The Morning Star (called "Chain" in Japanese versions, and sometimes Chain Whip, PowerUp or Power-Up) is an item that no vampire hunter should be without. Found in most action-platformer Castlevania titles by hitting candles (or occasionally dropped by an enemy), it powers up the player's weapon (usually the Vampire Killer whip) in two tiers, increasing attack power and/or range each time. These power-ups usually last until the player dies.
While the Belmont Clan have been the primary users of this item for the longest time, Alucard (son of Dracula) used these back in Dracula's Curse to make himself more powerful. Reinhardt Schneider, Carrie Fernandez, Cornell and Henry Oldrey also used these to power up their attacks in both Nintendo 64 Castlevania titles.
John Morris and Eric Lecarde are the only vampire hunters who don't use the Morning Star as power-up; instead, they use a variant called the "Coat of Arms". John's weapon would become a chain whip and then a morning star, as is the usual transformation for the whip, whereas Eric's Alucard Spear would elongate from a spear into a trident, then a much nastier-looking trident with folding blades. On higher difficulties, it's possible for players to obtain a third Coat of Arms which pushes the powers of the weapons a level further, engulfing the Vampire Killer in cyan electricity and the Alucard Spear with green flames (this state could also be achieved by finding hidden Spell Books in the walls of some areas). However, this power-up only lasts until the player is hit, at which point the whip/spear reverses to its second power level (taking more hits while in this state won't degrade the weapon any further).
|Item Data: Morning Star|
|Image||Name - Game|
|Type / Users||Attributes / Consume||Statistics / Sell||Found||Notes|
|Power: Increases power of Whip in 2 different stages; Comment: Short chain for 1st level, long chain for 2nd level boost|| Item|
Trevor C. Belmont, Alucard
|Increases the power of the Whip in 2 levels: short chain for 1st level boost, longer chain for 2nd level boost|| Item|
|Increases the power of your whip (2 levels).|| Item|
|Increases your long-range weapon power. You can collect a maximum of 2 of these items.|| Item|
|Coat of Arms|
|Power-up John's whip to three levels.|| Item|
|Power-up Eric's lance to three levels.|| Item|
- The very first Castlevania game and Castlevania Chronicles used a standard whip item rather than the blade-and-snake design that appeared in Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse. Despite its appearance, Super Castlevania IV once again calls it a "Morning Star" ("Chain" in the Japanese version).
- In the instruction booklet for Akumajō Densetsu, the Morning Star item is used to represent Trevor's whip and Alucard's Shot Bullet.
- In the instruction booklet for Dracula's Curse, the item is also used to represent Trevor's Mystic Whip, although it's upside-down for some reason.
- Each character in Castlevania: Bloodlines has their own unique Coat of Arms. John's slightly resembles the Great Seal of the United States, although with a cross instead of an eagle, whereas Eric's is more generic, not quite matching any one real world coat of arms exactly.
- A variation on John's Coat of Arms returned as a background display in the later games, although most prominently in Portrait of Ruin, taking place many years after Bloodlines.
- In Castlevania: Lament of Innocence, three door switches in the House of Sacred Remains bear an emblem that resembles the Morning Star.
- The animated series makes reference to the transitional power-up with a chest hidden in the wall of the Belmont house's treasure-vault, holding a chain whip with a morning-star head (named by Trevor and Dracula as "the Morning Star"). Trevor's sacred leather whip is not seen again.