"Castlevania: Lords of Shadow" is setting itself up to be 2010's other divisive direction-change for a longstanding NES-spawned franchise. Turning Castlevania 3D has never worked out very well, but Konami put some serious money and creative muscle into this attempt - which started out as a game "like" Castlevania that eventually got co-opted into a kind of reboot. In this trailer, actor Jason Isaacs - at this point probably best known to most as Lucius Malfoy - gives us a very thorough rundown:
Obviously, this'll have to come down to how it plays, but so far I like what I see. Yes, obviously, there's a HUGE amount of influence being drawn from other recent successes - most notably God of War and, of course, Shadow of The Colossus. On the GoW front, at least, it must be taken into account that Castlevania invented the use of whip-like and/or "tethered" weaponry in action games. But the design is gorgeous, the subtle but unmistakable references to series mainstays looks nicely done, and I'm really liking those moments where it looks like you're using the ubiquitous chain-whip like such weaponry is actually used (i.e. two-handed and "full body" style like Gogo Yubari in "Kill Bill" - most Castlevanias have had you using a chain whip like a "normal" leather whip.)
The question has always been "will it feel like Castlevania," and from this the answer looks like "yes!" to me - I see a vaugely medieval European setting, I see classic gothic-horror imagery, I see an improbably elaborate castle and I see a Belmont wailing on stuff with a whip - that's Castlevania, as far as I'm concerned. Assuming it plays well, the BIG "to do" among fans will be the design. From about 1997 on (re: "Symphony of The Night" on the PS1) the series has largely kept to a more starkly Manga-esque "neo-goth" look; while this one seems to be a conscious return to the Universal/Hammer Horror by way of Frank Frazetta art-design that the series boasted from the original up through Rondo of Blood. For me, this is what I've always wanted/hoped a 3D big-scale Castlevania would look like, but for folks who started at "Symphony" or after I imagine this must look a bit jarring.