The Let's Play Archive

Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin

by kloudtana

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Original Thread: Grinding for Souls and Profit: Let's Play the DS Castlevania Trilogy!



Grinding for Souls and Profit: Let's Play the DS Castlevania Trilogy!

I love the Castlevania series. It's consistently been one of my favorite video game IPs for pretty much ever. The trio of "Castletroid" (or Metroidvania) games released throughout the DS' lifespan are some of my favorites from the series. The games get a bad rap from some because of the grind-y nature of the games and the departure in difficulty from the series' roots. I personally find them hella fun despite any well-articulated arguments to the contrary. Joining me for commentary will be my friends Gubbin from the forums, and Bryce, who doesn't have an account. We'll be trading off people occasionally as well.

Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin is a DS Metroidvania game that loves the hell out of Rondo of Blood. Seriously, every enemy from that game returns in this one. It is considerably harder than Dawn of Sorrow, but there's no seals . PoR does away with the grinding for souls as well, but replaces it with something more... sinister. Two Sinister Things in fact.

You can freely switch between the two main characters (Jonathan and Charlotte), but the game seems to want to center more around the weapon and item user, Jonathan. Charlotte slings around powerful spells, though, so she is by no means useless. Most items and weapons for Jonathan are found as random drops from enemies, and the items (used by pressing up+attack) have to kill the enemy in order to obtain Skill Points (SP). Only the final hit from at item hitting the enemy with the item at some point will allow it to obtain the SP, and eventually the item will be "mastered" and become much more powerful. This is Sinister Thing number one.

This game also introduces the concept of quests. These are basically MMO quests (IE go out and kill ten skeletons) and mostly suck dingus and I hate them. Kind of. They artificially extend gameplay as some of them take forever. Some of them are even able to not be completed on your first playthrough if you're not careful. This is Sinister Thing number two. To top things off, these Sinister Things intertwine. More than once.

That said, this is still a good game with a lot of neat ideas and cool areas. I still really like the game, even though I consider it the weakest of the three.

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