LOCO's Gaming Update
Blood Rayne’s Betrayal
Published: Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Updated: Friday, November 2, 2012 17:11
Hello everyone, and welcome to another edition of the LoCo Gaming Update. This week I'll be tackling BloodRayne: Betrayal, a revamp of the BloodRayne series.
Review: BloodRayne: Betrayal
Release Date: Out Now
Developer: WayFoward Publisher: Majesco Entertainment
Platform(s): PS3 (Reviewed)/Xbox 360
Format: Digital Downloadable Title
ESRB rating: T
Price: 1200 MS Points ($14.99)
BloodRayne: Betrayal is a side-scrolling beat-‘em up action-platformer that despite all of the gore, somehow gets a T rating. It's also a hard game (sometimes very hard).
The story in Betrayal starts when Rayne and other Brimstone Society—the organization she works for—soldiers are infiltrating an underground castle. There's something about hunting down some vampires and other monsters that are in the castle.
Gameplay is split into two parts: hack-and-slash action and some serious platforming. The hacking and slashing has different combos: a juggle attack, a charged attack, and even a sprinting uppercut (my favorite). Since Rayne is a dhampir (half-human, half vampire), she can drain her enemies blood to regain her health or infect her enemies and cause them to explode. The platforming consists of Rayne doing normal jumps, backflips (which allow her to jump higher), wall jumping, and ground and mid-air dashes. Most of the time the platforming is fun, but can get pretty difficult sometimes, almost too difficult.
For example, there is a section where Rayne has to take down four ghost swordsmen while jumping in-between a disappearing platform and hopping on top of giant mosquito-like flies to avoid falling to her death.
Graphically, the game looks good. The lighting looks dynamic, the character sprites animate well, and said sprites are appropriately detailed. If the westernized-anime art style looks familiar, then it's probably because Alex Ahad, one of the artists working the 2D downloadable fighter Skullgirls, was one of the artists working on Betrayal. I should mention that, even though this is a reboot of the BloodRayne franchise, it's almost as gory as its predecessors.
Dismemberment and decapitations come frequently (for Rayne's enemies, and at times herself), and geysers of blood will be guaranteed on almost every enemy encounter. It should be mentioned that the text will appear small on standard definition TVs.
Audio also fares pretty well. All of the appropriate sounds are at play here. Enemies getting stomped and those who explode are accompanied by appropriate squishy sounds, explosive barrels explode with proper audio impact, and Rayne's blood sucking sounds like she's actually sucking blood. The soundtrack is what really stands out for BloodRayne: Betrayal in the audio department.
The old-school Castlevania-like tunes match the old-school style of Betrayal gameplay (yes, the BGM from the trailer is also present in the game). There's also a hidden cheat code that activates 8-bit mode for the soundtrack.
Unfortunately, the game is kind of short with just 15 levels. After beating the game, the only incentives to going back to it are getting all of the Red Skulls (which will allow you to upgrade your health or pistol ammo), getting a higher score ranking (which can be as hard as some of the platforming described earlier), and appreciating the soundtrack.
As a fan of the BloodRayne series, this is the first one I can confidently say that is good, but its flaws stop it from being great.
+ Bloody fun combat
+ Mostly good platforming
+ Great animations
+ Cheesy, but good soundtrack
− Sometimes far too difficult
− Too short (especially at $15) and little replay value
− No voiced dialog
− Art style won't suit everyone's tastes