Castlevania to break Live Arcade size limit

Konami says its Symphony of the Night won't fit in 50MB; Microsoft's Greg Canessa addresses implications for future XBLA games.

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The upcoming release of Castlevania: Symphony of the Night as a downloadable Xbox 360 game is noteworthy for a few reasons. Beyond adding the highly regarded game to the system's catalog, it breaks the mold of an Xbox Live Arcade game in several ways.

Symphony of the Night is not a "small-scale" game in any sense of the phrase. It's based on an existing home-console game, a distinction on Live Arcade only shared by the upcoming Alien Hominid HD. Konami has confirmed to GameSpot that the final size of the Symphony of the Night download will surpass Microsoft's 50MB size limit for Live Arcade games.

Microsoft's group manager for Xbox Live Arcade, Greg Canessa, told GameSpot why the company instituted a 50MB limit in the first place.

"By keeping the file size small for Xbox Live Arcade games, gamers can put one or more games on a memory unit and easily bring those games to a friend's house to share and play," Canessa said. "Small file sizes also mean fast download times, making it possible to download and begin playing any Xbox Live Arcade game within one or two minutes."

Even though Symphony of the Night will exceed the size limit, Canessa indicated that there is still a 50MB cap on Live Arcade games, although Microsoft is willing to make exceptions to the rule. "If any games do exceed 50 MB, it's for a very specific reason that would ensure that the gameplay experience is the best it can be," Canessa said.

Microsoft is willing to look the other way on Symphony of the Night, and according to Canessa, it won't be the last of its kind on Live Arcade.

"Castlevania: Symphony of the Night is one of the most popular games of all time, and you can [bet] that you'll see similar high-quality games come to Xbox Live Arcade in the future," Canessa said.

However, there is at least one Live Arcade rule that not even Symphony of the Night will be breaking. Canessa said that a free demo of the game would be made available to all Live Arcade users, and that it would be small enough to fit on a memory unit.

[UPDATE] After the publication of this story, a Microsoft representative contacted GameSpot to clarify one of Canessa's comments. While Symphony of the Night will have a free demo version, it will not fit on the system's 64MB memory unit.

Discussion

220 comments
huskerman34
huskerman34

when is the release of Castlevania Sympothy Of the Night ? This is a good thing Microsoft is doing in bringing good quality games to xbox live market place. We are going to see some top quality games in the near future.

nazraq
nazraq

How about a new KI for 360? I've wanted that for a while.

aet
aet

I can't wait for Castlevania SOTN. I'm gonna buy an wireless internet connection just for SOTN. It's got one of the best soundtracks a 2D game has ever had.

SPANNER-MAN
SPANNER-MAN

Yes, i've been waiting for killer instinct for years now man. I know they own the rights to it dam, that microsoft, keeping us in suspense.

Gamewako
Gamewako

So.. anyone else want to see a Killer Instinct "Arcade" port ? kuz i know i do

Raven87
Raven87

Fair enough its' not like you cant get a technically impressive game onto 50mb, just look at small arms, or roboblitz. I don't think MS will start letting everyone throw 700mb sizes everywhere, those that do will surely be justified.

XAF1
XAF1

The cap sucks in away. Because of MS's thinking this way we will probably never see games from the 90's that many people want. We are stuck with a great deal of 2D games that really don't work aswell as the Mamed games do. I like XBLA but I'm sorry those of us who bought premium 360 packages on launch and those who have bought harddrives should not have to suffer because of those who didn't. We want the earlier Virtua Fighters and Sega Arcade games that were 3D also the Neo Geo Games not just the crap that I have seen lately. Come on the word Arcade is being used here and it appears to be being used rather lightly. Sony may just overstep Microsoft in this one area of MS's Online plans. Come on guys kick XBLA in gear and give those of us who want the option the option and use this as away to sell more and bigger Hardrives to those who are serious about their Arcade games. Memory cards smemory cards that concept should have died last generation. Flash or SD sticks would have been better.

Trashface
Trashface

Humanchild, saying gamers who bought the Core unit aren't real gamers at all is a very stupid thing to say. I have the premium by the way. I never played another castlevania after the N64 version. The 1st Castlevania was so hard at the end.

Vraeth
Vraeth

This is the first game worth getting on XBLA. While Doom is notable, there's literally like 20 different releases of it already.

DrCLos
DrCLos

I can't wait. This was the best game on the PS1 and will be the best XBox Live game if done right... at least it better be :P

Uteron
Uteron

i just got done beating this game on the *psp*. but i still plan on getting it for x360. I hope all the bug/gliches still work. Some of them make the game more fun.

