Parents' Guide to

Castlevania Advance Collection

By David Chapman, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 12+

Sink your teeth into this legacy set of horror action games.

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For nearly a decade back in the early 2000s, Konami's hit vampire hunting franchise on the Game Boy Advance dominated with three games that quickly became favorites of fans and critics alike. The Castlevania Advance Collection brings those classics, as well as a fourth game from the Super Nintendo days, to a new generation of consoles and gamers. Each of these titles plays just as good as ever in their original forms, faithfully presented in all their original, pixelated glory. This is great for purists, but it's also the one slight knock against the game. Making the leap to larger, higher resolution displays causes the titles to look every bit of their age. It's a little more jarring when informative pop-ups appear onscreen in higher definition. But overall, this is a minor gripe that's far outweighed by the other additions.

The Castlevania Advance Collection brings with it a few gameplay features that make the playing these classics much more user friendly. The Rewind option is great for those times you miscalculate a jump or are wrapped up in a particularly difficult boss fight. While you can only rewind and replay a few seconds at a time, those few seconds can make all the difference. Also, the ability to save your game on the fly is huge, taking away much of the frustration of having to backtrack to a specific save point every time you make and significant progress. While it could be argued that these features take some of the difficulty out of the experience, they're also optional features that can be ignored. But for newcomers to the franchise, these extra can keep the games form feeling more frustrating than entertaining. And ultimately, it's all about having fun and resurrecting the Castlevania legacy for an even wider range of wannabe vampire hunters.

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