Trials of the Blood Dragon Review
Welcome to our CHEATfactor Game Review of Trials of the Blood Dragon. We review the game and then factor in how the available cheats affect the overall game experience. For better or worse, our reviews will help you decide whether or not to use cheats when playing the game.
Playing through Trials of the Blood Dragon I couldn't help but think about the rule of three. It's the idea that in writing, things that come in threes tend to be funnier and have a lasting impact. That theory persists in Ubisoft's weird combination of it's two franchises but it forgets the second part of that rule - that repetition and comedy are mortal enemies of each other. Trials of the Blood Dragon takes the joke and refuses to stop telling it, beating it to the ground thanks to Trials' trademark try and try again gameplay. I love Trials and the original Far Cry: Blood Dragon but I practically hated the combination of the two. I've been wanting an updated version of Blood Dragon...but not like this.
Trials of the Blood Dragon is a unique beast. The easiest way to describe it is this: it takes the physics based gameplay of the Trials series and puts it smack dab in the middle of the Blood Dragon universe. For those who didn't play the original, Blood Dragon is a shooter set in a fantasy world that's pretty much just been established to poke fun at action movies. It worked..and it worked pretty much because you were moving around so much that you never really questioned anything, you just sort of accepted that it existed and you had fun with it, but with Trials you do not get that luxury. Thanks to Trials' gameplay, which finds you trying and failing repeatedly to achieve a goal; you're going to hear the same jokes over...and...over...and over again.
That's really a shame because in truth, Trails of the Blood Dragon has crafted something pretty unique here. You play as the children of original Blood Dragon hero Rex "Power" Colt as they try to live up to their dad's legacy and fight for freedom. The whole thing is covered in a thick glass of 80's, from the Saved by the Bell type opening to the live action commercials, it's all pretty well done. The whole thing is from the "Hey gang, weren't the 80's wacky?" humor file but it works...until it doesn't. Trials of the Blood Dragon doesn't stop telling the same joke over and over again. It's like your office coworker that heard that one joke one time and then tells the whole office again and again
Gameplay wise, Trials of the Blood Dragon doesn't fare much better either. When the game allows Trials to be Trials and it focuses on the same physics based motorcycle stunts that the series is known for, it's easy to fall in love, but be careful, as we've learned already, the game doesn't seem to know when to leave well enough alone. Trials of the Blood Dragon introduces on foot, shooter elements to try to more blend the worlds and styles of the two franchises even more. They're hard to control and even harder to master. I'm not afraid to admit that I failed a lot with the past Trials games but it felt cheaper here and that's because the original Trials earned that. There are also space sections and even a remote controlled car section, which would be fine if they controlled nearly as well as the original motorcycle gameplay.
Trials of the Blood Dragon is disappointing because it could have been very important. It could have introduced a whole new audience to two franchises that have cult followings but it manages to take none of the redeeming qualities of either franchise to create a game who's mess is all it's own. Did you like the precision demanding levels of the Trials series? You're going to hate everything that Blood Dragon adds. Did you love the over the top shooting mechanics of Blood Dragon? You'll hate how Trials restricts your freedom and demands perfection. We've already learned this year that two different game franchises can combine to create something special; just look at Total War: Warhammer. This though, this is the complete opposite of that, and it does absolutely nothing to endear fans of either series.
Joe started off writing about video games for small fan sites when he realized he should probably do something with his communications degree and didn't want to get into the grind of daily reporting. Joining the team in late 2008, Joe is the featured game reviewer for Cheat Happens, producing up to 10 CHEATfactor Game Reviews per month.
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