Once in a while, a game releases that a lot of work clearly went into yet it simply doesn't end up being any good. With that said, here's Blood & Truth: a new VR game that plays like an action movie and an absolutely terrible one at that.
I really don't know where to start with Blood & Truth. Perhaps I'll share my first experience with it. Upon starting a new game and selecting normal difficulty and using a DualShock 4, I soon found myself in a completely impossible situation. A character was driving a truck and I was in the passenger seat tasked with shooting armed motorcyclists and other trucks. However, I kept running out of ammo and could not reload no matter what I tried. Considering I was completely stuck, I decided to start again but this time, I would select the easy difficulty and I decided to use the PlayStation Move controllers. However, I couldn't change the difficulty, start a new game, or anything of the sort. So, I had to go to the save data management tool, delete my save, and start from fresh. Unfortunately, the game didn't make up for this awful first impression even though I managed to get past the part that I was stuck on.
Anyway, Blood & Truth tells the story of the Marks family who are a bunch of nogoodniks that are being threatened by a crime lord. You play as Ryan Marks who is supposedly an elite soldier. Most of the campaign involves watching boring conversations and infiltrating enemy compounds such as a casino and a semi-demolished building. The only substantial gameplay is its first-person shooting segments but you'll also have to dink around with locks and goofy electronic boxes in order to unlock doors and stuff. The latter feels like it should be in a VR demo from 2016, not in a full game in 2019. The shooting is either accomplished through areas where you can move around by looking at nodes then tapping a button to automatically walk to them or via on-rails segments which are way more fun and action-packed.
All of that being said, the gameplay in Blood & Truth simply isn't fun. There have been dozens of shooting games for PlayStation VR over the past few years and the shooting here is probably the most generic and annoying. Sometimes, a headshot doesn't kill a defenceless foe and you may have to shoot them a dozen or so times to take them out and on other occasions, an enemy may perish after a shot in the arm. It makes absolutely no sense. Oh, and some enemies have their shields float in mid-air after you take them out.
Aside from tinkering with tools like screwdrivers, lock picks, and C4 whenever you're prompted and shooting, you'll also have to climb in certain parts. Of course, it's just as tedious as the rest of the gameplay. For example, you have to traverse gaps via monkey bars but you can let go and float in mid-air if you want. At one part, I had to hold onto a zip line but I accidentally let go and fell to my death. That's consistent, right? Another part has you blindly jump off a huge building only for you to grab onto a swinging cargo container. Some people may think that looks cool but I couldn't help but wonder how Ryan would continue with his newly shattered hand bones.
Gameplay aside, Blood & Truth is supposed to be an interactive action movie so how do its cinematic aspects hold up? As a fan of all sorts of action movies including plenty of cheesy British ones, I must admit that the characters and story of Blood & Truth are... absolutely awful! For starters, I kind of feel sorry for the actors because they definitely put in a lot of effort to make the characters move and sound convincing. The main issue lies in the script. It comes across like a prepubescent boy wrote the dialogue with plenty of unfunny jokes along with the most amount of F-bombs that I've ever heard in a video game. How could anyone in their right mind think this is entertaining? On top of all that, the mom of the Marks family looks younger than her sons and I looked it up; the actor who plays her is only 13 years older than one of the son's actors. So, I guess that's a sad story all on its own.
I know that I'm completely trashing Blood & Truth but it truly is a bad game in almost every aspect. However, I did enjoy its few on-rails segments. More specifically, the parts that have your character automatically move while you shoot at enemies. These segments aren't great or anything but they're the only sequences that actually feel similar to an action movie. If the whole game only consisted of this style of gameplay, it would actually be mildly enjoyable. Finally, after completing the campaign, you can take on the various missions again as well as time attack challenges but honestly, why anyone would want to do that is completely beyond me.
Blood & Truth's story is about as gripping as trying to hold onto a bowling ball with greased up hands and its gameplay doesn't do much to make up for that. Add in a bunch of glitches and goofy moments and you're left with one disappointing VR experience.
- + The actors do a decent job of being convincing
- + On-rails segments can be kind of fun
- - Laughable cliché story, unlikeable characters, and far too frequent obscenities
- - Gameplay is downright boring and broken
- - Loads of glitches and nonsensical crap