* ContestedSequel
* CrowningMusicOfAwesome: If you can get past the NES-like synthesized tones in the music, this game actually has some of the most haunting melodies heard in any of the portable Castlevanias (in particular, the theme heard in the bad ending), and a few badass tracks like the medley "Vampire Killer 2002".
** Successor of Fate. Very atmospheric.
** The [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PZ2Go8EkLNY final boss theme]] is dark but gives the feeling of triumph.
* GameBreaker: The game lets you hold up to 99 of any item, as opposed to 9 in newer games. With enough money, you can easily buy 99 Potions and Hi-Potions, which makes survival trivial.
** Maxim mode itself gives you the use of Maxim. And god, isnt he broken. Multi-hitting Shuriken Sub weapon, Invincible Rolls, FAST Stab attack, EVEN MORE FAST crouching kick (despite its pitiful range though), and a Franchise/StreetFighter command-esque move that is so powerful it wipes out boss easilly. Sure, it's a Bonus Mode, but try him in Boss Rush, and see how broken he really is.
** Cross + Wind Book. It creates a bunch of floating crosses that circle around you for pretty low MP cost. Those crosses won't disappear until they hit a certain number of times. It breaks both mooks (usually nothing will be able to get close to you) AND bosses (crosses hit many times before they disappear, constantly dealing damage).
* GoddamnedBats/[[GoddamnedBoss Bosses]]: Anything that can [[StandardStatusEffects curse]] you, thanks to this game making said effect even more annoying than usual and also using it very frequently.
* HoYay / FoeYay: At some point, poor Lydie starts to seem like a third wheel, some of Maxim's lines to Juste border on turgid, and the implicit love triangle becomes... complicated...
* ItsEasySoItSucks: The major complaint by {{fan hater}}s.
* NeverLiveItDown: Juste Belmont will [[MemeticMutation forever be mocked by fans for his (optional) sidequest to redecorate a single bare room in Castlevania with all sorts of furniture]].
* NightmareFuel:
** Legion, of course.
** Now in two delicious flavors! The standard Granfaloon "Destroy its outer layer of corpses, then whip the core" Legion and a new, more terrifying "Corpse" form, which involves whiping open a giant wound to attack its weak point -- a crucified skeleton! And the ''[[HellIsThatNoise sounds]]'' it makes! [[SarcasmMode Yay!]]