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Bloodborne has madesome big ripples in the gaming pond. In a market oversaturated with reboots,sequels and prequels, seeing something wholly new is very refreshing. If thatnew thing is executed well, thats just icing on the cake.
From Software, thecreators of Bloodborne, have made an excellent example of how to do it right.Now, theres nothing wrong with re-using mechanics from past games, in factmost gamers wish developers would do this more. People are simply getting boredwith the seeming creative bankruptcy of AAA studios.
You wont miss theinfluences of Dark Souls notoriously hard gameplay here. By breaking free theshackles of brand recognition however, Bloodborne manages to soar high aboveevery other new release. This one, small change makes a huge difference in agame. Dont believe it? Just look at the FPS genre! Minor stylistic differencesare all that separate otherwise identical experiences.
This game isnt afraidto run with its new-found freedom. Bloodborne has no pre-establishedframework, and it isnt afraid to go over the top (in the best ways). Thisfreedom also lets them tell a lot of the story through theme and texture. Neverdoes the player feel like they are just helping a camera get from scene toscene.
As is traditional withthis studio, the narrative closely follows the tip of the players sword. Thisimmediately creates some of the most gripping and immersive gameplay of anycurrent generation title. From Software hasnt forgotten that gamers like agood challenge first and foremost. A rich story is there, but its up to you todiscover it.
This really is a directDark Souls sequel in terms of gameplay. Expect to get frustrated dying over andover and over again. While casuals might not appreciate this, enough games aremade with them in mind as it is. There are far too few brutally hard, sometimesoutright cruel, games.
In Bloodborne you willbe punished harshly for your insolent button mashing. Warning the player abouttraps and ambushes were also not priorities in development. This makes for anaddictive, challenging game experience.
There arent nearlyenough recent action games, where technique and timing are of great importance.With Bloodbornes challenge curve, this will both jubilate and frustrate you.More often than not your valiant displays of heroism will make you morehole-ey. As in full of holes. And dead.
With some non-optionalbosses that take up to half an hour to kill, you will likely want to get apre-emptive heart condition diagnosed. While some headaches can be avoided byadequate grinding, you also get by if you truly study your environments andchallenges.
It cant be understatedhow refreshing it is to play something that doesnt coddle the gamer.Bloodborne doesnt just avoid holding your hand, it will push you every chanceit gets. When a developer expects more from a player, the result is always avastly better game.
One downside throughall of this, is ludicrous load times. This can create a really jarring pause inyour immersion, and the impact is very noticeable on a game like this. Breakingthe flow of action is the absolute last thing you want! Load times are amassive programming hurdle however, especially with visuals like those ofBloodborne. Load times are a very small, albeit noticeable blemish.
The aesthetics andstyle of this game do an outstanding job of immersing the player. There havebeen so many other titles that try, and fail horribly to horrify. From Softwarebalances its tones perfectly. The humor peppered throughout the game serves verywell in making the barbaric horror truly unnerving. Expect to see a lot ofgrotesque visuals and gore crawling out of every dark corner.
Its rare to see a gamelike Bloodborne actually get past fun-murderers a.k.a. the marketingdepartment. The developers had the freedom they needed to create a game openenough to be equally entertaining in groups as it is alone in the dark.
The controls andgameplay are very tight. Despite being an insanely hard game, it feels very easy to pick up and play.Even hardcore DarkSouls fans arent expected to dive in and succeed. If thisgame didnt kick your butt every chance it got, it would have totally failedits purpose.
Instead of holding yourhand, Bloodborne instead makes it easy to pick up where you left off. Ablatantly sadistic expectation of players skill means you dont have to waitthrough vital, un-skippable cut scenes, just to save and quit. You just have to die. And you will die, allthe time.
This small, barelynoticeable bit of brilliance in game design makes all the difference. You canpick up the controller at any time, and not have to worry about lost progressshould life get in the way. It also makes failure in the game a learningexperience, not an in-convenience.
Bloodborne shines inevery aspect of its design. The one and only real flaw is only a minortechnical issue. Its hard to fault something for its load times, wheneverything else is handled with the upmost skill. Not very often do gamers getthe chance to play AAA titles that have a clear focus, and coherent design.
The narrative is alsohandled very well. Video game writing isnt easy. Bloodborne manages to besubtle yet over the top when appropriate. Moments of absurdity also are bothgenuinely funny, and make the darkness all the more horrifying.
The minds at FromSoftware are among few in the industry that clearly know what they are doing.The thing you notice most while playing (from a critics mindset) is how muchintent was put into every facet of this game. At no point does anything feelforced, or shoehorned into Bloodborne. The environment itself is beautifullycrafted, as opposed to the procedurally-generated wastelands we have been facedwith from other titles.
All in all, this titleshines in every way a game can shine. Casuals would hate it, but they haventlooked up from candy crush since it came out anyway. Bloodborne is one of thoserare, perfect games.