Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Mirror of Fate
I wanted Castlevania, not this garbage
If you have played any of the Castlevania games on the DS, you are in for a disappointment. The developers decided to retool the gameplay and mix in aspects of God of War and Prince of Persia. This has led to a stiff gameplay, which is not a phrase I would associate with Castlevania. Your character takes damage from falls and all combat is based around combo attacks based on a two button attack system. Much of the levels are based around precision platforming, which would not be so bad if the player controls were more forgiving. And if you are looking for memorable boss battles against towering monsters, forget it. Bosses are in short supply and tend to be reused. Another unwelcomed subtraction is the lack of enemy variety. Even the first Castlevania on the NES had a larger variety of enemies in look and behavior. Later games expanded this by varying the enemy life-bars and changing up the attack methods. In this game, every battle is a overly drawn out combo fest. If you liked Symphony of the Night, Portrait of Ruin, or even Circle of the Moon, you will not be happy with this game. My advice, wait for this Lords of Shadows nonsense to end and hope Konami will come to there senses. Or buy a copy of Monster Tale.
A segmented prelude to Lords Of Shadow 2
Mirror Of Fate's purpose is to bridge the gap between Lords Of Shadow 1 and 2. It's a segmented campaign split into 3 parts that chronicles the journeys of Simon, Trevor, and Alucard. Even though the gameplay is solid and very reminiscent of LOS for a game that takes place on a 2D plane, don't expect the same depth here as Symphony Of The Night. Each section will take roughly a few hours to beat if you collect everything, but the only difference between each character is their 2 magics and sub-weapons (they all use the same main weapon: the whip / combat cross). There's no equipment to manage, and the max level here is 18.
The graphics are nice for a 3DS game and do a superb job of creating the atmosphere of a haunted castle (the cinematic portions are performed in-engine and have a cool cel-shaded filter on them). There are a lot of climbing and puzzle portions--much like Lords Of Shadow--but there aren't that many enemy types throughout the game, unfortunately. The score fits the motif of each area; nothing too epic--mainly just ambient mood music with some spooky sounds.
If you've played through Lords Of Shadow and would like something to wet your appetite for the sequel, Mirror Of Fate will fill that void. As a stand-alone Castlevania game, though...I have to say this one is a bit disappointing. It gives you a taste of greatness, but doesn't have the substance of other "Metroidvanias" out there...nor does it truly capture the excitement of the older, arcade-style Castlevanias.
Castlevania minus the fun
First I must admit that I did not get very far into the game, but that was only because it felt like a chore to play, so I'm writing this review to save people that wasted time. Frankly, I was really stoked for another Castlevania DS/3DS game. Portrait of Ruin was my introduction into the series, and I loved it. I liked it so much that I bought Dawn of Sorrow, which was older, just to get more of what I loved about Portrait of Ruin. So then I buy this, and I'm lost. Gameplay is reduced to a hack 'n slash with some cute finishing moves a la God of War, except that it's depressingly easy. All the fun of collecting souls is gone. The story is bland and predictable, and the cinematics are pretty embarrassing. Who thought it was a good idea to have voice actors and then not animate the character's mouths? In short, this game felt like it was trying too hard to be something bigger than it was, at the cost of what made Castlevania fun for me.
Not a Castlevania that I'm used to
I've been playing Castlevania games for all my life, and this game does not live up to their legacy. It is an okay game just not a Castlevania. It would be okay if it was your first Castlevania and it is pretty fun on your first playthrough but not to much after that.
Castlevania Gone Wrong
Anyone who has played a previous Castlevania game will undoubtedly be disappointed with this release. The game is easier then any other game I can remember and the combining of old school with new school (lords of shadow) does not work in this game. The gameplay is watered down and the exploring/finds are limited at best. This is one of the worst games in the series although not a horrible game there is no reason to pick this up at it's current price point. This is a $10 dollar game no more no less.
