Castlevania: Order of Ecclesia is an absolutely incredible entry in the franchise. Part homage to its classic action adventure origins and part labyrinthine exploration of a massive castle, the game wisely abandons the format of its five portable predecessors to unearth a framework that feels wonderfully refreshing. In doing so, it establishes itself as the peak of the line of Castlevania games that graced both the Game Boy Advance and the Nintendo DS. Understanding it could not topple the landmark that was Symphony of the Night by simply emulating its constitution and knowing the handheld titles that had come before it had already exhausted the formula, it sets out to discover its own niche and finds it. Order of Ecclesia is one of a kind; more important than that, though, is how its uniqueness is not vapid. It is there for a purpose, and in combining linear levels taking place in varied scenarios with the often visited Dracula’s Castle, it feels grand, it is stunningly fun, and it becomes a mandatory stopping point for both fans of the franchise and all gamers who value the power of originality.