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|System(s): Sega Mega Drive|
|Number of players: 1|
Castlevania: Bloodlines, known as Vampire Killer (バンパイアキラー) in Japan, is an entry in the Castlevania series, and the first of two games to reach Sega systems. Bloodlines was the subject of much debate at the time, as even though it has a considerable amount of violence and many depictions of blood, Sega's Videogame Rating Council only gave the game a "GA", the lowest rating possible. This affected the European release, which was heavily censored and renamed Castlevania: The New Generation, and the Australian release kept the name while remaining identical to the American release in content. The game was released exclusively for the Sega Mega Drive.
Bloodlines does not feature the Belmont clan featured in previous games. Although the characters are related to the Belmont clan by blood, they belong to other families and their relationship is not clearly explained. It is also the first game not to take place exclusively within in Romania.
Compared to other Castlevania games, Bloodlines was faster and more dynamic, e.g. it's possible to jump onto stairs. Weapons can be powered up, which also exchanges the equipped subweapon (axe, boomerang,...) into a smart bomb.
In 1897, Quincy Morris defeated Count Dracula, but died afterwards due to the wounds from the battle. His son, John Morris, and his friend Eric Lecarde witnessed it.
Twenty years later, a vampire named Elizabeth Bartley - who had been executed in 1421 - was accidentally brought back to life by a witch named Drolta Tzuentes. Once back, Elizabeth wants to revive her dead uncle - none other than Dracula.
Now, it's up to John and Eric - descendants of a clan of vampire hunters, the Belmonts - to find Elizabeth and stop her, before she brings Count Dracula back to the land of the living.
|“||The ancestors of the Belmont family are doomed to confront the power of evil incarnate......Dracula!
In 1917, a countess sought to revive the long dead spirit of the vampire. Her name was Elizabeth Bartley.
To revive him, she needed to travel all over Europe, enlisting help from all the powers of darkness.
Two young vampire hunters set out to fulfill their destiny.... Push back the evil hordes and drive the vampire back into his dark netherworld.
— Opening sequence
In Castlevania: Bloodlines, the player travels through six different countries of Europe, controlling either John Morris — current owner of the "Vampire Killer" whip — or his childhood friend Eric Lecarde — a master lanceman. Macabre creatures such as zombies and skeletons are summoned by Countess Bartley to kill you.
Along the way the player can collect items to power-up their character's weapon (up to three times), as well as one of three special weapons, useful to hit enemies from afar. In order to use the special weapons, the player must collect jewels, which are hidden inside candles found all over the way.
By default attacks, jumps and uses the special weapon; controls can be changed at the options menu. Special weapons normally require one jewel per usage, though holding while pressing turns it into a smart bomb, which uses up four jewels. Also, if you collect three power-ups having at least eight jewels, the special weapon is temporarily replaced by an ultimate attack that costs eight jewels. Holding and pressing midair performs a straight down attack.
Passwords are given at the end of each stage, once the stage boss is defeated. When passwords are used, the weapon level, jewels count and score are reset — the special weapon is also lost.
|John Morris (Johnny Morris in the Japanese version)|
|Born in 12 December 1895 in Texas, USA, he is the son of Quincy Morris (who died upon defeating Dracula in 1897), and a distant descendant of Trevor Belmont. His weapon is the sacred whip "Vampire Killer", used by the Belmonts for centuries and temporarily entrusted to the Morris clan, since the Belmonts are unable to touch it until the year of 1999.|
|Born in 3 May 1892 in Segovia, Spain, he is also related to the Belmont lineage, though details are unclear. Eric decided to become a vampire hunter after Elizabeth Bartley changed his girlfriend, Gwendolyn, into a vampire. His weapon is the "Alcarde Spear", entrusted to the Lecarde family by Alucard, the son of Dracula, to assist the Morris clan. He has the advantage of being able to attack upward and diagonally, by pressing the desired direction on the D-pad.|
|Awards the player an extra life.|
|Bag of Kreutzers|
|Awards 100 to 2,000 points.|
|Adds 1 jewel for special weapon usage.|
|Adds 5 jewels for special weapon usage.|
|Powers up the player character's weapon.|
|Mirror of Truth|
|Hits all enemies on screen.|
|Restores one half of the player character's life.|
|Causes a random effect, such as a weapon power-up.|
|Makes the player character invulnerable for a short while.|
