Sometimes we may see a movie, play a game or even read a book where a character just almost has a life of its own. There was a movie called Empire Records and in the movie, there was a date of April 8th. What is April the 8th…well that is Rex Manning Day.
But as the movie has Rex Manning leaving, where did he go, what has he been up to? Well, I think that Tribetoy has answered this question and so much more all while making something very special with Bow To Blood for the PlayStation VR.
WELCOME TO THE ARENA!
So what is Bow To Blood about? You play as The Freelancer who has been chosen to compete in the Bow To Blood championship. But in this tournament, you will be in charge of one of the mightest and deadliest airships around all while completing challenges, collecting rewards wherever you can. But you cannot do this alone, you will have a crew to help you along the way. But you cannot go into this thinking you are the best, you need to be the best as there are other chosen captains who are after the same prize. So the goal is not only to outlast everyone else but to win and become the ultimate Bow To Blood champion.
A Captain is never as good without their crew and Bow To Blood is no different. Elly will be the one to go and fight while Marlow is the calm one. With the DualShock 4 controller (you can use both Move controllers, but I went with the DualShock 4 controller) you will use L1 to give a command to Marlow while R1 will give a command to Elly. The great thing is you can command each of them at any time. Need one of them on drones or one on engines, then go for it. But the strategy part will come in as you have to decide which of the resources such as do you need to focus more on shields, do you need more boost or should it all be towards the weapons. Speaking of weapons, sometimes when certain types of enemies get a little too close, you do have a trusty blaster that you can use to help out your crew.
I really like how both Elly and Marlow have their own personalities. It’s almost like they have this Father and Daughter relationship or you could even think of them as a modern conscience.
Each round will have certain rewards to collect as that will help with your points. You are trying to find the warp key, which once you do you will have the option to exit the stage or you have the choice to search for more rewards. Unfortunately, if you stay and your ship is damaged, the enemies do not just go away, so you do risk your safety (remember it is not just you that you have to worry about, but your crew as well) for greed. The choice is yours but chose wisely.
After the round, you then get to see how well you did against the other captains. Remember, the goal is to be the champion, so just getting points is not going to help you here. If you are not part of the bottom two, then you are safe. If you are part of the bottom two, you better hope that your good looks and charm pay off like nothing else. What I mean by this is throughout the game you will receive messages from the other captains. They will be asking you questions to see if you want to team up and make a deal which could be from sharing winnings to even help persuade you to vote someone out of the tournament. So be careful who you align yourself up with and who you try to cross. Tribetoy has done a great job of allowing the choices you make in Bow To Blood to be its own welcomed challenge. So thank you Tribetoy…thank you.
I want to talk about the art style here. Using this type of cell-shaded art style in Virtual Reality really makes everything seem to pop from the designs and colors of the ships and characters, are really well done. The sounds and music have this original well-placed beat and tone about it, that somehow, the sound, gameplay, and design all compliment each other.
In between rounds, you are presented in your area. Your bed to your right is used to save, while you can hear Elly and Marlow talking while you look at parts of other ships as well as rewards. Being able to grab another ship in front of you to almost like a model toy really adds a special innocence about it that I can really appreciate.
Bow To Blood has a lot going for it in its single-player run. Would it be nice to have an online battle with a friend, sure, but does it need it, no. Would I like to see a global leaderboard or at least a percentage of what others have chosen afterward? A small part of me would have liked to see that, but again I can see why it doesn’t need all that. Tribetoy really has something special here that doesn’t need a distraction on what others would have done. This is about you and the choices you make. Greed can lead us to make decisions based on the cheapness of being selfish. If anything, we need to make choices from the heart and not the fear.
In case you missed the trailer, please enjoy. Until next time, I have to go become the Bow To Blood champion.