The Dracula saga from Mercury Steam bares resemblance to a couple of iconic games that have nothing to do with vampires and everything to do with being great.
Konami’s Castlevania Lords of Shadow 2 has a little over a month before it graces the previous generation of consoles. The franchise is far from done, but the Lords of Shadow arc will culminate come February. How the dark lord’s tale ends is a secret Konami refuses to share and rightfully so.
What the publisher has divulged are some of the key game elements that will guide fans to Drac’s climactic finale. And if there are games one can use for comparison's sake, then Batman: Arkham Asylum and The Legend of Zelda are it.
“It’s more, I guess, like Batman: Arkham Asylum,” game producer David Cox told us during a roundtable Q&A with press.“Not like Arkham City where you’re plopped into the middle of the city and have to kind of explore and do stuff. It’s more like we lead you on a path and that path gets bigger and bigger and bigger.”
When Cox thought about it more, Nintendo’s other big franchise, LOZ, came to mind, more so than the Metroid adventures; a series often compared to Castlevania, even earning the nickname, Metroid-vania over the years.
“I guess it’s more like a Zelda game,” Cox noted. “You know, Zelda you start off in the village and you kind of, as go away, you do more dungeons and the work becomes bigger and bigger and then you find yourself doing things in the world that you weren’t doing before.”
That's not to say there isn’t a bit of Metroid-like elements involved, but according to Cox, it wasn’t a purposeful design choice.
“You do revisit previous areas that you’ve been to before; so that backtracking, Metroid-style, I guess, is there, but it’s not deliberate on our part to make it like that,” Cox clarified.
Either way, based not only on the extended demo we played, but through the evolved narrative and combat, Castlevania is very much its own game, with its own personality. The similarities between M, LOZ and BAA are diminutive in scale, but the ingredients they share, for the most part, have cooked up successful recipes. And there’s nothing wrong with sharing the love.
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow 2 is slated to release on PlayStation 3, Xbox 360 and PC on February 25, 2014.