PAX East 2019 Hands-On Impressions: Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night

Monday, April 8th, 2019

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Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night

Title: Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night
Publisher(s): 505Games

Platform(s): Switch, PC, Xbox One, PlayStation 4
Release Date: Summer 2019
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Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, the highly anticipated game from Koji Igarashi, known as one of the “Godfathers” of the now incredibly popular Metroidvania genre, will be releasing soon. At PAX East, we were able to test a new build of the game and I have to say it is looking really good so far, and fans of the genre will have a lot of reasons to be excited for it. The demo had us playing as Miriam and exploring the main castle in the game.

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night | Gun

Miriam herself controlled incredibly well, very smooth and I had no issued jumping from platform to platform just like I would in any previous Metroidvania title by Igarashi. She has a useful double jump as well which can help you reach all sorts of high areas and rooms. The model for Miriam herself looked absolutely gorgeous and when you go into the equipment menu, you can see her up close and really admire the amount of detail that went into her. Some of the rooms in the demo did feel similar to ones in Symphony of the Night, as there was a series of rooms that reminded me of the clock tower area, it even had Medusa head-like enemies swarming around it. As you would expect, it’s filled with secrets and hidden rooms containing all sorts of loot such as equipment, items or stat boosts.

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night | screenshot 2

Speaking of equipment, Miriam is able to equip a variety of weapons including boots with blades, swords, claymores, guns or whips. Each of them control a bit differently, which is nice as it offers the player a lot of freedom in how they want to approach combat in this game. Much like in previous Castlevania games, Miriam can backstep and also do a downward kick in the air and bounce off enemies, which is useful if you want to try and get behind an enemy to score a few extra hits before they turn around. Miriam can acquire new skills randomly by defeating enemies. These can include magical attacks or even a familiar for you to summon. The music that played in the demo was composed by Michiru Yamane, known for her work in Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. The music had a very similar vibe to Symphony of the Night, featuring a nice mix of orchestra and rock. The music really shows just how much the developers are willing to go the extra mile to make this an experience that will feel familiar to Castlevania fans and serve as a love-letter to the series in general.

Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night | Screenshot 1

Eventually we came across a huge and challenging boss that consisted of these two giant monsters that took up a large amount of the screen. It was quite the sight to behold and a true test of your reflexes. With that said, you are able to grind and level Miriam up and find new skills to make this fight easier. While what we got to play was only a small portion of what the full game had to offer, it showed a lot of promise and Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is looking to be the next big name in the growing Metroidvania genre. With multiple other playable characters to choose from in the full version and a map size that is said to be bigger than any of Igarashi’s previous games, Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night is looking like a game that both fans of Castlevania and 2D action sidescrollers will want to put on their radar when it releases later this year.

Are you excited to explore the new castle as Miriam?

Please let us know in the comments below!

About Justin Guillou

Justin joined Operation Rainfall to share his passion and knowledge for some of the more obscure video games out there.