No media (book, movie, or game) exists in a vacuum. Castlevania shared concepts in common with platformers that came before it and then influenced games afterwards. This is especially true once the series merged into the Metroidvania genre (which, we should note, happened with the second game in the series, Castlevania II: Simon's Quest, although the bones were even beginning to take shape in the semi-remake/port Vampire Killer) -- it was inextricably linked to the explorational adventure-platformers, forever now being referenced when a new game (a "Metroidvania" game) in the genre is released.

So what makes a game a direct relative of Castlevania or Metroid? Is it just the ambiance, or the game play? Really, it's both as the style and substance of a game can indicate it saw what Konami (and/or Nintendo) was cranking out and decided to play in the same pool. Throughout this section we'll look at the games that came out before, around, and after the Castlevania entries and look at what was influenced by our favorite series and what might have been drawn from them in return.