Castlevania, known in Japan as Akumajou Dracula is a action-platformer video game developed and published by Konami for the Family Computer Disk System video game console in Japan in September 1986. It was later released for the MSX2. It was ported to cartridge format and released in North America for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES) in May 1987 followed by a European release in 1988.
The game takes place in the year 1691 where players control Simon Belmont who is tasked with defeating the vampire Dracula. It was re-released for the Family Computer (FC) in cartridge format in 1993. It is the first game in Konami's Castlevania video game series; it was followed by two more NES games titled Castlevania II: Simon's Quest (released for the NES in 1988) and Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse (1989).
Castlevania (NES version)
A fourth game was released for the Super NES and titled Super Castlevania IV.
Castlevania is often considered to be one of the best games on the NES. It has received critical acclaim ever since its original release. It sold impressively and is considered an NES classic by PC World, while Nintendo Power and Game Informer ranked it in their best video games list (at 22 and 48 respectively). IGN ranked it 19 among their favourite NES games.
Castlevania puts players in control of Simon Belmont as he travels through Count Dracula's castle, which emerges every 100 years. Simon battles numerous bosses along his way, including Frankenstein, Igor, the Mummy Man, the Phantom Bat, Queen Medusa, the Grim Reaper, and Count Dracula himself. Simon encounters Dracula in his lair and defeats him. He escapes the castle as it crumbles apart and credits roll. The credits feature modified names of film actors such as Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff, and Christopher Lee.
Castlevania uses platform gameplay and gives Simon a Magic Whip to use as his standard method of combat as well as move and jump. Simon's whip has a delay between the player's button input and Simon's use of it. Simon has a life meter and begins with three lives. When his life meter is depleted or he falls into a pit, he will lose a life. Once he loses all lives, he begins at the beginning of the block of stages players are in (of which there are six). Each screen transition leads to a new stage; players will eventually reach an area where they have to deplete a boss' life meter which allows them to progress. Players can replenish health by finding hidden meat in the walls and can gain a new life by gaining a certain number of points (which are gained by defeating enemies, picking up money bags, and completing a block). Simon can find items called sub-weapons that have different uses. The Knife can reach across the screen; the Holy Water can attack lower enemies and freeze them; the Axe can attack enemies in the air; the Cross goes for a time and returns to Simon; and the Stop Watch stops certain enemies for a short period of time. Players can only carry one item at a time and lose the item when they die. Whenever an item is used, it costs hearts. All items use only one heart except for the Stop Watch which uses five. Players may find items by defeating enemies or breaking candles. These items can include hearts, money bags, whip strength/length upgrades, and sub-weapons.
Find digital download of this game on
The NES version of Castlevania was originally controlled via the NES controller with a cross-shaped joypad and two action buttons. The basic description of game controls is summarized in the table below. Detailed description of how to play this game can be found a in the attached game manual. Please note that individual
gamepad buttons are emulated by different keys on your PC keyboard depending on the settings of your online emulator (see the table next to the game).
Controls forward and backward movement, standing and crouching, angle of jump, direction of attack.
Press the A button to jump. To jump diagonally, use 'A' button and Left/Right Control Pad keys.
Controls whip and all weapons. To activate whip, use 'B' button and Left, Right or Down Control Pad keys. To activate weapons, use 'B' button and Up Control Pad key. To crack whip or fire weapons, use simply 'B' button.
Not used in this game.
Begins game, pauses action during game.
This version of Castlevania was designed for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES), which was an eight-bit video game console manufactured
by Nintendo in the years 1983 - 2003. In that time, it was the best-selling video game console for which more than 700 licensed games and a number of non-licensed
games were created. Worldwide, approximately 62 million units of this console were sold at approximately price $ 100 per unit. More information about the
NES console can be found here.
Recommended Game Controllers:
You can control this game easily by using the keyboard of your PC (see the table next to the game). However, for maximum gaming enjoyment, we strongly recommend using a USB gamepad that you simply plug into the USB port of your computer. If you do not have a gamepad, you can buy one of these NES controllers:
Available online emulators:
6 different online emulators are available for Castlevania. These emulators differ not only in the technology they use to emulate old games, but also in support of various game controllers, multiplayer mode, mobile phone touchscreen, emulation speed, absence or presence of embedded ads and in many other parameters. For
maximum gaming enjoyment, it's important to choose the right emulator, because on each PC and in different Internet browsers, the individual emulators behave differently. The basic
features of each emulator available for this game Castlevania are summarized in the following table:
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