Jump to content
Moz

Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice

Recommended Posts

I ran into this last week at 50% on Steam, not sure what prompted the ad, maybe the VR release?


What a work of art. I'm crap at the combat (should probably plug in the xbox controller) but the audio and the environments and effects are stunning. The one thing that vexed me was getting too close to an opened gate early on and the Interact key not working. Took me ages to work out I just had to be a step further back.

 

Do they do something clever to throw processing power at her facial model when they do the non-controllable cut scene stuff because that is way better than anything I've seen before.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What an odd game. Just started playing this and it gives me no combat tutorial yet does have a message saying that if I 'die die' it's game over and all progress will be lost? 'the hell?!

 

It doesn't help that half the time I have no idea if my 'death' (from approaching the arena of the fire god just now for instance) counted towards an ultimate game over or not. Is there a way to track your health? Will you really have to start over from scratch if you die too many times? Tempted to stick combat on easy if that's the case lol.

  • Downvote 1
  • Empathy 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
6 minutes ago, VN1X said:

What an odd game. Just started playing this and it gives me no combat tutorial yet does have a message saying that if I die-die it's game over and all progress will be lost? 'the hell?!

 

It doesn't help that half the time I have no idea if my 'death' (from approaching the arena of the fire god just now for instance) count towards an ultimate game over or not. Is there anywhere to track your health? Will you really have to start over from scratch if you die too many times? Tempted to stick combat on Easy if that's the case lol. 

 

Its lying to you - probably...

 

(the game is all about psychosis - its messing with your head just as the lead characters voices are messing with her)

 

And no there isn't - its done visually

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And finished! Thankfully this ended up being a riveting experience and one that managed to surprise and intrigue me every step of the way! Ninja Theory have seemingly managed to fuse Norse mythology with aspects of mental illness without it ending up as contrived or erroneous. And for a game that's, for the most part, about walking forward I also found it impressive to see how they moved the narrative from one scene to the next. Even 'cheap' audio exposition dumps in the form of rune stones felt like they had purpose and fleshed out the world and its characters without breaking immersion. The writing and voice acting were all great but the animation of Senua herself really stole the show and was simply exceptional. It could've been so clunky and off-putting otherwise but they've done an amazing job in that regard.

 

That said, because we (mostly) only see Senua's darker side it basically becomes a 6 hour trip down into utter despair. I think it could've benefited from a few moments where we would've seen Dillion and Senua together, before. It would've allowed both the main character and player to breathe. Some of the combat and other gameplay mechanics got a bit stale by the end and I wouldn't have minded if Senua's running speed was a bit faster but that's getting into nitpicking territory. So all in all a terrific game and considering the budget they had to work with it's quite the achievement. I'm excited to see what they can do with Microsoft money. :D

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I finished this over the weekend, but only after bouncing off it hard from the first hour or so. I almost gave up on it but figured I have to finish it to know what its about.

 

If the stuff I had problems with in the game are the same that Edge refers to (I havent read their review) then I can understand why they gave it a 4/10.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Started this a couple of days ago and really have mixed feelings so far. I have fought the first boss and gone a bit further into the game but it seems lacking. The graphics and voice overs are fantastic and the combat seems decent. It's just the rest of the game seems to be very lacking in the respect that you must stick to the games path. Certain elements in the environment look like you should be able to climb on or over them but it suffers from the invisible wall a lot. Also the puzzling sections are extremely poor and im already fed up of them. Normally I would give up when feeling this way about a game but I believe it's short and I want to see how it pans out. I will give it a bit more of a chance. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I get that its more about the experience, and there may be economical reasons for why it isnt more fleshed out with all of the usual skill trees and upgrades and collectables etc you expect with this kind of third person action game.

 

But I still have a couple of basic issues with the game and one of them is how they go about displaying Senua's mental issues: I dont know who this game was meant to speak to in those terms but I found the voices and supposed mental state to be basic stuff like not daring to go into dark places and overcoming the fear of going into battle. I got tired pretty quickly of the voices either mocking you or cheering you on, and also Senua tend to scream a lot while rolling around in pain which was more aggravating to listen to than anything else so I just played a lot of the game without any sound. The game says on one of the splash screens that the game was produced in collaboration with some professional psychologists but I dont see where this work has gone at all. Its utterly mundane stuff.

 

The other thing is how you cant even pull your blade outside of the combat sections. So there are Combat Sections, and then Puzzle Sections. And I get that its an experience and not God of War or DMC, but I didnt fancy the puzzles very much and I missed having some furniture to break with my supposed blade from hell while I was figuring stuff out. Its a very sparsely populated world, and nothing to interact with while you are running down the next corridor. And I really wanted a map during the section with the labyrinth where you had to stay away from the fire demon or what it was while opening a door which you then had to run back to, to escape. I managed this only by trying and failing many times until I memorized the right path through the building.

 

The Fenris fight is cool, though. I like how you can spot where he is going to jump from the shadows from the controller vibration.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As I understand it, the concept of Hellblade was to make a AAA-looking game on an indie budget, so many of the decisions would have been taken to narrow the focus of development and keep costs down. Confining all sword swinging to arena fights means they didn't have to worry about what happens when her sword hits a piece of level geometry, or a bit of barrel flies off and hits a wall. Personally I didn't feel to need to smash stuff between fights, so it was a sensible bit of corner cutting for me. I agree that neither the combat nor the puzzles are especially amazing, and the game may have been better as a walking sim, but the audio visual experience overwhelms everything else for me, so it doesn't really matter.

 

I can't really comment on how well it deals with psychosis and serious mental illness because I don't know anything about it, but the documentary that comes with the game shows that at the very least they took the subject seriously and tried to do right by it.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Trumpets said:

and the game may have been better as a walking sim.

 

Hell no. >:|

 

I thought the combat was fine, but the main problem is that the spacing's a little off. You'll fight nobody for ages, then get into a battle where they spawn seemingly forever. A more measured drip feed would have improved things a little, I think.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I finished the game tonight and I can't really say I'd reccomend it. It is an absolute technical marvel and as an experience it's very well made but as a game its VERY lacking. I never really felt like I couldn't finish the game and it felt more like an interactive movie than a videogame. I totally appreciate the background to it and the whole ethos of the game makers but it really wasn't for me. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. Use of this website is subject to our Privacy Policy, Terms of Use, and Guidelines.