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Mercury Steam Talks Up 3DS for Castlevania: Mirror of Fate

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Would like to work on Contra

One of the third-party titles that caught the eye ahead of and during E3 was Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate on 3DS, with a trailer boasting impressive graphics and the prospect of 2.5D monster-whipping action. The developer, Mercury Steam, has already suggested that it'll combine a focus of action with exploration, with fans no doubt hoping that it'll live up to the legacy of the six Castlevania titles on Game Boy Advance and DS.

In a recent interview with Gamespot, Konami's David Cox and Mercury Steam's Enric Alvarez discussed the title and their desire to satisfy fans of the franchise. They also talked up the system's capabilities, stressing that it's allowed them to produce a game they're proud of that incorporates many of the handheld's functions.

DC: There will be StreetPassing and other clever uses of the hardware, but at the moment we can't talk about that. In terms of using the 3D, one of the advantages this provides when making a side-scroller is avoiding the flat presentation and giving it a grittier look. One thing we really liked about the 2.5 presentation on a 3D screen is that it's very deep, kind of like a miniature diorama. Some of the boss fights end up giving you a different perspective with the camera. Giving that extra dimension brings something to the game, and that's what attracted us to the 3DS. Not to mention, as a fan of Castlevania, it's exciting to bring it back to a Nintendo platform. We actually built a brand-new game engine just to bring it to the 3DS.

EA: We've adapted the same engine from the first game because it worked so well on the PS3 and Xbox 360, but of course we had to adapt it to the 3DS, which was quite challenging. The internals of the 3DS make it a very special console, very powerful, but having two cameras instead of one changes everything. You have to be very wise when placing cameras, otherwise you'll cause headaches. The strange thing is that a 2.5D game works wonderfully in 3D, but even with the fixed perspective, the layers of effects are very pleasing. Even though many people switch off 3D when playing, we bet with this game, this isn't going to happen. People are going to be willing to play with the 3D because it's going to be a very satisfying experience.

DC: One of the cool features of the touch screen with the travel book is the added option of the huge map where you can leave notes for yourself of areas of interest. For example, if you play through as Simon, there may be a certain area that you can't get to because you need double jump. Trevor has double jump, so playing as him will open up whole new areas of the castle. Because you are playing as different characters in different times, things you did in the past will affect characters in the future when they reach the same point.

Elsewhere in the interview Contra is named as a franchise that Mercury Steam would like to work on. If the developer pursued this on 3DS and did half as good a job as WayForward Technologies did on Contra 4 for DS, then that would be a game worth playing.

Based on what we've seen so far this new Castlevania title looks promising. Are you looking forward to it when it comes out later this year?


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User Comments (38)



Game0ver_Gavin said:

When is castlevania coming out? October? November? I need a new 3DS game (haven't gotten anything since kid Icarus uprising).



Karakato said:

If Lord's of shadow is anything to go by, I do hope Mercury Steam passes Contra on to a Dev team that does 2D the best... Not that LoS was bad, but I think its best if Contra stays on its tight and challenging 2d roots. Still looking forward to Mirrors of Fate though.



James said:

@ocarinadude14 Slow down, dude. No release date for this one yet but expect it later this year. Also, saying "first comment" is lame.



metafaniel said:

@ocarinadude14 I haven't bought anything since then too, the Hades challenges are difficult, I won't stop until I got them all! (or Cv-LoD: MoF it's out!!!)
This Castlevania it's a day one buy, or even presale, sounds quite promising!!
About this note I'm also very very excited about the fact they managed to adapt the LoS engine to the 3DS. If they say it was a challenge, then they won't use this engine in JUST one game... That would be none sense!!

Then, more games will come in the future if Cv-LoD: MoF sells well =) Can't wait =D



AcidFox said:

God please no. I tried to love LoS, I really did, but the more I tried the more I hated it. As a different game it would've been alright, but as a Castlevania I felt it was a disgrace to the saga, and to be honest (I know I'm probably alone in this) Castlevania 64 was, IMO, a much better 3d Castlevania. LoS had good art, good music, but lacked soul, it was just a bunch of games (Shadow of the Colossus, God of War, Uncharted, and a few others) thrown together in a blender, and what came out was LoS (plus, it had a Portal reference. In 2010. The Day of the Tentacle reference was ok, but it's as if the developers had been writing a list of games that they wanted to mention when they made their first big title since they were kids. Castlevania doesn't reference other games, OTHER GAMES make Castlevania references).
Sorry about the rant. Anyway, just let WayForward make another Contra, 4 was probably the best contra ever, and I'm sure they'd do a much better job with Castlevania than Mercury Steam. Mirror of Fate doesn't look all that promising, and the fact that it's set in the LoS universe makes me want to avoid buying it.



DreamOn said:

This game appeals to me. I hope it gets great reviews. I like the look, the use of 3D, and the effort to conserve some classic elements while trying to carve out a new take on the series. Listening to David Cox gave me a good vibe that this will be a worthy castlevania with the focuses they have. It's all about the castle, cracking it's code and whipping the hell out of countless skeleton baddies. Should be good.



accc said:

Mercury Steam is a worthless developer, they can't even get their games to run at more than 20 frames per second. Needless to say, a Contra game with a Mercury Steam-esque framerate would be completely unplayable.



