BloodRayne: Betrayal Preview

  • By: CM Boots-Faubert
  • Posted 13th Jun 2011

BloodRayne: Betrayal

It seems strange to refer to a game from 2002 as an old game -- we remember gaming in 2002 like it was yesterday -- but it really has been almost ten years since we were introduced to Rayne, Mynce, Juergen Wulf, Beliar, and our fledgling steps in Mortton, Louisiana...

BloodRayne was set in 1933, in a world in which vampires are very real -- and opens with an illustration of that fact and the best way to get rid of them -- which is similar to how you get rid of an immortal in the Highlander series, by separating their head from their body!

As is often the case there are forces lurking in the shadows, and those forces want to recruit BloodRayne, who is herself a 'Dhampir' -- which is half-vampire, half human -- and hell on Vampires, who she kills on sight. The Brimstone society is trying to rid the world of Vampires and moves to recruit Rayne, which if you played the game, you will recall is where the story begins.

It is important to know your origins when a new game comes out -- and as Betrayal is the third title in the series (there was a BoodRayne 2) that has been in hiatus for a while, doubly important if this is your first bite at the apple.

Our introduction to BloodRayne: Betrayal was a bit odd, as it came only after we had taken a look at Camping Mama: Outdoor Adventure , Cooking Mama 4: Kitchen Magic , and Pet Zombies , all 3DS titles that somehow did not prepare us for the bloodbath of BloodRayne. Still, it is fair to say that we arrived in a relaxed state, ready for a little adrenalin rush, and that was what we got but it was not the rush we were anticipating.

As a 2D side-scroller Betrayal is a functional game with all of the bells and whistles, and if it had been introduced as some other IP rather than as part of the BloodRayne series we probably would have liked it a lot more...

The problem is that it is part of an established series, and as such there is an obligation on the part of the developer not to screw around with the underpinnings of the series. When you take what is a well-established character who has a large following even today and you start playing with the art style, the game mechanics, and the very essence of what it means to play that character, as hard as this is to say, you get what you deserve.

A very sexy and convincing BloodRayne lurked around the lobby of the West Hall, posing for pics...

Game Play
The world in Betrayal is similar enough to the previous games to be familiar but different enough to scratch the nerves of a long-time fan. The good news though is, if you have never played any of the previous games in the series, well then chances are you will like this one!

The risk-vs-reward system that was put in play is a balance between aggressive play and holding back, with success being derived from how quickly you develop a sense for when you need to push forward, and when it is OK to hold back. Fail to find that groove and you will die. A lot.

They did a good job of rendering the hero-protagonist, BloodRayne, and as you would expect in one of these games, there was blood -- lots of blood -- and it is fair to say that it rained down upon most of the kills.

The weapons in the game include firearms, but ammo is not plentiful for them so it is definitely a situation in which you have to husband your resources to make it through some levels in good shape.

Once you learn when to dash and when to hang back and shoot/slice life gets a lot easier, but that will not present too much challenge, as we were able to figure it out pretty well during the brief demo!

Conclusions and Observations
Meeting up with BloodRayne at E3 was a lot like meeting up with an old friend that you have not seen in a long time, and who through no fault of their own has changed so much that it is hard to see the old friend in this new person. It did not help that Rayne looks good, or that the game was fun, it simply was not the old friend that we knew and loved.

If you are willing to be pleased by an entirely different game play experience that features a familiar character, than you will likely find this game a pleasure to play -- but if you are looking for your old friend... Well, you know what they say, life is full of disappointments...

BloodRayne Betrayal will land on Xbox Live Arcade and the PlayStation Network some time in August of this year, and will be priced at just 1,200 Microsoft Points or $15.

Official Title: BloodRayne: Betrayal
Developing Studio: WayForward Technologies
Publisher: Majesco
Release Date: TBA / August 2011
Platforms: Xbox 360 / PS3
Genre: Action-Adventure / Side-Scroller
Ratings: TBA