Bloodborne has been a game that many PlayStation 4 owners have been looking forward to since it was first announced. The game was originally scheduled to release next month, but has since been pushed back slightly to March 24, 2015. As Bloodborne is developed by From Software, the same company that brought you Demon's Souls and Dark Souls, many fans of both series have been eagerly anticipating the new title. We've discussed the differences between Bloodborne and Dark Souls before, so let's take this opportunity to examine what really makes Bloodborne shine.



Faster Gameplay

The biggest factor that has many fans salivating over Bloodborne is the fact that the game plays so fast. You don't have a lot of time to think about what you're going to do before you do it. While this may seem like a bit of a deterrent, once you get the hang of the combat system it becomes something more akin to poetry in motion. Your movements and actions become a symphony with the player as the conductor while you dismantle and dismember your enemies.

Not only does the gameplay feel fluid and graceful, the faster-paced action keeps things interesting. In other similar games there's a lot of walking around and a decent amount of down time between enemy encounters. That's not the case in Bloodborne. While you'll still have to walk around and traverse through each area, your walk speed is much faster and you come across enemies more frequently. You won't have much down time as you play through this game.

Regain System

The faster gameplay even influences the combat system. One of the most prominent features of the combat system is the Regain ability. This new feature rewards players for being more offensive. After being hit, blocking or dodging an attack, if you offer a well-timed counterattack some of your health will be replenished. With this new system in place a skilled player won't have to worry about a lack of health items. You won't have to run away if your health is low so long as you can successfully pull off a counterattack.

Of course this is still a From Software title in the same vein as Dark Souls. That means that using the Regain system won't be as simple as quickly mashing an attack button. You'll have to time your counterattack in order to reap the rewards of the Regain system. However, it's not something that feels impossible to do. After an hour or two of play you should know the system well enough to pull off proper counterattacks more often than not. With that said, even once you have it down, you still have to vary your timing depending on the enemy you're facing, especially during boss battles.

Weapons

While most action games have a large variety of weaponry, you tend to find a few weapons that you really like and stick with them. That could still be the case with Bloodborne, but the weapons have a variety all to themselves, even if you end up using only one throughout most of the game. This is accomplished by giving each weapon multiple forms. In most of the examples From Software has shown off, the weapons have a long form and a short form. Usually the long form attacks slower, but inflicts more damage, while the short form offers considerably faster attacks and sacrifices damage output.

This effect is amplified because you can switch weapon forms in the middle of a combo. Now combos are far more engaging than simply mashing out a button combination. You have to look at your enemy, see how they're reacting to your attacks and determine if you need to switch to long form or short form. Things become even more hectic when multiple enemies are surrounding you and you need to inflict damage while still attacking quickly and evading. Switching between weapon forms at the correct time will be crucial during some of these battles.

Visuals

The most obvious feature of Bloodborne that has the masses talking is the visual appeal of the game. The power of the PlayStation 4 has enabled the developers at From Software to really push the formula. Lighting is amazing and the enemies are just as massive as they are detailed. But it's the small touches in the environments that really pull you in and offer more immersion than you'll find in most other action games. The way the lights flicker and the water and brush react as you move through an area make for a far more immersive experience than most of the games from the previous console generation.

Expect a complete walkthrough of Bloodborne here on Prima Games once the game becomes available in March!