Hands onBloodRayne

We take a look at Majesco and Terminal Reality's slick action title.

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Representatives from Terminal Reality were on hand at Majesco's press event today to demonstrate the company's upcoming third-person action game, BloodRayne, on the Microsoft Xbox, Sony PlayStation 2, and PC. The core gameplay of all the builds is the same--players will take control of Agent BloodRayne, a half-human, half-vampire secret agent working for a mysterious organization whose mission is to hunt down and destroy supernatural threats. Two of BloodRayne's assignments have seen her cross paths with a rogue Nazi who has been has been searching the world for powerful occult relics that will bring Germany into a new age of domination. To prevent the madman from realizing his insane goal, BloodRayne will face his Nazi army and journey through the swamps of Louisiana, a temple in Argentina, and a vampire-infested castle in Germany. Along the way, she stumbles onto an even larger plot that threatens to consume the world.

As you'd expect from the story, the game's dark tone is echoed by dark and detailed graphics. BloodRayne is generously modeled with a good amount of polygons, and the character features moving hair and a host of nicely animated offensive and defensive moves. We were able to explore two environments in the game: a German submarine bay and what appeared to be the inside of an army barrack that had been overrun by demons. The levels are massive areas that were streamed off the disc and featured areas that could be deformed by scripted explosions triggered by in-game actions. The levels were populated with a large number of items that could be destroyed, ranging from crates and breaking glass to flags that could be slashed, showing off some interesting fabric animation.

Navigating through the various levels was a breeze thanks to the game's solid control, which lets the player control both movement and camera position at the same time. The controls also let players easily switch between BloodRayne's forearm-mounted blades, any guns she's collected, and her vampiric powers, which range from a Matrix-like slowdown effect to a zoom feature that lets you see great distances. But Rayne's coolest move has to be her ability to feed on the blood of any human enemies in order to restore her own health. In a nice touch, the move also allows you to move your prey into the line of enemy fire to avoid harm.

In terms of the builds that were on display, the Xbox build was further along than 2851723our earlier look at the game. Visually, it was more or less on par with the PC version at the event, although the PC version looked cleaner thanks to the resolution of the PC monitor it was running on. Surprisingly, the PlayStation 2 version actually compared quite favorably with the Xbox and PC versions of the game. Despite the obvious tweaks to the textures and the frame rate hitches, the game looked very good and managed to offer a comparable gameplay and visual experience. Although a GameCube build wasn't shown, Terminal Reality plans bring BloodRayne to that console as well. At present, the game is currently slated for release this fall on all four platforms. Look for more on the game in the near future.

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