Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles

Game review by
Marc Saltzman, Common Sense Media
Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles Game Poster Image
A 3-in-1 remake of classic vampire hunting games.
  • PSP
  • $29.99
  • 2007

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this game.

Positive Messages
Violence

While tame by today's standards, players use a whip to defeat monsters, some of which will leave blood before dying.

Sex

Some scantily dressed female characters.

Language

The occasional "damn" and "hell."

Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Players can drink potions to regain health.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that while the ESRB warns about violence and blood, this T-rated side-scroller's images are so small that the acts of killing enemies aren't too graphic. Players will be killing fictitious beasts including vampires, imps, skeletons, dragons, and minotaurs. They can use a whip to defeat monsters, some of which will leave blood before dying.

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What's it about?

CASTLEVANIA: THE DRACULA X CHRONICLES for the PSP is three games in one: two versions of the Japanese exclusive Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, which were originally released for the PC, and a revamped version of the celebrated Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, but with new content and re-recorded voice acting. But don't look for all three games available from the main menu: You must find special objects in the new 3-D version of Rondo of Blood to unlock the original 2-D version of the game from 1993 (but now in English) as well as the remake of Symphony of the Night.

Is it any good?

In Rondo of Blood, you play as either Richter Belmont or Maria Renard, heroic vampire hunters determined to destroy the maniacal Count Dracula. The side-scrolling game, where you move your character from the left side of the screen to the right, has you battling demons, jumping over chasms, and defeating tough "boss" characters. While the game is easy to control, the 10 stages are increasingly difficult, so expect a serious challenge.

Symphony of the Night, where you begin as Dracula's son, Alucard, improves on the Microsoft Xbox 360 and Sony PlayStation 2 versions by adding Maria as a playable character (along with Richter), redoing the script and voice acting, and fixing some technical bugs found in the original game. Fans of the Castlevania games might also be interested to know The Dracula X Chronicles features new character designs by renowned Konami artist Ayami Kojima, an optional wireless "boss mode" to be played with other PSP gamers, and the ability to mix and match music soundtracks from the various games.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about whether the killing in a game seems less intense when enemies are fictitious ones like the vampires, imps, skeletons, dragons, and minotaurs found in this game. What about in games like Manhunt 2 or the Grand Theft Auto series where the player is encouraged to kill innocent people?

Game details

  • Platforms: PSP
  • Price: $29.99
  • Available online? Available online
  • Developer: Konami
  • Release date: October 25, 2007
  • Genre: Action/Adventure
  • ESRB rating: T for Blood and Gore, Mild Suggestive Themes, Violence

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