Since it’s a first-person shooter, it’s not hard to imagine Blood and Truth working without VR. But the way it revives some of the genre’s mechanics wouldn’t be possible without it, either. The first-person shooter action is still mandatory for some of the inaccuracies and annoyances with PSVR and the less-than-accurate tracking. But it also uses these inputs to give you a satisfactory amount of control over each gun battle and the different activities in between. This is our Blood and Truth Review.
Whether it’s tearing off grenade pins with your teeth or hanging scaffolding while you bring backfire, Blood and Truth does an admirable job and expands familiar shooter concepts while still maintaining a comfortable VR experience.
Blood and Truth Review: About
- Platform: PlayStation 4
- Developer: SIE London Studio
- Publisher: Sony Interactive Entertainment
- Genres: First-person shooter
- Release Date: May 28, 2019
Blood and Truth Review: Gameplay
Blood and Truth can only be played with two Move controllers. You are explicitly told to play from a sitting position, and you get many points around your torso to work with. For example, if you put a hand on your chest, you can grab stored ammo to reload, while you can find gun holsters on your hips and slings for more massive weapons behind your shoulders. Blood and Truth make your move to reach the weapons you need when you need them, and also makes these moves easy and natural to remember.
There is a slightly long calibration process that ensures that all these movements are smooth and accurate. Great care is taken to ensure that you are tracked correctly at all times, which helps when you get thrown into some quick shootouts. Accurate tracking produces one of the most comfortable experiences I’ve ever had with PSVR. While Blood and Truth don’t wholly eradicate some tracking issues (which are more hardware-related), it bypasses common issues like camera drifting and annoyingly erratic motion tracking losses.
That’s not to say that problems aren’t frustrating when they surface. It is common to wrestle with a two-handed assault rifle and its scope while the game struggles to determine the angle you are aiming at. This leads to numerous frustrating deaths when the situation requires more agility than the hardware can provide, disproving otherwise challenging encounters with failures you cannot control.
Blood and Truth almost successfully distract you from this by giving you a lot more of what you can do with your hands, enhancing the otherwise ravenous first-person shots. Weapons like a pump-action shotgun feel more comfortable to use when you grasp the pump handle with your free hand and actively retract to reload after each shot. At the same time, a silent pistol is tangibly more accurate after resting your free hand on the side for extra stability. With Blood and Truth, you can also get ridiculous with how you approach combat so that you can use a powerful assault rifle in one hand and a sawed-off shotgun in the other, at the cost of accuracy.
Your movement in Blood and Truth is limited, but that helps keep the action running smoothly. Blood and truth only let you look in a direction that determines it, giving you control to move to predefined areas in front of you or strafe at the touch of a button. There are no confusing segmented rotations to struggle with, so you are free to focus on how to navigate your way forward and what coverage is available in productive ways.
With this in mind, it is comforting that enemies cannot find themselves in inaccessible spaces behind you, and you have enough choices in a shootout to keep it dynamic rather than just on rails. The transition to new coverage and the freedom you get to make minor adjustments to your firing angles are smooth and responsive, allowing you to flank enemies with ease.
There are a few sparse stealth sections to break through the sometimes brutal action, giving you options to navigate tight office spaces or dilapidated apartments and take out enemies with silent weapons. It’s thrilling to string together some silent murders before you get noticed and to re-emphasize how much space Blood and Truth gives you to work with, despite being so restrictive of your movement. If you’re not sticking your head between gunshots, you’ll be doing everything from picking locks to making your way over construction supports and crawling through open vents.
Each of these actions (and more) makes good use of the Move controllers, making your movements feel more intimate than ever before with a standard controller. For example, lock picking gives you the task of slowly rotating one Move controller and then using the other to lock the pin in place in the correct position quickly. It feels both precise and natural and helps the otherwise mundane action of unlocking a door surprisingly attractive.
The same can be said about the many ways Blood and Truth let you climb through the many environments. You need to extend your hand to grab top beams or protruding reinforcement pieces from walls to gracefully pull yourself up, being careful not to loosen both sides when dangling over a deadly dive. Some set pieces take advantage of this to create some memorable shootouts while hanging with one arm for a lifetime and firing back frantically with the other.
By physically holding to hold, while remaining aware of where your hands are, these actions feel all the more natural and satisfying. With some intense work and creative use of VR, it’s a pity that Blood and Truth don’t sum all this up in a story that doesn’t feel as disjointed and hokey as it does. After the escapades of a London-based crime family under threat, Blood and Truth leaves through every gangster story cliché in the book.
Gravity moments are undone by pompous voting and lousy writing, while others can’t decide whether they want to be a grounded crime story or a world-famous James Bond impersonation. Blood and Truth never settle for a consistent tone that helps her story move forward, making the story-oriented stages (without action) elongated and tedious.
Blood and Truth Review: Conclusion
Blood and Truth game is uneven, especially if it’s determined to let you focus on an uninteresting story while enduring the shortcomings of VR. But the great thing about Blood and Truth is that it also does great things with the platform. The addition of motion control makes familiar and everyday mechanics captivating, while even breaking the cleverly designed first-person shots and creating an excellent rhythm for the six-hour or so campaign. Blood and Truth fail to hold onto the landing in every way, but it is undoubtedly a step forward for PSVR shooters.