Earlier this month, it appeared as if Castlevania Resurrection, a canceled Sega Dreamcast project from the early 2000s, had somehow escaped the dark confines of a Konami warehouse somewhere. Now, everyone has a chance to play that prototype thanks to gaming preservationists having archived that early build.
This has all been made possible by the folks over at Sega Dreamcast Info, a French website dedicated to chronicling the history of the much beloved video game console. The site first brought the Castlevania Resurrection prototype to light weeks ago, and has now made the ROM and associated files available via Archive.org.
Sega Dreamcast Info’s breakdown indicates that the Castlevania Resurrection prototype includes several levels as well as a boss battle against Medusa. Being an unoptimized build of an incomplete game, you can also expect a variety of bugs and freezes. Included in the download are files for emulation as well as a version for burning to disc and playing on an actual Dreamcast.
Castlevania Resurrection was intended to follow Sonia Belmont and a new character named Victor Belmont as they traveled back in time to, what else, square off with Dracula. But despite a private reveal at E3 1999 and even getting a brief write-up in Dreamcast Magazine, developers like former Konami artist Jason Lee Elliott now consider the game “doomed from the start” due to the Resurrection team’s lack of experience with the genre. Konami canceled the project in March 2000.
While there’s zero indication that Castlevania Resurrection would have been a hit, archival projects like this are important to maintaining an ongoing record of video game history, and it’s not everyday you get to try a “new” Castlevania game. Kudos to the folks at Sega Dreamcast Info for documenting this prototype and its anonymous owner for allowing its wide release rather than hoarding it to themselves.