One of the most renowned names in video game history said his latest title was designed so that players can beat it -- without getting hit and using only the weakest weapon in the game.

Koji Igarashi has long been associated with the popular “Castlevania” series of games, particularly with the hit PlayStation classic “Castlevania: Symphony of the Night.” His new warmly received title, “Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night” is seen as a throwback to the earlier title, complete with side-scrolling action and a lot of monsters to slay in the name of good.

One thing fans likely noticed in these titles is the amount of difficulty they’ll face whenever they fight a boss in any areas in the game. Kotaku reported that Igarashi-san put up a few rules in place so that, no matter how tricky the enemies may be, they can be defeated by diligent players even when they use a weapon as weak as a dagger.

The Golden Rule

In an interview with Gamasutra, Igarashi was asked if he had design guidelines every designer in the game had to stick to no matter what happens. Igarashi responded with probably one of the most comforting things players of the genre liked to know:

“I wouldn't call it a design guideline but Bloodstained does follow a strict rule that I always make the team [adhere] to,” Igarashi said. “That is...the developer who creates the boss must beat their own boss without taking a hit and only using a dagger! (We almost didn't make it...)”

Explaining what he called the “golden rule we follow in our games,” Igarashi said the developers make it a point to test if it’s possible to beat any boss in the game without receiving any damage regardless of the game’s difficulty.

Enjoyable for longer

By doing this, he said they are able to remove the “unfairness” that players are likely to feel when they can’t beat the game and end up seeing the “game over” screen repeatedly. Igarashi also said that by doing this, players will be motivated to try and defeat the boss using a different method or technique.

Aside from making sure that the game’s bosses are beatable, Igarashi also wanted the game to have longevity and good replayability. He said this is difficult to achieve, but they do it by putting in a lot of “content and things to do.”

Those who haven’t played “Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night” are missing out on a classic Igavania game. It’s available for the PS4, Xbox One, PC and Switch here.

Miriam using her whip in "Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night" 505 Games