|Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia|
|Released date(s)|| October 21, 2008 (NA)|
October 23, 2008 (Japan)
February 6, 2009 (Europe)
March 12, 2009 (Australia)
|Media(s)||512 megabit Cartridge|
|Rating(s)|| ACB: M|
|Director(s)||Moriemon, Koji Igarashi (Producer)|
|Composer(s)||Michiru Yamane, Yasuhiro Ichihashi|
|Mode(s)||Single player, Multiplayer|
Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia is the third Castlevania title released for the Nintendo DS handheld platform. Though developed by the same team that created Portrait of Ruin, it has dropped the anime inspired artwork of its two predecessors in favor of a more traditional Gothic style with character design by newcomer Masaki Hirooka. It is also notably the first canonical game to feature a woman in the lead role, who is known as Shanoa.
This game was released on October 21st, 2008 in the US and October 23rd 2008 in Japan on the Nintendo DS.
The basic gameplay is like all other "Metroidvania" style games. The system for this game is known as the Glyph System. Shanoa is able to absorb the powers found in glyphs found throughout the castle and within enemies. These glyphs give her magical weapons and abilities and consume her magic meter, which automatically replenishes itself. She can equip a glyph in her right hand, her left hand, and on her back, marking a return to the two-handed weapon style only seen in Symphony of the Night. Each usage of glyph absorbs magic meaning simple attacks use magic. However, equipping certain glyph combinations in each hand will give the ability to activate a "Glyph Union", which will execute a powerful special attack that consumes hearts instead of magic. Glyphs can be found in certain locations on the map, or can be dropped by enemies; at which point, Shanoa can absorb the glyphs simply by holding the up button. Some enemies also use Glyphs to attack; you may interrupt their attacks by absorbing their Glyphs. Additionally, there are Glyphs that affect the environment; Shanoa will have to absorb these in order to proceed. Besides from attacking, there are also glyphs that will boost skills, increase speed, transform Shanoa into an enemy creature, and so forth.
Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia takes place after Castlevania: Symphony of the Night, sometime in the early 1800s. As the Belmont Clan had vanished by that time, several organizations are created in order to research countermeasures against Dracula and his army's eventual return. Between these organizations, the most promising was the Order of Ecclesia who created a triad of magical glyphs named "Dominus". Shanoa is a young lady chosen by the order's leader, Barlowe, as the human vessel for Dominus, but just before the ritual is performed, the glyphs are stolen by Shanoa's best (and only) friend and fellow Ecclesia member Albus, disrupting the ritual and apparently costing Shanoa her emotions and memories. Upon awakening, Barlowe tells her of his version of the events and orders her to retrieve Albus and Dominus.
In her pursuit, Shanoa arrives in the deserted Wygol Village and finds out that Albus kidnapped its inhabitants and keeps each one of them imprisoned in a different location. As Shanoa rescues them throughout the game, she learns that Albus captured them to perform some kind of twisted experiment on them which involved draining samples of their blood. Each villager rescued provides Shanoa with tasks that once completed, provide new rewards. Although completing the tasks is not required to complete the game, its final areas are only unlocked when all villagers are rescued.
On two occasions, Shanoa manages to track down Albus, who willingly lets her retrieve one of the Dominus glyphs. But when she finds him possessed by the power of the third and final glyph, she is forced to battle him; it transpires his objective in gifting her with the glyphs was to learn her absorption technique. If there are villagers left to rescue at that part of the game, Shanoa retrieves the final piece of Dominus after killing Albus and immediately returns to Ecclesia to perform the ritual. The game ends with her untimely death and Barlowe's master plan completed.
However, if all villagers are rescued before Shanoa's final confrontation with Albus, his conscience fuses with hers when she absorbs the final glyph and she learns that Albus's true intentions were to find a way to defeat Dracula without Shanoa using Dominus, as he knew that it would cost her life if she used it. He also reveals that the reason he experimented on the villagers was because they were the last descendants of the Belmont Clan, and he (erroneously) believed their blood would have the power to help him control Dominus without it consuming him. As for her lost emotions and memories, he revealed that Barlowe used them as a sacrifice to gain control of Dominus, a fact he hid from her. He also revealed that Dominus is made from Dracula's own essence.
