Summary: As a package " Castlevania: Harmony of Despair " offers an appealing package to the right player, its just the right player is not necessarily the traditional series fan. With so much hinging on others to get the most from the game many long time followers may be put off by the need for multiplayer.
Excerpt: Similarly to the recent Mega Man games, Castlevania: Harmony of Despair’s visuals have retro charm, which will appeal to series fans. Characters are all from past entries in the franchise and the musical pieces are remixed versions of those from other games.
Excerpt: Does anyone recall ever asking for a multiplayer Castlevania game? Well, regardless, here we are. Harmony of Despair comes way out of left field, and it hooks you in unexpected ways. Not too bad for a concept that by all rights should be unworkable.
Summary: Castlevania: Harmony of Despair is not the 2D sequel to Symphony of the Night that Castlevania fans have been clamoring for, but it is a fresh approach to a series that has been remarkably predictable since the PlayStation's pitch-perfect Symphony of the Night.
Pros: Entertaining co-op action for up to six players, Deep character customization through equipment, magic, and skill acquisitions, Challenging, fast-paced gameplay, Six playable protagonists from previous Castlevania games
Cons: Pixelated visual style goes for a retro feel instead of a modern take, Some may lament the lack of continues or extra lives, No story elements or leveling from earlier titles
Summary: If it feels like you've played Castlevania: Harmony of Despair before, then you're not alone. From the eerily familiar name to the hodgepodge of recognizable characters, there's a sense that you've been there and done that. Even the game's graphics and sound are reminiscent of recent installments.
Excerpt: The classic console game, Castlevania arrives on XBox Live with Castlevania: Harmony of Despair and unlike the original game, this title supports co-operative play with up to six players, which is pretty damn impressive.