Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin
By Andrew Raub Wednesday, 17 Jan 2007

Time to brush up the review skills.

Let me just start off by saying that this is, without a doubt, the best Castlevania since Symphony of the Night. Now let me explain why (hopefully without revealing too much).

At first, Portrait of Ruin seems just like all the other Symphony style games, and in reality it pretty much is. But, it has some nice new twists that keep things fresh. The portrait system is a great new way of breaking up the standard castle layout. Dracula’s castle this time around isn’t as big as in the past, but there are 8 portraits to explore so the game as a whole is just as big, if not bigger, than in the past. These portraits range from a pyramid to a school, and offer styles that would seem out of place in the past games. The portraits are much closer to linear level design not seen since before Symphony of the Night. This is a real treat and surprisingly refreshing.

Item collecting and detailed searching is emphasized much less this time around. Certain items are still required to progress to different areas, but to get 1000% or to find all of the items takes much less backtracking through the castle walls. In fact, the vasy majority of the castle’s layout is area’s with gameplay substance. Some areas can become overwhelming at first because there are so many enemies around, but these areas also become very important towards the end of the game.

Of all the item collecting that there is to do, most of it is in relation to the new quest system. There is a character that offers various quests to complete, and the rewards are quite nice. Some of them are very vague and it can become frustrating at times figuring out what to do, but overall it is a great addition and well worth completing.

How could I get this far without introducing the biggest addition? Portrait of Ruin revolves around two main characters: Jonathan and Charlotte. Jonathan is the weapon-wielding, physical powerhouse of the team, while Charlotte is the magic user. Both have their strengths and weaknesses, but eventually either one can hold their own. It is not required to just pick one at a time however. You can call out your team mate to perform their equipped sub-attack, or you can pull them out permanently to fight right alongside you. When the second character takes damage, the magic meter depletes rather than the HP meter. This makes for some good strategy planning. Luckily the A.I. targeting is good, and the partner will go after enemies that you currently aren’t.

The best improvement in Portrait of Ruin, in my opinion, is the weapon balancing. In Dawn of Sorrow, it seemed like there was often no incentive to use anything but the most powerful weapons. Maybe I was just too lazy to try anything else, but it seemed like the claymores and axes were the obvious best choice. But in Portrait of Ruin I found myself switching between large swords, fist weapons, whips, and short swords. Almost every weapon in the game offers some cool reason to try it out, weather it just looks cool, is more powerful, has a nice ability attached, or is faster. I don’t want to say too much, but the whip makes a huge comeback in Portrait of Ruin, and for me it is a very welcome one.

What else does the game offer besides a solid single player mode? Well, as can probably be expected, there are a few endings and some unlockable characters. The unlockable characters are very fun to play as, and offer new experiences to the game. There is also a hard mode and a level cap that can be applied, with bonuses for beating them. The Boss Rush returns with multiplayer additions. While it won’t be the next big online multiplayer game, it is fun. You can also set up a store and either sell goods or shop for goods online. Trust me when I say that this will be your best friend after you unknowingly sell something that you shouldn’t have.

Graphically, Portrait of Ruin improves on the already fantastic Dawn of Sorrow. There are some excellent 3D and 2D backgrounds and detailed and large enemies. The game also features yet another solid soundtrack, perhaps the best since Symphony of the Night.

There you have it. Portrait of Ruin is a fantastic game. I don’t understand how Konami does it, but these Metroid ripoffs keep getting better and better.


6,832 Responses to “Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin”

  1. escort Says:

    Superb website…

    […]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I love but don’t get a lot of link love from[…]……

  2. escort Says:

    Websites you should visit…

    […]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[…]……

  3. escort Says:

    Recommeneded websites…

    […]Here are some of the sites we recommend for our visitors[…]……

  4. san antonio bail bonds Says:

    Check this out…

    […] that is the end of this article. Here you’ll find some sites that we think you’ll appreciate, just click the links over[…]……

  5. san antonio bail bonds Says:

    Awesome website…

    […]the time to read or visit the content or sites we have linked to below the[…]……

  6. san antonio bail bonds Says:

    Online Article……

    […]The information mentioned in the article are some of the best available […]……

  7. san antonio bail bonds Says:

    Websites we think you should visit…

    […]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[…]……

  8. Bad service Says:

    Websites you should visit…

    […]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[…]……

  9. Bad service Says:

    Gems form the internet…

    […]very few websites that happen to be detailed below, from our point of view are undoubtedly well worth checking out[…]……

  10. Bad service Says:

    Sources…

    […]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[…]……

  11. Bad service Says:

    Recommeneded websites…

    […]Here are some of the sites we recommend for our visitors[…]……

  12. london tantric Says:

    Websites worth visiting…

    […]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[…]……

  13. london tantric Says:

    Cool sites…

    […]we came across a cool site that you might enjoy. Take a look if you want[…]……

  14. london tantric Says:

    Links…

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]……

  15. london tantric Says:

    Superb website…

    […]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I love but don’t get a lot of link love from[…]……

  16. london tantric Says:

    Great website…

    […]we like to honor many other internet sites on the web, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some webpages worth checking out[…]……

  17. london tantric Says:

    Read was interesting, stay in touch……

    […]please visit the sites we follow, including this one, as it represents our picks from the web[…]……

  18. break fix Says:

    Links…

    […]Sites of interest we have a link to[…]……

  19. break fix Says:

    Great website…

    […]we like to honor many other internet sites on the web, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some webpages worth checking out[…]……

  20. kalici makyaj Says:

    Read was interesting, stay in touch……

    […]please visit the sites we follow, including this one, as it represents our picks from the web[…]……

  21. gambling Says:

    Great website…

    […]we like to honor many other internet sites on the web, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some webpages worth checking out[…]……

  22. boiler maintenance brussels cheap Says:

    Websites you should visit…

    […]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[…]……

  23. valiant boiler troubleshooting Says:

    Superb website…

    […]always a big fan of linking to bloggers that I love but don’t get a lot of link love from[…]……

  24. recupero dati Says:

    Websites you should visit…

    […]below you’ll find the link to some sites that we think you should visit[…]……

  25. recupero dati Says:

    Awesome website…

    […]the time to read or visit the content or sites we have linked to below the[…]……

  26. techos de aluminio Says:

    Websites we think you should visit…

    […]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[…]……

  27. binary options trading Says:

    Great website…

    […]we like to honor many other internet sites on the web, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some webpages worth checking out[…]……

  28. online fut game Says:

    like…

    Hi it�s me!!,This is my Excerpt, I am also visiting this website daily Write more, thats say.!…. I thought my life was well over. Good Nie.,, Literally,,…

  29. cool games Says:

    best…..

    Hi it�s me!!,This is my Excerpt, I am also visiting this website daily Write more, thats say.!…. I thought my life was well over. Good Nie.,, Literally,,…

  30. online games Says:

    nice…..

    Greating site I follow all the time.! I found Thank you broo But,.This is my Excerp…, what about the conclusion?…

  31. boohoo voucher Says:

    Sites we Like……

    […] Every once in a while we choose blogs that we read. Listed below are the latest sites that we choose […]……

  32. debenhams voucher Says:

    Visitor recommendations…

    […]one of our visitors recently recommended the following website[…]……

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.