SeanBond
SeanBond

Thanks for the info, Pixy.

PixyMisao
PixyMisao

"Clsmoothest1 Funny how all these people who keep talking about Castlevania think this was on the PS1 only and don't know it came out on Saturn befor that. I hope MS keeps this up, I would love to see more full size game releases on XBL" Actually it was ported from PS1 to Saturn about a year later (and a very shakey port at that done by Konami Nagoya). But no SeanBond, Maria will not be playable. This will be a pure PS1 port with a slight graphical support bra beneath it. Al the incomplte items should be in tact, and it will be interesting to see if all of the glitches work.

joomen
joomen

ive been lookin for a reason to play this game again ;p

DeathmageMokey
DeathmageMokey

You know what would great to see on XBLA? I'm thinking perhaps Homeworld (PC) or the original Resident Evil games for the Playstation. Homeworld may be a bit too big, but seeing how it's hard to find, it would be a good addition.

SeanBond
SeanBond

Does anyone know if the Live Arcade version is going to have Maria as a playable character, like in the Saturn version? Although I already own SOTN for the PS1, I'm going to purchase it again on Live, and the addition of Maria would make it even sweeter...

Clsmoothest1
Clsmoothest1

This is fantastic news, I can't wait to download this game. I wonder what the price will be though. Funny how all these people who keep talking about Castlevania think this was on the PS1 only and don't know it came out on Saturn befor that. I hope MS keeps this up, I would love to see more full size game releases on XBL

Rayze78
Rayze78

One of my favorite games that I never got to buy. I cant wait.

jeffreystark069
jeffreystark069

Slayer420 I completely agree with you qiwihead. The Core system in the long run is going to be the bane of the Xbox 360. The PS3 will never have to worry about this kind of issue. Other then that, the 360 is an amazing console I don't think the core system is really a bad thing at all. I just recently bought a core system, then i got a hard drive, hd cables, headset, remote, and wireless controller on e bay for 40 bucks. can't beat that. I f you shop you can make a premium 360 for less than 400. I did.

NND1
NND1

Another great reason to own XBox 360

Thanos_of_MW
Thanos_of_MW

Thanks for the tip Slipshoddoa. I might just clear some space in my 360's HDD that way :D

aramitz
aramitz

While original content is good and independent development should be encouraged, it's also nice to see some older 'real' games on XBLA because the Wii is starting to catch up with some very good stuff itself!. I was very tempted to buy the snes sim city till I remember I wouldn't get achievement points for unlocking the mayors house ;p.

slipshoddoa
slipshoddoa

Actually, the Core System makes upgrading easier. Why? When the V2 360 comes out with an HDMI port, I can just buy the Core System and take my existing hard drive onto that unit and sell my old system as a Core unit. Conversely, if I don't need HDMI, I can buy a Core unit now and in a few months buy a bigger detachable hard drive. As for Castlevania. So what if it is bigger than 64MB? For people with hard drives, it doesn't matter. For those with the Core System, we know 256MB memory cards are coming any day now. Besides, it's not like you need to keep all your Live Arcade titles on a memory card. You can burn the executables (because your Live Account knows which games you own) onto a CD and they boot just fine on the 360. It is perfectly legal and discussed on offical Xbox forums. Core System owners only need a memory card at the time of download or a friend who can burn them onto a CD.

Slayer420
Slayer420

I completely agree with you qiwihead. The Core system in the long run is going to be the bane of the Xbox 360. The PS3 will never have to worry about this kind of issue. Other then that, the 360 is an amazing console.

qiwihead
qiwihead

It seems to me that the 50mb cap was instituted because of the Core system, which doesn't have a hard drive. For those foolish enough to purchase a Core system, they can only save games on the memory units, which are 64mb, so XBLA games have to be smaller than that. Yet another reason why the Core system was a bad idea, especially because its existence affects all of us. Even if we have the Premium system and have plenty of space for larger games, M$ has to cater to the lowest common denominator.

DrKill09
DrKill09

never really got into these games, but if it's comin to XBLA, I'll give it a try.

pearlpunx85
pearlpunx85

i never had a chance to play symphony but heard it was amazing. i love that now i get a chance to play it on xbla and get achievements!!!

zaphod_b
zaphod_b

I own a copy of the PS1 version and I'll probably still buy this so I don't have to blow the dust off my PS2. Konami and Microsoft must be establishing a pretty good relationship to allow SOTN on XBLA. Metal Gear anyone?

