Castlevania: Harmony of Dissonance Secrets



armony of Dissonance offers some interesting secrets and unlockables. Among them are secret characters, more challenging modes in which to play the game, a sound mode, and a Boss Rush mode.


Boss Rush

You must beat the game to unlock the Boss Rush. In this mode, you are put in a timed trial against the bosses from HoD. At the beginning, you are granted the sub-weapon of your choice, but you must decide wisely because you are stuck with it for the entirety of the test.

Armed with your whip and sub-weapon, you battle against the bosses one after the other, being rewarded after each fight with an orb that replenishes all lost hit points and hearts within candles. These, however, are temptations that are meant to slow you down. You should only take your time picking these things up if it is absolutely necessary.

The Boss Rush has three difficulty settings. In the easy mode, you battle all of the bosses up to Minotaur. The normal mode contains the bosses up to Legion (Saint), and hard mode pits you against all of the bosses, save for Maxim. Beat one mode to unlock the next.



Sound Mode

Upon beating the game, you are rewarded with a sound mode, where you can listen to Harmony of Dissonance's complete soundtrack. Unlike Aria of Sorrow's sound mode, the sound effects are not included.

Sound Mode contains some music that isn't played in the game's normal modes.



Maxim

After beating the game as Juste, you are able to start a new game as Maxim Kischine. Much like Richter Mode in Symphony of the Night, there are no equipment, relics, story, or leveling up. Since Maxim has all of his abilities at the beginning, you can pretty much go wherever you please right from the start. However, Maxim isn't able to get full 200% map coverage. While playing as him, you must settle with 198.3% at best. Certain obstacles such as walls that Juste would need the Crushing Stone to get past have been removed.

Maxim is similar to Juste in that they both have forward and back dashes, jump kicks, and they both use their sub-weapon with up + B, but there are some major differences between the two of them. The first things that players may notice are how much faster he is compared to Juste and his ability to triple jump.

Though swifter, Maxim is ultimately much more limited than Juste, primarily because he has only one sub-weapon, which is a shuriken that returns to him like a boomerang. Instead of using a whip like Juste, Maxim uses his Stellar Sword as his chief weapon. Maxim slashes with the sword much more quickly than Juste whips, but it has less range and is not as defensive since it cannot be used as a shield like the Vampire Killer can. When crouched, Maxim can execute a very short-range kick, which can leave him quite vulnerable. The virtue in this attack is the pace in which it can be done. Maxim can rapidly hit foes with a flurry of kicks and deal heavy damage to them. It's easily the fastest attack in the game.

Overall, Maxim is really fun to play as. The things that make players feel dread when facing him as Juste are his incredible special abilities. Now you have those skills at your disposal.

You must first beat HoD, start a new game, and input "MAXIM" in the Name entry screen in order to open this mode.

Maxim's stats:

Level 0
Max HP 306 (+5 per Life Max Up)
Max MP 197
Max Hearts 135 (+5 per Heart Max Up
STR 159
DEF 191
INT 131
LCK 79

Screw Attack

Much like Samus Aran, Maxim has a mid-air somersault that renders him invincible while damaging enemies. To do this, press up and jump while in the air. Continue pressing jump to repeatedly do aerial spins, or just hold the up button to roll across the floor.


MP cost: 5 per roll.

Mirage

This is Maxim's most devastating attack. He will make duplicates of himself that continually strike all enemies on the screen from multiple angles. Press right, left, down, up and B to do this. Take heed, Maxim cannot move for the duration of this attack.


MP cost: 100

Healing

This technique taps into Maxim's hearts instead of his MP. It acts just like Juste's Summoning Tome spell. Maxim is bathed in holy light that replenishes all of his hit points. Press up, down, down-right, right, and B to do this.


Heart cost: 50


Hard Mode

Once you beat the game, you can play it again with higher difficulty. The only thing that has changed in hard mode is the amount of damage that enemies deal out, which is much greater. You'll have to be especially careful during the latter portion of the game, as enemies can kill Juste with only a few hits.

Enter your name as "HARDGAME" to begin playing HoD's hard mode.



No spell books

Once you beat HoD, you can play through the whole game with Spell Fusion disabled. Now, you could simply just not use Spell Fusion, but if you get in a tough spot and feel the urge to bust out one of the trusty tomes, this will be sure to stop you.

Input "NO MAGIC" as your name to halt all Spell Fusion techniques.


Play as Maxim in Boss Rush Mode

You can play as Maxim during the Boss Rush. He controls exactly the same as he does in Maxim mode, and is still limited to his shuriken sub-weapon.

To play as Maxim in Boss Rush, hold down the L and R buttons when you select a difficulty setting at the Boss Rush menu.



Play as Simon Belmont in Boss Rush mode

As a special treat for long time fans, in Boss Rush mode you can play as Simon Belmont, Castlevania's most celebrated vampire hunter. To add to the charm, a beefed up version of "Vampire Killer" plays as the BGM, with an awesome remix of "Clockwork" added to it.

Simon has the same sprite, controls, and even sound effects as he did in the original Nintendo Entertainment System Castlevania. While he is not near as agile as Juste, he hits much harder. As Simon, an attack made with the Vampire Killer scores a whopping 138 hit point damage in comparison to Juste's 79. Simon can use all of the sub-weapons except for the Sacred Fist.

Simon's stats:

Level 79
Max HP 566
Max MP 294
Max Hearts 249
STR 276
DEF 196
INT 227
LCK 113


Simon faces off against an old foe – the Vampire Bat. To further the nostalgia, in order to play as Simon, you must input the traditional Konami code when the Konami logo appears before the title screen. The code is up, up, down, down, right, left, right, left, B, A.


One of Simon's most fearsome opponents was Death. The two of them go another round in this special Boss Rush mode.


Dracula gets a second. . . no, like, seventh chance at finally taking down Simon. A cross that is clearly based off of the one at the intro of Akumajo Densetsu (Japanese version of Castlevania III) witnesses the epic battle.


While beholding a screenshot like this, and pondering over all the fan service that was delivered with HoD, it makes me wonder how some people think that IGA is disregarding the series' past, especially after bringing us Castlevania Chronicles.

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