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Author Topic: Castlevania: Lords of Shadow  (Read 9029 times)
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« Reply #40 on: October 07, 2010, 01:06:01 AM »

Tried the demo on PS3 and I thought it looked and played great!  I think I'll have to rent this for sure.
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« Reply #41 on: October 07, 2010, 05:00:55 PM »

I watched a quicklook at GiantBomb and it looked awesome, guess I should check it out eventually  icon_lol

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« Reply #42 on: October 07, 2010, 05:50:15 PM »

Played a bit of Chapter 2 last night and I really like some of the systems they've introduced which give it an edge over God of War.  One, there is a system that rewards you for mixing up your combos and not getting hit, which results in orbs that can be used to fill up two different meters.  Those meters are for Light and Shadow and you can choose whether to suck up those orbs to fill either meter or both.  The Light meter allows you to use power so that when you hit with attacks, it fills up your health.  The Shadow meter allows you to use power so that your hits do more damage.  When hitting in either of these modes, you don't get the orbs to fill up the two meters.  So, you can basically flip in and out of light and shadow mode as needed and use strategy to determine when and if you should do so.  Definitely still enjoying the game very much, though still looking for the elusive castle.
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« Reply #43 on: October 07, 2010, 07:02:40 PM »

I absolutely suck at combat.  I can't block to save my life.  It doesn't help that there are too many enemies all closing in and wanting to attack and that some of the enemies have unblockable attacks that telegraph very quickly.

Still in Chapter 2, and I'm still balancing health and the two meters better than I feel I should be, but I dread the challenge spike.
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« Reply #44 on: October 07, 2010, 10:40:24 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on October 07, 2010, 05:50:15 PM

Played a bit of Chapter 2 last night and I really like some of the systems they've introduced which give it an edge over God of War.  One, there is a system that rewards you for mixing up your combos and not getting hit, which results in orbs that can be used to fill up two different meters.  Those meters are for Light and Shadow and you can choose whether to suck up those orbs to fill either meter or both.  The Light meter allows you to use power so that when you hit with attacks, it fills up your health.  The Shadow meter allows you to use power so that your hits do more damage.  When hitting in either of these modes, you don't get the orbs to fill up the two meters.  So, you can basically flip in and out of light and shadow mode as needed and use strategy to determine when and if you should do so.  Definitely still enjoying the game very much, though still looking for the elusive castle.

Yeah, there is a ton of meat to the combat system and makes the game feel less like an outright God of War clone than some may think.  It certainly helps to know that the game is supposedly to be insanely long because, after six hours of play, I feel like I've barely scratched the surface on combat.

I've made it to 3-1 and I'm really enjoying the game.  I love the lore/background stuff- the game feels like Lord of the Rings meets Universal Horror. 
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« Reply #45 on: October 08, 2010, 02:13:56 AM »

Dammit!!!!  My save disappeared.  Must have got corrupted or something but it's no longer on the system.  Six hours down the drain!
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« Reply #46 on: October 08, 2010, 02:16:50 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on October 08, 2010, 02:13:56 AM

Dammit!!!!  My save disappeared.  Must have got corrupted or something but it's no longer on the system.  Six hours down the drain!

Uh oh.  That's two in this thread.  Hopefully it doesn't happen to me.  Are you guys quitting midlevel or anything?  I usually only quit out at the map screen.
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« Reply #47 on: October 08, 2010, 03:24:03 AM »

Quote from: The Grue on October 08, 2010, 02:16:50 AM

Uh oh.  That's two in this thread.  Hopefully it doesn't happen to me.  Are you guys quitting midlevel or anything?  I usually only quit out at the map screen.

What happened was that I was on the second stage of a boss fight when I shut the game down using my Harmony Remote.  I think that by the time the remote sent the PS3 the command to turn off the game was in the process of autosaving and that was probably what corrupted the file.  So the lesson learned for me is to exit to the XMB before shutting the PS3 off. 
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« Reply #48 on: October 08, 2010, 03:31:08 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on October 08, 2010, 03:24:03 AM

Quote from: The Grue on October 08, 2010, 02:16:50 AM

Uh oh.  That's two in this thread.  Hopefully it doesn't happen to me.  Are you guys quitting midlevel or anything?  I usually only quit out at the map screen.

