Haunted Castle
Image: Konami

Famed FPGA developer Jotego has ported Konami's Haunted Castle arcade machine to MiSTer and the Analogue Pocket. The port is currently in beta and can be downloaded if you're one of the developer's Patreon supporters.

Originally released in 1987, Haunted Castle is part of the Castlevania series. It's arguably one of the worst instalments in Konami's vampire-hunting franchise (our user-generated ranking has it dead last), famous for its unfair difficulty and ropey design.

Still, the music is great, and it's a legitimate piece of Castlevania history if nothing else. It was once exclusive to arcades but has since been released on modern-day platforms, including the Nintendo Switch.

"This is a significant milestone because it features the Konami custom CPU, which is not an encrypted one but a completely different beast," says Jotego. "Heavily influenced by M6809 and the HD6309, this is an 8-bit CPU on steroids that powers games like Aliens, The Simpsons or Parodius. We have made a very clean implementation based on MAME documentation. We have no idea how fast or slow this is compared to the original, but we are going to find out. As we progress with other cores, we will develop test benches to run on the original boards to derive the execution speed of each CPU instruction. We will fix our implementation to match the original and we will also feed this information to the MAME team so they can make adjustments too."

[source twitter.com]