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Saying Nitesco makes short work of a lot of the bosses is silly because you don\'t have access to that glyph until you make it to just over about of a third of the way into Dracula\'s castle, which only contains five of the bosses (one of which can only be killed in a very special way). The only other boss is Jiang Shi, a bonus boss. Plus, Nitesco is only a game breaker if you combine it with a melee weapon in a glyph union while using something like Dominus Agony. Not everyone is aware of how broken this glyph combo is, anyway, so not using it isn\'t the equivalent of a self imposed challenge, which is intentional.
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Now, despite all that I said, I have to say that I don\'t feel the game\'s nearly as hard as people make it out to be on the normal difficulty. It\'s generally much harder than the other more recent Metroidvanian Castlevanias (although that isn\'t saying much). In fact, considering what I said, much of the game\'s difficulty on Normal comes from the fact that people aren\'t experimenting nor doing as much as they could be.
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Most of the most useful items and equipment can only be found via side quests (many of which require you to pick up randomly dropped items, usually in bulk). If you don\'t do these quests, you\'ll find yourself with a shop lacking many of the healing items, armor, and accessories. It\'s not a self-imposed challenge if you didn\'t know that doing these quests would make life a lot easier for you.