«

»

Blood Breed review for Nintendo Switch


Platform: Nintendo Switch
Publisher: Cool Small Games
Developer: Blake McKinnon
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No
ESRB: M

For the life of me, I’ll never understand why some developers have such a fascination with recreating the look and feel of PS1 horror games. In the last couple of months, just off the top of my head, I’ve played Without Escape, Back in 1995, Injection π23, and Submersed (to name just a few, because I’m positive I’ve forgotten several others), and they all have two things in common: they all tried to recreate Silent Hill/Resident Evil, and they all sucked.

To that ever-growing list, you can add Blood Breed. I suppose it stands out from all those other games by virtue of the fact it tries especially hard to earn that M rating, with lots of over-the-top gore and polygon-based nudity, but I don’t know that this qualifies as an accomplishment. If anything, it feels more like a bargain budget horror game from the ‘90s (or, going back further, a bargain budget slasher film from the ‘80s) that overcompensates for being thoroughly terrible by trying to push the envelope well beyond the realms of good taste.

Because needless to say, it absolutely succeeds at that. This is clear right from the get-go, when you have the option of turning nudity on or off right at the title screen. And from there. It’s all M-rated content, all the time. Dismembered naked bodies litter hallways and hang from hooks. When you die — and you’ll die plenty, for reasons I’ll get into shortly — it happens in the goriest ways possible, as your character gets chopped limb from limb, and blood sprays everywhere.

While I can’t say that any of this is my cup of tea, it might at least be forgivable (or tolerable) if the Blood Breed was any good. But it’s really not. You’ll spend a massive amount of time just wandering around, trying to figure out what to do next, because the game’s devotion to looking like a forgotten ‘90s relic means that it’s hard to see important details like keys hidden away in dark corners. And even when you do find them, you have to go through the rooms again and again, hoping that a bad guy won’t pop out of nowhere and chop you to bits — and knowing that when he does, it’s practically insta-death, because a) you have a very limited stamina metre, b) you don’t get weapons until well into the game, and c) the bad guys all seem to move at warp speed. Running is hopeless, fighting is impossible, and it’s hard to shake the feeling that every little bit of success you have here comes down to being very lucky rather than being skilled.

To continue the thought from up top, just about the only way Blood Breed might appeal to you is if you, too, have nostalgia for the early days of PS1 horror games — but if you do, you’re probably much better served playing the Resident Evil remakes than you are playing junk like this. For that matter, I suspect that if you were to go back and play some of those classics from that games, they’d still be better than Blood Breed. Really, just about anything is better than this.

Cool Small Games provided us with a Blood Breed Switch code for review purposes.

Grade: D