Bloodstained is the Castlevania game you’ve been waiting for

At the risk of being reductive, there’s very little to say about Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night other than this: it is good. From the day this game hit Kickstarter more than four years ago, it’s always been clear what it was intended to achieve. If it managed that, it would be good. If not, it would be a failure.

So yes, Ritual of the Night is good, and that’s because its developers pulled off their one job: revive the “Igavania,” a specific style of Castlevania game that producer Koji Igarashi worked on at Konami for a little over a decade. Beginning with 1997’s Symphony of the Night, Igarashi transformed the action-focused Castlevania series into a mixture of Metroid-style exploration with heavy role-playing elements. Two trilogies…

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