What happened was that I was on the second stage of a boss fight when I shut the game down using my Harmony Remote.  I think that by the time the remote sent the PS3 the command to turn off the game was in the process of autosaving and that was probably what corrupted the file.  So the lesson learned for me is to exit to the XMB before shutting the PS3 off. 

>_<
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« Reply #49 on: October 08, 2010, 03:33:31 AM »

Quote from: Autistic Angel on October 06, 2010, 07:42:11 PM

I tried the 360 demo for this game and the rock-solid 23 frames per second was threatening to give me headache.  Maybe it isn't a big deal on a smaller screen, but on a 52" LCD, the hitchiness really stands out.  


So I finally had the chance to try the PS3 demo, and it definitely plays better than the 360 version.  It's a subtle difference, but going through them back-to-back, the PS3 version looks smoother and feels more responsive.  Timing blocks and dodges is more natural, and the *slightly* higher framerate really comes across during the riding sequence.

I usually prefer the 360 version of any cross-platform game because of the way it handles Achievements, but barring some kind of dramatic patch, I'll definitely pick this up for my PS3.


Quote from: Kevin Grey on October 08, 2010, 03:24:03 AM

What happened was that I was on the second stage of a boss fight when I shut the game down using my Harmony Remote.  I think that by the time the remote sent the PS3 the command to turn off the game was in the process of autosaving and that was probably what corrupted the file.  So the lesson learned for me is to exit to the XMB before shutting the PS3 off.  


Yeah, some people lost their Heavy Rain progress in the same way.  I've gotten really careful about using "Exit to Title" options to back out the main menu and then shutting the system down from there.

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #50 on: October 08, 2010, 06:00:59 PM »

Dammit, I just got sick on the same day that I bring home both Castlevania and Enslaved. Typical.  icon_evil
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« Reply #51 on: October 08, 2010, 06:04:27 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on October 08, 2010, 06:00:59 PM

Dammit, I just got sick on the same day that I bring home both Castlevania and Enslaved. Typical.  icon_evil

That's the perfect scenario.  I played Dead Rising 2 all day on Monday when I was sick.
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« Reply #52 on: October 08, 2010, 06:08:59 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on October 08, 2010, 06:04:27 PM

Quote from: TiLT on October 08, 2010, 06:00:59 PM

Dammit, I just got sick on the same day that I bring home both Castlevania and Enslaved. Typical.  icon_evil

That's the perfect scenario.  I played Dead Rising 2 all day on Monday when I was sick.

1) It's Friday, and the workday is already over.
2) When I'm sick, playing games is a low priority and often makes me feel worse.
3) Castlevania requires a lot of attention to survive in.
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« Reply #53 on: October 08, 2010, 09:29:45 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on October 08, 2010, 06:04:27 PM

Quote from: TiLT on October 08, 2010, 06:00:59 PM

Dammit, I just got sick on the same day that I bring home both Castlevania and Enslaved. Typical.  icon_evil

That's the perfect scenario.  I played Dead Rising 2 all day on Monday when I was sick.

Shouldn't that be written as :

That's the perfect scenario.  I played Dead Rising 2 all day on Monday when I was "sick".  ninja
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« Reply #54 on: October 09, 2010, 02:19:23 AM »

You guys were right - Only got to play for about 45 minutes and LOVING it!
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« Reply #55 on: October 09, 2010, 09:07:42 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on October 08, 2010, 03:24:03 AM

Quote from: The Grue on October 08, 2010, 02:16:50 AM

Uh oh.  That's two in this thread.  Hopefully it doesn't happen to me.  Are you guys quitting midlevel or anything?  I usually only quit out at the map screen.

What happened was that I was on the second stage of a boss fight when I shut the game down using my Harmony Remote.  I think that by the time the remote sent the PS3 the command to turn off the game was in the process of autosaving and that was probably what corrupted the file.  So the lesson learned for me is to exit to the XMB before shutting the PS3 off. 

