The Dagger, sometimes referred to as Knife, is one of the five original throwable sub-weapons in the Castlevania series. In later games, it also appears as a primary weapon, and in some instances the "Dagger" (or "Knife") conforms a complete class of weaponry used mainly for stabbing.
The Dagger sub-weapon is the most basic, and usually weakest, weapon in the Castlevania series. It is thrown forward in a straight line to hit enemies in front of the hero. However, this weapon may be considered almost useless against enemies that move around a lot. It is most effective when thrown with dead-on aim and is the fastest of all sub-weapon attacks. Its weakness, compared to some of the other sub-weapons, is offset by the fact that it only consumes one Heart, can be thrown very quickly in succession (Symphony of the Night), or in multiples at once (Rondo of Blood, Portrait of Ruin and Harmony of Despair). In some games its usefulness is limited in that it can't pass through walls.
Some games have different varieties of the Dagger: they can be thrown further, faster, stronger, in different numbers, or pass through multiple enemies or walls. The original Item Crash in Rondo of Blood is called "Thousand Edge", which allows a character to throw a large barrage of daggers very rapidly for a set amount of time. It works best when attacking enemies on the ground or when successfully hitting flying enemies while on a platform.
Some bosses also use the Dagger as a weapon, including the Doppelganger bosses, who will mimic many of the heroes' attacks, including throwing knives.
Stabbing daggers can be used as primary weapons in some games. Some games also have a class of such weapons available to the heroes. Most of the time, these weapons are weak and offer little in the way of reach, made up for by their fast attack speed. One of the most prominent examples of this behavior is Grant Danasty's main attack animation in Dracula's Curse 's versions outside of Japan.
Game specific information
The original Castlevania features a Dagger as one of the five original sub-weapons that can be used in the game. The player can only equip a single sub-weapon at a time, each which can be obtained from hitting a particular candle or as a drop item from an enemy. By pressing ↑ while attacking, a single dagger is thrown forward until it strikes an enemy, hits a candle or leaves the screen. The weapon can be thrown two or three times in a row upon encountering a Double or Triple Shot.
The "Broadsword" in this game acts as a replacement for the whip as the primary weapon, rather than as a sub-weapon. It does not consume any Hearts and two daggers can be on the screen at a time. It is otherwise similar to the Dagger from the original Castlevania. It is equipped until a player dies or until it is replaced with another primary weapon (such as a Fighting Chain, a Battle Axe or a Battle Star).
This is the only traditional sub-weapon from the original Castlevania, other than Holy Water, to appear in this game. It can be purchased in the town of Veros for 50 Hearts and can be selected at any time once purchased. It is thrown like the Dagger from the original Castlevania and consumes no Hearts to use; however, its range and damage is low. More powerful versions of the Dagger can be obtained, including the Silver Knife (consumes Hearts, but travels across the whole screen and is stronger) and the Gold Knife (bursts into flames when striking an enemy, stunning them and dealing massive damage).
The Dagger found in Dracula's Curse is identical to the one found in the original Castlevania. It can also be powered up with Double and Triple Shots. Trevor Belmont and Grant Danasty are both able to use this weapon.
Grant can use the Dagger as both, a primary weapon and a sub-weapon. In the Japanese version, the Dagger is thrown without consumption of Hearts when a normal attack is performed. Only a single Dagger is allowed to be on the screen at once, but if a dagger is also equipped as a sub-weapon, an additional dagger can be thrown (consuming a Heart), along with any additional daggers allowed by a Double or Triple Shot. In the U.S. version, Grant does not throw his dagger when doing a normal attack, instead, he lunges forward a bit and stabs an enemy with it. If he is on a wall or ceiling, he will throw the dagger in the opposite direction. Candles that would normally give Trevor Holy Water, will drop a Dagger for Grant.
The Dagger in Super Castlevania IV is similar to the one found in the original Castlevania. It can also be powered up with a Double or Triple Shot.
Due to its low usefulness in previous games, the Dagger was greatly enhanced in both Rondo of Blood and Dracula X. Instead of throwing a single dagger, Richter now throws three daggers at once, one straight, one slightly higher and one slightly lower, covering most of the area in front of him. The daggers now do the same damage as the whip. They're also larger, resembling short swords more than knives, and are thrown much faster than in previous games. Its Item Crash, Thousand Edge, if used correctly may inflict a devastating amount of damage to ground enemies, although Richter isn't invincible while doing this move.
Castlevania: Symphony of the Night (LCD handheld)
In both, Castlevania (N64) and Legacy of Darkness, Reinhardt starts the game with a Dagger as his secondary attack weapon. This weapon looks and behaves more like a short sword and is used for close quarters combat. It is quick but rather weak, and is more suitable for breaking candles or for breaking free from an enemy grab.
