The Best and Worst

Hello and welcome to a night of celebration. A night where I--Mr. P, the creator and author of this "Castlevania Realm"--am going to honor this marvelous franchise of games by giving it the accolades it deserves. Castlevania is a series that began in 1986, and maybe even years before in its inspiration, and it's been a staple of video games ever since. Over the course of its twenty-game-plus history, it's had its ultimate highs, like its stunning debut on the SNES with Super Castlevania IV; its grand achievements, like Castlevania: Symphony of the Night; and its major disappointments, like its ill-fated venture into the realm of 3D with Castlevania 64. But it still goes strong today because it has on its side those intangibles that will always keep it elevated to the forefront: A name that conjures up feelings of unmatched classics, a story that is as old as mankind yet still amazingly intriguing, and a universe of characters that is strong enough and plentiful enough to last forever. So let's not wait any longer--let's start handing out those awards. (Note: The awards are for games Castlevania - Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia. Eligibility for any future title is one year after its release, whence these awards will be reconsidered.)

But first, ladies and gentleman, let's welcome our host for the evening: Straight from the Castlevania Library, it's the baron of books, the dean of decimal systems, the sultan of shelf, and that fountain of endless knowledge--please show your love for the Master Librarian!

"Thank you! Yes! Thank you very much, ladies and gentleman! And thank you, Mr. P! And now--hrrrrm. 'Mr. P,' huh? What kind of name is that, anyway? What, were you some kind of star plumber or something? Give a guy a website and yeesh.

Anyway: Welcome to a night like no other, a once-in-a-lifetime gathering of all the stars from Castlevania for the ultimate of spectacles--the 'The Mr. P Castlevania Awards'! How it works is real simple: We've selected eighteen categories from which to judge the twenty different titles and their ports/updates: The best and worst Enemy Selection, Story, Stage Design, Controls, Challenge, Sound, Graphics and Gameplay. Each category will play host to five nominees as voted upon by our panel of judges, but only one can win.

Furthermore, at the end of the respective halves, we're going to list for you what we consider to be both the series' best and worst games, in no specific quantity, and tell you what soaks in the the sparkling brilliance of fame and what should be bludgeoned with the oversized hammer of shame! Now, if we may, folks, let's get this shindig underway by welcoming our first guest speaker for the evening. And who better to present the very first award than the one who started it all--our good friend Leon Belmont!"

"I'll destroy YOU aaaaand the night!"                           

          "Stop that."


"I don't know why I have to put up with this. Why couldn't they get Hammer to do this thing? I appear in one game and you'd think I was Samuel L. Jackson. 'It's only a small role,' they said. Right. Yeah--some role: 'Oh, here's an ... enemy list. And you ... hold it!' Brilliant. Maybe I can jump through hoops in the next game? Rubbish, I say.

So, uh..."

"So what?"                                                  

           "I'm not getting any younger over here, He-Man."

"All right! I'm ready, I'm ready! Jeez.

Hello, ladies and gentleman, I'm Leon, the first Belmont of legend ... I think ... and I'm here to present the first award of the evening, which is ironic since it's kind of my fault that we're all here! Yah-hahhh... yeah. And, uh, since I'm not one for misplaced melodrama during the course of overly long conversational pieces (not another word out of you), let's get to it!

One of the fun parts of playing a 'Castlevania' game is getting to know its large cast of characters. And you know that I'm talking about its enemies, mainly. The artists over at Konami have always had the pulse of the mythological world, and they've combined that knowledge and amalgamated it with the popular genre of classic horror films to create a cast as durable, as creative and as recognizable as any in video games. You know their troupe as the 'minor enemies' and 'bosses' that populate Dracula's castle and its intimidating surroundings. 'But which game had the best assortment of foes?' you ask. Well, here are the nominees, in alphabetical order:

  • Akumajou Dracula X68000: For its very detailed, sharp- and mean-looking cast of fast and furious yet clever enemies and bosses.
  • Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow: For the many mythological creatures whose weapons and attacks you can steal and use as your own.
  • Castlevania: Symphony of the Night: For its very large selection of fantastic-looking, smoothly animated monsters, old and new alike.
  • Dracula X: Rondo of Blood: For supplying the fun and inventive template from which future games will continue to borrow.
  • Super Castlevania IV: While not as large as the others', this selection proved that it's what you do with the enemies and when you do it.

And here's the envelope.

Just pretend, all right?

I see. Very interesting. What's that? You'd like to know? Well, then, simply click the link below to find out which game is the big winner."

Page 2: The Award for Best Enemy Selection