First of all, Blazblue's one of my favourite fighting games/franchises of all time since I played it on PSP years ago and I've played all kinds of fighting games since Street Fighter EX2 Plus (if I remember correctly) so I would highly recommend it to any fan of the genre. Most negative opinions about the game (from myself n others I guess) are mainly due to knowledge of the better sequels that are not available on PC (yet?) It feels like we're being told to be grateful for having anything at all. Thanks to Arc System Works I can cry myself to sleep...
Note: I would have a lot more hours if my PC didn't currently have problems n bluescreen when I played some games :/ but I played lots before Steam version.
I type a lot :l Tl;dr (too long; didn't read): read bold text.
Valve: bold text needs to be bolder.
I put this first 'cause of the game's description of being the first hi-res 2D game, I find this particularly awesome (in all modern 2D fighting games) 'cause these games use pixel art whereby characters and most in-game elements are drawn pixel by pixel and char/sprite animations are done via the same way as GIF images that play according to button input. I'm only assuming this is still how it works today and although I think KOFXIII's pixel art is more godly Blazblue does a great job in keeping the characters alive throughout the battle & making beautiful, fun and non-distracting stages. Animations are smooth and special effects/attacks are pretty. You also get a wide variety of colour palettes when picking a character
, more than most other games I've played, just remember to press start when selecting char. The UI/main menu is also very nice & simple.P.S. You can skip pretty much all loading screens - just press start - how awesome is that!
For those not very familiar with fighting games, one thing to note is the main difference between 3D & 2D fighting games (IMO) is the pacing. Blazblue: Calamity Trigger incorporates this very well for me; it's very fast-paced and requires almost if not constant input and quick response (in a good/hard match). The basic mechanics are very simple. Main input commands are 'weak attack', 'medium attack', 'strong attack' and 'drive' which is a special attack/ability that is unique to each character. Characters don't have a very large skill set but as with many 2D fighting games you can kinda make your own combos
as you get used to the mechanics, making efficient use of your 'drive' & your position. There are many levels of difficulty to use to your advantage ranging from "very easy" to "hell mode"
so you can go from absolute beginner to master I guess :D and the AI is nothing to laugh at either. Button response has about no delay in this game and attack animations are quick
so countering and whatnot are something to look out for (I'm looking at you Hakumen). Each character has about 2 super moves and one 'Astral' move, astral moves are highly animated finishing moves that must be unlocked for most chars and can only be used under certain circumstances, rendering you high with joy when you get to use them.
There is an arcade mode and a story mode, each with different endings for each character. First thing that really gave this game a unique identity to me was the story mode, it plays out like a Visual Novel until you come across trouble and have to fight your way through. The narrative is written very well with no linguistic errors (Engrish) and all dialogue said by any character is fully voiced and it is done absolutely well! You have the option to choose b/w English and Japanese voices
and although I would normally go with Japanese, BB's English cast seem so perfectly fit for it and do a great job
. Each character has their own story which includes most of the other characters (if not all) and there are at least 2 routes/endings to each story. There is also additional dialogue/extra sequences if you're defeated and sometimes it triggers an alternate route/ending
. To reach 100% completion you have to lose & win against each opponent. Tip: Basic sequence is - save game>fight>lose (game over)>load game>fight>win>repeat for 100% story completion. The story itself can be very confusing at first, depending on the order of characters you play in story mode, but overall I love it! Synopsis is available in game description :/
BB's weakness, as the beginning of a fighting game franchise, is the no. of available chars. There are 12 characters readily available to play with (including the boss/es), each very unique in design and fighting styles
. Overall theme is very steampunk. The character relationships are interesting and show in-game during a fight
(through dialogue & pre-battle sequences). Later installments of BB add a lot of characters as well as some additions to existing characters' attacks. Overall, I think the characters, their backgrounds and personalities, are more interesting than the main story
and they're sorta what make it what it is.Note: although later games have a lot more to offer, they kept changing artists for the character cards (what you see in the loading screen before a fight/the VS screen) and I think Calamity Trigger has the best artwork among all Blazblue titles. Noel Vermillion <3
Chronos Phantasma is great too but Continuum Shift's art is the worst IMO, wish we could get BB:CP next :/
It's Badass! Aside from the main theme, ending credits theme ('Limited again', one of my faves), menu and whatnot, each character has their own fitting theme music
and if you set bgm to auto it will play the theme of your opponent (iirc, or the stage, I'm not too sure). The soundtrack is essentially a great mixture of heavy metal & orchestral music
and as it is downloaded with the game (in the directory), you can add it to your music library.
There's a large gallery to unlock which includes concept art, character art, arcade end scenes & a few videos. You can also unlock 'unlimited mode' versions of characters by completing arcade which is a slightly powered up version of the character that you can set when selecting characters for vs battle
(not sure about arcade battle). There is also a comedic story-like tutorial about BB's world accessible within story mode called "Teach me miss Litchi".
BTW, I highly dislike this game's opening, mainly because the one on PSP was far better IMO. The PSP version's opening had the same video (second video up there) but used the arcade music from the first trailer up there on the store page ("Calamity Trigger"), it was so badass and much more fitting than this song
(see on youtube)...I used to watch it everytime on PSP but I must skip it on PC.Special element:
One of the best things about BB (IMO) is the special element of immersion in the game, characters are lively & have a lot of dialogue within a battle + unique dialogue for certain characters. There are also some special animations before a battle between some characters
. This makes it more fun and interesting when you listen to their insults & comments while you fight. This adds tension and/or enjoyment to the already exciting battles. The normal dialogue in a fight also adds so much more, like characters saying "Saw that!" n "Missed!" when you dodge/block/counter. I just love how there's so much effort & personal touches put into this intoductory title.