Bloodborne ($60) is a PS4-exclusive action/role-playing game developed by From Software, the Japanese company that brought you Demon’s Souls, Dark Souls and Dark Souls II. However, while Bloodborne is an exceptional game for both longtime fans and newcomers, it’s also just a little less delightfully vexing than its predecessors.
Laughter of the mad surrounds you as the blood moon rises over the top of a damned city. You tighten your grip on the controller and your stress level rises as a terrifying visage approaches in the distance, unearthly aberrations sprouting from its squirming limbs. Soon the laughter of the mad is yours; the impossible battle that you have finally managed to obtain a fraction of control over takes an unexpected turn, and you realize how little you know. Welcome to Bloodborne, where death and insanity lurk around every dark corner and nothing is as it seems.
You are a tourist in From Software’s mad dreamscape, and your journey through this atmospheric masterpiece leaves you unsettled and craving more. You face the impossible and the unreal, and through prowess and persistence, you overcome the nightmares with an unrivaled sense of achievement and satisfaction. Yes, the game is as challenging as a Souls title (also made by From Software), but just as with that series, multiplayer options and player progression can provide methods for anyone to triumph.
Bloodborne is a shining example of fantastic gameplay combined with terror, with its introductory hours rooted in traditional horror tropes, rife with werewolves and twisted humans in the cursed city of Yharnam. The tale quickly takes a turn for the weird and the wonderful as the true plot is revealed layer by layer, an esoteric and eldritch trek through a luxurious Lovecraftian yarn. Never before has From’s dark fantasy setting been so intimately realized, with strong visuals and atmosphere, and the switch to a pure horror aesthetic allows the studio to embrace aspects that have only been subtly injected in previous titles.
Father Gascoigne is the second boss you might encounter while playing Bloodborne. This is a tough looking cowboy dude that you have to fight in a graveyard.
Before you go ahead and fight Father Gascoigne, you better be prepared first. I was stuck in Bloodborne for many hours until I found out you have to make use with the items that are given to you. Hacking and slashing by itself is not really effective on its own.
For this boss fight, I made sure to stock up on both Throwing Knives and Molotov Cocktails. Throwing Knives cost 100 Blood Echoes, and you can stock up to nine of them. Molotov Cocktails cost 180 Blood Echoes and you can have up to 10 of them. Both items are really helpful against Father Gascoigne, and they are great to have in Bloodborne in general.
The other item that you need is lots of Blood Vials. These things replenish your health and you can have up to 20 of them. Kill as many enemies as you can so you can spend all your Blood Echoes on Blood Vials, Throwing Knives and Molotov Cocktails.
PROS: Gorgeous, interconnected world; Exciting, fast combat; Eerie sound and visuals; Weird characters and lore
CONS: Not as complex as predecessors; Some graphical oddities
VERDICT : Bloodborne is an exceptional game for both longtime fans and newcomers, but it’s a little less delightfully vexing than its predecessors.