The client is at all times proper, so the saying goes. However when BloodRayne Betrayal: Contemporary Bites presents to you its wares, it’s not fairly able to concede that a lot. If the shopper thinks there’s truly a couple of too many monsters on display screen, nicely, they’re incorrect. In the event that they suppose these platforms are a bit too slender, that’s additionally incorrect. You possibly can by all means provide an opinion about checkpoint spacing, however it is going to be ignored. BloodRayne might not present the friendliest customer support, however you’ll undoubtedly get served.
That is the core of the BloodRayne Betrayal: Contemporary Bites proposition: a vampiric, cartoon-gory, 2D, side-scrolling platform slash-em-up, refreshed from 2011, that’s old-school in style, type and aesthetic. It’s additionally old-school in what it calls for of the participant and in the way it treats you when its calls for are usually not met.
The state of affairs is a part of the prolonged lore of the BloodRayne media franchise, which grew from the primary recreation in 2002 right into a film, comics and extra video games. If that’s not your bag, then it gained’t have an effect on your enjoyment of Betrayal. Taken purely as vampire schlock with tacky gothic evildoers, the setup does all that’s required to get you into the motion. For these following alongside, there are the added voice skills of Laura Bailey and Troy Baker for this Contemporary Bites launch, bringing the characters to life – or undeath if that’s extra correct.
Rayne, the half-human dhampir and star of the present, has a considerable moveset of slashing, leaping, dashing, capturing, extra slashing, infecting, wall kicking, blood-sucking, slashing once more, exploding, launching, combo-ing, stamping, decapitating and a bit extra slashing to verify. These tag along with complexity and creativity to make an absolute massacre of the display screen.
Enemies somersault in from the foreground, hatch from sacs on the ceiling, leer from behind the deep parallax backdrops and simply typically pop up spherical and in regards to the place prepared for a slashing. You possibly can virtually fly indefinitely by chaining aerial hits throughout the hordes. Racking up the factors as you clear your path is a buzz – as is the amusingly prolonged pause within the motion as you suck a neck fully dry to regain some well being.
This whirlwind blade-whizzing is about out like a dynamic comedian ebook, with the motion rising to fill the body in pink, gloopy, balletic element, all characters silhouetted in opposition to moonlight as river rapids of blood churn throughout the display screen. The play feels visceral, kinetic and sensual; it sounds assured and charismatic in opposition to gentle classical piano or rock-metal guitar. Rayne is a personality simply made to slice throughout screens of baddies with flamboyant swoops.
Which is the place an issue is available in. Rayne is certainly made for whizzing and slashing – each phrases for weeing however that’s not what we imply – she’s made for that, however she’s then requested to do a little bit of platforming on the facet. Greater than a bit, truly, and it may be infuriating. There’s a commonplace platform peak that’s simply greater than Rayne’s soar. It’s good throughout a battle as a result of it creates a layer of motion that you just gained’t transfer to with out deliberately doing the next flip soar, however for platforming it’s a bit mindboggling. It’s just like the world has been constructed particularly not to be climbed on, and but that’s what you’re requested to do.
One other widespread platform sort – a transferring one, no much less! – is in regards to the dimension of a kneecap. Rayne’s stance is so broad that she will comfortably place her toes both facet of the goal and relaxation “on” it whereas floating in mid air. In reality, that’s nearly the one technique to do it. Enemies and their corpses additionally commonly overhang ledges, balancing horizontally by only one toe, like a sheet-covered girl in a Victorian magic act.
Lastly, the surroundings doesn’t do nicely to sign what’s a flooring and what’s a gap; what’s a spike and what’s a wall; or what’s a blocked path and what’s an open hall. Put all that collectively and you will get a sequence like this: cross checkpoint, kill a number of waves of unhealthy guys, traverse excruciating platforming part, attain the tip on try 200 however misinterpret the place the ground is, ow, acid, begin try 201 from again on the checkpoint, which was earlier than the waves of enemies, not even in the beginning of the platforming…
There are flashes of potential in BloodRayne Betrayal: Contemporary Bites’ platforming. If you’re permitted to discover a rhythm and it performs to the strengths of Rayne’s killer moveset, it’s thrilling. However they’re uncommon. It’s the boring, artless, unfair sections you’re repeating advert infinitum.
WayForward instructed Nintendo Life they’d sought to determine “options and additions that had good ‘bang for the buck’” when remastering BloodRayne Betrayal. The “commonplace” and “basic” problem settings are a fantastic instance – rebalancing harm and well being values to let extra informal gamers benefit from the fight whereas preserving the talent ceiling very excessive. Addressing the platforming points would have supplied much more bang, however presumably at appreciable additional buck. It is testomony to the standard on present in different areas — the ingenious fight, the beautiful visuals, the implausible audio — that we left glad with the expertise.
The client is at all times proper, so the saying goes, and as clients of this recreation, gamers can have some official complaints in regards to the service. The platforming shouldn’t be enjoyable: sadistic design selections are realised with lacklustre supplies. However BloodRayne doesn’t care. The fight, if you’re allowed to play it, is exclusive and raucous and deliciously convoluted, with a talent ceiling as excessive as a gothic cathedral. BloodRayne isn’t right here to take your order; it’s right here to suck your blood.