Bloodborne – Frustration and Triumph

I’ve never played a Dark Souls game, nor Demon Souls, or pretty much any game like it prior to Bloodborne… well, there was a brief flirtation with Lords of the Fallen, which turned into one of my biggest game purchase regrets ever. However, after recently playing the free to play Let it Die on my PS4, and growing interest in the idea of the Souls games, I delved into seeing which game to get, and based largely on the story, I went with Bloodborne.

The result? Lots of F bombs from me to the game. It is a constant frustration to die so often. Going in, I knew this would be the case though, and I’m working on it. So far, I’ve pretty well enjoyed my time in Yharnam. Though even after many hours into the game, I’ve yet to beat the first real boss of the game, Father Gascoigne. I’ve beat the Cleric Beast, but I’m still working on leveling and “getting good” in order to beat Father Gascoigne. Finally beating the Cleric Beast resulted in a huge jump from my seat and wild self-congratulatory cheer, and this I’m guessing is the real achievement of the Souls style games. You die constantly, but then you finally get past an area, past a boss, and knowing that win was hard-won, brings a true sense of triumph that most games don’t give on completion, let alone just getting past one small point. I think part of the problem is that many games have made us soft, and even on hard difficulties, often feel cheated when you die, rather than the fact you messed up. There is no incentive in many games to get good, where here it seems to be lessons learned that lead to a victory over what was holding you back.

Having not gotten far into the game, this isn’t a review or even a preview. That said, I think it is fair to say that based on my experience and other reviews I’ve read, it should be greatly enjoyed by people who love the Souls style games. And based on my own experience, I think it may be a really good entry point for Souls virgins.

In short, though I’m not too far along the game, I’ve come to appreciate why people love the Souls games. I probably won’t jump on the Dark Souls games themselves, partly because I really like the story of Bloodborne, but also because one really punishing, but ultimately rewarding and fun game, is enough for me at the moment. There is also the issue of my recent addiction to Oxygen Not Included and the upcoming Horizon: Zero Dawn, both of which will take time from my Bloodborne habit.