Developer: Scientifically Proven
Publisher: Midnight City
Release Date: October 28th, 2013 (Original Release)
Available on: PC
I’ll totally admit it now that werewolves have always sort of been my monster of choice. They’ve always been the one that seemed the most awesome to me. Yet there’s so few games that put you in the role of one. Blood of the Werewolf is a 2D action platformer that, while fun at times, ramps its difficulty far past the point where you want to continue.
Blood of the Werewolf puts you in the role of Selena: a werewolf hunting down various other monsters to find her kidnapped child. Depending on the environment you’ll be playing as Selena in either human or wolf form, switching depending on weather you’re in the moonlight or not. Both have a different play style, though I honestly wish I could spend the entire game in wolf form because it made the platforming much more bearable. In human form Selena can only jump once, but she has the ability to attack at range with her crossbow. It’s not very strong, though she will eventually get the ability to fire two arrows at once or use a burning arrow to attack. Once she enters the moonlight she turns into the wolf, and her powers change significantly. As the wolf Selena can double jump, used charged claw swipes to inflict massive damage, charge through enemies, and heal herself. I honestly felt like I was in more control when I was playing as the wolf, like I was able to actually do the things I wanted to have Selena do rather than just hope for the best while she was in human form.
You’ll really need that control too, as Blood of the Werewolf is completely unforgiving when it comes to difficulty. You will die constantly while playing this game. Falling into spikes, crushed between objects, killed by enemy projectiles, bottomless pits… you’ll see it all. The game is generous with its checkpoints and quick loading times, but that doesn’t make it any less frustrating to be stuck on a part for an extremely extended amount of time because you just can’t get pass a part. Some things seem to require pixel perfect and split second reactions so you can manage to just barely edge your way out of some challenge. It’s not much fun and it’s a great way to discourage players from continuing.
The story sure isn’t going to get you to continue either. Selena’s tale of kidnapping and revenge isn’t really that interesting and pretty much doesn’t go anywhere the entire game. Selena will run into famous movie monsters such as Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Dracula, and Dr. Frankenstein. Sadly they’re also stuck between such memorable monsters like “The Mummy” and “The Creature.” Each of the characters that Selena talks to is full of cheesy dialogue made worse by some pretty awful voice acting. The worst comes from the one line Selena’s son gets during the credits, where the child speaking the line seems to be swaying back and forth so his volume constantly fluctuates, at one point even bumping into the microphone. It’s so poorly done that I honestly think I would have preferred an adult pretending to be a child for this.
To speak positively of the game, every third level is a boss fight and each one is done really well. Bosses manage to hit that level of difficulty where they’re not so hard that you get stuck on them for ages, but enough so that they provide a challenge. Figuring out each bosses’ patterns and exploiting them to hurt them is a lot of fun. A battle against Dracula puts you on a moving train mostly sticking to human form while in tunnels, but occasionally hitting the moonlight outside which puts both monsters in their true form. A later fight against The Mummy has him flying around, using a sarcophagus to teleport, and blocking out the moon to force you human. Each boss fight is an intense way to cap out a set of stages and by the end of the game I was wishing there was more.
Blood of the Werewolf was a real disappointment. Some occasionally fun platforming and excellent boss fights aren’t enough to make up for the extremely frustrating time I had with the majority of the game. It seems I’m going to still be waiting on that good werewolf game.