Blades Of Time

The Switch is on fire! Isn’t it evident? Putting aside the long running, best-selling franchise games (e.g.: Super Mario Odyssey, The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, and Super Smash Brothers: Ultimate), there are so many ports showing up all the time. One of the most recent of which is Blades of Time. We first saw this title published by Konami for the PC, Xbox 360, and PS3 way back in 2012. Is it worth your hard earned dime, lets dive in and find out.

Blades of Time (“BoT”) is a third-person hack & slash game reminiscent of Bayonetta, amongst other games. As treasure hunter Ayumi, you travel to a magial island to snatch a “dragon treasure.” You don’t get much back story other than that. Laughable at best, the plot really serves no purpose in this game other than to give you a reason to be on this “fantasy island” of sorts surrounded by monsters. But, you’re not here for the story. You’re here for the gameplay. If you want complexity, this is not the game for you. But then if you wanted complexity, maybe the entire hack & slash genre isn’t for you. But this is a whole new level for the genre. There are too few combos, and the camera controls are horrid. Yet somehow, they still manage to make the combat fun, with plenty of enemy designs and combat choices to keep you entertained.

There are some features that distinguish BoT from other games in the genre, though. First we’ll look at time rewind. This type of feature isn’t new, as we have seen in the ever-popular Prince of Persia franchise, but this is a bit different than what you may have seen before. You’re not just simply going back in time, instead, you re-enact your past actions through the use of clones, which becomes useful in both combat and puzzle sections. The other feature is the addition of third-person shooting mechanics. After an awkward press of the right stick, you switch between a rifle and a machine gun, both outfitted with an unlimited ammo supply. The controls are pretty standard for shooters: not overly complex, easy to handle.

It always surprises me when people just expect ports to work because, after all, they are running older software on a far superior hardware setup. But in most cases, as we see with BoT, that just isn’t the case. People often discount the fact that many ports were written on outdated engines, often with features that don’t exist anymore, or behave entirely different than they initially were even as little as 3 years ago. BoT’s graphics are pretty decent for the most part, with great animations on the main character and some good looking details in your environment. The persistent framerate issues keep the game from really shining in the graphics department. On the really bad side of things, though, I seem to be one of the few who hit a major game-breaking bug during my playthrough. Not even an “I couldn’t access the area” or “it won’t let me pick up that item” kind of bug. A, “let me enter this area and oh… the game has crashed” kind of bug. Several times when trying to enter a specific area of the game, I got my classic Nintendo-style alert: an error has occurred. Like others, I tried reinstalling the game. It did not fix it. Like others, I tried starting a new game. It did not fix it. Hopefully, Gaijin Distribution gets a patch out for this soon, as it makes the game impossible to complete. Something to keep in mind when you look at purchasing this over Bayonetta (at this time, I’d go with Bayonetta).

2 stars out of 5