Blood Alloy: Reborn (PC) Review

By Athanasios 16.03.2016

Review for Blood Alloy: Reborn on PC

It has been mentioned time and time again: a good game is a good game, a bad game is a bad game, and a game that could be fantastic, but throws its potential away, is a painfully disappointing game. Blood Alloy: Reborn started its Kickstarter odyssey by promising an action-packed, 2D Metroidvania, but, failing to reach the required budget, ended up as a simple, yet very impressive, shooter/hack 'n' slasher/score-chaser, with crisp pixel art visuals and a catchy soundtrack on top of it all - and congratulations to the team behind everything for finding the strength for doing so. Sadly, the end result ruins what could very well be one of the best indie productions of the year!

The heroine, a girl with a - prosthetic? - cybernetic suit that looks as if a Neon Genesis Evangelion mecha had a baby with Gray Fox from Metal Gear Solid, enters a futuristic stage whose NES-like aesthetics are nothing short of great. Suddenly, all sorts of tiny robots appear, and she blasts them away with her pistol, or slashes them with a hi-tech sword that cuts through them like butter in a matter of milliseconds - pulling everything off with the grace of a ballerina.

Stronger metallic critters will soon appear, and this agile warrior will start using even fancier techniques, like bullet-time evasions, massive one-hit-death beams, or fast horizontal/vertical sliding moves, which add some homing projectiles into the mix. After a while, however, she will get seriously hurt, the music and sound effects will get distant and distorted, and after a single fatal hit, this skilled sharpshooter/ninja will disappear from this dystopian world with a scream.

Screenshot for Blood Alloy: Reborn on PC

'Cool' is the right word to describe all this, and this awesomeness increases even more with the use of a fantastic, and very fitting, electro-synth soundtrack, courtesy of Magic Sword and Perturbator (yay!), amongst others. Anyone observing the action, however, will soon notice that the protagonist seems to be in an arena of sorts, where there's not much to do besides shooting down mechanical mosquitos. The reason is that, although Blood Alloy: Reborn's initial goal was to look like a Metroidvania title, the low budget reduced it to a pure and simple score-chaser, with multipliers and all.

Bad decision? Not really, since simple doesn't necessarily equal simplistic. Besides the fact that the whole "bug hunt" business itself can be very exciting at times, it utilises an interesting method of increasing the score. The first multiplier is a traditional one: keep killing enemies, and it will eventually reach x10; idle, and it will drop back to x1. The second meter increases by mixing different playing styles instead of focusing on gun and/or sword, and, while the underlying rules are not very clear, this gives enough incentive to be a Swiss knife of pure badassery.

Screenshot for Blood Alloy: Reborn on PC

Blood Alloy: Reborn can be quite challenging, with the heroine having to keep many balls in the air, and with no power-ups to aid her in her ordeal. Unfortunately, high challenge needs smooth and flawless controls, and, while they certainly aren't broken, they need much work, since they are not as responsive as they should be - not to mention that having to use the basic buttons, instead of the shoulder buttons, in a twin stick shooter/platformer feels extremely uncomfortable, with the alternative being a cumbersome WASD keyboard and mouse scheme, with keymapping not being an option.

Besides an atrocious dizziness-inducing camera movement, and the fact that it's impossible to see incoming danger, replenishing lost health uses a very annoying method. After reaching x10, a captured soldier spawns, who can be set free in exchange for some HP, with the catch being that he will disappear the moment this meter drops. Why annoying? Because he always appears as furthest from the main character as possible, which means that she will have to keep blasting baddies while getting there, before receiving his unsatisfying reward, which usually translates to losing more health points in the process, if any.

Screenshot for Blood Alloy: Reborn on PC

All these, however, are things that may change in the future. The controls can be fixed, the camera can be adjusted, and the healing can turn into a simple system where a higher multiplier equals a faster regeneration. The biggest problem with this title lies elsewhere, though. Evident by the lack of options in the title, this is an incomplete product, with no difficulty settings, and no leaderboards; a must in score-chasers.

It's possible to unlock additional equipment, levels, and even music, but they don't increase the replay value as much as they should, not to mention that most will manage to unlock everything in about six hours. Even worse, there are only three levels available, and, besides some subtle differences in terms of height and platform placement, they are very similar, with their inhabitants being the same four to five kinds of cyber pests.

Screenshot for Blood Alloy: Reborn on PC

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 5 out of 10


If it was only a matter of bug fixes, control adjusting, and overall rebalancing, the final judgment would be much more positive, because, when Blood Alloy: Reborn is at its best, it is truly magnificent, since it seamlessly blends rapid shooting, sword fighting, and platforming, with addictive and challenging high score-chasing - plus it looks and sounds fantastic. Sadly, the problems begin when one realises that there's not really much to do here, with pleasure soon giving way to boredom.


Suppressive Fire


Nkidu Games


2D Platformer



C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  5/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   


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