One more time, Simon
Symphony of the Night is a game appreciated also by those who do not identify themselves as Castlevania fans. It is a beautiful looking game with great music and excellent playability. But would someone mind telling me why it has reached an almost relic-like status and why is Alucard so often revered as the key ingredient of a succesful Castlevania game?
Few acknowledge (though, increasingly more are coming to realize) that even though SotN is completely different from the other CV games for the newer platforms, it is not unique. Simon’s Quest had a non-linear enviroment and it had RPG elements to the extent the spunky NES could offer. It was not confined inside a single castle. It gave the chance to roam the Transylvanian lands and search through areas fitting to the motif. There was even a day and night cycle. Can SotN or any other CV game be praised for being as dynamic?
Don’t get me wrong. SotN is a masterpiece and its ‘heirs’ are entertaining. I only mentioned it because many CV enthusiasts think of it as revolutionary, even though SQ offered much the same, albeit with a weaker technology. Naturally, I am very aware of the many problems that make SQ a horrible game in many people’s minds.
But that brings me to the actual topic of this article. I think SQ deserves a remake more than any other Castlevania so far. Imagine hunting for the body parts of Dracula with the technology available today. With 3-D graphics and with an improved soundtrack accompanying the adventure. The story and implementation of the original Simon’s Quest leaves much creative space for the developing team to do something completely new. Simon could use a horse to travel and perhaps rest during nights. And maybe we would finally get to see and hear an actual conversation between Simon and Dracula, along with other impressive cinematic cutscenes.
In other words: a new version of Simon’s Quest. Now, Konami, Now. Yes, this was a high-hoping confession of a fan, but it does make sense too. If you haven’t played the original Simon’s Quest, do so immediately and join the choir.