Akumajou special

Last night I finished up my ongoing Castlevania “mod” for Mega Man Powered Up. I still need to do some fine-tuning, but the point remains: I have created surprisingly accurate renditions of all six levels from Castlevania using a 3D Mega Man engine. It is possibly the dorkiest achivement of my life, and I have done some awfully dorky things in my time.

But that’s hardly news. I mean, I’m inordinately proud of the lengthy, full-map-height drop that kicks off level 4, so what does that tell you?

It’s a shame that Capcom won’t allow multiple levels to be strung together in sequence, because the overall effect would be much more impressive than playing a single level at a time. And bosses from the final stages would be a nice touch — Dracula’s tower needs a Yellow Devil, not freakin’ Elec Man.

Still, this whole process has given me a new appreciation for Castlevania’s level design. It was truly exceptional in its time, and the attention to detail Konami lavished on the game is still impressive. Little things, like the way columns line up between vertically-stacked screens, are really classy. The gaps in the floor that pose deadly jumping hazards aren’t just poorly-conceived architecture, they’re places where the underlying structure has crumbled. No level element in the entire apepars to have been placed frivolously. And there’s a real sense of progress from place to place; each level begins where the last one ended, and Simon’s little trek across the map is very accurately reflected within the actual game. Whoever designed the world took their charge to create a decaying castle seriously.


And based on the clock tower level, I’d say they also enjoyed making video gamers cry.

If only more video games sent such conflicting messages of love and hate these days, the world would be a better place. And sales of replacement controllers would be much healthier, no doubt.

Anyway, I’ll finish tweaking my level designs and share the download codes once Capcom reactivates the game hub. I know you’re just champing at the bit to experience my anal-retentive creative bankruptcy.

7 thoughts on “Akumajou special

  1. I can’t wait!

    But, can you clear one thing up? In order to unlock all the map editor elements, do I have to beat it on EVERY difficulty with everyone? Or just one difficulty.

    Also, what about the challenge modes?

  2. Most of the extra map packs appear on normal and hard difficulty… so far I haven’t noticed any unique ones in hard, so as long as you’re not playing on easy you should be able to grab the map pack pick-ups. You don’t even have to beat a level to be able to keep the packs you collect — once you grab it, you’ve got it. The challenge modes are unlocked as soon as you unlock a playable boss, which you accomplish by defeating it on any difficult using just your arm cannon. You can polish off a boss on easy mode and it’s unlocked for good, which is very fortunate because trying to pull that off on the hard difficulty setting would be insane.

  3. The question is… CAN Tomm beat the original Megaman 9 times on a flight to Japan…?

    (Answer: Of course not, the PSP battery doesn’t last that long)

  4. Could you show some screenshots of your mod? Also, which version of Megaman is it for?

  5. Someone sure hasn’t been paying attention.
    (I’m sorely tempted to leave it at that, but because I’m pathologically helpful: Jeremy’s using the a pre-repease copy of Mega Man Powered Up, the new PSP port which includes a built-in editor.)

  6. If only the difficulty didn’t ramp up to near-impossible by the time you reached the Grim Reaper.

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