|Version Reviewed: X-Box
I’ll be honest here when I first saw this game I wasn’t expecting much. Oh sure, just like with SiN it’s got a cool picture on the cover but I really wasn’t expecting this game to be all that great. But BloodRayne is a pretty good game.
What I really liked about BloodRayne was how it took several of my favourite games and combined them. It took the original first person shooter Wolfenstein 3D and Return to Castle Wolfenstein’s plot and the enjoyable gameplay of Tomb Raider and then threw in some Castlevaniavampires (although they look completely different) and combined them to make a great game.
The gameplay is something that may take a bit of time getting used to. Most people find the control a bit disorienting at first. However the control can always be reversed or altered and BloodRayne offers the gamer main different control options (at least for the X-Box version). The fighting system is not one of the best but when you consider how complex it is you can be pretty forgiving of any short comings, like the fact that all the moves seem pretty similar. The unique concept of feeding on your enemies to regain health was really interesting because you need to catch them as healthy as possible to gain the most health and this puts an emphasis on using stealth. Read the game’s manual for a better description. There is a radar in the game in case you get lost and have no idea where to go to complete your objective. I have a tendency to ignore my radar however and wander aimlessly; however the game has 4 “visions,” all of which have there own function. There is a standard mode, aura vision that shows where an objective is and also the current health of enemies, sniper vision and bullet time vision. I find that even though I ignore my radar, I often pay attention to the aura vision, which will help anyone out there like me.
The plot to the game is an excellent one and leaves you wondering just what’s going to happen next. The only problem with the game is that you don’t really want to play through it again once it’s done unless the story left you confused, you would rather go out and get the sequel, (Due out in October 2004) or if you don’t want to play you can wait for the movie (although as most people know movies based on videogames are not always good; i.e. Street Fighter). There are some bits of realism that can detract from the game but only slightly. For some reason the programmers felt the need to put in a Nazi mecha tank. Their role in the game seems incredibly forced and at the one point where you actually have to pilot one, it handles like a poor mech from Mecha Assault with a terrible rate of fire with their missiles and no ability to aim. Fortunately the part with the mechs is over quickly, although it may result in dying several times and having to restart the level.
When I compare BloodRayne to other X-Box games from 2002 I don’t find it stands out all that much visually, but I find that it has very realistic graphics and the FMV’s are amongst the best I have ever seen. The audio in this game is great. The explosions sound excellent, the gunshots are great and the voice acting is excellent and fitting for most the characters (Rayne’s Tibetan friend Mynce being the exception, she has a British accent). The only real problem is that all the Germans speak English with German accents, except for certain points in the game.
Overall BloodRayne is an excellent game with only a few flaws. While it doesn’t take too long to beat and its replay value is marginal, it is still a great game to own, because it will definitely be one of the most fun games in your collection. So if you can get your hands on a copy of BloodRayne I suggest you do, as long as your parents don’t mind if you play a game with a Mature Rating.