads DS charge

castlvania dsGameDailyBiz reports that Castlevania DS is leading DS sales to new heights this holiday season. From the article: "The game's brisk first-month sales and solid legs seem to indicate many things, all of which are positive for Konami. It shows that the franchise has a loyal fan base that will follow the franchise to new hardware. It also seems to indicate that Castlevania awareness has deepening roots within the hardcore community."

How does Castlevania DS rank in your book?

Top 10 DS Games

According to, these are the top 10 games based on average ranking:

  1. Mario Kart DS
  2. Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
  3. Advance Wars: Duel Strike
  4. Meteos
  5. Kirby: Canvas Curse
  6. Super Mario 64 DS
  7. Nintendogs: Labrador and Friends
  8. Nintendogs: Dachshund and Friends
  9. Nintendogs: Chihuahua and Friends
  10. Sonic Rush

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