Review: Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Ultimate Edition

Gameplay

Ahhhh.. Castlevania. Whether you are new to the series or remeber the pimple-faced days of playing the original on your NES, it mattereth not. Belmont and Company are back with a "new" adventure that launched a few years back on Xbox 360 and PS3. While the latest entry in the series was praised for stunning artwork, music and sound, the main struggle was a big dip in frames per second, especially on the Xbox 360. Well, now the series is on PC with both DLC packages and a great port at a budget price. How does Lords of Shadow hold up in the gameplay department on PC? Amazingly, if you have a gamepad! Whether you snag a PS3 controller or wired 360 controller, it's a must to enjoy this adventure. Swinging, whipping and throwing holy water on vampires all are a blast in this game. This is HUGE adventure with even more to offer with included DLC. Whether you are even remotely interested in the series or action gaming at its best, pick this game up, NOW.

Drool bucket NOT included.

Graphics and Sound

Look, I am a jaded old gamer that is hard to impress. Hey, at least I admit it. Very rarely in gaming am I blown away with graphics, with art quality and even more rare so, when both strike a perfect balance. Saying that Lords of Shadow is a work of art both technically and artistically is a gross understatement. Now if you don't understand what I mean by that, let me put that into terms you kids in 2013 will understand: This game is ZOMG beautiful, stunning, amazing and a thrill to see. The game runs beautifully maxed out even on minimal machines with just an occasional slow down. Playing this title at 60 FPS is such a joy and such a landmark in game art, I couldn't stop taking screenshots. Kudos to Mercury Steam for this staggering acheivement. Whether it is pristine waterfalls, stagnant swamps or cold, stark castle filled with vampires, this game nails atmosphere.

Now, the game looks gorgeous but how does it sound? Ummm.. yeah. It excels in that department too. Whips snap, ground is pounded with a slam of deep bass, creature sound grotesque and much more. Apart from that, most of the voice acting is amazingly well done. Patrick Stewart as Zobek and the narrator is candy for the ear. We love you Picar... err Patrick! Rounding off the package is a lush orchestral soundtrack that is haunting, subtle and bombastic all at once. Strike up another audio masterpiece!

Excuse #79,657 to post a screenshot

Fun

If you can't tell by now, I am in love with Lords of Shadow. This version has been a long time coming but it meets and exceeds every expectation I had. The main quest is beyond beefy with tons of unlocks and collectibles not mention the included DLC chapters. It plays great, it looks like a dream, sounds like heaven and will thrill, excite and scare you. Honestly, you need to pick this up on Steam ASAP. It's available at a budget price but bests most full priced games. 

Final Verdict: 

While a lot of action adventure games linger in mediocrity, Castlevania Lords of Shadow stands above the pack. While not perfect, it's one of the best games we've played in recent memory.

4.5/5 Stars -- DigitalHippos Highly Recommended