Lucien’s Review: Bloodborne: The Old Hunters DLC

The Old HuntersFollowing on the coattails of Life is Strange for my favorite game of this year is Bloodborne.  The punishing difficulty is a thing of beauty.  As is the wonderful Lovecraftian horror that the hidden plot of this game weaves.  It’s a story that is both miserably-depressing and hard to truly grasp.  When you see this story unfold, you realize why the idea of a holy being watching over us is terrifying.  And along the way, some eldritch truth is learned, which you can never return from.  My expectations for a DLC to a game this good were about as high as could possibly be.  After all, how could they improve on such a game?  This DLC was the answer.  In so many ways, it measured up.  Is it as good as the game itself?  No.  But as far as DLC goes, this may be a touch bit overpriced, but it is still worth so much.

Since the plot of this game is a little hard to follow, I’ll just say that this DLC unlocks a new area.  Another nightmare for you to traverse.  A place of twisted desires and dark secrets.  For you see, there is more to learn about the Healing Church and what they have done.  But you have to ascend a twisted tower, and fight some bosses along the way.  Hopefully you have the stomach for it.

Okay, the first thing to talk about is the visuals.  This DLC looks fantastic.  I will say that they reuse some area from the original game, which does seem a touch like cheating, but that’s just in places.  When you get to the biggest part of the Hunter’s Nightmare, this is all new stuff, with a beautiful visual aesthetic that you can’t help but get wrapped up in.  I always love how full of detail this game is.  Every area has personality.  I will say that it’s nice to have a part of this game that isn’t dark as shit.  Well, not all of it, anyway.  Can’t be a Lovecraftian horror story without some twisted shadows.

Speaking of, this new area is hard as shit.  The enemies are both plentiful and tough.  What’s more, there are a ton of twisted Hunters, that will respawn when you return to the area.  Enemies will mob you, which can be more than a little annoying, considering how each of them packs one hell of a punch.  Your nerves and your skills will be put to the test in this place.  I can’t even imagine what it’s like in New Games Plus mode.  Gives me chills.  We also get some new types of enemies inside the Astral Tower.  Like the deranged people who were the victims of the experiments that went on inside.  Being asked by so many to kill them is both sad and creepy.  Then there are the headless bodies of experiments, and the deformed heads.  Both will attack you, separately.  Again, creepy as fuck.  I will add that the first major boss that you fight has a kind of savagery that you haven’t seen before.  I felt so under-powered fighting it, because it does massive amounts of damage, and covers distance so fast that I am comfortable saying that it is the hardest boss in the game.  The pure ferocity it has when it attacks is off-putting.  A good word for this entire DLC.

There is a lot to discover in this place.  A ton of things to collect.  Almost all of it has both purpose in the story, and keys to the story about what has happened here, and the woman who is the cause of it.  If you are interested, definitely make sure that you read about it.  In addition to stuff to collect, we get some new weapons.  Some of these are so freakin’ cool!  The whip-sword, the bow-blade, and a deranged pizza cutter that you saw things into chunks with.  These weapons are fun, and you get some new toys to experiment with.  At the very least, having them is worth something.  What’s more, there are a ton of them.  People who bitched and moaned about there not being enough weapons in the game will find quite a bit to sink their teeth into.

This is a DLC done right.  What all DLC should be.  It adds so much to the story, showing an even darker side to what was already a nightmarish story that had a complete lack of hope.  Your skills will be put to the test, and your curiosity piqued, as you head into this desolate wasteland remains of what either was, or will be Yharnam, generations down the road.  Take that for what you will.

Final Verdict
8 out of 10

Peace out,

Maverick

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