Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Reverie DLC
Available for: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Game Developer: MercurySteam Entertainment
Game Publisher: Konami
Release Date: March 22, 2011
Official website: www.konami.com
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow‘s first downloadable expansion comes five months after the game’s debut. Players who have been away will definitely have to brush up on their platforming skills and Relic abilities. Reverie mainly offers challenging puzzles and more on the story of Gabriel. There is not much in the way of boss battles or combat. Expect tough environmental puzzles and challenging controls. Play time may be short, considering its premium DLC price tag ($9.99), however, Castlevania diehards will likely be sucked into the expanded story of Gabriel and the astounding castle environments.
Game (DLC) Recommendation:
Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Reverie DLC review
One of the intriguing characters encountered in the original Castlevania: Lords of Shadow was Laura. The vampire girl forms a bond with lead character Gabriel Belmont, reminiscent of the relationship of Louis and Claudia in Interview With A Vampire. Maybe not as deep, but Laura is one of the few characters that Gabriel befriends, and whom survives. Indebted to Laura for her aid in his original adventure, Gabriel returns to heed her call for help in this first content expansion for Castlevania: Lords of Shadow, titled Reverie.
In Reverie, the attention to detail in the castle environments and adornments is astounding. This is the most worthwhile experience of the downloadable content. The majority of the gameplay in Reverie is not combat, but several challenging environmental puzzles. That would be the second highlight of this expansion. Puzzles are not only challenging and well thought out, but fairly unique for third-person adventure games. If you are looking for more combat and bosses, you won’t find that in Reverie. I felt a bit mixed on the heavier weighted puzzle and platforming elements than action. Depending on what gameplay you liked best in Castlevania: Lords of Shadow, you should know that puzzle and jumping gameplay is the core of Reverie, not combat.
Those that haven’t played through Castlevania: Lords of Shadow since the end of last year will likely feel a bit lost on the controls. I know I had to go back to the more advanced Relic move references to be able to get through some sections. Getting though a watery level using dashes and surviving the new Spawns of Leviathan enemies was tough and borderline frustrating. The good news is the checkpoint system throughout the level is very forgiving. So if you survive at least a couple of platforms, you will respawn at a manageable point.
[Warning: skip this paragraph if you don’t want a semi-spoiler!] Another highlight of Reverie is that players get to control a new character, for a bit. Yes, Laura is a playable character, switching off with Gabriel at certain points. Her main weapon is an electric shock, but her blood-sucking ability is the fun part. Players will need to clench onto throats of their adversaries and tap away to suck their blood to gain health. Laura is not as fluid in control as Gabriel, but it is a nice change. Using her mist form was also a unique experience, but one that was not tapped into nearly enough.
It has been a while since the original release of Castlevania: Lords of Shadow (read the original review here), so this first downloadable content comes fairly late in the game for early players. Reverie is an amazing experience for the lavish environments but at $9.99 for about two to four hours of play, it comes at a substantial cost. Yes, Castlevania diehards (I attest to being one of them) shouldn’t miss out on Reverie for the additional story element and cliffhanger into the second downloadable content. Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Reverie is a bit of a wade through the rich experience of the original game. Reverie‘s cliffhanger ending will definitely have players hooked into the second downloadable content, which hopefully is more meaty in gameplay for the price.
See various screenshots from Castlevania: Lords of Shadow Reverie below (see fullscreen here):