The Castlevania series is celebrating its 35th anniversary this year (damn it, we’re old), and Konami’s celebrating the franchise the best way it knows how…with NFT’s? Hopefully, we’ll see something else come down from them, in an effort to show just how much they appreciate the franchise.
One thing it can do? Take a close look at a fan-made project that features some amazing 8-bit action.
A fan by the name of Dracula9 (not their real name, obviously) detailed their new project, Castlevania: Seal of the Eclipse, over in a Castlevania forum group. In it, they explained the origins of the project, which delves deep into the lore of the series.
“With a (comparatively) reduced emphasis on exploration, backtracking, and puzzle-solving, the focus for this has become rather akin to how CotM1&2 and CV3 and DoS handled things — pushing the formula of standard platforming to accommodate multiple player characters who all have different strengths and weaknesses. Obviously, this is not a new concept by any stretch of the imagination, but with its goals being smaller in scope it allows more intense exploration of how to get those key elements just right and polish them to a shine wherever possible,” Dracula9 explained.
This Beautiful Fan-Made Delight
The first gameplay footage of the project is below, with a lengthy story explaining where it sits in the Castlevania saga. It then focuses on a pair of characters trying to clean house on demonic forces, using a variety of awesome weapons and powers.
The project has been in the works for some time with a minimal team, but they’re devoted to getting it done, even in the face of COVID or, worse yet, the face of Konami’s potential legal wrath.
From the Team
“Seal of the Eclipse has, in undisguised and blunt terms, made more progress in a year than main Umbra had in several. Currently, it’s at a lull, but not for lack of planning or severe nonproduction of resources — it’s a hobby project above all else and time just isn’t as abundant as we’d like, on account of the world being absolutely insane to live in right now.
“But the engine is fairly solid, adding things and editing it is much more streamlined than main Umbra’s as it lacks 4+ years of outdated bloat code and obsolete assets tangling itself up, and what few bugs I’ve found aren’t game-breaking and several of them seem to be a result of a Win10 update actually affecting how GMS itself processes and compiles its runner and therefore its loading ticks, and working around that is much more tedious than correcting a mistake I wrote myself in code-speak that’s identifiably mine. So all in all, it’s a much easier time all-around to create things and get them in-engine and moving about the scenery than main Umbra ever was.”
They noted that some things with the project aren’t “quite perfect yet” and it still has a ways to go before the ROM makes the rounds. But it’s definitely coming together. And on top of that, the 8-bit soundtrack sounds amazing. Check out a sample of the original soundtrack below!
Hey, Konami, You Listening?!
At this point, it probably wouldn’t hurt for Konami to give these guys a call. It’s not like they have a Castlevania game in the works (at least, as far as we know at the moment), and having a project like this become official wouldn’t be the worst thing. In fact, it would truly say something about the love of fan development, and how far a franchise can come because of it. And if you need further proof of that, just take a glance at what Christian Whitehead did for Sega with his Sonic CD and Sonic Mania games. Yep, that was all inspired by fan work.
Hopefully, we’ll see something out of this because Seal of the Eclipse looks rad as hell. Fingers crossed that Konami doesn’t let this project pass them by!