Great Castlevania game
I am a huge fan of Castlevania. I have been playing since Circle of the Moon came out on the Gameboy Advance and have been playing all manner of Castlevania games ever since. After reading the review for this game on IGN (which gave it a horrible review and score) I was very weary of getting this game. But having played it for nearly nine hours, I am absolutely hooked and it is indeed a great game. However people should know that this game plays almost nothing like previous Castlvania games such as Symphony of the Night, but is far more similar to Lords of Shadow (it is a direct sequel to Lords of Shadow after all and made by the same game developer). If you are expecting a game similar to the way Symphony of the Night played, you will be disappointed . However if you are open to the game play of Lords of Shadow and wish to know the back story of Dracula and the Belmont clan of the Lords of Shadow universe then this game is definitely for you! The game play is awesome, the graphics are incredible and the music sets the mood and atmosphere perfectly (though the tunes are not nearly as catchy as previous Castlevania games). In short if you are a Castlevania fan who enjoyed Lords of Shadow and its new take on the Castlevania universe, then you will definitely enjoy this game as well.
I now know that I cant trust ign reviews. I was hooked the moment I put this game in. Graphics are great along with the animations. Ive been playing games for almost 30 years, Ive seen alot of bad and a lot of good this is one of the good. If you are not a fanboy and love great gaming experiences you will enjoy this game alot.
A great preface to Lords of Shadow 2
Critics and gamers alike seem to be quite divided regarding this title. This should come as no surprise seeing how the game itself is quite a mixed bag. Mirror of Fate tries to mix combat elements from LoS with exploration and RPG aspects from the metroidvania games.
Combat is implemented very well for the most part, the combos are simple yet satisfying to execute, bosses are intimidating and varied. On the negative side, combat is still littered with quick time events which many, including myself, find irritating. Difficulty is also kept at a fairly low level, even in higher difficulties. Mid-boss fight check points show this game is trying to help players get to the end credits rather than providing them with a challenge.
The aspects borrowed from the metroidvanias are less well implemented, both the leveling and exploration being shallower than I expected, with exploration in particular suffering as a result of the constant hand-holding, with the game clearly and purposefully telling you where to go. Leveling up merely results on additional combos being unlocked. This makes the leveling system shallow but I found it still provided a nice incentive to go out of your way and fight extra enemies just to get that new, stronger, flashier combo.
As for audio, the voice acting is, for the most part, good. The music, on the other hand, takes a page from LoS rather than old Castlevania games, meaning it is less music and more ambiance, it lacks the variety and subtlety of the music from Symphony of the Night or Harmony of Dissonance. Lastly, there is the game length: in brief, this is a short game, very short, you could foreseeably sit down and beat it one weekend, even if you're a completetionist looking for 100%.
Despite its flaws, this game is quite good. It is a joy to watch your whip wielding avatar launch a group enemies into the air and then proceed to tear them to pieces with a series of well executed whip and axe strikes. The story, which I feel is the central aspect of this game, is well told, although many of the plot twists are predictable and obvious watching them unwind is still enjoyable, the plot is good enough to make you want to keep playing even if you can guess what will happen next. Oh also Alucard is back, and that's always good.
A new Spin on the Classic Franchise
I admit it, at first i hated this new take on the original castlevania series.. Lords of Shadow just didn't do it for me, there wasn't enough from the original series to link the new vision together with the old.. but this game does it right.. Simon Belmont, Trevor and of course my favorite ALUCARD return in this new spin on the series and boy does it make a difference! even a few of the original monsters come back! such as the Hunchback (also known as the Flea-Man in the Iga/Ayami Kojima Castlevania's Such as SoTN) its that attention to detail that really make this game rock for the older fans of the series.. i can only hope and pray they keep the games going in THIS direction for now on! the gameplay itself is amazing also, it feels like Metroid mixed with God of War.. no longer do you have but one attack like in SoTN or Rondo of blood, you have a HUGE amount of attacks at your disposal.. i cant recommend this game enough to fans of the series, or newcomers alike! its only $40 bucks, buy it and find out for yourself how fun it is!
good, but very short.
i beat this game with everything in 10 hours... its good but very short. controls feel nice and fresh. soundtrack is absolutely amazing, story is ehhh they couldve done better there. there is no boss rush or sound test like any many of the previous castlevanias. as good as this game is i would not suggest buying it until the price drops below 20. over all there is very little content that and has no replay value