Game: Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood
Platforms: PS4 and PC (Only Epic Games Store)
Reviewed on: PC
French developer Cyanide comes with a new proposition, a stealth action where you incarnate an eco-terrorist werewolf seeking redemption and a new path after a life-changing tragedy. After a quite unnoticed E3 2019 presentation, the game is finally here, so let’s get to it.
The lone wolf
Earthblood starts as a story about a broken man who made a terrible decision and now has to deal with its consequences while helping his comrades to survive and succeed in missions that will carry him through lots of places. With such a setting, you can expect an entertaining story, which sadly drags between acts by changing its narrative focus constantly and not making its characters likable enough to keep you immersed in it.
Its story may not be particularly memorable or especially well written. Still, it’s good enough to keep the player engaged, and its short duration, roughly 14 hours, helps keep it flowing at a nice pace.
This is the part where it becomes apparent that the team didn’t have the biggest resources; as a game without big pretensions, it’s a pretty average looking game with seemingly basic level design. This is also evident in its character acting and animations, which can take away some of its most important moments. Regardless, the game does have some pretty good-looking scenarios and models here and there and, despite not changing much during the same chapters, these fulfill their purpose.
As mentioned before, this game is anything but ambitious, which is also reflected in its gameplay. Despite its shortcomings when it comes to animation, its stealth and combat have a fair number of options, including abilities and enhancements for the player to unlock on the run; this is well complemented with a balanced curve of difficulty, which starts quite easy, to the point that you can feel limited at first. Still, as its variety of enemies and options make their entrance, it opens many choices. The player then can approach most scenarios in two ways, stealth, which allows you to move in the shadows and avoid direct conflict, do silent takedowns and move around the place through vents and other shortcuts while avoiding traps, or direct attack, which will turn most encounters into waves of enemies, tougher as the game progresses, in the skin of a werewolf with 2 different combat instances which can make you tougher or more agile, this two will prove useful with different kinds of enemies so a smart usage of both instances along with the abilities to resupply health and some useful attacks to get some space or close distances faster will be required to dominate or else the game could become quite hard but then again doing some stealth takedowns before going into full rampage is also at your disposal. The boss fights don’t disappoint; there are quality and quantity in this regard, a bunch of them are the ultimate conclusion to some character arcs, and with it key moments to the story, each one of them is pretty different from the rest. They’ve all got their own particular combos and abilities, which can turn tricky.
Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood is a game conformist with its scale, with great gameplay and variety of content in a 14 hours experience that didn’t aim for a full-price release to compensate for its size. It is a fun experience that ultimately isn’t here to push any of its genres or tell an unforgettable story; as a bonus, the game features two different endings that the player can choose, which might make it a more worthy experience with value replay at least one more time.
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