Bloodborne: The Old Hunters (PS4) Review

Justin Celani

Live by the blood, die by the blood, DLC by the blood.

Bloodborne was an obsession of mine for a week or two. I literally lost hours upon hours of sleep as I got obsessed. More so then Dark Souls or Demon Souls, Bloodborne had me by its dreaded, nasty, morbid grips. If players haven’t experience what the main core game of Bloodborne offers, there is little reason to even dive into this review, as there is so much to cover on that alone. While Bloodborne is a favorite of mine, I’m indifferent to the DLC, and I’ll explain why.

Return of the nightmare

Bloodborn DLC can be accessed via a location in the main game that isn’t explained nor really told, by an item that just randomly appears. I’m all for figuring things out, but when it comes to paying for DLC and having to actually work to use it, I can’t help but feel a bit gipped. If it wasn’t for the instructions included with the review copy, I’d have no idea how to access it.

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MSRP: $19.99
Platforms: PS4
Price I’d Pay: $10.00
Multiplayer: 1-3
How long to beat: 8+ hours

I’d also have no idea the level requirement, which is suggested somewhere in the 60 + level range. That’s fine, but also depends on the players’ save game state, since Bloodborne only allows one save and it saves often. So many players might find themselves on new game plus and for some on new game +++++ however many times players have completed the base game. What’s unfortunate is that the difficulty experience there is added to the DLC as far as I could tell. This leads to another issue I had, just getting into the DLC.

I had completed the game and my new game plus was at the start, which required me to get through quite a few hours to access the DLC, including fighting a boss that I repeatedly kept losing at. Getting to the DLC alone was frustrating for me. If I started a brand new game, I wouldn’t be at the required level to do the DLC, and as it was, the new game plus difficulty I was experiencing was preventing me from getting there. Frustration and difficulty in a game I can accept, but making it a hassle and chore to find, access, and get to the DLC itself is a frustration all the same, not the good kind.

This is Bloodborne alright

After spending a few hours to finally get back to the point where I could access the DLC, I dived in and immediately realized that some of these assets were the same as the ones we’ve already seen in the original game. Yes there is new design and elements that string some of them together, but familiarity of course rings through. Once again players will find themselves doing battle with some familiar foes, new ones, and all with that hardcore difficulty one would expect of the series. Perhaps a little too hard for my liking, as new game plus in the DLC absolutely stomped me repeatedly. I can already hear the excuses coming in “get good” and I’m OK hearing that, as I finished and loved the core game, yet the DLC has me struggling in both difficulty and wanting to move forward.

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Conflicted with frenzy

Bloodborne is a fantastic game in my eyes that’s cruel and punishing yet fair. The DLC is literally more of the same, but it didn’t give me the same pull or feeling that the main campaign does, and it felt unfair at times. Maybe it’s due to my frustration of just getting to the DLC, the reused assets, or the fact that it’s not new anymore? I can’t really tell as I’m confused on it myself. There are some great new weapons, my favorite being the chainsaw like melee weapon, and the bosses look as disturbing as ever. The environments and enemy design that are new are just as amazing and dark as before, but something was missing here for me.

It’s great to see some new areas and bosses for Bloodborne, but as it stands I don’t find it necessary. Most that love Bloodborne will eat this new content up with a silver spoon wanting more. I’m content with what the base game offered, and find it almost unnecessary, but I do appreciate what is offered for those wanting more reasons to jump back into the world of monsters and hunters.

Review copy of game provided by publisher.

Good

  • More Bloodborne
  • New weapons
  • New bosses

Bad

  • Accessing DLC
  • Difficulty
  • Re-used assets
7

Good

Justin Celani
Justin is a long time passionate fan of games, not gaming drama. He loves anything horror related, archaeology inspired adventures, RPG goodness, Dr Pepper, and of course his family. When it comes to crunch time, he is a beast, yet rabies free we promise.
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