Besides this weapon, Reinhardt can also make use of the Knife sub-weapon, which is exactly the same from previous games, flying quickly straight at a foe to deal low damage.
In Legacy of Darkness, the Knife can be upgraded up to three times upon collecting power-ups, making it more powerful and and allowing the protagonist to throw several of them continuously.
In this game, the Knife is the weakest sub-weapon in Normal Mode. It deals only 22.5% of the Hunter Whip's damage and is unaffected by STR enhancing DSS combinations. In Shooter Mode, the Knife is twice as strong as the whip and can be upgraded into a homing knife, which can pierce through walls and chase enemies by sacrificing a bit of its strength. Combining this sub-weapon with the Venus + Pluto DSS combination allows Nathan to throw two knives simultaneously. He can throw up to three (six with the Venus + Pluto DSS combination) knives on screen.
Nathan can do the Knife's item crush using the Salamander + Pluto DSS combination (20 Hearts). He throws 64 spears, each of them possessing approximately 10% (22% in Shooter Mode) of his whip's strength. He can switch his direction while continuing the item crush. During this period he is invulnerable.
In Aria of Sorrow, Soma can make use of three different variations of knife attacks:
- Knife Throw - This ability is obtained by gaining dominance over the Evil Butcher's soul. Soma throws a single knife forward to inflict Sword damage. The knife, however, won't go through objects and will end its travel with anything it comes in contact with, either an enemy, a candle or a wall.
- Penetrator - This ability is obtained by gaining dominance over Durga's soul. Soma throws a short sword forward to inflict Sword damage. This sword is much larger than the knife from the previous ability and will penetrate through objects, hence having the capability of damaging several enemies with a single attack.
- Scalpel Throw - This ability is obtained by gaining dominance over the Ripper's soul. Soma throws a blood-soaked knife forward, and when it hits an enemy it will get stuck on them, dealing constant damage.
Leon starts his adventure with a simple dagger affixed with a silver blade, and nothing else. When questioned by Rinaldo on whether he was armed for his hunt for Walter, Leon claims, with some hesitation, that he does have "a weapon" (referring to the dagger) despite having to relinquish his sword with his title, and upon getting the Whip of Alchemy the dagger stays on him as a side weapon.
Much like in Harmony of Dissonance, it can be combined with 7 different colored Orbs that can be obtained by defeating bosses for more fantastic attacks. They can also be switch between the different styles of attacks without the need to access a text-based menu screen. However, these new attacks also consume Hearts, the Magic Meter is only used by Relics.
The Dagger orb attacks are as follows:
- Red Orb (Triple Dagger): Three quick-moving daggers are thrown. They can't be seen until impact. This equals triple the damage of the normal dagger. Consume 3 hearts.
- Purple Orb (Magic Missile): Seven needle-like daggers forming a semicircle are summoned. Each will fire, successively counterclockwise, and home in on the enemies. Consume 8 hearts.
- Blue Orb (Needle Claws): Leon will cause a wave of large, sharp needles to rise up and travel toward the enemies, where their path culminates. Consume 4 hearts.
- Green Orb (Force Cannon): Leon will accurately fire a quick but devastating dagger in the form of a beam. Consume 4 hearts.
- Yellow Orb (Astral Knife): A little portals is open up all around Leon, mostly near enemies, from where daggers will suddenly appear and strike them. Consume 10 hearts.
- White Orb (Spread Gun): An inflamed crystal is shoot toward the enemies that cause a great explosion on impact, damaging others in the surround area. Consume 6 hearts.
- Black Orb (Blade Serpent): Daggers in a snake formation are release, that will home in on enemies, circle them, and thus destroy them. Consume 12 hearts.
The dagger represents also a type of damage (Knife), whose effectiveness depends on enemies.
- Main article: Dagger/Lament of Innocence
The Knife sub-weapon is used by Trevor Belmont specifically in his own mode. It is in the first slot of his sub-weapons, which are available from the start. However, the Knife does minimal damage. When used, he simply tosses three knives in front that travel in a straight line. The special attack which costs 10 Hearts, allows Trevor to magically summon plenty of them which form into a whip-like shape that surrounds him. It can be used both offensively and defensively, as any enemies that come in contact with Trevor will immediately be damaged by the torrent of knives. It automatically locks on to the nearest enemy and will follow it for the duration of the spell. This lock-on also works for flying enemies such as Wyvern, Gaibon, and the like.
- Main article: Dagger/Item Data
- See: Dagger/Gallery