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Castlevania: Symphony of the Night
main platforms XBLA
timing RTA
framerate ~60
style metroidvania

The Castlevania: Symphony of the Night aka SOTN speedruns focus on movement and efficient combat. Alucard, Richter and Maria have their own separate categories and unique playstyles. The runs feature heavy usage of many mobility-based special abilities with complex, fighting game style inputs. This wiki focuses mainly on the PSX, PSN and Xbox360 version of the game for Alucard and Richter and Sega Saturn for Maria. The Saturn and Dracula X Chronicles/Requiem versions of the game work differently and would be covered in separate pages that we will potentially make in the future and link as separate categories.


Other links


Main article Alucard

Alucard runs feature the most wide range of mechanics and playstyles as well as the most heavy use of various glitches.

Popular Alucard categories


Main article Richter

Richter runs start at full speed and never slow down. Very heavy in execution and extremely merciless due to his low hp.

Popular Richter categories


Main article Maria

Played on the Sega Saturn. Categories are separated between emu and console due to significant differences in performance. Maria starts with all of her powers unlocked like Richter, but is much more resilient.

Popular Maria categories

Input Reader / Input Mechanics

  • The game requires every direction of a motion to be inputted exactly, no input approximation is included in the engine. For example J+874126+J would result in a failed wingsmash due to the missing 3 diagonal.
  • Special move inputs are non exclusive and can be buffered into each other or from other actions. For example a jump can be inserted into the Blade Dash / Air Slash move input just before pressing attack: 823+jump+attack
  • Inputs for spells, Wing Smash and Richter special moves are buffered (stored) for 19 frames. You must press the next button in the required sequence within that time frame.
  • Tetra Spirit requires at least 32 frames of charging up.
  • Gravity Boots have a shorter buffer window of 15 frames.
  • Charge moves allow you to hold the first charge input as long as you want to before finishing the motion.
  • Spells require pressing the activation button at least one frame after completing the motion input.
  • Some character states can ignore inputs or clear the input buffer entirely.
  • Whenever Alucard transitions from a ground state to an air state, there is a 7 frame period where he retains some properties of ground state. He can walk, but still has falling speed, and can jump, allowing you to get an extra horizontal boost if a jump is too far to make normally.
  • States when the game is frozen and doesn't progress logically also halt the input countdown timer. Level ups, transition screens and the menu do that. Example: You can start a Wingsmash input, enter a screen transition or level up, then resume the input after regaining control.
  • Blue doors will allow you to buffer an action but not special moves.


All categories are timed in RTA. Time starts upon gaining character control and ends at final boss death. Runs are submitted with second accuracy with the exception of top times. Guide for precise run timing:

Version Differences for main Alucard and Richter categories

Platform Frame Rate Notes
Xbox 360 XBLA NA ~59.94 Some console models seem to lose additional time, we have not confirmed why yet. Significantly faster loading times. Playing while online causes lag due to xbla time attack leaderboards. No texture mapping glitches. No third outer wall warp glitch.
Xbox 360 XBLA EU ~60
Bizhawk / Mednafen ~59.29
PlayStation NTSC ~59.29
PlayStation PAL ~49.76
PlayStation 2 unconfirmed
PlayStation 3 PSN unconfirmed
PSP PSN unconfirmed
Requiem unconfirmed
Mobile unconfirmed