Friday, August 7, 2009

Call of Juarez: Bound in Blood Review

Platform: PC

I'm a single child, I have no brothers or sisters, so I have never felt that brotherly jump-on-the-grenade-for-your-kin love. After some movies, books, games, I acknowledge that it is something really deep and only something really bad could break this a woman.
A while ago Call of Juarez appeared, and it got a lot of good reviews (my own will come soon), so I tried it. After some swearing (at the stealth missions) I flushed it out from my HDD. Now when Bound in Blood was announced I tried it again so I could follow the story. After I finished it I found out that Bound in Blood was gonna be a prequel... well whoopeee.

The game is centered around the McCall brothers: Ray (the Pastor

from Call of Juarez), Thomas (Billies father) and William. After deserting from the army to save their home and family Ray and Thomas become outlaws and are living on the edge, always running and shooting. They also take their little brother William with them, who is a priest and tries to guide them on the right path but that sorta seems to be in vain. The characters are very well defined, you will just love them. Through most the game, aside from a couple of chapters, you can choose to play as Ray or Thomas. Ray cannot jump higher, can carry a gatling gun, and is good with dual-wielding pistols while Thomas is the agile type, he can climb, use his lasso to get to high places and is a excellent sharpshooter. I used Thomas the whole game.

The story is well written, you interact with all of the characters from Call of Juarez and see how they got where they got. Even old Calm Water has something big to say in Bound in Blood although his name now is Running River (you will see why) and you will find out (if you haven't played Call of Juarez) why the sudden change in Ray's temper. From the killing-machine to the peaceful Priest.

The graphics are .... well I drooled all over my keyboard. They are great, it really resembles the (few) western movies I've seen.
You get to visit a Ghost town, kill some indians in the forest, shoot from a moving wagon.

The sound is also good, I liked the voice-acting a lot, but I encountered a problem. If the person talking was behind me, i couldn't hear anything he said until I was facing him. Must be my computer, but i didn't have this problem in any game... so it must be from the game. Maybe I'll try it again when I put my 5.1 system back.

The HUD is very simple, well...actually it's empty. No health bar, the health regenerates (pretty fast) when you stay behind cover a bit (call of duty style), the only thing that appears is a meter .. concentration-meter... when it's full you can enter concentration-mode ... and well that's a different story. If you play as Thomas when you enter the concentration, the time slows down for a bit, and you can one-shot-kill every enemy that was is sight when activated.Tthe target will

automatically be put on a enemy and you just have to draw your mouse back and click. For Ray, the time slows down as well, but you have to move your mouse over the enemies, and mini-targets will appear on them... when the concentration-mode is over, he will automaticly shoot those targets this consumes no ammo....and you can enter the concentration with one bullet, put as many targets you can, and he will shoot them all. Also, another thing that was put in this game was the auto-aim... since i have a mouse, and not a X360 or PS3 controller in my hands I think it kinda ruins the game a bit. But, it did come in handy sometimes. Also the game offers a cover-system, a pretty god one actually. You don't get into cover every time you approach something bellow your belt (mass effect, gears of war), but every time you stand next to something the character moves his gun/guns/rifle, around the thingy you are facing so it can shoot. It took me a while but I shot someone from underneath Ray's arm.

Saving the best for last. The duels. Instead of Boss-fights, at the end of some chapters you get to duel with a character. This consists of you (camera centered on your hip) and the other one facing each-other. You can move left or right so you will always face him (he moves too), and when the bell rings (which is kinda weird when you duel is in a collapsing Aztec ruin.... WHAT BELL ?) you draw and shoot. That feels great, there is almost no sound, everything except your opponent is blurred, and you draw your hand closer and closer to the gun... and then the bell rings...and BAM! Really nice.

One major problem would be that it is too short. I finished it in less then 5 hours on normal difficulty.....

the bad: auto-aim, too short, sound problems, no health
the good: graphics, atmosphere, voice-acting


  1. It's a good game, I haven't finished it yet but I will surely do it soon.I also liked the graphics and the voice acting.Nice review.Keep up the good work and... baga review si la Dark Athena:P