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Proto:Castlevania: Bloodlines/December 1993

From The Cutting Room Floor
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This is a sub-page of Proto:Castlevania: Bloodlines.

CVtngproto-title.png
Hmmm...
To do:
Sound rips, more palette change screenshots, etc. Apparently, there's major arrangement changes in the Sound Test menu.

The European prototype of Castlevania: The New Generation is very similar to the final (to the point where some fansites may mistake it for a final release), although it still has a good amount of differences.

General Differences

  • Regional lockout is not yet implemented. The game will detect the console's region and change the title on the copyright screen accordingly, though the title screen itself does not change.
  • Game difficulty is set to Easy by default. Normal is available, although Expert is nonexistent in this build.
  • Certain mid-bosses do not use the supplied boss energy meter. Exceptions include Frankenstein, Death, and Elizabeth. The only regular boss that does not use the energy bar is the Golem summoned during the fight with Death.
  • In certain circumstances, you will continue living despite having zero health, though an extra hit will kill you off.
  • The heroes' hit detection is worse than in the final, and they sometimes receive damage for attacks that don't even come close.
  • In this build, entering the Konami Code (Up, Up, Down, Down, Left, Right, Left, Right, B, A) at the main menu unlocks a Level Select instead of Expert mode. After entering the code, a number will appear; press A or B to increase the value, and C to decrease it. Upon starting the game, you will be warped to the desired level. This will also enable invincibility and the classic Castlevania tunes upon collecting a third coat-of-arms. Interestingly, this was mentioned in the Castlevania Bloodlines strategy guide on the Sega Channel January 1996 dev disc.
Prototype Final
How generous How stingy
  • In the final version, setting BGM to 05 and SE to 73 in the Options menu, exiting back to the main menu, waiting for the title screen animation to replay, and then entering the Konami Code at the main menu will unlock a 9 lives setting in the Options menu. In the prototype, this is a whopping 30 lives instead.
  • During the score tally after defeating the boss, the prototype gives 10 bonus points per health block. This was bumped up to 100 points in the final versions.
  • Enemies deal more damage, even in Easy mode. Even in the final's Expert mode, no enemy can remove more than 2-4 health blocks in a single attack. This is much more noticeable with the skeletons in Stage 4-1.
  • Eric's spear does not impale him when he dies in this build, although the sound still plays.
  • Sword Knight, Blood Skeleton, and Wheeled Knight do not exist at this point.
  • Easy mode does not skip mid-bosses in certain areas as it does in the final versions.
  • Eric's diagonal upward stab just stops if the attack button is tapped; the button must be held to complete the attack.

Sound Differences

  • There are a total of 28 BGM and 168 SFX listed in the prototype's Sound Test, whereas the final has 30 BGM and 208 SFX. The missing BGMs are All Clear and Dracula Orb.
  • Some sound effects are different at this point, and some enemies and bosses don't even have sound effects. For example, the Mace Skeleton makes an odd siren noise as it flails its weapon around, a trait carried from earlier prototypes. Death is completely devoid of sound effects.
  • Stage 3-8 (the area before the Stage 3 boss) plays Stage 4's main theme.
  • The ending and credits themes are available in the sound test. However, since the ending is somewhat broken, neither can be heard during gameplay.
  • Bloody Tears, Beginning, and Vampire Killer do not have the pickup sound (038 in the Sound Test) in the prototype. They were added in the final's music test.
  • Despite the healing sound effect being available and used when picking up a pot roast, the same sound does not play when the player is healed during the score tally.

Graphical Differences

Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-title.png CVtngretail-title.png
  • The prototype's password option has a space between PASS and WORD, carried over from previous builds. The final release does not have the extra space in any region.
Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-axearmor.png CVtngretail-axearmor.png
  • Various foreground objects, background objects, and enemies have palette changes.
  • There is graphical corruption in various places. This can be seen in Eric's fully-powered spear when fighting Death, one of Elizabeth's frames, and in the sparkles that fall down after defeating Dracula.
Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-stage1start.png CVtngretail-stage1start.png
  • The title card at the start of the stage and the score tally at the end were colored in black and white, rather than red and white.
Proto Final (Europe)
Cliffhanger, now buy the full game! You have been awarded additional time
  • The ending is only partially implemented, as it loops its last few frames and does not show the epilogue or credits.

Level Differences

Stage 1

Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-crows.png CVBloodlines-CrowZombieEU.png
  • The dead body at the start of Stage 1-1 has not yet been removed in this build.

Stage 2

  • Minotaurs, as first seen here, shimmer in weird colors as they die.
  • The waterfall in Stage 2-2 is different.
  • The water particles in Stage 2-4 are corrupted. This can be seen when a Medusa Head flies out of the water.
  • The Golem does not raise its hand during its death animation. Furthermore, getting in close contact with its hand as it plays its death animation will damage you.

