The lights are on
What new ideas the game brings to the table and how well old ideas are presented.
How good a game looks, taking into account any flaws such as bad collision or pop-up.
Does the game’s music and sound effects get you involved or do they make you resolve to always play with the volume down?
Basically, the controller to human interface. The less you think about the hunk of plastic in your hands, the better the playability.
Flat out, just how fun the game is to play. The most important factor in rating a game.
BloodRayne has an interesting past. The first two games garnered
decent reviews from critics and fans, but the series all but died in
2004. In the seven years since, Uwe Boll’s awful trilogy of movies
dragged Rayne’s once good name through the mud. Now Majesco is trying to
bring the franchise back by re-teaming with WayForward to deliver the
same magic the developer sparked with A Boy and His Blob.
glance, BloodRayne: Betrayal seems like a slam dunk. The tone of a
Castlevania game blends effortlessly with the gameplay of NES-era Ninja
Gaiden. Rayne’s beautifully animated attacks slice through foes, while
her guns offer ranged blasts. A variety of combos offer an assortment of
attacks for pushing enemies away, launching them in the air, and
stomping down from above. Rayne’s dash (in mid-air or on the ground) is
absolutely essential for platforming and dodging attacks or projectiles.
Sucking certain enemies’ blood gives you a satisfying and vital health
boost, and a brief suck infects foes, allowing them to be detonated at
will. All of this adds up to wild fights with plenty of options. Most of
the large-scale boss battles offer a healthy challenge, but after a few
failed attempts you can usually identify their patterns and overcome
Adding to the variety, Rayne can also transform into a raven
to fly through spike tunnels and dodge hazards such as large buzzsaws.
If you’ve ever played the notoriously tricky electric seaweed swimming
level in the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles NES game, you know
what to expect here. Surprisingly, these sections rank relatively low on
Betrayal’s difficulty scale. This game loves to punish the player.
many parts of this unrelentingly hard game will haunt my dreams
forever. Outrunning a speeding buzzsaw while jumping across pits of acid
as moving platforms get ever smaller. Battling several waves of enemies
while electricity zaps random sections of the screen and then fighting a
boss immediately after with no checkpoints. Hopping between small bugs
to stay in the air over an enormous pit while dashing past moving
buzzsaws. The list goes on and on. Many sections feel like WayForward
just tried to think of the most torturous levels possible. Rather than
enjoying myself as I progressed, I started to dread whatever new
merciless deathtrap was waiting around the next corner.
just the agonizing level design that fuels the frustration. The jumping
works fine for combat, but it’s too floaty for the intense platforming
the game demands. Rayne also goes from standing to sprinting
immediately, so it navigating small platforms is more stressful than
necessary. When combat mixes with hazards, it’s too easy to accidentally
do the dash combo and suffer an instant death.
I feel proud for
beating BloodRayne: Betrayal, but I can’t recommend it for anyone who
lacks an ocean of patience. Majesco’s plan for BloodRayne’s resurrection
looked great on paper, but the arbitrary and unnecessary difficulty
spikes unfortunately keep this half-human half-vampire in her coffin.
Email the author Bryan Vore, or follow on Twitter, and Game Informer.