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What's Shakin' at the Bacon

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ME Andromeda may be the first video game with an all-blind cast.
 

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Blood Will Tell – PlayStation 2

Blood Will Tell

Platform: PlayStation 2

Developer: Sega Wow, Red Entertainment, Sofdec, ADX

Publisher: Sega, Tezuka Productions

Release Date NA:  Septermber, 9, 2004

Genre: Action Adventure, Hack and Slash

Ranking: Innovative

Reviewed by: Juuchi Yosamu

To tell you the truth I bought this game as a gag. After reading the the first sentence on the cover “Be the ultimate arsenal of weapons with arm blades…” I literally fell to the floor laughing. I expected to play it for 10-20 minutes, have a good laugh and just use it as a coaster but that wasn’t the case. First 10 minutes of game play were spent messing with my T.V trying to figure out why the hell the game was in black and white. Figuring I would never touch the game again I didn’t bother to reading the story line. I soon gave up trying to fix my video problems, eager to unleash my FEARSOME arm blades! So there I was hacking away, the whole time infuriated with this black and white crap, when I ran into this…. Quasimoto looking fiend. After sending him packing back to his bell tower I received…. my left eye? What the hell is going on? Color returned to the game and I was in awe of how…. freaking awesome that was. I reset the game, now paying close attention to the story to find out that this game would inevitably make it’s way from the coaster stack (along with Bruce Lee: Quest of the Dragon) to my personal collection.

Synopsis

The protagonist, Hyakkimaru, was sent down by the gods to rid the world of the fiends who plague the world but, as we all know, things never go according to plan. Hyakkimaru’s father, Kagemistu Daigo, is a feudal lord who sold his sons body parts in exchange for power and invulnerability. Hyakkimaru was saved by Jyukai where he… well… essentially makes him the 6 million dollar man. Hyakkimaru ventures out into the world to reclaim his 48 lost body parts by destroying the fiends who took his life from him. (48 Body parts….. I’m pretty sure we’re all thinking the same…. thing…. HAAAALP!)

Leg Cannon

Hyakkimaru firing his leg cannon.

Battle

There are a many swords you can find throughout the game most having an enfeeble like poison or an elemental characteristic to target certain foes.You are also armed with a machine gun and canon for mid-long ranged attacks. Ammo is limited so try and conserve them for when you’re in a bind. The battle system can get a bit repetitious but later on you get some new toys to play with. Holding down the heavy attack will trigger a charge move which, if you connect, will open up an input bar. Press the corresponding buttons to unleash a flurry of slashes, what is your highest score?

Spirit Attack

Hyakkimaru using one of my favorite spirit attacks: Thunder Strike

Spirit Attack Scrolls

There is a blue gauge under your health that, when full, will unleash a devastating attack upon your enemies. In order to utilize these skills, you must find the scrolls scattered throughout the levels. Once obtained, you can browse through them and swap them out via your equipment screen. They are very powerful and are well worth the effort of hunting them down.

Arm Blades

Yes… I said it… arm blades, the moment we’ve been waiting for. Arm blades start off fairly weak and you can often find a sword better suited for battle. With that being said both arm blades level up the more you use them (common really… why would you even take them off?) A little bit of elbow grease and your arm blades will be a force to be reckoned with!

Stats 

This is the part that sold me on the game; I have to commend their unique approach. On top of being able to level up, reclaiming Hyakkimaru’s stolen appendages will net you stat increases and some offer special traits to help you defeat your enemies. Essentially they replaces “armor/accessories slots” with your own body…. I love it.

Dororo

You will find Dororo on your journey and she will aid you in her quest. Dororo will follow you around and peck away at the fiends in battle and, at times, can be a big help when surrounded. Each chapter you will reach a point where you take control Dororo.  Have fun deciphering puzzles and breaking balls with Dororo’s mighty “Dororo Punch!” or her ultimate attack…. the “Dororo Uppercut.”

SHINRYUKEN!!!

SHINRYUKEN!!!

 

Dororo

Reminds me of the good old days of Resident Evil puzzles before they turned into a 3rd person shooter…

 

 

Graphics & Audio

The graphics are fair but the audio makes you wish they stole your hearing at times.

Conclusion 

I hold this game in high regard for it’s uniqueness. To my knowledge, there is nothing else like it and I am very grateful, even though it was on a whim, to have stumbled, quite literally, into this title. I feel if the battle system would have been like Sword of the Berserk (Fits well with the cannon leg etc.) or any true hack and slash title, with the right music, this game might have been a force to be reckoned with. Even still it was a great game and I await the day when someone will bring this game back to life on a next gen system. This is another title that rewards completionists for their scrutiny and determination and for that: “We thank you.”

 

 

Written by Nerd Bacon

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