Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate -- In Your Face Vampire WhippingBy Rob Manuel - Posted Jun 05, 2012
Return now to the world of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow as we find out how the other half live in the new 3DS game, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate.
For those of you not familiar with the Lords of Shadow relaunch of the Castlevania franchise, the previous console title took us down the dark and winding path of Dracula. The 3DS game introduces the second piece of the puzzle with the start of our protagonist clan, the Belmonts.
Every vampire killer clan needs to start somewhere. We start this tale with the sudden death of a mother and a mysterious castle where the father hides from the prying eyes of his two sons. Yes, Mirror of Fate gives us two of the most renowned of the Belmont boys, Trevor and Simon, as they charge headlong into their father’s castle, looking for revenge, but only finding danger around every corner.
In my hands-on session with the game, I got to take Trevor on his quest for revenge and his search for the front door of the castle. Equipped with a combat cross, Mirror of Fate presents similar combat options to that of the console game even though it’s only in 2D. Trevor moved quickly even to dodge or block any sword-wielding skeleton that got in his way. Blocking at just the right time staggered the enemy and allowed me to get in a couple of quick shots.
A stunned enemy also lets me get in a quick kill after grabbing them. Seeing the camera actually move into the world and show off the 3D environment for a bash to the head turns out to be quite impressive--especially when that image is coming to you in full 3D. The game often taps into the power of the 3DS through imp flinging cut scenes or the occasional area within the background revealing a few secrets.
From the very beginning, I got used to whipping around hooks and working my way up the scaffolding of a building. As I moved my way around, I found that certain sections remain close to me without the right magic. As with the previous title, Trevor brings the same light and dark magic mechanics as Lords of Shadow. Peaking at the map at the bottom screen, multiple pathways seemed to jut out in all like another title dear to Castlevania fans, Symphony of the Night.
Even though I didn’t to play with him, developers say that Simon will play slightly different than his brother. Instead of the combat cross, he gets to wield the whip that everyone remember as well as carry different items such as burning oil. In addition, Simon will take on spirits and elementals over the magic that his brother weaves.
Even though Konami seems to be taking Castlevania in a new direction, thanks to the success of Lords of Shadow, seeing the blend of the traditional 2D exploration with the new combat system seems to be the right blend of both brains and brawn for the series. What lays head for those Belmont boys is anyone’s guess, but hopefully we’ll get to see more of them with the release of Mirror of Fate on the 3DS later this year.