DeepCoalMiner
DeepCoalMiner

Greg Canessa, get your head out of your *ss. Most demos are 1 gig and more and they don't take that long to download. You actually think its a problem waiting a few minutes more to download a XBLA game??? Who uses memory units anyway? And why are they so freakin' small? You can buy a 1 gig flash drive now for about $20. Why the freakin' restrictions? It's just a plain boneheaded move.

theKSMM
theKSMM

I have to second what said down below. Let me put my downloaded games, games saves, music, videos, whatever onto my USB flash drive. Microsoft is the only game maker in this generation that does not yet support standard flash memory or hard drives for external storage, and I think that's a shortcoming in comparison to the PS3 and the Wii. Of course, I'm sure they don't want to make their memory cards obsolete / irrelevant. And the ability to use thrid-party USB Wi-Fi adapters (a la TiVo) would be great too. I was pleased to find that the original XBOX brand Wi-Fi adapter (the MN-740) does work with the XBOX 360 (even if it doesn't support WPA). Honestly, it would be cheaper just to get a Wi-Fi router and put it into bridged mode to connect the 360 to the Internet. As far as the XBOX Live! Arcade games go, keep 'em coming. It would be nice if they had a "Platinum" edition too, so that hot-selling Arcade titles could be purchased a year or so after release for a reduced cost or as part of a bundle.

Irve
Irve

yay .. why have a 50mb limit .. it's tiny .. make it 500mb instead and finally release your bigger HDD you fools !!

Cloud737
Cloud737

It`s nice to see M$ is willing to make some exceptions. Hopefully, those exceptions means great games.

XL70
XL70

Hopefully this should see other big games coming to Xbox Live Arcade. Maybe in this generation we'll have full retail game downloads.

Dreski83
Dreski83

Not only is the Wii gaining serious ground in allowing classics to be downloaded, but it only makes sense that someone joins them and tries their hand at surpassing them. To think actual games rather than lil arcade bits will be available gets me very excited about spending money over Live. Not saying I haven't more than I should have already, but at least this way I won't feel so shafted after pouring a bunch of time into a 8 or 10 dollar game. If Microsoft is keen on overlooking the whole 50mb cap, I wonder if they'll change the achievement score to something more suitable since this is an actual game...??

stoned-stoner
stoned-stoner

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

pazz999
pazz999

ive never heard of anyone downloading xbla games and really caring if they fit on there memory card or not, yet again i dont even think any of my friends have memory cards

Britesparc
Britesparc

I'm glad they're starting to edge towards ditching the 50Mb limit... the majority of 360 users have a hard drive, so it's unfair forcing them to suffer the same limitations as the minority. Obviously, keep the sub-50Mb games on Live, even make them the majority for now, but more big games will be very, very good. I also like Valen_Ca's idea - add support for USB flash drives. That would solve all the capacity problems in a stroke, although MS might not like it, coz then we wouldn't have to pay £25 for a memory unit. If MS really wanted to be nice to us, they could just add support for various USB devices - how about an ordinary PC wifi adapter instead of the humongously expensive 360 add-on?!

gertish
gertish

I didn't even know people used the memory cards.

Firecrest
Firecrest

IGA has said that the likelihood of a next-gen 2D Castlevania may be riding on this game, so everyone pick it up!

humanchild
humanchild

"bad for gamers with no hard drive. " Gamers with no hard drive are no gamers at all. It's as simple as that. Microsoft needs to start letting more stuff like this out there for the majority that own the hard drive and don't mind waiting more than "one or two minutes" to play a good game. Keep the small simple stuff for all those that were dumb enough to buy a core, but start letting out some larger stuff for the real gamers. (not that some of the existing Live titles don't rock, but there should be more room to work with) Oh and for the record the hard drives are just as portable as the memory cards. (just because I can already hear somebody saying something about portability of the games...)

FiestaUnicorn
FiestaUnicorn

you can get the original SOTN for about 10 bucks.

sda3
sda3

I guess it is time to releas a 128mb memory unit. Its not like they sitll won't make a %200 profit on that size.

Sonicgod
Sonicgod

This just in I knew that even before they said it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They also said. "Xbox live is not the place for a company old ps1 games." and I dont care I already have the game.

faizali86
faizali86

bad for gamers with no hard drive.

snoz_dawg
snoz_dawg

"I'll wait for the PS3 version. " "You dont have to wait - its already playable on the ps3 as a ps1 game. Although the 360 version will be enhanced." "doesnt that cost over $100. I read that in a gamepro or something. if true yay for xbla." australian gamepro so in AU$..sorry