Story: The premise here is a simple one, as Wryn wants to be the greatest hero the world has ever seen. This is a little tough however, since the world has many heroes and to stand out, she will need some serious heroics. But she is determined to make her mark, so she ventures out to prove herself as the greatest hero ever. This will require battles against creatures, monsters, robotic creations, and even past heroes, but she is certain she will emerge victorious. So you jump into those shoes and try to guide Wryn to her destiny as the greatest hero to ever live. Sounds simple, right?
Entertainment Value: This is a side scrolling twin stick shooter, so you walk around with one thumbstick and aim/fire your weapons with the other. You can jump using your right trigger, but not just a dull normal jump. No, you can triple jump in Bleed, with a lot of control over your in-air movements. This means you can jump at just about any angle, or shift your jump into more of an air dash. The left trigger controls your bullet time power, allowing you to slow down the passage of time, to gun down enemies, avoid damage, or just look cool in the heat of combat. The controls are rock solid, but it did take me a bit to adjust to jumping with the trigger, but once you adjust, you’ll know the default control scheme is optimal. As you progress through the seven levels, you will face all manner of enemies and after a while, you’ll run into a mid-level boss, then more enemies, then a level boss. The boss fights in Bleed are fun and a challenge, as each boss is unique and requires you to learn the pattern, then burn them down. But if you die, then you’re all done. No retries in this one, though the game is kind enough to let you start at any level you’d like. So there is the rogue-lite spirit in Bleed, both in mechanics and in that the game can be tough as nails. If you enter the harder difficulties, prepare for rough times.
The game does offer four levels of challenge however, so you can play at whichever you’re comfortable with. Bleed is designed with frequent replay in mind as well, so practice on the lower difficulties, refine your approach, then duke it out on the harder settings. The game also extends you an olive branch with an upgrade system, which allows you to unlock some permanent boosts. As you destroy enemies, you earn points and if you’re creative and skilled, you can earn multipliers, so the better you run, the more points you pile on. These points can be cashed in for extra health, faster bullet time recharge, and of course, an arsenal of weapons. I appreciate this kind of upgrade system, as it encourages replay and adds a sense of progression, even if you’re struggling to move forward in the campaign. Maybe that extra notch of health is just what you needed to finally pass that boss. The weapons you can unlock are fun, but I found the default ones to be more efficient and useful. But since you can swap weapons whenever you’d like, it is never an issue to change up your tactics. Although the game kicked my ass, I had a lot of fun with Bleed. The gameplay is fun, but leans on repeat level clears, the controls are excellent, the upgrade system is good, and the visuals are quite cool. Overall, a very fun game that might be tough, but it is also a fair experience.