Konami 50th anniversary collections bring back Castlevania, Contra, and more

The sort-of but not actually Gradius collection

Castlevania and Contra are to get their own separate retro collections, as well as a compilation of arcade classics focusing on Gradius.

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Sometimes it’s hard to know whether Konami even really count as a games publishers any more, since after getting rid of Hideo Kojima they’ve shown almost no interest in making new games – especially after the failure of Metal Gear Survive.

What few releases there have been, have been limited to Pro Evolution Soccer and the odd retro re-release, such as last year’s disappointing Castlevania Requiem on PlayStation 4.

What kind of effort they’re putting into these new 50th anniversary collections remains to be seen, but at least there’s three of them and they’re all multiformat.

The only one with a definite release date is the Arcade Classics Anniversary Collection, which will be released digitally on April 18 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and PC.

Half of the eight games included are related to Gradius though (Gradius I and II, Salamander, and predecessor Scramble) so we’re not sure why they didn’t go all-out and just make a proper collection based around that.

Three of the other games (Typhoon, Thunder Cross, and TwinBee) are also 2D shooters, while Haunted House is actually a rebranded Castlevania entry. So, yeah… we’re not really sure how much thought has gone into this.

The Castlevania Anniversary Collection contains NES games Castlevania I, II, and III, as well as SNES title Super Castlevania IV. Although more will apparently be announced later, as the collection won’t be released until early summer.

Contra Anniversary Collection will contain the arcade versions of Contra (aka Gryzor) and Super Contra, as well as NES version Super C, SNES classic Contra III, and ‘more’.

The home versions were rebranded as Probotector in Europe and the human protagonists replaced by robots but it’s unknown if that fact will be referenced at all.

All three collections also come with an eBook featuring concept sketches, promotional items and, in the case of the Castlevania one, an interview with animated series producer Adi Shankar.

It’s also implied that more 50th anniversary collections will be announced in the future.

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