Stage 3

  • Harpies in the prototype's Stage 3-1 do not have spears, regardless of difficulty. There is only one Harpy with a spear in 3-3.
  • Unlike in the final, the fake breakable wall in Eric's Stage 3-3 route is escapable by simply going right in the prototype. Other retail versions require some mad mashing with the jump and directional buttons to the right.
Proto Final (Europe)
Budget cut. Not anymore.
  • The platforms in the penultimate room before the boss are half the size they are in the final, making the trek to the boss unnecessarily harder.

Stage 4

Proto Final (Europe)
I swear I didn't take them. There they are.
  • The candelabras containing the 1-up, 2000-point money bag, blue gem, and red gem are missing from the prototype's secret alcove in 4-2.
  • The pistons in Stage 4-4 all move at the same speed.
  • Gold skeletons in Stage 4-5 have incomplete death animations.
  • Crouching under the second gear in 4-8 will deal damage. It needs to be cleared in one shot.

Stage 5

Proto Final (Europe)
It's a background object, right? It lives!
  • The Stone Roses at the beginning of Stage 5-1 are not fully implemented yet, which in turn eliminates the control-screw obstacle they cause with their pollen in the final. The grass was also slightly recolored.
Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-bloodfountain1.png CVtngretail-bloodfountain1.png
CVtngproto-bloodfountain2.png CVtngretail-bloodfountain2.png
  • The blood fountain has already been censored by this point. The area is also missing a few platforms and candelabras.
  • The Fleamen (including the ones Elizabeth spawns) behave oddly: instead of converging on Eric, they run away instead.
Proto Final (Europe)
Misery Loves Company Not anymore.
  • The flames from the Bag Slave's death are somehow able to harm John.
Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-bonetowerroom.png CVtngretail-bonetowerroom.png
CVtngproto-bluearmorlord.png CVtngretail-bluearmorlord.png
  • In the bone tower room, the game plays the mid-boss music, whereas in the final it will continue the stage music. The Blue Armor Lord mid-boss is much tougher, its room lacks the seven candelabras present in the final, and you can simply bypass the battle by exiting right at any time. Both rooms were also brightened and had some palette changes in the final.
  • The Silhouette Demon shoots metallic-looking rings instead of energy spheres, which show up in threes instead of twos. Eric can simply stab upwards in the proto to prevent them from spawning; to prevent this, they were made invincible for a short period of time after spawning in the retail versions.

Stage 6

  • "FINAL STAGE START" is missing in the prototype.
  • There are no subweapons, money bags, blue jewels, or Mirror of Truth candelabras at all in this stage at this point, only red jewel candelabras.
  • There are absolutely no Medusa Heads, Crows, Axe Armors, or Fuzz Busters in Stages 6-1, 6-2, and 6-4. The only non-boss enemies that can be found in this stage are the Armor Battlers and the Fleamen that Elizabeth summons in 6-3 and 6-9, respectively.
  • Areas between Stages 6-3 and 6-4 were swapped around for unknown reasons.
Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-gargoyle66.png CVtngretail-gargoyle66.png
CVtngproto-golem66.png CVtngretail-golem66.png
CVtngproto-gearsteamer66.png Did you notice that all the bosses Death summoned start with G?
  • The bosses that Death warps you to use their regular stage palettes instead of the alternate palettes seen in the final. They are also as strong as their original appearance in earlier stages.
  • The Fleamen which Elizabeth summons use the wrong palette.
Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-stairstodracula1.png CVtngretail-stairstodracula1.png
CVtngproto-stairstodracula2.png CVtngretail-stairstodracula2.png
  • 6-10 has a full moon on a blue background, while the full moon background in Stage 6-11 is simply black. The final version has both areas' background changed to a full moon on a black background.
CVtngproto-dracula1stform.png CVtngproto-dracula2ndform.png
  • The fight with Dracula is much, much shorter. Instead of depleting his whole life bar between his three forms like in the final, Dracula changes form after certain amounts of hits.
Proto Final (Europe)
CVtngproto-dracula3rdforma.png CVtngretail-dracula3rdforma.png
CVtngproto-dracula3rdformb.png CVtngretail-dracula3rdformb.png
Without a hit it's the same as the previous phase. CVtngretail-dracula3rdformc.png
  • Dracula's third form's phases differ from the final as well. His first phase retains Drolta's palette instead of using the pink palette seen in the final. His second and third phases use the retail's first phase. There is no background when fighting the final form, either.
Whoa.
  • The flames that appear after defeating Dracula's final form are corrupted, and his death scream is different. The victory theme heard after defeating him in the final doesn't play, as it doesn't exist yet.