Bloodborne’s Horrific Setting Makes Combat Even More Intense - Bloodborne - PlayStation 4 -
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Bloodborne’s Horrific Setting Makes Combat Even More Intense

I had the chance to play Bloodborne for the second time at PAX Prime 2014, and was able to take in a bit more of the big picture than my frantic scrambling with the title at Gamescom.

One of the big reasons Bloodborne feels so perfect is the Victorian era horror setting - While the Souls titles sort of dance around this by creating environments and encounters filled with tension and surprise, Bloodborne allows them to embrace this fully. You’re not just wary of fallen hollows on the wayside, you’re actively hearing terrifying cries, shrill screams, and facing down actual nightmare creatures.

The basilisks and other iconic Souls critters that are the bizarre stuff of bad dreams have nothing on the Bloodborne backdrop, crafted precisely to instill a healthy dose of dread alongside the precise combat. The chilling environment syncs up so well with the changes to core combat, and alongside the chance for From Software to push their haunting setting on current gen hardware, Bloodborne truly feels nothing less than incredible.

The regain system (Regain lost life by successfully landing blows on opponents during a short window after you’ve been damaged) has you fighting for your life constantly against some of the darkest visions I’ve seen in gaming. The fear plays so well with Souls style combat it creates what I consider to be a natural progression for the series, playing up aspects that may have been subtly interjected into the previous games.

During my first demo a few weeks ago, I played a more traditional loadout featuring the speedy sword cleaver. For this round, I went with the heavy combo of axe and shotgun. The axe transforms into two-handed mode for a feel like a Souls halberd, while offering a standard moveset similar to the Souls axe. My moves definitely took a bit more setup to use effectively, but I was able to move through the “easy mode” (Difficulty lowered so that players waiting hours in line were not dead in 20 seconds) demo smoothly, taking on a variety of enemies from corrupted townsfolk to freakish, bloated crows.

The expository crawl through a corrupted town has been seen in trailers and video, but it’s hard to even do the experience justice. Souls players that are reticent to dive in because of the combat changes do not have to worry, it’s the same precision and tactical prowess with more of a razor’s edge to it because of the lack of shield. You still need to be highly aware of the situation at hand, and with the regain system constantly assaulting you with questions of “what should I do now? Attack? Roll away and lose health for good? Run?”. Bloodborne takes all that is great about Souls combat and adds a layer that goes beyond the safety of the shield raise.

Bloodborne’s horror setting is a perfect complement to Souls-style combat, and it’s about time the series hit current gen systems. If you’re still on the fence about Bloodborne, I have a feeling you’ll be taking a delicious bite of bloated, corrupted crow early next year.

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  • I absolutely love the setting. It's dark and disturbing. The creatures are horrific. And it feels like London in a sense. I'm glad horrific games are making a return.
  • SO EXCITED!!! I can't tell whether I'm anticipating this or Persona 5 more...
  • Ohhhh I wanna play this so freaking bad!

  • WANT.

  • I think this looks amazing! Does anybody know if the release date on PSN is legit?
  • Those visuals are so cool and different looking.

  • I'm not a huge fan of the Souls series. I'm pretty bad at it, and I'm thinking of just putting it aside permanently. I'm pretty hyped for this because the action seems a bit quicker, judging from trailers that is.
  • But will there be variety?!

  • It just occurred to me the the Japanese release date is close to that of The Order. As much as I want this to come out in Feb or somewhere close to their release, but I would hate to see exclusives stacked.
  • Most anticipated game since.... since... hell if I know.

  • Quite excited for Bloodborne. When this gets a North American release date, what else will be coming out? 2015 will be one hell of a year for gaming. I don't want to chose between this and several other phenomenal titles. Hopefully this will release a week after the Japanese version.
  • I'm definitely buying a PS4 for this game hah

  • I'm so hype!

  • Wow this world looks really interesting. I think I am going to dive deep into this one.

  • I was afraid I wasn't going to get this one since I don't own a PS4 yet, but my boss is awesome and I'll get to play it as soon as it's out in NA! :3

  • It almost seems like this is coming out too close to Dark Souls 2. I understand they have been working on this for some time now, but the reveal of the game itself was way too soon. I still want to get this game, but I'm not as interested in it as I was Dark Souls 2. Not enough time has passed between the last release this upcoming one. Yes, I know Bloodborne won't be out until March-ish/April-ish (in the U.S., an educated guess by me), but it almost feels like the precursors to an annually released franchise. I hope I'm wrong.
  • Hype ahead!

  • Hopefully, this releases in NA not long after it does in Japan. Can't wait to play!

  • So this is going to be a horror themed souls game? Sign me up for 100 copies!

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