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Akumajō Dracula is the first and only Castlevania title released for the Sharp X68000 homecomputer. The game was released only in Japan on July 23, 1993.

Akumajō Dracula has been described by the developers as a "updated, more beautiful version of the original Castlevania", released seven years earlier on the Famicom Disk System. Later series producer Koji Igarashi described the game as a remake of the Famicom original, a term which is also often used in fan circles.

A re-release of Akumajō Dracula called Castlevania Chronicles (Castlevania Chronicle Akumajo DRACULA in Japan) was later produced for the PlayStation in 2001.

StoryEdit

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"Transylvania, a small, peaceful country in Europe’s Middle Ages. In this country, there is a legend about Dracula.

“Once every hundred years, when powers of Christ weaken, the prayers of those with evil hearts revive the Demon King Dracula. Then, upon his return, his dark powers grow more powerful.”

Once, long ago, Dracula returned to this world. However, Dracula’s ambitions to enshroud the whole world with clouds of evil and rule over a world of darkness were crushed thanks to the hero Christopher Belmont.

Dracula was defeated by Christopher Belmont in a battle to the death, and once again entered a hundred year slumber in the Transylvanian countryside. One Easter night, a town held a grand carnival commemorating the resurrection of Christ. However, in a ruined cathedral on the outskirts of town, heretics poured human blood over the remains of Count Dracula in a Black Mass ceremony, hoping to resurrect the Undying.

Then, at the moment when evil clouds covered the town, and a bolt of lightning tore through the cathedral, the Demon King Dracula, with evil ambition, once again returned to this world.

To solve this crisis, Simon, a young man inheriting the blood of the Belmont line, took up the whip imbued with strange powers, which he inherited from his father, and set off alone towards Castle Dracula."
— Official manual description for Akumajō Dracula


GameplayEdit

Most of the game functions the same as the original game, however Simon can control jumps in mid-air and can whip downwards when jumping. The five sub-weapons from the orignal game, the axe, holy water, cross, knife, and stopwatch make a return with the addition of the rare herb which restores Simon's health.

AudioEdit

The game gives a choice between three different sound modules: the X68000's FM Synthesizer, MIDI Roland LA (MT-32, CM-32L, CM-64) and MIDI Roland GS (SC-55, SC-33, SC-155, CM-300, CM-500). While the soundtrack will remain the same throughout the game regardless of which sound module is chosen, the instrumentation may vary and some songs will be arranged slightly differently.

DevelopmentEdit

When the development staff was still deciding on the design choices of a Castlevania game made for the X68000, they concluded the original game was the best of the series. During development they aimed to take the best elements from it, while at the same time being aware this would be a more old-fashioned game in terms of mechanics. Another design concept was to fully make use of the X68000 hardware.

In the middle of the development the new X68030 model was released and the game was made to work on this system as well. Certain differences exist between the X68000 and X68030 versions, such as smoother animations in certain places.

ReceptionEdit

After the release of the game, the development staff received a lot of postive feedback from postcards sent to Konami. However, because the game was aimed at hardcore gamers, there were some complaints that it was too hard.

TriviaEdit

  • The design of the Skull Knight is a reference to Chun-Li from Capcom's Street Fighter series.
  • The Statue enemy was censored during development.

TestEdit

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"Do not underestimate the power of my bloodline!!"
— Juste to Dracula Wraith

Juste Belmont (pronounced "Jeust") is the hero of Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance. He is part of the Belmont Clan, and the grandson of Simon Belmont.

Because his ancestor Sypha Belnades married into the Belmont family, the powers of the Belnades Clan were integrated into the bloodline. Because of this, the descendants of Trevor and Sypha possess the powers of both families. Juste would come to inherited these powers as well.


Character HistoryEdit

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"The main character of the story who is a blood descendant of the Belmont clan, renowned for being the fiercest of vampire hunters. The Belmont clan's magical power is partly derived from blood ties to the Fernandez family.
Having abilities considered prodigious even among his family members, he inherited the whip passed down from his forefathers at the young age of sixteen and has inherited the title of Vampire Killer."
Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance booklet description


Juste grew up in a village which had formed around the Belmont family, who before that point were hated by the local residents, after Simon's great effort fighting against Count Dracula. He grew up there along with his childhood friends Maxim Kischine and Lydie Erlanger. Juste is considered powerful even amongst his family for his superb magical talent derived from the Belnades Clan. He is able to best his friend, Maxim Kischine in a skirmish in order to determine who was the better Vampire Hunter. After being beaten by Juste in the competition, Maxim then goes on a training expedition to better himself. He returns two years later, wounded and amnesiac, and claims that his and Juste's mutual friend, Lydie Erlanger, was kidnapped and taken to a mysterious castle. Juste arrives with the wounded Maxim, but goes alone when Maxim needs to stop and recover. Chased inside by a giant undead knight, Juste has no other choice but to find Lydie with only his trustworthy Vampire Killer and a bracelet that both he and Maxim share.

StoryEdit

Juste meets Maxim at a castle where Lydie is being held captive; after a brief talk, he leaves Maxim outside and begins to explore the castle. Within the castle, Juste encounters Death, who confirms that the castle is Dracula's. He then meets up with a dazed Maxim, whose memory is slowly returning to him and they split up to cover more of the castle ground. While trekking through the castle, Juste notices that the castle sometimes has different atmospheres. He also meets Maxim several more times, but is baffled by how his friend seems to change personalities periodically. Regardless, in one of their meetings, Maxim reveals that he went on a journey to find and destroy the remains of Dracula, something Simon Belmont had previously done, but when he collected all six, his memory went blank.

Juste encounters Death again, who explains that the castle has been split in two "layers" to accommodate the two spirits living in Maxim's body: his original spirit and an evil one created from Dracula's remains and his suppressed jealousy of Juste. Maxim later confirms this and admits to being Lydie's kidnapper. Juste meets his friend again in the other layer of the castle where he reveals that he lost his memory to protect Lydie. He then gives Juste his bracelet to help him locate her in the castle. However, when Juste finds her, Death kidnaps her to use her blood as a means to unite the two castles by destroying Maxim's spirit. Juste defeats Death, and proceeds to search for Maxim. Along the way, he accumulates Dracula's remains, which are scattered throughout the castle. In the center of the castle, he finds Maxim with an unconscious Lydie.

Three endings exist. In the first, Maxim, possessed, has already bitten Lydie. With Maxim's defeat, Juste escapes the collapsing castle alone and curses his inability to save either friend. In the second, Maxim struggles against the possession and urges Juste to kill him. In his final moments, he thanks Juste for killing him and reveals that he had wished to save him from his fate as a Belmont. Outside the castle, Lydie awakens, unharmed, and tells Juste not to blame himself for Maxim's death. The third ending begins the same as the first, except that, during the fight, Maxim notices that Juste wore his bracelet and resists the possession. Dracula flees into a weakened form using the gathered remains and fights Juste, planning to use his blood to return himself to full power. Vanquishing him, Juste escapes the castle together with Maxim and Lydie, whose bite marks disappear by the time she regains consciousness. Outside the castle, the three resolve to return home

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