Confronting her master after learning the truth, Shanoa hears from him that his true objective all this time was to bring Dracula back to life using her as a sacrifice. After Barlowe is defeated, he ends up offering his own life to fulfill his ambition. With no memories left, no emotions left, and with the death of those who were most precious to hers, Shanoa sets for Dracula's castle to put him back into his slumber, and complete the task she has spent her whole life preparing herself for. Shanoa infiltrates Dracula's castle, defeats many of his underlings, and finally confronts him. She successfully defeats him using Dominus, but seemingly at the cost of her own life. However, Albus's spirit appears and reveals to Shanoa that while using Dominus demands a life in return, it need not be hers. He gives up his own in Shanoa's place after restoring her emotions and memories back, but not before he asks her to smile for him one last time. Albus's soul disappears, Castlevania crumbles into ruins and Shanoa escapes. It is also said that all records of Ecclesia vanished soon afterward.
- Main article: Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia/Gallery
|Heroes & Supporting Cast|
The heroine of the story. Intended to be the vessel of Dominus (Playable)
Shanoa's adoptive brother and an antagonist for the first part of the game (Playable)
The founder of Ecclesia and Shanoa's master. Becomes an antagonist in the second part of the game.
People from Wygol Village. Kidnapped by Albus. They later help Shanoa in her quest and give her missions.
Ecclesia was founded to defeat this powerful vampire in the absence of the Belmont Clan. Final Boss.
Shane Bettenhausen in the August 15, 2008 1Up Yours podcast raved after his hands-on experience with the game, "It's maybe... the best Castlevania ever", and called it a cross between Symphony of the Night and Simon's Quest, noting that the high difficulty level ("You will die a lot. You will die all the time") was balanced by the roleplaying elements. Bettenhausen also raved about the quality of the game, despite the length, noting there are "3 or 4 levels of things to find". He concluded his experience with the game stating "It's all action-RPG oriented Castlevania at its best". He later awarded the game an A- for 1Up.com, stating, "With this game, series director Koji Igarashi proves that he can still breathe new life into this long-running, often self-cannibalizing franchise."
Order of Ecclesia has gained generally favorable reviews, with the reviewers often praising its increased difficulty over the older installments of the series, the new "Glyph" system and the renewed artwork.
The game was made by the team who developed Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin along with Igarashi. In a Wired interview, Igarashi said, "We're doing another Nintendo DS version. There hasn't been an official announcement, but we're doing it... we want people to enjoy the PSP version Castlevania: The Dracula X Chronicles, and afterwards we're announcing it. So, please wait a little bit". On January 25, 2008 a group of "leaked" screenshots from a DS Castlevania game that also showed Wii connectivity appeared. In response, Igarashi didn't give a direct answer if this was even the same game or said it was an official Konami product—he told IGN that "Konami doesn't comment on rumor or speculation". Eventually, it was confirmed by a later update that these were screenshots from Order of Ecclesia.
|Giant Skeleton||Minera Prison Island||800||350|
|Jiang Shi||Large Cavern||6500||2525|
Use of LatinEdit
- Main article: Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia/Use of Latin
The word ecclesia is Latinized Greek in origin, meaning "assembly" and used in English to denote either a particular local group, or the whole body of the faithful. Ecclesia is also another name for the Catholic Church.
Many of the names in Order of Ecclesia come from Latin, place and glyph names.
- Category:Order of Ecclesia
- Category:Order of Ecclesia Artwork
- Category:Order of Ecclesia Characters
- Order of Ecclesia Bestiary
- Order of Ecclesia Inventory
- Order of Ecclesia Locations
- Order of Ecclesia Original Soundtrack
- Order of Ecclesia Promo Soundtrack
- Official Koma - Comic panels associated with this game.
- Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin - The previous game in the Nintendo Dual Screen series (not chronologically).
- Castlevania Best Music Collections BOX - Contains music from this game on Disk 15
- BradyGames Order of Ecclesia Official Strategy Guide - US Official Strategy Guide
- Konami Akumajo Dracula: Ubawareta Kokuin Official Guide - Japan Official Strategy Guide
- Game Informer
- Kotaku article on rumored image
- Silicon Era Order of Ecclesia news
- Nintendic - ESRB Ratings