|The Battle Axe thrown up then falls down, making it difficult to hit enemies in certain cases, though it's great to reach the ones above you. At level 3, it summons three axes which fly straight forward.|
|Crystal Blade Boomerang|
|The Boomerang thrown in a straight line then comes backward, possibly hitting enemies twice on its way. At level 3, it summons three boomerangs which fly forward forming a circle.|
|Like the Battle Axe, the Sacred Water is thrown up then falls down, and can damage enemies in the air, though when it touches the ground a sacred explosion is created. At level 3, it flies through the screen in a spiral movement, hitting a good area.|
|Stage 1 - Ruins of the Castle Dracula, Romania|
|The first stage is divided into eleven sections, featuring a Hellhound at the end of 1-5 and the stage boss — Armor Battler, a giant mecha knight.|
|Stage 2 - Atlantis Shrine, Greece|
|The second stage has seven parts, featuring three mini-bosses — the Water Mage and two Armor Lords, all in 2-3 (the first one wielding a morning star and the other wielding an axe) - plus the stage boss — Golem, a stone giant.|
|Stage 3 - The Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy|
|Stage 4 - The Munitions Factory, Germany|
|Stage 5 - Versailles Palace, France|
|Stage 6 - The Castle Proserpina, England|
|There are three boss fights throughout this stage starting at 6-5, which is a fight with Death and rematches against the stage 2 through 4 bosses, Elizabeth and Medusa at 6-7, and a final battle with Dracula and Drolta at 6-9.|
Like most Konami games on the Sega Mega Drive, Bloodlines has become a highly desirable game and as a consequence is rather expensive. For many years, the game had never seen a rerelease on another system, which didn't help the game's rarity. In 2019, the game finally saw two re-releases - as part of the Castlevania Anniversary Collection on PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Steam, and as one of the 42 games pre-installed on the Mega Drive Mini. The Mega Drive Mini re-release includes all regional versions of the game accessible by changing the system language accordingly.
The game utilizes a region lockout mechanism, but it can be disabled by holding down the button during startup. Note that this doesn't affect the title screen and graphics modifications (so it's not possible to turn a censored PAL version into an uncensored NTSC-J or NTSC-U version). The PAL version included on all variants of the Mega Drive Mini disables all region lockout by default.
|Language||Localised Name||English Translation|
|English||Castlevania: The New Generation||Castlevania: The New Generation|
|English (US)||Castlevania: Bloodlines||Castlevania: Bloodlines|
The only regional difference in the ending credits is in the very first line, where it says "<regional game title> Staff". Also, if you beat the game in normal difficulty it ends with "Try Expert Mode!"; if you finish it in expert difficulty it changes to "Congratulations! You are the master of Vampire Killer".
- Programmer MK1: Hanaten
- Enemy Program: Takashi Takeda
- Trap and Enemy Program: Kenichiro Horio
- Wandering Programmer: Koji Komata
- Program: Hidenari Inamura
- Main Designer: Bunmin
- Design: Mamuun
- Special Design: Tat, Norio Takemoto
- Sound Program: Atsushi Fujio, Osamu Kasai
- Sound Design: Michiru Yamane
- Package Design: M.Yoshihashi, Kaori Sasaki
- Special Thanks to: H.Takeuchi, K.Iketani, K.Kinjyo, T.Shinguu, N.Tanaka, S.Yomota, H.Jyuni, A.Shizuno, T.Niimi, T.Yabe
- Copyright by: 1994 Tokumashoten Intermedia Inc.
- Supervisor: Yutaka Haruki
- Producer: Tomikazu Kirita
- © 1994 Konami All Rights Reserved
- Source: In-game credits
- Main article: Castlevania: Bloodlines/Magazine articles.
- Main article: Castlevania: Bloodlines/Promotional material.
|Sega Retro Average|
|Mega Drive, SE (Rental)|
ROM dump status
|1MB||1994-03||Mega Drive Mini (EU)||Region lockout disabled.|
- GamePro, "December 1993" (US; 1993-xx-xx), page 253
- Computer & Video Games, "February 1994" (UK; 1994-01-15), page 62
- File:SegaPro DE 18.pdf, page 42
- Beep! MegaDrive, "April 1994" (JP; 1994-03-08), page 17 (19)
- Sega Saturn Magazine, "September 1995" (JP; 1995-08-08), page 83 (85)
- Consoles +, "Mars 1994" (FR; 1994-xx-xx), page 92-93 (92)
- Computer & Video Games, "February 1994" (UK; 1994-01-15), page 62-63 (62)
- GamePro, "March 1994" (US; 1994-xx-xx), page 46-47 (48)
- Joypad, "Mars 1994" (FR; 1994-xx-xx), page 112-114 (112)
- File:MMS16 CastlevaniaReview.pdf, page 2
- Player One, "Mars 1994" (FR; 1994-xx-xx), page 68-71 (68)
- Sega Magazine, "February 1994" (UK; 1994-01-10), page 91-92 (91)
|Castlevania games for Sega systems|
|Castlevania: Bloodlines (1994)|
|Castlevania: The Bloodletting (Cancelled)|
|Castlevania: The Bloodletting (Cancelled) | Akumajou Dracula X: Gekka no Yasoukyoku (1998)|
|Castlevania Resurrection (Cancelled)|