Well crap, this just happened to me as well. Played the game up to part 3 yesterday, looked carefully for some way to exit to the main menu (couldn't find it), then quit to the XMB and from there turned off the system. Turned the game back on today and was told my save is damaged. Goddammit, what the hell am I supposed to do to protect it then? I was overly careful yesterday and still lost it, so how do I know this won't happen again when I'm 20 hours in?
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« Reply #56 on: October 09, 2010, 11:35:42 AM »

Sounds like save corruption is an issue with this game for both the PS3 and 360 versions, though the 360 version seems to recover from it while the PS3 version just overwrites the faulty save. I'm sure this will get patched somehow, but for the time being I'm keeping backups of my saves. It sucks that the game only allows one save too. What were they thinking?
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« Reply #57 on: October 09, 2010, 01:06:13 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 11:35:42 AM

Sounds like save corruption is an issue with this game for both the PS3 and 360 versions, though the 360 version seems to recover from it while the PS3 version just overwrites the faulty save. I'm sure this will get patched somehow, but for the time being I'm keeping backups of my saves. It sucks that the game only allows one save too. What were they thinking?


Can't you just exit to the map screen by hitting Start?  I don't think it saves anything there.
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« Reply #58 on: October 09, 2010, 01:41:52 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 09:07:42 AM

Well crap, this just happened to me as well. Played the game up to part 3 yesterday, looked carefully for some way to exit to the main menu (couldn't find it), then quit to the XMB and from there turned off the system. Turned the game back on today and was told my save is damaged. Goddammit, what the hell am I supposed to do to protect it then? I was overly careful yesterday and still lost it, so how do I know this won't happen again when I'm 20 hours in?


Damn that blows away my theory that the issue was turning the system off in-game.  If it still happens after exiting to the XMB then I don't think there is anything to do protect against it.  I'll probably start backing up my save every night. 
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« Reply #59 on: October 09, 2010, 03:17:57 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on October 09, 2010, 01:06:13 PM

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 11:35:42 AM

Sounds like save corruption is an issue with this game for both the PS3 and 360 versions, though the 360 version seems to recover from it while the PS3 version just overwrites the faulty save. I'm sure this will get patched somehow, but for the time being I'm keeping backups of my saves. It sucks that the game only allows one save too. What were they thinking?


Can't you just exit to the map screen by hitting Start?  I don't think it saves anything there.

That's what I did. I both waited for a while after the last autosave before entering the menu, and in the menu I waited some more. Didn't help. It's entirely possible that the game was corrupted by random chance or some other bug in the game saving code.
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« Reply #60 on: October 09, 2010, 05:59:14 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 03:17:57 PM

Quote from: The Grue on October 09, 2010, 01:06:13 PM

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 11:35:42 AM

Sounds like save corruption is an issue with this game for both the PS3 and 360 versions, though the 360 version seems to recover from it while the PS3 version just overwrites the faulty save. I'm sure this will get patched somehow, but for the time being I'm keeping backups of my saves. It sucks that the game only allows one save too. What were they thinking?


Can't you just exit to the map screen by hitting Start?  I don't think it saves anything there.

That's what I did. I both waited for a while after the last autosave before entering the menu, and in the menu I waited some more. Didn't help. It's entirely possible that the game was corrupted by random chance or some other bug in the game saving code.

Oh wow, then that really scares me. Now I'm going to be all paranoid, though I only exit when I have ended a level, so hopefully it is some weirdness with backing out the map in the middle of a level.
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« Reply #61 on: October 09, 2010, 07:33:02 PM »

Savegame corruption aside, the game is really awesome and very long. I'm only in chapter 3, and there seems to be 12 in total. Each chapter consists of anywhere between 2 and 8 levels or so, and each level can last pretty long.

You can easily tell that a lot of love was put into this game. Every single location seems painstakingly hand crafted and beautiful, and there's little if any repetition.

It's hard for me to compare this to the God of War series since I've only played the first one, but this is much better than that one at least. The combat feels more meaningful and complex without relying on an overabundance of combos, and the game doesn't force you to fight every enemy twice like GoW did just to increase the length of the game. There's more than enough content here without such cheap gimmicks.
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« Reply #62 on: October 09, 2010, 08:09:40 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 07:33:02 PM

Savegame corruption aside, the game is really awesome and very long. I'm only in chapter 3, and there seems to be 12 in total. Each chapter consists of anywhere between 2 and 8 levels or so, and each level can last pretty long.