RevolverLink said:

I can't shake my skepticism about MercuryStream or this Castlevania, but I'm trying to give them the benefit of the doubt until I play it.

I'm still not big on the switch from beautiful 2D to 2.5D-style visuals, but that's a matter of preference more than anything.



Rapadash6 said:

As a Castlevania fan, I'm interested in Mercury Steam's take on these classic characters, but at the same time, I really didn't like Lords of Shadow all that much because it threw out a lot of Castlevania trademarks. Already I can see this game will have a more gothic setting, which was one of the complaints I had with LoS, so it seems promising. I'm going to try, however, not to go into this game expecting the same grandure of IGA's classic entries into the series, because I know they won't do those games justice at all, but instead appriciate Mirror of Fate for what makes it unique. Even with my stance on LoS, I still have great respect for anyone who admires Super Castlevania IV as much as Mercury Steam does. Certainly not a bad source of inspiration at all as far as I'm concerned.



blackknight77 said:

I saw a 20 min. demo on Youtube from E3 and I like what I saw. Although I prefer the AOS, DOS, OOE style better this game still looks good.



paburrows said:

This looks pretty awesome! But I have to say as a huge fan of the Advance/DS games I'm a bit worried when they say that the games is a reboot in one of the interviews. Theres already a great story in place to be added upon, so why do they need to tell an alternate? Also that makes me think that a reboot means that it won't have the elements that made the previous 6 great? I hope that I'm proven wrong.



Expa0 said:

Ugh no, they've already made Catlevania into a crappy GoW clone. If given the chance they would probably turn Contra into a crappy first person shooter CoD rip-off.



FluttershyGuy said:

God no, please don't even TOUCH Contra! After this unnecessary Castlevania reboot, Metal Gear Rising completely changing the nature of the MG series, and Gradius being dead for years now, Contra is the only Konami franchise left that hasn't been ruined or butchered. Well, the PlayStation entries were a black eye for Contra, but it survived. Contra is all I have left!

That's probably exactly what they would do. After all, they turned Castlevania into a God of War clone game play-wise. My favorite series are getting slaughtered!!!



FluttershyGuy said:

I think Konami is the one that needs to be rebooted. I don't know what the bleep is going on with those guys, or the ones at Capcom and Square Enix. Whole industry looks like it needs to be rebooted!!!



Cyrso said:

With all the respect to the fans of the Castlevania series.

But, uhh it must be really annoying to be game developer that is developing a game in an existing franchise.

Some people complain about going away from it roots. Others complain about the series not evolving and always using the same formulaic structure....
Fans are really annoying sometimes, do you prefer one of your favourite franchise dying and not getting games at all?

I think this game looks rather interesting and fun.



Graph said:

Long time Castlevania fan who buys all the consoles and all the handheld in existance for any castlevania games that could come out and Lords of Shadow was the perfect reboot for the mess the series was getting into story wise. The timeline was so screwed up it's unbelievable and Lords of Shadow was a very good game to do just that : Complete rebooot.

Mirror of fate looks promising and I hope it can be as good if not better than Lords of Shadow.



hendie001 said:

i love castlevania so i hope that they get this right look like they are on the right track



Tasuki said:

I have LoS but I have yet to get around to play it. Maybe with this one coming out I will dig it out and finally play it.



chiptoon said:

Its interesting how divided opinion is on Mercury Steam's Castlevania. Personally I loved it. It remains one of my very favorite games of the last few years.



WaveGhoul said:

Hell no, the biggest mistake already was not handing over this new Casltevania sequal to WayForward they would of done ClassicVania justice in comparison to this worthless developer. I'd also love to see a Contra 5, again from WF. I typically hate Western developers, but i can't help but LOVE WF.



KAI7321 said:

Contra 5 at 20 frames per second? No thanks. Give it to WayForward, they actually know what they're doing.



Urbanhispanic said:

I'm willing to give Mercury Stream a chance and yes the graphics do remind me of the Rondo of Blood remake for the original PSP and I thought that game was good to look at.

Thinking about Contra now is looking into the future too quickly. Let's see how Mirror of Fate turns out. If it's a hit and WayForward isn't going to make it for the 3DS, let Mercury Stream have a crack of the whip at it.



BattleBorn said:


The only ones being smug are the pseudo-purists who believe Castlevania's roots are in being a second-rate Metroid rehash.

As a 3DS skeptic and non-owner, this is one of the few upcoming titles that might actually convince me to buy the handheld (the other one is Paper Mario 3DS) because it's actually unique instead of being a sloppy rehash (any 3DS Mario game so far) or a N64/PS2 port. MercurySteam tackling 2D development is an unknown for them, but I actually respect developers stepping out of their comfort zones... something Igarashi seemed incapable of doing.

Of course, this is the community that worships the 3DS library in all it's mediocre rehashed/ported glory and hysterically bashes any kind of "Westernization" in their beloved franchises, so not surprising to see the immature, spoiled-brat bashing of this game.



BattleBorn said:

Also, I like WayForward, but they aren't as perfect as you think they are. Would you truly enjoy a 2D Castlevania from them with the same piss-poor quality of balancing as their Bloodrayne reboot?



alLabouTandroiD said:

While it's looking good i'm still a bit wary about it.
And i would very much look forward to a new Contra. If done right 2.5D could make the game feel quite fresh imo.

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