Yeah, sure, Blood Hunt is just a battle royale...but with the Vampire: The Masquerade IP! Does it suck?

I have no idea if this is any good:

I’m pretty sure it’s not because it’s free-to-play, hardly surprising given it’s published by Tencent. But the developers are called Sharkmob, and since they’re Nordic – it seems to be a joint Swedish/Danish development? – it puts me in mind of Fatshark, another group of Swedes who have made some of the best co-op shooters you can play.

Anyway, I haven’t tried it, but I was hoping somewhere here had. Because the idea of running around in a milsim game playing a battle royale isn’t terribly interesting to me, but vampires from asymmetrical factions hunting prey – and each other – in a modern European city? There are probably a hundred ways this game could be terrible, but there have got to be at least three or four it could be awesome.

Any takers?

-Tom

In the registration form when you boot it up for the first time, Tab doesn’t move the cursor from field to field. I nearly uninstalled it right there.

You’ve made it further than anyone else on Qt3! Godspeed, brave explorer!

-Tom

I mean, three strikes, imo.

This is the Vampire game to watch! (When it comes to Steam, of course.)

Why? What’s notable about it?

-Tom

Maybe it’s the pedigree? Looks like it’s the developer of the game “The Council”. I never played that, so I’m unaware of their previous track record.

It appears to be a plot-heavy RPG with consequences and branching paths in the VtM world – albeit without combat. That’s notable to me!

I suspect like most VtM games it will ultimately disappoint, but I’ll be keeping an eye on it in case I’m wrong.

As I mentioned in another thread when this came up a month or two ago, I’m curious and optimistic about Swansong. I played and liked The Council, well, except for the goofy illuminati/conspiracy plot and setting. But much like the current discussion of Citizen Sleeper and Disco Elysium, it’s a game with all the trappings of a CRPG- stats, equipment, skill trees with perks, etc., but no combat. It’s all skill checks and dilogue trees, managing relationships between yourself and the other characters, trying to deduce what the bloody hell is going on. There is the occasional reflex-oriented bit- not exactly a quicktime thing, but it keeps you on your toes. So given all that, I think it’s a pretty great system for a Vampire game, all politics and interpersonal stuff (at least if done properly).

First impressions of Bloodhunt are that it’s… fine?

It’s battle royale with vampires. You run around picking up modern weapons of various rarities in a shrinking environment until one person is left. At the start of a match, you pick a class, which gives you a couple of abilities, which are just vampire-flavored versions of abilities you’ve seen a hundred times before (Example: one ability creates a sensor that alerts you to enemy movement in a small area. In every other game, it’s like a little deployable motion sensor or something, but here? It’s bats.)

It does a few neat things. There are lots of civilians milling around. When you feed on one, it gives you a static bonus called a blood resonance or upgrades one of the other resonances you’ve already gotten. If you kill players or feed on certain stronger NPCs, you can increase the number of slots you get for resonances, so you can theoretically shoot for a particular build and get quite strong. If a human witnesses you eating another human, you’ll trigger the titular Bloodhunt, which shows your location to everyone else for a minute. It’s kind of a neat risk-reward mechanic.

When you’re downed, you have to be “diablerized” in order to actually die, otherwise you’ll stand back up after a minute. And even after you are diablerized, you respawn once (in solo mode, at least, I don’t know what it’s like in duos or trios because I don’t have friends) with all your gear and stuff. So it’s somewhat forgiving.

Instead of a menu, there’s a hub area you can walk around. You can do basic fetch quests and examine things to fill out a lore encyclopedia. It makes all the waiting between matches a little more engaging if you want it to be.

The factions don’t really enter into it in a functional way. Classes belong to one faction, but you can group up with whatever combination of factions you want, and there’s no benefit to killing other factions or drawback for killing your own faction (other than to complete challenges like “Kill 100 Brujah”).

The map is fine as well. It’s city architecture, so it’s at least a little different than open fields, bases, and buildings. Here you have large squares, small squares, and alleyways. You loot vans and storefronts instead of treasure chests.

The requisite battle pass has a hundred levels.

So an adventure game? Or even visual novel, right? Aren’t there a bunch of those already? This one, for instance, just came out:

I don’t really have any interest in a visual novel or adventure game, though. That’s why I posted this battle royale thing: it looks like an interesting use of the Vampire IP for mechanical rather than narrative reasons. And as an erstwhile Jyhad/Vampire: Eternal Struggle player (I recently sorted and organized my dusty old collection, which is why this is on my mind), I was curious about games that might use the IP for cool asymmetrical gameplay with the different clans. I guess the 2004 Bloodlines is really the only place for that?

-Tom

No, it’s fully 3D. Looks a lot like HITMAN.

I have no interest in VNs, either.

Yeah, again, Swanson is not a VN, at least any more than CS or DE are, anyway.

Funny thing I read a few days ago about the Vampire license - apparently paradox has made it free for fans to use in video games. So expect to see all sorts of small projects coming out using the setting. There’s a few listed at the announcement:

This sounds really cool, and I’m imagining how cool it would be if the game weren’t just a shooty battle royale!

I figured the different clans would just be character classes, which in turn determines a character’s powers. Like that bat radar you described. If this game is any good, there should be some interesting meta in the character powers. That might be too big an “if”, though.

Theming!

Well, you managed to just pique my curiosity further. I was kind of hoping you would just tell me it was junk, nothing to see here, move along, the next battle royale with an intriguing theme will be along within the month. :)

-Tom

Ha! I didn’t want to be too mean to it, since I ended up liking it a little better than I thought I would after spending a little bit of time with it. But honestly, there are so many battle royales with their own twist, and the twist is all they have to set them apart from each other… it’s just exhausting. Why would I put any meaningful time or progression into this one when there will just be another one around the corner?

They’re all fun to dabble in, and they’re all probably loads of fun if you have people to play with that like to hop from one to the next together. But I feel like I’ve seen everything this one has to show me.

Perish that thought, @SadleyBradley! Because if you use is as the criteria for your free-to-play battle royales, what’s to stop you from using it as the criteria for all your videogames? That way lies madness!

That’s really the crux of the matter, isn’t it? The point is to find people you enjoy playing with, which is more important than what game you’re actually playing and whatever unique angle it might take. The best battle royale I’ve ever played was the new mode in Battlefield 2042 because I was variously playing it with @Jason_McMaster, @Telefrog, @lordkosc, @DaveLong, and other people I know. If we’d all been playing Blood Hunt, I probably would have enjoyed it just as much.

-Tom

So, is this what we’re doing later?

It would not be my first choice.

-Tom

I’m not seeing a “no” in there

Zoinks! Exit stage left!