Blood does have a story behind it, but it’s not particularly important, suffice to say that there’s an evil you-know-what called Tchrenobog who’s stolen the love of your life Ophelia. How do you get her back? You, and your arsenal of weapons are all you have to get through the levels, fighting the hoardes of zombies and other creatures in this game. The screenshot above should give you more than a hint as to what sort of game it is that we’re playing.
One other thing… it’s very gory.
Installation can take place in either DOS or Windows 95, and whichever environment you choose to install it in, you can run it from either. Installation is simple, and can be easily followed from the instruction manual. Once installed, the setup program is run to optimize performance of the game.
If you install from within Windows 95, then uninstalling is a quick affair byusing the uninstall button. If you’ve installed it in DOS, then you’ll need to delete the files by hand, but this is easily done by deleting the entire BLOOD directory, or whatever name you have chosen to call it.
Another bonus if playing the game in Windows 95 is that all the FMV sequenceswill only run in that environment so that’s the one I choose to run it in, myPC having a dual-boot system.
Playing the Game:
There are four episodes in the game, each with between six to eight levels,and playing them one after the other in order progresses the level ofdifficulty.
The episodes are : The Way of All Flesh, Even Death May Die, Farewell ToArms, and Dead Reckoning.
There are also five levels of difficulty you can select at the start of eachgame to determine the number of zombies that will appear : Still Kicking, Pink on the Inside, Lightly Broiled, Well Done and Extra Crispy.
There are more options than you can shake a blood-soaked scythe at:
- 1. Mouse Sensitivity
- This controls the responsiveness of the game to mouse movements, so the
higher the sensitivity, the faster you’ll spin.
2. Key Turn Speed
- The faster the speed, the faster you’ll turn, giving keyboard players a chance against mouse players in the multiplayer Bloodbath mode.
3. Configure Keys
- This changes the level of detail. Too much on a slow PC, and you may
experience choppy image quality, so this enables you to turn it down.
- Adjusts screen brightness. Higher settings reduce contrast, and may also overbrighten some areas intentionally left dark.
- djusts volume of background music.
- Adjusts volume of sound effects and ambient sounds.
8. CD Audio
- Adjusts volume of CD Audio music.
9. Auto Aim
- It’s best to leave the auto-aim function enabled as it eases the killing of airborne or crawling creatures.
- Toggles a crosshair for easier aiming.
11. Show Weapons
- Allows you to see which weapons your opponent is using in the Bloodbath mode. The weapons will appear above your enemies heads.
12. Slope Tilting
- Controls whether or not the player’s view tilts in the direction of slopes. Disabling the option keeps your view levelled at the horizon.
13. View Bobbing
- Toggles the vertical ‘bobbing’ of player weapons.
14. View Swaying
- Toggles the vertical ‘swaying’ of player weapons.
15. Parental Lock
- Allows control of parental lock in the game, but you don’t really want to lose the gore do you?
There are a number of weapons you can use in the game. In the case of Blood, using the later ones instead of the first lot doesn’t always guarantee the best option. You’ll need to work out which ones are the best for killing which enemies.
The weapons include the pitchfork, the first weapon you get, but you’ll need to get close to use it. It has no ammo so you’ll always be able to fall back on it. There’s also the flare gun which is one of my favourites. Shoot at the enemy. Then as they go to kill you, watch them try before they fry! The flare lights up, and so do they!
Other good ones I’ve come across include the sawed-off shotgun which is the guv’nor. It packs a punch and feels very satisfying. The Thompson’s Machine Gun is better known as the Tommy Gun and has a rapid fire rate, but uses up ammo quickly. Also, there’s a number of dynamite bundles scattered around the place. Light one of these, chuck it as far as you can and watch zombies split apart, and the blood fly!
Health and Armour
Feeling a little unprotected? Five types of armour, plus Life Seed and Essence will help you out.
Powerups and Inventory Items
To aide you further are powerups such as Guns Akimbo which gives you double-fisted killing power with one-handed weapons such as the shotgun, flare gun and Tommy gun.
A number of other items available require you to initiate them when you find it. Example’s are a Doctor’s Bag which contains 100 points of health and allows you to top up your health as and when you need it. Also, the Jump Boots allow you to jump much higher than usual – useful for those hard to reach places or for crossing chasms the easy way 🙂
Keys and Puzzles
Some areas are accessible only with special keys hidden in each level. Others require you to solve a puzzle such as restoring power to an area, or providing a specific combination. While you can use trial and error to solve combinations, there are clues around if you look carefully enough…
Where would a game like this be without enemies? And there’s 18 of them, from bats, rats and spiders, to zombies, cultists, gargoyles, hell hounds, and the dreaded Tchernobog
Graphics, Sound and Playability
Let’s get one thing out of the way first. Yes, Blood is a Doom clone, but in as much as Duke Nukem 3D was. Yes, the game is a first-person gory shoot-em-dead-before-they-get-you-by-any-means-necessary affair like both of the above, but the graphics are as detailed and fast-moving as anything seen in Duke, and similarly you can look up and down, which was one feature lacking in Doom.
Like those two games, sprites are used in this game instead of polygons which gave Quake a more polished look, but slowed the gameplay down a tad unless you have a fast Pentium machine.
The sound, like all the above, is a combination of sound effects from your weapons, the enemies, some ambient sounds, plus the occasional words from yourself – sometimes you even burst into song. Somewhere Over the Rainbow, anyone ?
Playability is nothing short of excellent. The game is very easy to get into,and if you like your games full of blood, then this one gushes plenty. It takes three blasts from the shot-gun to kill the skeletons, but on your third shot, try not to get covered in blood as their head pops off!
Duke Nukem 3D was a step-up from Doom and this one is an equal to Duke. Hence, this one loses a point from the graphics as Duke got there first, but make no mistake – if you enjoyed the gore and humour from that game, you’ll love this one.
Don’t forget that when you’re done going through the four levels on your own, you can link up with up to eight other people for a monster Bloodbath !
Producer: Jace Hall
Music: Daniel Bernstein and Guy Whitmore
Caleb: Stephan Weyte
Tchernobog / The Voice: Jace Hall
- MS DOS 6.0 (or higher) or Windows 95 DOS Mode (correctly configured)
- Pentium PC 75 Mhz
- 16Mb RAM
- 75Mb Hard Drive Space
- Dual-speed CD-ROM Drive
- Supports all major soundcards
- VGA graphics card 256 colours
- FMV sequences only available in Windows 95
- Modem and Network game support for up to 8 players in the multiplayer Bloodbath mode.
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.