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Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin

4.6 out of 5 stars 92 customer reviews
Rated: Teen
Metascore: 85 / 100
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Platform: Nintendo DS
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About the Product

  • In Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin, players take on the role of Jonathan Morris and Charlotte Orlean
  • Evolving the action-adventure gameplay that has been the series' trademark for 20 years, Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin lets players switch freely between Jonathan and Charlotte.
  • The game has two different endings. Both endings involve the prevention of Dracula's resurrection, however only one actually involves the defeat of Brauner.

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Product Description

Product Description

Celebrating 20 years of vampire hunting action, the legendary Castlevania series is back with an all-new action packed adventure. Take control of two heroes, Jonathan Morris, a vampire killer and his close friend Charlotte Orlean, a girl with tremendous magical ability. Amidst the chaos of World War II, two mysterious sisters emerge, and design a plan to resurrect Dracula. Join Jonathan and Charlotte as they attempt to thwart the terrible plan to resurrect Dracula.

Amazon.com

Celebrating 20 years of vampire hunting action, the legendary Castlevania series is back with an all-new action packed adventure. Take control of two heroes, Jonathan Morris, a vampire killer and his close friend Charlotte Orlean, a girl with tremendous magical ability. Amidst the chaos of World War II, two mysterious sisters emerge, and design a plan to resurrect Dracula. Join Jonathan and Charlotte as they attempt to thwart the terrible plan to resurrect Dracula.



Fight vicious bosses as you play the character of Jonathan and Charlotte.


Choose which character you want to control on the fly.


Explore the depths of the castle.


Seek out the evil Brauner.
Game Storyline
In Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin, players take on the role of Jonathan Morris and Charlotte Orlean. During World War II, many lost souls from the global conflict were left to wander the world in search of salvation. Desperate to escape their terrible plight, they sought to resurrect Dracula's Castle from the rubble of society, assisted by two mysterious vampire sisters. Now Jonathan and Charlotte must work together to confront the two vampire sisters, and ensure that this villainous catastrophe is not unleashed on the world.

Gameplay
Evolving the action-adventure gameplay that has been the series' trademark for 20 years, Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin lets players switch freely between Jonathan and Charlotte as they proceed on their heroic mission, each with their own strengths, abilities and style of play. Players can now utilize powerful combination attacks in which both characters unleash the full extent of their combat abilities to decimate the game's more than 100 different enemies and bosses. In their quest to stop Dracula's resurrection, Jonathan and Charlotte can collect and use different weapons, equipment, and items to increase their overall skill level and acquire new abilities.

As mentioned before, players can switch freely between both characters, a necessary option to win the game. For instance, you need to analyze certain situations and carefully choose to play either Jonathan or Charlotte in order to successfully battle against the vampire army. The two characters can also combine their powers to pull-off powerful combo attacks. Their combined abilities are needed in certain parts of the castle in order to progress through the game.

The game has two different endings. Both endings involve the prevention of Dracula's resurrection, however only one actually involves the defeat of Brauner. Different choices allow for a uniquely diverse gameplay experience.

Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin supports the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection with a limited cooperative play mode feature. There is an online shop mode used through Wi-Fi as well. Players are able to put their items up for sale in a realistic marketplace. And perhaps best of all, when another player buys the item, the selling player gains the money but doesn't lose the item.


Product Information

ASIN B000GIXIPK
Release date November 22, 2006
Customer Reviews
4.6 out of 5 stars 92 customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
Best Sellers Rank #3,700 in videogames
#82 in Video Games > Nintendo DS > Games
Pricing The strikethrough price is the List Price. Savings represents a discount off the List Price.
Product Dimensions 5 x 5.2 x 0.5 inches
Media: Video Game
Domestic Shipping This item is also available for shipping to select countries outside the U.S.
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Top Customer Reviews

By T. Sparks on December 10, 2006
Format: Video Game
The Castlevania series has undergone its fair share of criticism; i.e., the Metroid-style structure has been done to death, and there simply aren't enough innovations to distinguish the games from each other. The 3D games have been particularly aligned, with poor level structure being the widest complaint.

