The controversial new first person shooter, Bulletstorm aims to not only offend you but your whole family. Will its new style of ‘kill with skill’ really be a game changer, or is it all bark and no bite?
Created by People Can Fly and Epic Games, the companies that brought us Gears of War and Pain Killer, Bulletstorm is in a category all its own. At first glance is seems like your typical sci-fi shooter with cheap tricks, vulgarity and low brow humor. Beneath the vulgarity the game surprises with both gameplay and graphics.
The plot begins with space pirate Grayson Hunt crash landing on planet Stygia, in an attempt to take revenge on General Serrano. Not only must he survive, but he must also and keep his promise to get Ishi Sato, his newly cybernetically enhanced friend, off the planet. Grayson and Ishi take on the chaos of mutants, gangs and carnivorous plants on the once revered Stygia. He is armed with a unique and massively destructive Energy Leash that can marvelously grab, slam, pull and throw his unfortunate victims.
Known for its foul language, the game intersperses bits of wise guy humor and pop culture references. The slow paced start to the plot was surprising, but when the game picks up speed, it’s balls-to-the-walls nonstop action. Once the mayhem begins, this fast paced shooter has you spraying bullets left and right in, yes, a bullet storm. The game’s almost frenetic and totally over the top experience is more memorable than the plot and some moments will really stick with you.
For example, at one point you control a robotic T. Rex as a weapon.
The gameplay involves attaining Skillshots, which are creative and vicious methods of causing the demise of your opponent. The Skillshots give you points which are used on upgrading weapons as you go through the levels. Rather than going for head shots or easy kills, this new game design choice encourages you to think outside of the box – then blow the box up. The more creative your massacre, the more points you get. You become an artist, and your weapons your paintbrushes.
Grayson wields ubiquitous FPS weapons such as assault rifles, sniper rifles and shotguns, but all have a Bulletstorm twist to them. For instance, the shotgun has four barrels of destruction and its alternative fire creates a giant fire blast, incinerating anything in its path. One of my personal favorites is a gun shooting a drill bit that can either send the enemy into the air or drive them into the ground. The weapon variations get the job done, and you will quickly find your personal favorites. Not only can you use the weapons and Energy Leash, but your body is also a weapon with the ability to kick and slide into the enemy and propel them into the air.
As the enemy flies through the air and plummets to their death, the player notices the stunning visuals. From the beautiful lighting to the horrific dismemberments, the environments are striking. The Unreal 3.5 Engine allows for incredible backgrounds, whether it is crumbling buildings, underground taverns, space ships, or a city that once was called a Paradise. Stygia is a colorful visual delight.
In addition to the regular gameplay, there are two extra modes of play, Echo Mode and Anarchy Mode. In Echo Mode you replay certain key points from the campaign, with the goal of achieving a high score of Skillshot points. This is nice but it feels familiar; the scenarios are taken right out of the game. The main purpose is to compete with your friends on the Leader Board. Echo Mode is great if you are competitive or if you just want to play for a few minutes without any commitment.
Anarchy Mode serves as an online multiplayer. Four players take on waves of enemies and try to rack up as many points as they can. Occasionally an enemy will appear that requires each team member to destroy him in a different way, resulting in bonus points. Anarchy Mode is truly about teamwork and fun if you have a good team.
Bulleststorm features an estimated five to twelve hours of play, but you will want to go back and unlock all the possible weapons and improve your Skillshot scores. Bulletstorm is everything that you wanted in a FPS and more, it takes the genre to a new and crazy level.
image Via scorephoria