FromSoftware branched out from the Dark Souls series in 2015 for the release of the PS4 exclusive, Bloodborne. And everything they learned from the brutally-difficult fighting game was elevated to new heights in the spectacular action RPG where death is inevitable and progress demands pain. The fantasy setting of the Dark Souls games has been replaced by the twisted city of Yharnam. Its cobblestone streets and dark alleys are filled with all manner of brutish creatures. As a hunter, you must endure death time and again as you cleanse the city of the monsters that terrorize it and the corruption that warps it. Here are all the things you learn when you step into the world of Bloodborne.
10 Nothing Is Free
Most games will hold your hand a little bit to guide you through the world. Not in Bloodborne. What's going on in the world is a mystery. How best to navigate the city of Yharnam is left up to you to discover. What kind of enemies you will face is unknown. Any side quests or helpful items are obscured in the lore of the game. This is not an experience for the soft-hearted. You must develop the perseverance to survive. While that's unsettling at first, especially for players that are used to more guidance, the environment ultimately creates a sense of fulfillment when you do achieve things in the game.
9 Patience Is Key
You will die. A lot. More importantly, you'll die right before a fight is finished or a boss is beaten. And that is extraordinarily frustrating. Losing a fight when you're so close to winning will be excruciating, but you have to learn from your mistakes. Study the opponent more. Learn the movements that telegraph an impending attack.
Tweak how you're transitioning between offense and defense. Dodge more accurately. Every death is a step toward a more efficient and wily combat strategy. Those deaths will make victory taste sweeter. Just stick with it.
8 Upgrade Your Weapons And Stats
This goes without saying in most games, but it bears pointing out with Bloodborne. Everything that can be improved requires blood echoes, the currency of the game. And those must be gathered by killing enemies. Which can be burdensome. Not only because it requires time to grind through the parts of Yharnam that you've unlocked. It also requires you to be extremely careful. Once you develop a knack for combat, you can dispatch many enemies with speed. But all enemies are dangerous. Anything can significantly damage you if you're not careful. So grinding for blood echoes can still kill you. And likely will many times. But you have to suffer through it. Your weapons and stats need the boost.
7 Maybe Play By Yourself
Bloodborne is a special game. The experience embeds in your mind and you'll always remember the boss fights and memorable moments that defined your gameplay. And yet...it's super frustrating. You will yell a lot. Probably curse a good bit as well. Depending on how impulsive a gamer you are, there could be broken controllers in your future. It's not a pleasant sight. So maybe don't play around other people.
Especially young children. They don't need to see the mad glint in your eyes and the twitch in your shoulders when you fall to Martyr Logarius for the eighth time.
6 Weapon Forms Can Save Your Life
Every weapon has two forms to transform between. A hunter's ax can be a close-quarters devourer, but it can also extend out to a long, sweeping instrument of death. Same with the saw cleaver and the other tools of the hunter trade. Never forget this. Learning which weapon form to use and when to alternate between them will give you the upper hand in combat. That knowledge is vital when figuring out how best to approach the creatures that stalk the streets of Yharnam.
5 The Hardest Difficulties Don't Scare You
Many games offer unforgiving modes for the most accomplished gamers. Those that want a challenge. Difficulties in which a single mistake will send you falling to your death or leave you battered bloody by an enemy.
That's intimidating to the casual gamer. After playing through Bloodborne, you will no longer fear the hardest difficulties that games have to offer. You will relish the experience. The pain is a crucible through which you forge your destiny. No obstacle is too great. No boss is too tough.
4 Counter-Attacks Never Felt So Good
FromSoftware has established itself as a studio that constructs punishing combat systems. Within that structure, though, is the key to success in many monster encounters. Counter-attacks and parries allow you to break an enemy's advance at the right moment to unleash your own devastating hits. Counter-attacks allows you to regain lost health and well-time parries stagger creatures, which opens them up for attacks with massive damage. When you learn the techniques to implement these on a regular basis, you become a walking nightmare for the monsters in Yharnam.
3 Find A Friend
There are some obstacles that might be too much for you to handle alone. That's why you can bring support. Bloodborne supports co-op battles, so you can call upon other players or NPC hunters to join the fight. Having another hunter at your side can tip the scales of an encounter, and it can be refreshing to have an ally in the dark world of Yharnam.
In a place where everything is out to kill you, the opportunity to team up with someone else reinvigorates your fighting spirit. So, if you're having trouble with a certain area or particular boss, bring in reinforcements.
2 Open Up The World
Yharnam is a labyrinth. There is no map to help you out. There are no convenient signposts showing the way. There are winding roads and small passageways that you can miss if you're not careful. But there are also locked gates and doorways. Open them up whenever you can. Some require blood echoes. Some require being on the right side of the gate. Whenever you have the chance to open something, do it. Because the ability to quickly navigate through the map will be a crucial element in recovering your blood echoes when you die or getting to a particular area without having to slog through all of the enemies in the city.
1 Believe In Yourself
Don't give up too easily. Bloodborne is a hard game. It will savage you and leave you for the birds many times over. Accept that and move on. If you keep practicing and keep fighting, you'll overcome the challenges in the game. Understand that you have what it takes to beat extremely hard bosses. Death is certain, but so is your growth as a gamer.