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As WP's senior editor, I edit review and preview articles, attempt to keep up with the frantic pace of Rainier's news posts, and keep our reviewers on deadline, which is akin to herding cats. When I have a moment to myself and don't have my nose in a book, I like to play action/RPG, adventure and platforming games...

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'Castlevania DS' (NDS) - Facts & Screens

by Judy on Jan. 6, 2005 @ 7:35 a.m. PST

Konami of Europe today unveiled a new Castlevania game for the Nintendo DS. Set in the year 2036, the newest title in the series continues the storyline that first emerged in the critically acclaimed Castlevania: Aria of Sorrow for the Nintendo Game Boy Advance. While the new 2D side scrolling action game will contain all the classic gameplay that fans of the series have come to expect, Castlevania for Nintendo DS will also incorporate innovative gameplay elements that take full advantage of the portable system's powerful new technology.

"The game's rich storyline and strong characters coupled with the adoption of the new technology in the Nintendo DS has allowed us to bring the series to a whole new level" says Hans-Joachim Amann, Head of Product Management of Konami of Europe. "By utilising the Nintendo DS' sophisticated capabilities such as the Dual Screen functionality and Touch Screen technology, we are able to bring a fresh new dimension to this title and provide a truly unique gameplay experience for the gamer."

Taking place a year after Aria of Sorrow, the game's protagonist – Soma Cruz – finds himself at the center of a mysterious cult's plan to resurrect their evil lord and master, Dracula. In order to save himself and protect the lives of those he loves, Soma Cruz must infiltrate the enemy's home base, a towering replica of Dracula's castle that is teaming with monstrous creatures. Players' abilities grow and develop as they collect items and gather experience points by defeating enemies.

In their quest to defeat enemies, players will utilize completely original gameplay concepts that leverage the Nintendo DS' Touch Screen technology. One example of this new technology is Castlevania for Nintendo DS' "Magic Seal" system. By using the stylus directly on the screen, players must connect a series of symbols in the proper order to unlock an enchanted opening and disperse their enemy's magic into it when they are weakened.

Also aiding them in their battle against dark forces is the ability to collect the souls of their enemies to gain powerful new attacks and skills. The new Castlevania for Nintendo DS takes advantage of the Nintendo DS' Wireless Connection, letting players exchange and/or trade acquired souls to enhance their characters' strength. An incredibly moving musical score, visually stunning graphics and imaginative special effects round out this uniquely innovative gaming experience.

Created by Koji Igarashi and the creative team behind the critically acclaimed classic Castellanies: Aria of Sorrow, the new Castlevania for Nintendo DS is scheduled for release in Europe in Autumn, 2005.

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