Posted Tue, Dec 17, 2013 by Lewis B
Having already spent 24 hours with Bloodline Champions, my time with the game continues in this "Time Extended" coverage. Unfortunately I've still not played a tournament or found myself a guild but that's all because I'm finding it too bloody hard to step away from the 3v3 solo rated matches
I'm finding it hard not to play Bloodline Champions when I really should be playing WildStar. That's the problem with a competitive game that has matches which last less than a minute and before you know it, three hours have flown by and you've not even showered yet.
That's pretty much where I find myself with BLC. It's addictive and has the annoying 'one more go' factor that is the bane and joy of all my gaming. I make no bones about this, Bloodline Champions is bloody addictive. Like Counterstrike orDoom III, it's all about self improvement and physically seeing the end result of your time spend (i.e you die less and kill more). You might now be thinking to yourself “well why didn't you enjoy DOTA 2 or SMITE then?”and if I was being honest, that's a difficult question to answer.
I think on the whole it all comes down to accessibility, community and re-playability (is that even a word?). DOTA 2 and SMITE are time intensive and at times this feels at odds with the nature of the game. Inevitably, MOBA's and their content is all temporary and yet games last a long time. In BLC, games last very little time (mere seconds at times) but have a sense of balance and progression.
BLC taps into my Counterstrike psychi more than DOTA 2 or SMITE ever have and I'm sure it's because of that impulse play that allows you to leap in and leap out in a matter of minutes. I've found myself playing BLC for around 15-20 minutes before I shower, have lunch, tea or go to bed. It fills void periods where I don't quite have enough time to boot up a single player game nor have enough time to complete a dungeon in whatever MMOG I happen to be playing. That's super welcome in my eyes and isn't prevalent enough in many modern games.
During my time with BLC I've been trying out as many Heroes as I possibly can and I can honestly say they all feel distinctly different and well balanced. I'm surprised at that because there are a lot of Champions and there are a lot of varying skills. I'd like to think it's a good job done by Stunlock Studios as they've clearly tried to replicate each archetype to some degree, but added twists on all of them. No two Champions play the same even if they share some similarities.
As it currently stands, I'm one level off the highest (24 of 25) and ploughing through the random 3v3 arenas. Despite a small community, matches trigger instantly which is surprising. I don't imagine there are more than 2000 people playing Bloodline Champions based on Steam statistics and I think that's a real shame for Stunlock Studios. They've gone to great effort to make the game accessible, skilled and with enough support tools and tutorials to ease players into the game. It would be a real shame to see the game fail this far into its lifespan when DOTA 2 sees concurrent users peak out at 600,000 and yet it offers equal if not better gameplay.
I'm not suggesting that BLC has the style, polish or infrastructure Valve can provide but who really cares? The game still looks great, has excellent Champions, tournaments daily and plenty of skins and Champions for you to buy and best of all, it's free to play.
I figure I've got one more Time Extended left with Bloodline Championsin the hopes of getting into a guild and taking part in some tournaments, improving my rank and finding out if Grimrog really is the Champion for me.