So I blew into the cartridge and bashed it against the NES a few times, then I put the game in the slot of the 25-year old console.
The art style really reminded me of Castlevania at first, with its over-sized character fitting in the small screen (and I was playing it on a 32" TV), but I slowly realized that the art style was the only way in which it can be likened to Castlevania.
|Fire... fire everywhere!|
The first level is a butt pain, and that's literally the nicest way I can put it. I actually had to check IGM for a walkthrough of the game on the first level! You start off standing outside the castle, with a sea-serpent spitting fire at you. Seems fair enough- dodge the fireballs and get into the castle, right? Wrong! Of course it isn't that simple, otherwise this game wouldn't be known as one of the hardest games in history. You have to wait for the drawbridge to open, dodging fireballs the entire time. Then, the sea serpent goes away and a bat appears out of the drawbridge- another possible killer (seriously, it kills you in one hit). After the bat goes away, the sea serpent is back (he ducks around a lot more this time though) and you have to run across the bridge. If you don't run, the bridge breaks beneath your feet and you die. Needless to say, once I'd gotten past that part I felt like the biggest pro ever.
Oh, your character does actually have a weapon... but I'd save it for the bat if I were you.
There are other levels, but the hardness of the first does increase and it gets really annoying because if you run out of lives you have to start all over again... And boy did I want to smash my game cartridge after dying so many times.
So yes, it's a nice game if you want something to pass the time, but I'm a bit of a masochist. It is, however, something I advise you to pick up- not only because it's quite hard to find (probably due to people destroying the game cartridges in fits of rage) but also because completing the levels gives you the sense of achievement that no other game gives in this modern age. It's now even available on Wii, PSN, DSiWare, IPhone, IPad and Android- so many ways to enjoy a masochistic lifestyle!