Before, when everything was better… When political correctness was not yet the order of the day. In Retrofiel, one of the editors of Eurogamer Benelux goes back to the good old days. In preparation for Blood’s twentieth anniversary, Johnny once again brings out his inner sadist.
In Some blood Play as the anti-hero Caleb, a gunslinger from the Wild West known for his aggressive nature, sadistic features and sarcastic humor. Thanks to this reputation, he quickly rose through the ranks of the evil cult of the Cabal. Ultimately, the dark god Chernobog chooses him and three others as his personal elite soldiers. However, after years of loyal service, the four are betrayed by Chernobog. Caleb ended up underground for almost sixty years. The fact that he then comes out of his grave with the wrong leg is pretty sweet. Dressed in a cowboy hat and trench coat, with glowing red eyes and a tendency to spit out eye-catching linings with his hoarse voice, anyone who opposes his revenge has to brutally believe him.
The blood begins as Caleb is still in his grave. For some reason, the lid of his grave slips off and Caleb wakes up with the legendary words “I Live Again”, from the horror comedy Army of Darkness. Armed with a pitchfork, you exit and are immediately attacked by a zombie crawling out of his grave. He calls for brains and rushes towards you. Aggressively, you attack him with a pitchfork while trying to dodge his ax. As soon as you give him the finishing blow, his head flies. Blood gushes gracefully from the bare neck. The ground quickly turns red. If you find your head, Caleb will chase it like an accomplished soccer player. Welcome to the world of Blood.
Much like Duke Nukem 3D and Shadow Warrior, Blood is a typical construction engine game. All three follow the same pattern of 2.5D worlds full of recognizable locations, exaggerated violence, exotic weapons, cheesy liners, and lots of humor. Blood is distinguished by a horror theme still unique to this time that goes beyond the clichés. The game is full of references and is actually a great homage to horror movies and literature. For example, enemies have many characteristics of the Deadites from the Evil Dead series, including a possessed hand that tries to strangle you and screams “I will swallow your soul.” But there are also many references to the works of Edgar Allan Poe, HP Lovecraft, and Stephen King.
The horror theme is also reflected in the locations offered by the game. You will visit a cemetery, a fun fair, a haunted house and a Cabal temple. The levels themselves are also full of winks. For example, the Crystal Lake folder was named after Jason Voorhees’ home port in the Friday 13 movies. As you play, you will hear the familiar sound “ki, ki, ki, ma, ma, ma And if you pay attention, you can find Jason’s mask and machete. Although each level has a linear design, it is worth exploring the area and discovering not only the many Easter Eggs, but also the alternate paths and secrets. The little details keep you entertained endlessly and ensure that it’s never a punishment to replay a level.
But it’s not just the levels that make you want to keep playing Blood. Thanks to a diverse selection of aggressive enemies and a deranged arsenal of weapons, the fights are incredibly intense and extremely brutal. Fanatic Cabal members throw bundles of dynamite, shoot tommy guns, and chase after you as they challenge you in their own language. Gargoyles hide and unexpectedly attack the grunts from the air or try to trap you by disguising themselves as a statue. As if that weren’t enough, you should also consider Phantasms: Skinny Gentiles who come to your soul with their icy screams and are only vulnerable when attacking with their scythe or magical skulls.
However, Caleb is not alone and can count on a large arsenal of mad weapons. With a Zippo and a spray can, Flare Gun or Napalm Launcher, you can set it all on fire. Enemies pass by, shouting “It’s hot” or “It’s burning”. Insert a needle into your voodoo doll and watch them moan in pain or imagine yourself a real gangster sifting through everyone with two tommy guns at the same time. But if you really want to clean up, you throw in a bundle of dynamite and enjoy how entire groups erupt as Caleb laughs mournfully between the bouncing heads. If you are still losing you can still watch how the enemies circle around your body. If you happen to have lit a bundle of dynamite just before your death, you take them all with you to the grave.
All of this bloodshed is backed up by an impressive amount of appropriate sound effects. The screams of your opponents cross the bone. A zombie sounds like the living dead, the Cabal’s tongue is supernatural, and the monster rumble is awesome. Additionally, Caleb’s voice honors the character. You hear the underlying sadistic hatred and pleasure when he makes the umpteenth comment. Even if he smiles during the excessive violence, you know it’s mean. In addition, the classic orchestral soundtrack with melodramatic sounds perfectly matches the tone of the desolate world.
Blood recently celebrated his twentieth birthday, but Caleb wasn’t having a party. The underrated shooter was slowly forgotten by everyone. Due to a rights issue, the source code was not released, so the modding community never fully blossomed. These days you can buy the game, including all expansions, for 5 euros on Steam. To get the most out of this version, I recommend the Blood GDX mod. If this bloody article has piqued your interest, give the game a try. Who knows that with enough enthusiasm Caleb, we’ll hear the words “I’m living again” again.
Source : IGN