Growing up during the Nintendo Entertainment Console days, many old school gamers remember playing classic Castlevania side scrolling, hack and slash games. The goal was always simple. Infiltrate Dracula's castle and destroy the evil monster. Over the years, the Castlevania franchise has evolved and most recently experienced a reboot back in 2010 that was titled Castlevania: Lords of Shadows. Mirror of Fate is a side story sequel to the 2010 game and continues the story being retold in Lords of Shadows.
The story of Castlevania is as connected to the evil villain, Dracula, as it is to the family of heroes tasked with destroying him...the Belmonts. In the rebooted story of Lords of Shadow, the Belmont family members are Knights within the Brotherhood of Light and each of them has a personal vendetta against the Dark Lord. The player assumes control of the Belmont lineage through three generations as each member battles the Dark Lord in an attempt to destroy the immortal villain.
Mirror of Fate is broken up into a prologue and three main Acts. The prologue begins by telling the story of Gabriel Belmont continued from the story told in Castlevania: Lords of Shadow. Act I jumps 40 years into the future and focuses on Gabriels grandson, Simon Belmont. Simon is on a quest to destroy the Dark Lord as revenge for the death of his parents by the forces of Dracula. Act II switches the attention to the mysterious vampire hero named Allucard as he attempts to help Simon defeat the Dark Lord. Act III goes back to the past to follow the footsteps of Simon's father and Gabriel's son, Trevor Belmont. Trevor is also on a quest to avenge the death of his mother.
MercurySteam did an admirable job of trying to shake up the chronological order of the story to help add to the mysterious ending, but I felt it only complicated the story and did nothing to hide the predictable conclusion. It also hurt the game that the entire story was set in the same locations, meaning the player had to replay a lot of the same levels over and over as all three main characters had to revisit the same areas. By Act III, the game began to feel very repetitive.
The gameplay in Mirror of Fate is well done. The player can switch between the Belmont's iconic Vampire Killer Whip and magic abilities. Mirror of Fate also includes platforming and puzzle questing elements and introduces Quick Time Events (QTE) that aren't too bad, but don't feel as natural as they do in other games. The 3D graphics work very well, although the overall graphical look of Mirror of Fate feels dated.
Overall, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate is a good game for anyone who enjoys classic side scrolling hack and slash platforming games. Any old school Castlevania fan that also enjoyed the recent Lords of Shadow reboot will find much to enjoy with the fresh new feel Mirror of Fate helps Lords of Shadow add to the Castlevania franchise, while still having the same classic charm.