You can easily tell that a lot of love was put into this game. Every single location seems painstakingly hand crafted and beautiful, and there's little if any repetition.

It's hard for me to compare this to the God of War series since I've only played the first one, but this is much better than that one at least. The combat feels more meaningful and complex without relying on an overabundance of combos, and the game doesn't force you to fight every enemy twice like GoW did just to increase the length of the game. There's more than enough content here without such cheap gimmicks.


Hey, wait a second.... paranoid

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #63 on: October 09, 2010, 08:50:47 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 07:33:02 PM

the game doesn't force you to fight every enemy twice like GoW did just to increase the length of the game. There's more than enough content here without such cheap gimmicks.

I dunno, I sure have fought a ton of werewolves and wargs.  It doesn't lessen my enjoyment of the game and I have a feeling it will change once I beat Chapter 3.  One other thing I love in the game are the two giant bosses you've had to fight.  It has a Shadow of the Colossus vibe on those battles and I really love it.  The game is definitely still great.  Let's hope we get to a castle in Chapter 4.
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« Reply #64 on: October 09, 2010, 09:31:37 PM »

Quote from: The Grue on October 09, 2010, 08:50:47 PM

Quote from: TiLT on October 09, 2010, 07:33:02 PM

the game doesn't force you to fight every enemy twice like GoW did just to increase the length of the game. There's more than enough content here without such cheap gimmicks.

I dunno, I sure have fought a ton of werewolves and wargs.  It doesn't lessen my enjoyment of the game and I have a feeling it will change once I beat Chapter 3.  One other thing I love in the game are the two giant bosses you've had to fight.  It has a Shadow of the Colossus vibe on those battles and I really love it.  The game is definitely still great.  Let's hope we get to a castle in Chapter 4.

You do. I'm 5 hours in and just saw my first castle. Dunno if I actually get to visit it, but I suppose so.

There are some fights where pushover enemies will respawn for a bit, usually until you achieve some kind of objective (like defeating a bigger enemy), and there are places where a mountable creature will respawn if the previous one dies so that you'll always have a mount available, but there's nothing like GoW's way of doing things. There, any non-boss enemy would always respawn once immediately upon death. Every fight felt like it lasted twice as long as it should, and it really dragged out the game in a bad way. Castlevania isn't like that.

The game is really challenging, but it hasn't been frustrating yet. I defeated the first Lord of Shadow (without spoiling anything), and it was a really long, multi-part battle with checkpoints between each part (thank god!), and the whole concept of the fight was way cool. The cutscenes and acting are also top-notch, though I could do with a few less clichés (magic crystals? Prophecies? Really?). Still, it's Castlevania, and this is infinitely better than the stories in the old games in the series, most of which were just laughably bad.

It's hard to put the game down. There's something epic, either a breathtaking vista or a memorable cutscene, around every corner. The pacing is excellent; just as you're about to get tired of something, you're suddenly asked to do something else. Combat against regular enemies is broken up with massive boss encounters, platforming and puzzles, and sometimes a mix of these.
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« Reply #65 on: October 09, 2010, 10:19:24 PM »

Several months ago, I read that Hideo Kojima in the earlier part of the development cycle warned the developer that they were trying too hard to mimic God of War, and they would be unsuccessful if they went down that road because the comparisons would not be favorable. He also tried to get them to focus more on environmental detail.

Out of curiosity, was this advice followed, or does Castlevania play basically like a gothic God of War? I have quite a bit of respect for Hideo Kojima so I'm hoping they took his recommendations to heart, especially in terms of focusing on environments. Incidentally, his vision was something akin to God of War meets Onimusha (the old PS2 samurai games) meets Vampire Hunter D.







