Blues and Bullets - Episode 2 Review (PC) - GlitchFreeGaming
Blues and Bullets Ep 2 does a great job of keeping the existing narrative they expand upon the relationship he had with his partner who was gunned his compadre, Milton, right where we left them at the end of Episode 1. GameSpot awarded the first episode a score of out of 10, saying "Although Blues and Bullets isn't without its. Steam Trading Cards related website featuring a Showcase with all Trading Cards, Emoticons, Backgrounds, Artworks and a Trading Bot.
Early on in a scene in the diner, one of your former co-workers is hassling you about his burger taking too long. From the manner this guy talks you can tell he is an asshole. He asks Ness to go easy on the chilli sauce and as you prepare the burger, the game prompts you to ask if you want to add some sauce to the burger. And then some more. Maybe there should be some more?
It is kind of funny but it can also be sad. As the police officer leaves, whether you spiced his burger or not, Ness can respond in different ways. The game does not tell you what Ness will say, but instead will give you an adjective — friendly, angry, reserved?
Play it angry, and it looks like these two have some bad blood between them, maybe they have never liked each other, or maybe something happened between them. Respond friendly, and these two are awkward colleagues who tease each other. The dialogue system defined the way the relationship was between Ness and the police officer and you can interpret it as much as you want. It takes the Telltale formula and throws a lot of stuff in it — elaborate sets, investigations, shoot-outs.
The content of the game is almost as diverse as the story and setting. The setting was intriguing and I broke my rule of staying away and I was rewarded with a very good, sometimes awkward, and stylish as hell narrative game. I also rewarded myself with a game that will never be finished.
Although there was never an official statement saying that the studio closed down, Internet sleuthing revealed that the company was slowly losing its key staff. This not only drew resources away from completing the other chapters, but it delayed the release of chapter two.
There was a year between the first and second episode as well, which is a lot of time for fans to maintain interest. A Crowd of Monsters did a few unusual, if not controversial, things with Blues and Bullets.
Wot I Think: Blues and Bullets | Rock Paper Shotgun
The first was to offer a season pass. Customers who got the pass paid a higher price up front but would get access to all future episodes. It might be cynical, but maybe they knew they would run out of money even if the first episode did modestly well. Another red flag came when they were initially offering the second episode only with a season pass, effectively making people who only bought the first episode to buy the second episode at a much greater price than the first.
This was later taken back and changed by the studio with an added discount. I understand the benefits of episodic released from both a developer and a consumer stand-point.
Blues and Bullets – Episode 2 Review (PC)
Developers get to stagger their release schedule and recover some costs up front which should allow them to lock in resources for the rest of the episodes. Blues and Bullets failed to make the most of both of these advantages. First off, I believe that A Crowd of Monsters was hurting for resources early on and needed to desperately show some returns for the studio and its investors.
It is clear that they were going for a highly polished game but for whatever reason they implemented pricing practices that were dubious at best. The thing with episodic games is that you have to be pretty sure you can get it done one way or another before you start releasing the episodes. The point is that these developers most likely planned on being able to complete most of their game in time whether it did well or not.
Secondly, the time between episodes helps build hype and anticipation. We see this in TV, in Game of Thrones, where time between each episode is used to build interest and anticipation from the fans discussing their theories and speculating about what might happen next week.
The suspense between episodes prevents the game or TV show from ever completely leaving the minds of its fans. There is also more of a necessity to explore environments. Ness puts clues together on a deduction board that leads him to conclusions. Nothing here is particularly challenging, although the process replicates the step-by-step nature of a criminal investigation.
Action scenes are also more involved. Button-press fights and reactions are similar to those in more casual adventure series, but they tend to demand a little more from the player. In addition to the bare-knuckle sequences, there are also firefights in which you take cover and blast away at enemies.
Anyone with even the most rudimentary arcade skills will be able to take on these vaguely GTA-inspired battles without breaking a sweat, but at least the game goes through the motions and gives you more to do. What makes Blues and Bullets really stand out is its atmosphere.
The game looks like an interactive version of the Sin City movies. Surreal touches add to this effect. Other stylish touches add tension. While most of the game consists of high-contrast black-and-white, red accent slashes are everywhere. This is of course used to indicate blood and to create a constant threat of violence. The dialogue is also very good, albeit in the cheesy vein of old-time noir. Ness is pretty much the prototypical self-flagellating private detective with a weakness for booze and dames.
Many lines teeter on the edge of self-parody. While most of the story takes everything as seriously as an IRS audit, some aspects are over the top.
One moment in which Ness interrupts a knife-thrower to the disappointment of the crowd and his now-perforated female target is so played up for slapstick that the Untouchable briefly turns into Frank Drebin.
The voice acting is all over the place, but the leads are good for the most part. Ness is played as kind of a growly, boozy take on Batman, and Capone is a no-surprises, marble-mouthed thug. The cast is small, though, and actors try to hide their multiple roles with broad accents that do nothing but make the game seem amateurish.
Blues and Bullets: Episode One Review
Another issue that illustrates the indie nature of Blues and Bullets is the presence of a few bugs. Slowdown is the most noticeable problem.
Every so often, the game will drop to single-digit framerates. This usually takes place during panoramic introductions that sweep across city blocks. On a couple of occasions, this brought the game to a complete halt for me and forced a restart.