Portrait of Ruin was Konami's answer to those complaints. While the design of the game has been restructured, the overall execution is somewhat lacking.

For example, the game's protagonists, Jonathan Morris and Charlotte Aulin, must use paintings, much in the style of Super Mario 64, to enter new worlds. Here's where part of the problem lies--there are only five distinct levels (Dracula's Castle, a city overrun with monsters, a dark forest, Egypt, and a twisted circus sideshow.) You can find restructured and more difficult versions of these levels later on in the game, but the overall lack of diversity is disappointing. Instead of offering different versions of the same levels, Konami could have delved into Castlevania's 20-year history to deliver us mountain ranges, or sleepy villages, or haunted docks, or sunken ruins . . . the list goes on, and its rather aggravating to find such a lack of effort in this title.

However, the dual-hero system works well for the game. Sadly, there aren't very many puzzles in which you must rely on your partner--yes, there is a segment in which the two characters ride motorcycles and the player must shift between the two to clear the course--but events like these are few and far between. Most often, the only reason you'll switch to Charlotte is to turn into a frog or an owl, or to cast a specific spell. You'll spend the other 90% of the time as Jonathan.

The difficulty is also somewhat skewed.
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I got this game on the recommendation of my daughter's boyfriend. I had just finished "Legend of Zelda, Phantom Hourglass" (five stars there), and was looking for another game. I enjoy this game because of the puzzles and the ease of use of the characters. It's a bit challenging for me as I'm not very experienced with these things (I'm 47). I would recommend this game, but if you're not very experienced, like myself, be prepared to spend some time on it. 'Course that's not a bad thing either.
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Format: Video Game
Well, I was actually quite pumped up to play this game, so much so that I went and pre-ordered it at EBgames and managed to get some bonus goodies along with the game. But that's another story altogether. Let's make no bones about it, Portrait of Ruin (POR) is a solid entry to the Castlevania franchise that is definitely going to live up to many fans'expectations. It's the same gaming formula that was introduced in the earlier PS2 hit, Symphony of the Night, and was reused in many of the later sequels.

And that is exactly why, while it is a good game, it doesn't succeed in becoming an excellent game. It's the same tried and true offering with minimal changes. There are a lot of reused character sprites, reused music and even reused plot developments (no real surprise there, a descendent of the Legendary Belmont clan and his partner encounter the evil of Dracula once more as his castle once again casts its menacing shadow across the land. Ho hum). Even some of the game's boss fights are reused from previous outings (I won't mention which one in case it ruins the surprise). In short, the game plays a lot like something you may have played before.

However, that is no reason for anyone to dismiss this game out of hand. The new partner system, while not being groundbreakingly innovative, is a good example of clever game design, opening up multiple choices as to how to dispatch the unholy dead. The level designs, though familiar, are wonderfully crafted and gorgeous to a 2D affecionado (or anybody, for that matter). There's solid action and RPG elements to keep any gamer happy for hours on end (I ended up playing more than 6 hours straight on my first day...even through my class lectures).
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Format: Video Game
It's a safe bet that when Konami creates a Castlevania for a handheld that it's going to be pretty good. Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin is no exception, and while it doesn't do much we haven't seen before in the series, it still manages to pack one heck of a punch. Following up the wonderful Dawn of Sorrow, Portrait of Ruin puts you in the shoes of Jonathan and Charlotte; a whip and magic wielding duo that you play as together throughout the game. This new dynamic adds some spice to the tried but true side scrolling gameplay, which is rich with a horde of weapons, items, and power-ups to find. And, since this is a Castlevania game, it's only natural that the boss battles are nothing short of fantastic and the best parts of the game. The graphics look sharp with superb animation and effects that really show off what the DS is capable of with 2-D graphics. The music and sound is superb as well, and the game offers some decent touch screen capabilities that are more substancial than the ones found in Dawn of Sorrow. If there's any cons to Portrait of Ruin, it's that the level designs don't have that personality that we've seen in previous Castlevania games like Dawn of Sorrow and the GBA titles, but that's not a huge gripe. All in all, Portrait of Ruin is another superb portable Castlevania game, and yet another must own title for the DS.
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