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« Reply #66 on: October 10, 2010, 12:49:56 AM »

Quote from: Dante Rising on October 09, 2010, 10:19:24 PM

Several months ago, I read that Hideo Kojima in the earlier part of the development cycle warned the developer that they were trying too hard to mimic God of War, and they would be unsuccessful if they went down that road because the comparisons would not be favorable. He also tried to get them to focus more on environmental detail.

Out of curiosity, was this advice followed, or does Castlevania play basically like a gothic God of War?

Initially it seems like an outright, almost shameless, copy of the GoW formula.   But as the game goes on it really develops it's own style and vibe that really sets it apart IMO.  Combat is much more focused on defense than offense and is a bit slower paced.  Combined with the different magic and focus systems plus the ability to purchase a far larger moveset than the GoW games, Castlevania's combat really starts to differentiate itself from it's peers.  

And the environmental detail is insane.  I really can't believe what they accomplished and it's even more amazing when you consider how massive the game is.  It's incredibly rare to see this degree of detail and variety in a game that still manages to be 20+ hours long.  
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« Reply #67 on: October 10, 2010, 02:17:49 AM »

I cant stress enough how much polish and effort went into this game.

The environments and levels are absolute masterpieces. The combat, like Kevin said, starts very GOW, but becomes a Ninja Gaiden-esqe system of counters and throws. The difficulty is tough, but on a very reasonable curve. Its also at least 15+ hours long...50 levels, each unique with puzzles, etc. Cinematics, voice acting and just its sheer sizzle....bravo to MercurySteam.

Beat it this morning, into Chapter VI in Paladin mode. Best game I've played this year.

9.5/10
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« Reply #68 on: October 10, 2010, 04:31:01 AM »

i finally played the 360 demo of this tonight and i have to admit that i'm pretty impressed...controls feel tight, graphics are very impressive, and the overall presentation seems to be incredibly well done.  the only thing that i really disliked in the demo is the stationary camera...really annoying when you know there's an enemy hiding off-screen but can't tell exactly where.  this may be something that is tolerable if the levels are designed well, but it could also be a major annoyance.  i loved Ninja Gaiden 2 most of the time, but one of the most frustrating aspects of that game was being killed by enemies that you couldn't see...and that was a game with a movable camera.  can anyone with the full game comment on the camera issue?  it's not really a deal-breaker if the rest of the game is really that good, but it would be nice to know going in...

as a big fan of GoW and Ninja Gaiden, i'm very tempted to pick this up right now, but i'm trying to wait on anything new until i've managed to thin out my backlog a little bit...especially considering this wasn't even on my radar until all the favorable impressions started popping up.
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« Reply #69 on: October 10, 2010, 04:45:54 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on October 10, 2010, 12:49:56 AM

Quote from: Dante Rising on October 09, 2010, 10:19:24 PM

Several months ago, I read that Hideo Kojima in the earlier part of the development cycle warned the developer that they were trying too hard to mimic God of War, and they would be unsuccessful if they went down that road because the comparisons would not be favorable. He also tried to get them to focus more on environmental detail.

Out of curiosity, was this advice followed, or does Castlevania play basically like a gothic God of War?

Initially it seems like an outright, almost shameless, copy of the GoW formula.   But as the game goes on it really develops it's own style and vibe that really sets it apart IMO.  Combat is much more focused on defense than offense and is a bit slower paced.  Combined with the different magic and focus systems plus the ability to purchase a far larger moveset than the GoW games, Castlevania's combat really starts to differentiate itself from it's peers.  

And the environmental detail is insane.  I really can't believe what they accomplished and it's even more amazing when you consider how massive the game is.  It's incredibly rare to see this degree of detail and variety in a game that still manages to be 20+ hours long.  

Good to know. I had already purchased the game, but was afraid to crack open the packaging.

