In 1989 a Castlevania prequel made its way to the Game Boy in the form of Castlevania: The Adventure. Last month a remake appeared on the Wii's WiiWare service entitled Castlevania: The Adventure ReBirth. Will this remake reintroduce new gamers to an old classic?

ReBirth follows the same premise as all Castlevania games. You play a member of the Belmont family (this one is Christopher) as he goes through various levels defeating monsters and demons, finally leading up to the Count himself: Dracula. The game plays like the classic 2D scrollers of years past, with graphics revamped to look something between the SNES and the Playstation. While nostalgic-wise it keeps to its traditional core, for the price you have to pay for the game (1000 Wii Points) they could've at least tried and given it a better look.

Christopher's main weapon is the whip, which is very useful. However if you need an extra edge you can find upgrades for it. Players are also given a secondary weapon such as throwing axes, knives and crucifixes. These are especially good when you have to deal with villains that are flying too high for your whip to reach.

Controls can be tricky at times, depending on which ones you use. If you play it just with the WiiMote you will be using it like the classic NES controller. The D-Pad moves Christopher, while the 1 & 2 buttons are to jump & attack. Adding the Nunchuk to the controller changes the way the game is played. The Nunchuk is used to control Christopher, swinging the WiiMote makes use of the whip, the B-Button is jump and holding down Up on the D-Pad while swinging lets players use their secondary weapons. While this sounds all nice and organized, trying to do more than three things is next-to-impossible; which will lead your Christopher to either fall to the start of the level or die in a bloody mess.

Completing this game may take some time, and at first glance it may look like you'd have to start from the beginning if you were to stop mid-way. Not so. At the game's Start Menu hold down the right button to find the Level Select area, which will have all the levels you completed with the current level you're on. Granted there are no checkpoints to save on, but at least you won't have to start right at the beginning.

While there's a lot to like about Castlevania: The Adventure ReBirth the price of 1000 Wii Points ($10) seems a bit too much for a remake. If it was for either 500 or 800 Points then it would be a bit more reasonable. And considering that there are only six levels (two more than the original) that you can probably get through in around four hours, it doesn't seem at all like Konami put enough time and effort to make this a noteworthy re-imagining of a classic.

PROS:

  • Smooth gameplay, good for those that aren't familiar with the Castlevania franchise
  • New items and weapons not seen in original game
  • Graphics are an improvement from the Game Boy version...

CONS:

  • ...but they could've made them look like one of the better WiiWare titles
  • Controls can be complicated at times, especially when fighting monsters on a stairway
  • 1000 Wii Points is a bit too much to ask

FINAL THOUGHTS:

While a good game and all there isn't a whole lot for returning fans of the original. On top of that the controls aren't too great. However if you've never played the original Adventure game then ReBirth may be worth looking into.

FINAL GRADE: 7.3 (out of 10)

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