Review: Until Dawn: Rush of Blood

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Until Dawn: Rush of Blood is an on-rails shooter. Therefore, it’s kind of lame.

This failing isn’t virtual reality’s fault, but that of the genre. I’m a massive Resident Evil fan, but that doesn’t mean I enjoyed The Umbrella Chronicles. C’est la vie. Even then, the gimmicky nature of Rush of Blood means I’d pick this shooter up before delving back into the adventures of Chris, Jill and company.

Loosely tied in to Supermassive’s 2015 surprise hit, Rush of Blood takes place in a creepy carnival where you’re the highlight attraction. Armed with either two Move controllers or a DualShock 4 (and, like every other game, you should invest in a pair of Move controllers), you dual-wield against things that go bump in the night.

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Using a contoller, your left bumper and trigger control your left hand, while the DualShock’s right side controls your right. Your on-screen avatar looks like a bit of a derp with guns held out, forever equidistant from one another. Aesthetics aside, the control scheme also makes it really hard to hit things coming from your peripherals when you’ve basically one gun that points a bit to the left and right of where you’re aiming.

With Move controllers, you’re free to do whatever you’d like with each arm, independent of the other. Your on-screen avatar will occasionally flip out, arms spazzing out in moves reminiscent of tracking issues encountered in Kinect Adventures. It’s a small price to pay for far better targeting, especially if you’re trying to go all-out and become a point-grabbing master.

Oh, and it needs to be said: enemies are usually in the form of clowns. Fitting, given recent real-life events, eh?

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There’s not much else to it. Ride down the rails, look left and right, and shoot anything with a target on it, literally or otherwise. You’re incentivised to be constantly on the lookout via teeny collectibles that are scattered all around, each raising your score when hit. Levels are big on said scoring, showing you leaderboards in an effort to get to you replay.

While there are a bunch of psychological scares present, the only times I screamed were when I just happened to be looking the wrong way. When I re-centered my focus and was immediately jumped by a creepy clown, I couldn’t help by lose my mind. Still, the atmosphere presented by Supermassive is absolutely effective in getting you on edge; jumpy, uncertain of what’s to come next. That’s what makes the title great, not the shooting itself.

Until Dawn: Rush of Blood is a great little title that makes great use of virtual reality. It’s not as terrifying as you’ve been lead to believe, especially against the likes of Resident Evil 7. This is one to grab if you’re a fan of the franchise, or if you’re open to a jump scare here and there.

Until Dawn: Rush of Blood was reviewed using a promotional code on PS4 with PS VR, as provided by the publisher.

 

Review: Until Dawn: Rush of Blood
7.5 out of 10

The good

  • Tense and atmospheric.
  • Clowns. Clowns everywhere!

The bad

  • Occasional tracking issues.
  • It’s an on-rails shooter.

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