Incidentally, for those of us that are are not so good at games like God of War or Ninja Gaiden, would you guys recommend starting on easy or normal? I don't want the game to be a cakewalk, but I don't want to get stuck like I did in Ninja Gaiden and Devil May Cry 3.
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« Reply #70 on: October 10, 2010, 06:06:12 AM »

I would say Normal should do you well.  I am no good at GoW or Ninja Gaiden either but Normal is manageable in Castlevania.  I have had to replay a few sections 4 or 5 times so far, but unlike other games it has not been a feat of frustration for me.  The fights are tough, but they feel winnable, so I never lose hope and give up in a fit of rage.  Actually, the only thing that is making me rage is being able to find all of the crystals but the ones that give me a bigger health bar.  I am on the 3rd level and have yet to complete even one HP medallion. 
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« Reply #71 on: October 10, 2010, 07:11:01 AM »

Quote from: Dante Rising on October 10, 2010, 04:45:54 AM

Incidentally, for those of us that are are not so good at games like God of War or Ninja Gaiden, would you guys recommend starting on easy or normal? I don't want the game to be a cakewalk, but I don't want to get stuck like I did in Ninja Gaiden and Devil May Cry 3.

I believe you can select difficulty on the fly but I haven't tried it myself.  I would say that it's a harder game than GoW but easier than Ninja Gaiden and DMC3.  I would definitely give Normal a go. 
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« Reply #72 on: October 10, 2010, 10:30:11 AM »

I just came across a boss that has appeared in several other Castlevania games. That was neat, and it was fun to fight against. smile

Spoiler for Hiden:
The crow witch. I've seen her in several other games, including Dawn of Sorrow which was my first Castlevania game.
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« Reply #73 on: October 10, 2010, 04:39:07 PM »

Quote from: TiLT on October 10, 2010, 10:30:11 AM

I just came across a boss that has appeared in several other Castlevania games. That was neat, and it was fun to fight against. smile

Spoiler for Hiden:
The crow witch. I've seen her in several other games, including Dawn of Sorrow which was my first Castlevania game.

I am at that level right now, but haven't tried it yet.  Looks like I am finally at a castle, though.  I beat that boss and I assume it is time to get my castle on.  Still loving this game a ton.  I actually like it more than God of War, which is saying something.  Plus, Gabriel doesn't shout everything when he talks. slywink
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« Reply #74 on: October 10, 2010, 05:11:13 PM »

Hey!  For your information, Kratos also snarls, grumbles, and seethes when he talks. icon_razz

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« Reply #75 on: October 10, 2010, 08:08:18 PM »

Alright, I beat the cool boss that TiLT mentioned and am moving onto chapter 5. Still no castle, but I am pretty sure that thing I see in the distance is Dracula's Castle, so should finally be getting my castle fix. The game just continues to surpass me with how cool the environments are, how beautiful the game is, and how awesome the music and sound in the game are.
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« Reply #76 on: October 10, 2010, 09:14:28 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on October 08, 2010, 02:13:56 AM

Dammit!!!!  My save disappeared.  Must have got corrupted or something but it's no longer on the system.  Six hours down the drain!

That happened to my Mass Effect 2 save! What's going on here??

I hear people saying the game is long, how long are we talking?
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« Reply #77 on: October 11, 2010, 03:37:36 AM »

Pretty sure I've heard about 15 to 20 hours... Pharaoh's post above seems to jibe with that.
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« Reply #78 on: October 11, 2010, 05:24:53 AM »

Quote from: Ridah on October 10, 2010, 09:14:28 PM

I hear people saying the game is long, how long are we talking?

I've played for 8 hours so far, and I'm less than half way through. That's not counting going back to replay levels so I can pick up those elusive hidden goodies I couldn't get the first time. Secrets are amazingly well hidden in this game. I can finish a level thinking I've seen everything it has to hide, then have the game tell me I just missed 3-4 bonus items somewhere in it.
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« Reply #79 on: October 11, 2010, 04:55:02 PM »

Up to chapter 8. For those of you afraid of the whole "where's the castle?" angle, rest assured that you'll be spending a large amount of the game in one hell of an ominous castle. smile

I've only run across one single section in the game so far that has annoyed me. It was a mini-game that you encounter about halfway through, and while it IS tactical in nature, it also contains enough luck that you can lose simply because of a bad streak of randomness. On the other hand, you can skip it at the cost of a significant amount of XP. I lucked out and beat it on my first attempt, but it was slow enough that I was really glad I didn't have to try again.

I'd love to see impressions from more people in this thread though. It feels like I'm talking to myself here at times. slywink
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