Kid Dracula (NES) Playthrough – NintendoComplete

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A playthrough of Konami’s 1990 action-platformer for the Nintendo Famicom, Akumajou Special: Boku Dracula-kun! (悪魔城すぺしゃる ぼくドラキュラくん!).

As you might have noticed from its original title, this game was a direct spin-off from the Castlevania series. Literally translated, the title means “Demon Castle Special: I’m Dracula-kun!,” and Demon Castle Dracula is typically called Castlevania when the games are translated into English. The Game Boy sequel/remix game was released in English under the name, “Kid Dracula.”

You can find my video of the Game Boy game here:

I am playing a fan-translation for this video, so the title screen reflects the logical localization of the title for western audiences. If you are interested in playing the game, you can find information on its translation here:

Kid Dracula on the Famicom (NES) was announced as part of the line-up for Konami’s Castlevania Anniversary Collection to be released later this month, so I thought I would upload a playthrough for anyone that might be curious about it.

It’s a cutesy take on a series that’s typically known for it’s gothic horror trappings, featuring several Castlevania series’ staple characters in super-cute, brightly-colored SD form. Like Parodius and Otomedius are of Gradius, the Kid Dracula titles are parodies of the Castlevania games.

You play as an adorably squat version of Alucard in Kid Dracula in this one, and ultimately have to face off against Garamoth and Death. (Anybody else noting the Symphony of the Night connections here?) Many of the stages and some of the music are adapted from the first three Castlevania games – I thought that the nod to Castlevania III was particularly cool in the first stage’s background music. The graphics are fantastic by NES standards, too. There are quite a few effects that look very impressive for the hardware (notice how stage 1 actually fades in during the transition from the intro without cutting to a black screen? Or the size of the boss characters?), and I loved the recreation of the iconic clock tower scene.

I’m extremely curious to see how Konami handles the graphics for the US release. I highly doubt that the first stage’s boss will look the same in the upcoming release – even though it’s a totally innocent-looking ghost with a manji on his forehead in Japan, I really doubt Americans will view him the same way. So awkward… Haha!

The game feels much different from the standard Castlevania games to play – the sprites are all far larger, the jumps are much floatier (much closer to Mario than Simon or Trevor), and now earn secondary powers through magic learned at the end of each stage instead of sub-weapons with heart ammo. These allow Alucard to shoot mega-buster style fireballs, using homing projectiles, to turn into a bat, or whatever else might suit the challenges the stages present. It all feels smooth and works well within the context of the game, though like I said before, it feels much different from a typical Castlevania adventure. The game is also a bit more forgiving than Castlevania games tend to be, though it does amp up the challenge a fair amount near the end.

I’m very happy to see it finally getting a western release. Kid Dracula was just one among many classic Konami NES titles that never got a release outside of Japan, and it has aged surprisingly well for a nearly 30-year-old NES game.

It’s cute, it’s fun, and it’s well worth giving a chance. Highly recommended!

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No cheats were used during the recording of this video.

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46 COMMENTS

  1. I think Konami might've been making fun of specific sequences/designs from other games around the same time, like ribbing everyone else that was popular at the time. The underwater section of this game had copious amounts of corner-bolted tiles and wavy animated seaweed, both very similar to Super Mario Bros 3. I think the overabundance of the cornerbolt tile in this game might be an exaggeration of how common those platforms appeared in SMB3. That Chinese dragon boss is a replication of the dragon bosses from Ghosts 'N Goblins, just drawn in the style of this game. The chibi statue of liberty quiz "boss" in particular reminds me of a very similar "fight" against a sphinx in Sega's Wonder Boy in Monster World.

  2. Man this game looks just like Konami’s other series. From charging your shot to getting a new weapon after each boss.

    Heck even the damage sprite and being knocked back is an exact copy of it.

  3. This game is in the Castlevania Anniversary Collection. I like it, very fun. And the first level music is fun too.

  4. Gosh I been looking for this game for so long…. I didn't remember the name, thought it was just a Castlevenia meme or side-game. I think I was only grade 5. There was a part where you need to understand Japanese in order to progress… I had to ask my house-mate nanny because she can speak Japanese lol. Good childhood memory!

  5. Game paling suka / Favorit..
    Main waktu SD Thn 1988.. itu juga Cartridge nya tukeran sama saudara..
    Setelah di minta kembali / di tukar lagi kasetnya.. Sy merasa sedih 😭😭

  6. I don't know, I think I prefer the GB's music. Also, gotta love the happy remixes of the Castlevania music. High class all around.

  7. Just beat this. The last stages music sounded like it would be at home in mega man. Not a difficult game but worth playing.

  8. I've been playing this on the anniversary collection. Never played this as a kid but having a good time so far. Gives off a SMB3,tiny toon nes vibe.

  9. Played this game on Castlevania Anniversary Collection. It's a surprisingly awesome spin-off, with fun levels, gameplay and great music. And thankfully the game isn't too frustrating, nor too easy. There's some rough spots, but a little skill (and some save states) helps.

  10. Why does everyone keep saying this is Alucard? As far as we know this is Dracula as a kid, not his kid right? Genuinely interested if there is more to this backstory since everyone keeps saying that we're playing as baby Alucard.

  11. As much as I usually resist the urge to go “Squee!” at cute things, this is seriously testing me.
    Also, do you think older Alucard would smile or sweat-drop at the sight of this? I’m pretty sure Lord of Shadows dad and son would both be like, “😓 Are you f—ing kidding me?”
    Also also, if Kid Drac here is anything like Xellos, does him opening his eyes mean sh—‘s about to get real?

  12. I can just imagine Dracula rifing through old photo albums and then there's a picture of Alucard, spiky young boy hair and all, looking dapper in a fitted tux.

  13. I could have sworn you ride on a skateboard at some point in this game. I think I was just confusing this with the Alucard from Captain N.

  14. The final stage is so cheap in my opinion. I found the game to be quite fun until that point. Especially since dying resets you to the beginning of the stage

  15. When Alucard was a kid and was enjoying life in the castle. Proof: he's standing on day at the beginning of the game. Vlad cannot do that.

  16. Honestly this seems more fun than the original Castlevania. I wanna full series of this.
    LIL MAN SHOOTS HOT STUFF AT OTHER LIL THINGS

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