Are you ready for some Blood Ball?
Never having played the first Blood Bowl by being highly interested, I was excited when Blood Bowl 2 announced. As someone who both enjoys playing American Football and fantasy themed games, the game seemed like a perfect merging.
Game Name: Blood Bowl 2
Platform(s): Playstation 4, Xbox One, PC
Publisher(s): Focus Home Interactive
Release Date: 9/22/15
Price: $49.99 (Playstation 4 and Xbox One), $45 (PC)
The game is turn based with each side taking control of individual characters on the team. While based on American Football, there are slight differences. There are still 11 men on the field, each with a position, getting the ball into the endzone will only net you one point, after which the opponents will get their turn. There is no kicking for an extra point or two point attempts. While there are specific roles, anyone can throw the ball (though the quarterback, called a “thrower” is best at doing so). There is no split between an offensive and defensive team, which makes the placement of your players much more important. Specific races also excel at different aspects of the game, offering players a variety of play styles, yet there are too many aspects of the game that simply falls down to luck.
Everything from running a far distance to simply picking up a ball has a percentage of success. Too many times I’ve watched my players try to pick up the ball from the ground only to have if flop out of their hands. As Blood Bowl was originally a tabletop game that relies on dice rolls, I can respect sticking to the source material, but I personally don’t feel like it translates well to a console game. A turn based football game would have been fine, but a turn based football that relies highly on chance is another story.
Other events will either make you love or hate the game. Watching your friend get his players knocked out by a goblin referee is hilarious until you’re the one holding the controller. Player injuries are nothing new to sports games, but Blood Bowl 2 takes it further with character deaths. Some races can take a beating better than others, but you will more than likely lose a player at some point (It’s a bit of an annoyance in the campaign mode).
Graphically, the game is gorgeous. Each race is highly distinguishable, the fields look great. What is a bit upsetting however, is the lack of a deeper customization of how characters look. What adds to the game is the stellar voice acting. The campaign mode is based around the Reikland Reavers, a once great team who is now in shambled. The casters do a great job giving the Reaver’ backstory and their narration throughout the game itself is wonderful, making it feel very similar to any normal sports game. It’s not a very deep storyline, but it is a little something for those who want to experience a bit of a tale. Both online and local multiplayer are available, which is where sports games seem to strive. For all of these reasons above, it’s a game I really liked, but because of the randomness/chance factor it kept it from being a title I truly loved.
*Review copy provided by publisher
- Phenomenal voice acting
- multiplayer options
- Too dependent on luck
- New races will be paid DLC