Bloodborne: Back To The Basics

After an incredibly long semester of reading literature and juggling two jobs, I can finally get back to gaming. More importantly, I saved up all semester so that I could get a PS4 this summer and get the game I’ve been itching to play; Bloodborne. Now that I’ve gotten some time invested in the latest title from From Software I thought I would give some of my thoughts on the game as a veteran of all the Souls games (excluding Scholar of the First Sin).

Practice Makes Perfect

To say that I’ve had to relearn some things for Bloodborne would be an understatement. While I could pick up Dark Souls I and II and feel right at home, I felt an air of insecurity when I picked up my axe and pistol in Bloodborne. The gameplay is pretty different here. From Software took away my shield and I sorely missed it at first. It’s nerve-wracking to run towards a couple enemies with my only defense being my agility and reflexes. I’ve gotten much better over time, but it took a lot of practice.

Honestly, I loved the fact I had to actually learn the mechanics of the game—something I hadn’t done since Demon’s Souls. While I’ve certainly died a lot, I can’t say that I’m deterred in the least. It’s refreshing to experience that learning experience again where every death makes you smarter and stronger.

So Few Options, So Much Time

The best part of Bloodborne has to be the weapons that it offers. I was apprehensive about there being so few weapons in the game in comparison to the Souls games, but I really prefer this system of fewer weapons over having dozens at my disposal. This is because you really feel like you master your weapon. My Hunter’s Axe is my best friend in Bloodborne. I feel like I’ve mastered every move it offers and when to use it. When I’m standing in the middle of a terrifying area, blood-soaked and low on items, I know my axe has my back. I never felt this way in Dark Souls. Then it was more a matter of, “look at all these awesome weapons! Too bad I don’t have the stats to equip most of them.”

This Game is Dark… Really Dark

Bloodborne is dark in more than one way. First, it’s incredibly grim and graphic. As the name implies, there is blood everywhere. It flies through the air as you hack at enemies, it covers you as you go farther through the game without taking a rest, and it’s streaked on the ground and walls of the world around you. What I didn’t expect is how terrifying this game is. The imagery and sounds of Bloodborne keep me in a constant state of paranoia. I mean jump when my phone goes off in my pocket, paranoid. It’s great. The atmosphere in Bloodborne is by far the most effective I’ve ever experienced.

I can’t recommend Bloodborne enough. As a veteran I love it and my friends that are newcomers to the series love it too. As time goes on I’ll be writing more about the game, but for now I’m just trying to survive.