Bloodroots is a fast-paced action game that puts your reaction time to the test as you brutally fight your way through the “weird west.” Paper Cult Games released the demo for this title earlier this week, giving a first impression of the game. With its captivating gameplay and goofy nature, I went from someone who knew barely anything about the game, to someone highly anticipating it’s full release.
You play as Mr. Wolf, a man who will stop at nothing just for a chance at revenge and will take down anyone in his path using, well — just about anything. In Bloodroots your environment is your weapon. Grab a sword from a stump. Pick up a vase to throw. Beat down your foe with a dead fish. Some weapons, a ladder for instance, can also be used as modes of transportation that change up the way you get around the map. After beating down some foes, use it near a wall to vault your way up there.
Picking up different weapons can drastically change the flow of a run, and seeing all the intuitive ways Mr. Wolf brings down his enemies and destroys the world around him is nothing short of entertaining. A perfectly timed jump attack might even reward you with a gruesome small cutscene featuring some kind of unique takedown. It’s super cool to see the way Mr. Wolf is able to kill an enemy in one punch to face, or the steps required to end a life using only a wooden fence post or a rubber duck. With such a vast amount of weapons in a playthrough, you’ll want to sit back and watch all the cinematics Bloodroots has to offer.
This aspect may not seem like much but it adds an interesting movement to the overall gameplay. As you spend most of your time perfectly thinking out your every move, you’re given a break from the madness with these small cutaways that give you a scene in slow motion. Although this gives you a bit of time to stretch your fingers, it doesn’t take away from the inherent action of Bloodroots one bit. Papercult Games did a phenomenal job of peppering in these cutscenes to give the player a sense of satisfaction, but also adding an incredible rhythm to a game where you can already never miss a beat.
We can expect to see even more diverse attributes in the full game. According to Nick Verge, of Popagenda,“What the game does have is different hats that give you different abilities, a bit like the masks in Hotline Miami.” According to the papercut games official twitter, the game will also feature “over the top boss fights” something we didn’t quite get a chance to experience in the demo. Speedrunners will also have a field day, as weekly challenges pop up and have players competing for the highest completion time.
The gameplay is insanely quick and forces the player to make decisions with only half-seconds to spare. As little as one slip up with controls or placement can quickly end in your demise, sending you back to the last checkpoint in the run. This common mechanic, which is usually a hair-pulling experience, was something I didn’t see myself minding all that much. It’s obvious that, in Bloodroots, you’re expected to die pretty often, and Paper Cult had no trouble making it an actual enjoyable experience to try and try again.
Even though the demo only included the first mission, I found myself replaying it over and over again. You’re given a rank at the end of each successful mission much like the Sonic Adventure series, and I can really see myself having no issue grinding a run through to eventually obtain that perfect “S”. The frustration of constantly dying and retrying was put at ease by the cartoon-ish art style and overall lighthearted feel of the game. That, mixed with the intuitive, speedy gameplay kept Bloodroots feeling fresh even when booting up the same level countless times.
There is no official release date for Bloodroots, but it is set to be available sometime Summer 2019 for Switch, PS4, and Steam. In the meantime, you can subscribe to play at the demo at https://www.bloodrootsgame.com/ and get updates on the upcoming western-style chaos by following @papercultgames on twitter.
Official Bloodroots release trailer: