Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger's Requiem
Image via CFK

Review: Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem Pays Tribute to Classic Castlevania

Touhou spin-off, indie games are hit or miss. You never know what the experience and quality will be like until you give one a shot. Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem is a follow-up to Frontier Aja and CFK’s original 2022 Castlevania sort of release and, while the game doesn’t do too much new for this series or genre, it’s a challenging enough adventure.

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Some background with the Touhou series helps here, but the story of  Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem is pretty easy to jump into. Sakuya Izayoi is essentially a maid/bodyguard for Remilia Scarlet. Upon returning to the Scarlet Devil Mansion, she finds things are awry and everyone else there missing. You’ll need to defeat familiar and unfamiliar bosses, who retain their bullet hell sort of energy attack patterns despite this being a Castlevania-like, reunite with characters who can become summon partners, and fight your way through stages to discover what’s going on.

Image via CFK

As this is taking cues from the original Castlevania games on the NES and such, the gameplay may feel familiar. Players follow Sakuya as she goes through stages in the Scarlet Devil Mansion. Everything is shown from a 2D perspective, and she has her knives to attack as well as sub-weapons and summoned partners you can pick from for stages. As you go through general enemies, which are devastatingly strong on their own on the standard difficulty, you eventually reach bosses who are familiar faces. When you do, you’ll need to stay alive and take them down. However, as this is based on the older Castlevania entries, that means that falling in stages too many times nets you a game over and ends your progress.

Given this is a sequel, you expect some repetition in Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem. The thing is, there’s a lot more than I expected, as well as seeing some lessons haven’t been learned. There are a lot of the same enemies again. They both look and act in the same ways. There are still some of the same platforming pitfalls as the original, with knockback issues hampering progress in certain areas and sometimes the controls feeling a bit slower than I needed to deal with bosses. (Admittedly, it does control better than Scarlet Symphony, but only a little.) Also, while there are updates in the form of more subweapons, I felt like the new additions weren’t substantial enough to feel exciting.

That said, some of the features that are new to Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem do genuinely feel worthwhile. Especially if you’re feeling like you need to push yourself further and perhaps get beaten down by its fearsome foes. The boss rush mode lets you tackle all of the most intimidating opponents. I was terrible at it, but appreciate that it is there and it seems to be handled well. 

Also, since so many enemies are being recycled from the original game, I was pleased to see Reimu return as a playable character. However, I found this option doesn’t also include a new storyline, which is disappointing. It just replaces Sakuya with Reimu. It’s actually more barebones in a way, because it’s just like she was plucked from Scarlet Symphony with no quality of life adjustments.

Image via CFK

Really, the best thing about Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem is the way it looks and feels. Banpai Akira’s art is absolutely incredible. All of the Touhou character designs look amazing. Much of the sprite work is very good and quite detailed as well. Also, the game does have a lovely soundtrack. That there is now an option to head into the Collection section so you can appreciate some of these elements without the constant threat of death is also an appreciated perk.

I enjoyed Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem and did enjoy my time with it. It will really test you with its difficulty. It also looks gorgeous. However, this is an incredibly basic title. There are no frills to this Castlevania inspired Touhou fan game. Also, it feels like while I did see progress from the original, it didn’t build on and learn from it enough to really stand out and show major progress. It’s absolutely fine, especially if you enjoyed Koumajou Remilia: Scarlet Symphony and want more of that, but it isn’t one of the best Castlevania-likes I’ve played.

Koumajou Remilia II: Stranger’s Requiem is available on the Nintendo Switch and PC

Koumajou Remilia Ⅱ: Stranger's Requiem

Koumajou Remilia Ⅱ: Stranger's Requiem is a gothic horror Touhou action game, boasting remastered HD graphics, fully-voiced lines by professional voice actresses, and even more content for the game. Switch version reviewed.

Koumajou Remilia Ⅱ: Stranger's Requiem is one of the better Touhou fan games and looks great, but it’s a very basic Castlevania-like.

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Jenni Lada
Jenni is Editor-in-Chief at Siliconera and has been playing games since getting access to her parents' Intellivision as a toddler. She continues to play on every possible platform and loves all of the systems she owns. (These include a PS4, Switch, Xbox One, WonderSwan Color and even a Vectrex!) You may have also seen her work at GamerTell, Cheat Code Central, Michibiku and PlayStation LifeStyle.