|ONLINE||No Online Play|
|INSTALL||360: 817MB; PS3: 2GB|
|RELEASE DATE||May 14, 2013|
|PLATFORMS||Playstation 3; Xbox 360|
|DEVELOPER||Platinum Games & Kojima Productions|
Taking place just a little while before the events of Rising‘s main story, the story follows Blade Wolf [LQ-841] during his training and the moments just before his showdown with Raiden.
It’s a bit on the short side – only clocking in at around 2 hours, max [As with the main game – the “Final Clear Time” doesn’t count retries or cutscenes – only your fastest times through a ranked fight.]. It does a decent job shedding some light on Wolf’s story – but a lot of what’s revealed is pretty much already known – mentioned in cutscenes or CODEC conversations in the main game. There’s not much new here. There aren’t even any new locations to visit. There is, however, a new character revealed – a previously unknown “Wind of Destruction” – Khamsin.
This add-on essentially just shows what’s already established – it lets you see exactly what Wolf went through before his battle with Raiden, and throws in a new boss.
Nothing has really changed. The game still runs smoothly. Blade Wolf animates decently – though he’s obviously clunkier than Raiden.
There are no new locations, though some of the rehashed areas are changed a bit, due to being recreated in a VR space for Wolf’s training – adding in new platforms to traverse. However, these take on the look of the standard VR platforms.
There is a new song to go along with the new boss fight – and like all the rest, it’s brilliant and certainly makes the fight much more exciting. It fits right in to the feel of the other boss themes.
Gameplay is where this has the biggest difference to the main game. Blade Wolf is a much less mobile character than Raiden. He can’t platform all that well, and his sprint is much slower than Raiden’s – he also can’t automatically leap from ledge to ledge while sprinting.
Wolf’s combat is also much more limited in comparison to Raiden – only having a small handful of combos to make use of, and no extra attacks to purchase at all. He has 2 three hit combos – one light, and one heavy – as well as a dashing tackle that launches most enemies, and a spinning aerial attack that actually homes in on your currently targeted enemy – which also gives him a little more mobility than normal.
Wolf is a more stealth-based character – and you’ll likely fare better in the game actually trying to avoid combat, rather than engaging every enemy – especially on Revengeance difficulty, which – like before – changes the enemies you face, and makes them much stronger.
Making use of “Hunt Kills” [Wolf’s equivalent of Raiden’s “Ninja Kills”] is definitely the best way to go about using Wolf.
There are some upgrades available to Wolf – in the form of Health and Fuel Cell upgrades that are found throughout the levels. As with Raiden, these carry over on subsequent playthroughs, so it’s best to get them on a lower difficulty before you try to tackle the higher ones – otherwise you’ll be taken out in one fell swoop by just about every enemy.
As before, you can play this DLC on any of the 5 available difficulties. Easy through Hard are about the same – only increasing in how hard the enemies hit you.
Very Hard and Revengeance again change enemies and their placements. The enemies are much, much stronger – and can wipe out even a fully health upgraded Wolf very, very quickly.
The DLC also contains a few new VR missions featuring Wolf – though these are only available in the story mode – they can’t be accessed through the VR Mission mode of the game. I didn’t manage to find all of them, but the ones I did play ranged from fairly easy, to down right tricky due to Wolf’s slower feel.
There are also new trophies/achievements to earn in this add-on – though they aren’t as hard as the main game’s. After 2 or 3 playthroughs, you’ll likely have them all.
All in all, Blade Wolf doesn’t add much to the main game. It’s nice to experience a truly different playstyle – but I just wish there was a bit more meat to it. A boss fight with Raiden, perhaps – maybe even revealing what happened to Wolf during the moments right before the final boss fight of the main game.
What’s here is decent – it just could have been fleshed out a bit more.
Final judgment? I’d say buy it ONLY if you truly enjoyed the main game and really want to see Wolf’s opening moments. Otherwise, wait until the price comes down – $7 is a bit of a steep price of admission for something that’s only going to last a couple of hours tops.