A Preview by Fenrir-Lunaris
Vampire's Curse was developed for the Halloween Contest of 2007. The name Vampire's Curse is derived from the SNES Castlevania game Vampire's Kiss, and the filename of Akumajo is a direct reference to the Akumajo Dracula / Castlevania series. In a sense, Vampire's Curse is an homage to this series of vampire slaying games, and shares many similar elements with them.
Vampire's Curse follows a lone protagonist named Baron Orlock, who after his vampiric transformation resembles Max Schrek (who is perhaps best known for a similar character in movies). Orlock's wife is slain in an attack by Dracula, and goes to Dracula's demonic castle hoping to put an end to the vampire's reign. Orlock fails, and is turned into one of the undead. Swearing revenge, Orlock then proceeds to track down the vampire so he can put an end to his dark unlife, hopefully redeeming himself in the process.
Along the way, Orlock repeatedly encounters a mysterious entity who reveals himself as Dante, a cloaked being with a glowing red eye seen under his hood. Dante assists Orlock in learning about his newfound vampiric strengths, and pushes him in the right direction to defeat Dracula, warning that if along the way Orlock kills too many creatures, he will remain a vampire forever. Orlock is then given virtually free reign to explore the castle; defeating monsters, fighting Dracula's minions, and sinking deeper into the depths of madness with each kill.
At Dracula's keep, Dante and Orlock confront Dracula about his crimes against humanity, and Dracula likewise scoffs at Orlock's wish for vengeance on behalf of his deceased wife. The two trade insults until Dracula grows tired of the charade, and posits the question "What is a man?" - the theme of the game itself. The game's plot diverges in four directions after Dracula's demise, each depending on the player's ability to make it to the end with as few kills as possible. In one ending, Orlock's humanity is returned to him, and he goes out to great the morning sun, his sins forgiven. Most of the game's endings follow this chain of progression, except the final, hidden ending; where Dante's true identity is revealed, and a final battle for the fate of the world must be waged.
Vampire's Curse started development in mid September of 2007 after I saw a Youtube video about the opening scene for Castlevania - Symphony of the Night, and another featuring a remix of the song "Bloody Tears". Development quickly began, and I stated that the game itself would feature multiple endings based solely around a player's performance. It makes heavy use of downsampled MP3 music from various Castlevania games as well as a full range of sound effects and heavy use of plotscripting for the game's 100+ unique battles. A second version featuring midi music in lieu of the MP3 soundtrack was simultaneously released pending any unforseen problems with uploading the game to Castle Paradox or Slime Salad.
A quasi-hidden encounter with Cthulhu from Vikings of Midgard can also be fought, if certain conditions are met.