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  • Alternative Character Interpretation:
    • As this review points out, the entire "adventure" in Castlevania could've taken place in Tim's mind.
    • Justin Halley, captain of the Snake Men, from Metal Gear 1, is portrayed here in a way that is significantly different to the iconic, melodramatic Solid Snake as he would be in Metal Gear Solid.
  • Complete Monster (by publication date):
    • Blaster Master: The Plutonium Boss is a sadistic Planetary Parasite who feeds on a planet's radiation. Ingraining itself into a planet's core and slowly killing it as it feasts on the core's radiation, once the Plutonium Boss has had its fill, it arises from the ground and annihilates everyone on the planet. Doing this to Eve's home planet Signar-el before moving on to Earth, the Plutonium Boss experiments on organisms to make them its mutated warriors, including a teenage human named Alex. Kidnapping Eve to lure Jason Frudnick and Alex to its lair, the Plutonium Boss reveals to the trio the Psychlotron machine, which will speed up both the feeding process and the destruction of Earth at a much faster rate.
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    • Metal Gear: Colonel Vermon CaTaffy is the dictator of the small, but wealthy, country of Nouria. CaTaffy always hated "the free world" and wanted to bring it to its knees. Constantly committing atrocities, like the bombing of civilian aircraft and the torture of civilians and non-combatants for fun, CaTaffy decided to build his own Weapon of Mass Destruction, kidnapping Doctor Pettovich and his daughter Ellen to force Pettovich to build him Metal Gear, threatening to kill his daughter if he refused. When the US military sends nearly all Snake Men to Outer Heaven to stop CaTaffy, he managed to capture them and torture them all, some fatally. After his Metal Gear is complete, CaTaffy tries to launch the nukes at Washington, London, Tokyo, Canberra and Paris to "destroy the free world".
    • Ninja Gaiden: Jacquio, real name Guardia de Mieux, is a demonic being who seeks to use the light and dark statues to awaken a powerful demon, harness its energy, and gain world domination with his demon army. Kidnapping Ken Hayabusa and making him his mind-controlled fighter after he and Dr. Wimpleton steal the statues, Jacquio sends thieves out to regain the statues, uncaring of the casualties. With the teenage Ryu Hayabusa, Ken's son, inside his personal temple, Jacquio promises to kill CIA agent Irene Lew should he not get his dark statue back, forcing Ryu to fight his monsters after he complies. Seething with glee over forcing Ryu to fight his mutated, mind-controlled father, once he finds them reconciling, Jacquio attempts to kill them both and continue his world domination plan.
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    • Bionic Commando: Generalissimo Kilt is the leader of the terrorist organization BADD who steals the plans for the Albatross, a deadly weapon which he'll use to destroy the world and rule over the remains. Kidnapping Super Joe and damaging Jack Markson's arm enough to have it amputated, Kilt plans to give Joe a slow, painful death. Once the Albatross is completed, Kilt and scientist Master Destructo decide to have it destroy North America as a way to test its power. After the Albatross perishes, Kilt leaves his men behind to escape with Destructo, but despite dying at the hands of Jack, Kilt posthumously reveals to have programmed his lair to self-destruct should he perish, gleefully preparing to take his own men with him to the grave.
  • Fridge Brilliance: Dracula being subservient to a manifestation of Death makes some sense when you realize Death is usually the hardest boss in Castlevania games.
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  • Harsher in Hindsight: The Bionic Commando novelization has an instance of this. Early in the book, Jack has trouble working the bionic arm, but pulls through. When he gets through the area he speaks to the arm, telling it he'll take care of it, and it'll take care of him. Fast forward to the 2009 reboot, where Rad Spencer's arm is his wife, who vowed to always be by his side.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The Castlevania II book has Dracula be a lackey of a Greater-Scope Villain named Thanatos, Master of Death. Later Castlevania games would have the heroes, as well as Dracula himself, face off against Satan on occasion, and Aria of Sorrow reveals the castle and all of Dracula's power stems from a single monster named Chaos.
  • Narm: The main reason these books are remembered is for their copious amounts of this:
    • Castlevania II opens thusly:
    It looked as though Count Dracula was going to win the battle.
    "I will drink your spirit like cherry pop!" said the count, flapping his cape and showing his fangs. "Yes, Simon Belmont! You will become one of my children of the night!"
    "Dedicated to the ninja in everyone's dad."
  • The Scrappy: Timothy Bradley, the protagonist of the Castlevania II book, is one of the least-liked characters in the book series for his candy cravings, drawing attention away from Simon Belmont, being generally self-centered and cowardly depending on the danger, and making awful puns. He gets a little better later on in the book as he does more stuff to help, but not by much.
  • So Bad, It's Good: They're comparable to Captain N: The Game Master in this regard, especially Mega Man 2, Metal Gear, and Castlevania II. Blaster Master and Bionic Commando are generally regarded as the best adaptations, with the former even becoming canon to the game series.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • The Mega Man 2 book has Mega Man inexplicably become human, which leads to him feeling afraid of Air Man for all of half a page before the plotline is all but ignored.
    • The Castlevania II book has Dracula's spirit fighting for control of Simon's body, which is accurate to the game's backstory to a degree, but it isn't delved into much as Timothy is able to drive Drac off with bad jokes. Simon also has to resist the Seven Deadly Sins to avoid Dracula's influence, which leads to a bout with gluttony and anger and not much else.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Worlds of Power's Dracula accidentally ends up relatable because he can't stomach Timothy Bradley's awful jokes.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic: Tim Bradley was meant to be a relatable viewpoint character for the reader but ends up as a case of This Loser Is You who alternately tries to get out of helping Simon and doesn't realize the gravity of dangerous situations until they're spelled out for him. His chocolate obsession also makes him generally unlikable, even after he kicks the habit.

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