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Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice - Review Thread

Savantcore

Unconfirmed Member
Nov 8, 2013
3,417
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Metacritic - 81
OpenCritic - 84

Eurogamer - Essential
Ninja Theory crafts a highly competent action game and a nuanced, powerful exploration of mental health.
GamesBeat - 95
It might have been madness for a small studio like Ninja Theory to take on such a herculean task, but I'm glad they made the trip.
Hobby Consolas - 91
Hellblade approaches psychosis in a videogame in a mature and original way. The game has a perfect balance of combat, puzzles and exploration, with great sound and graphics, but it falls too short, clocking in at about 8 hours of length.
Trusted Reviews - 90
Hellblade triumphs equally as action game, mythic quest and psychological character study, bringing together some amazing visuals, great performances and ingenious design. It's short-lived but perfectly paced with a blend of action and puzzles that grows in richness and complexity as the game goes on. While some might prefer Enslaved or the DMC reboot, I'd call it Ninja Theory's best work yet.
Gadgets 360 - 90
Marrying combat, narrative, and strong characters, Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is greater than the sum of its parts, making it well worth its asking price. It might not be the sequel to DmC: Devil May Cry, but it's a tense, dramatic experience that's worth the price of entry.
PlayStation LifeStyle - 90
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is a complete experience for a bargain price. Struggling through life as a psychosis sufferer is an alarming experience, and Hellblade provides an illuminating glimpse into the lives of those afflicted by such terror.
God is a Geek - 90
One of the most inventive games of the year, showing that time and patience can be behind a challenging, smart, and incredibly interesting game.
IGN - 90
A masterclass of atmosphere, storytelling, and the marriage of mechanical and conceptual design. While there are moments that feel shoehorned in to remind us we're playing a videogame, the care and attention Ninja Theory has clearly poured into Senua and her story has created something amazing. This is a game everyone should play, and I'm thankful for the opportunity to have lived inside the mind of Senua, however briefly.
WCCF Tech - 90
Blending powerful imagery, unrivaled visuals quality, an excellent combat system and a unique setting that mixes Norse mythology with mental illness, Ninja Theory fully delivers on their independent AAA pitch with Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice. This is one of those titles that, albeit not flawless, should be experienced by every gamer at some point.
AngryCentaurGaming - Buy
Just a damn unique title
IGN Spain - 88
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is an excellent demonstration of quality with an absorbing history and an outstanding artistic direction. Joining concepts such as Norse mythology and psychosis was not easy, but the mixture has been respectful and interesting.
EGM - 85
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is the action adventure genre stripped of its excess, until a smaller, more personal journey remains. While it may feel shallow and lacking for some, those wanting something other than the usual big-budget 70-hour fare will find Senua's story to be unlike anything else in recent years.
IGN Italy - 85
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is the action adventure genre stripped of its excess, until a smaller, more personal journey remains. While it may feel shallow and lacking for some, those wanting something other than the usual big-budget 70-hour fare will find Senua's story to be unlike anything else in recent years.
GamePro Germany - 84
It is so unique and so interesting that it can not be overlooked.
TheSixthAxis - 80
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is a profound sensual experience that's unmissable. The way it highlights psychosis and incorporates it isn't just a part of the aesthetic, but it also makes for fascinating gameplay. This is a phenomenal achievement for the discussion of mental health that we'll be talking about for years to come.
GameSpot - 80
Hellblade's most notable achievement is the handling of an incredibly sensitive subject matter within an engaging and well-crafted action/adventure game. At its heart, the story is about Senua's struggle to come to terms with her illness. In the process, she learns to find the strength within herself to endure, and to make peace with her past. And in a profound and physical way, we go through those same struggles with her, and come away with a better understanding of a piece of something that many people in the world struggle with.
Game Informer - 80
Psychosis in video games is often used to justify a villain's world-destroying ambitions, or as a vehicle to present gameplay gimmicks. Hellblade goes beyond those conventions, using Senua's mental illness as the core from which the entire tale radiates. That approach results in some phenomenal and unsettling narrative moments that knock you off-balance. However, in pursuit of that achievement, Hellblade weaponizes the real-world frustration it causes in exploration and combat. That's where it falters as a game, even while it captivates as a piece of interactive art.
Gameblog.fr - 80
Hellbalde: Senua's Sacrifice is a Hell of a game. A gorgeous, scary, crazy, oppressive and unique experience with a great setting and story, different and loveable heroine and some interesting gameplay mechanics. Maybe the best surprise of summer 2017.
Push Square - 80
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice is not going to appeal to all tastes, and nor does it try to. As a character action game, it has decent if underdeveloped combat and a mixture of some excellent and some overplayed puzzles. But it's the way that the title utilises the unique attributes of the medium to raise awareness of mental health that elevate this release beyond the sum of its parts.
PC Gamer - 78
Hellblade could benefit from more exploration and enemy variety, but it's a powerful portrait of the strength of will over personal demons.
SpazioGames - 75
Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice demonstrates that videogames can be the perfect medium to tell a story about complex themes. The depiction of a disease like psychosis is believable and deep. The story works out very well, but the puzzles and the combat system are the game elements that push back the the overall quality of this very interesting project.
Destructoid - 75
Slowly but surely Ninja Theory has moved into film territory, but they can't let go of their need to shove action mechanics into everything they do.
Gamereactor - 70
Ninja Theory's latest game offers concepts and gameplay mechanics that aren't for all.
Everyeye.it - 65
Ninja Theory's last effort is intriguing and fascinating both at a conceptual and executive level - primarily due to its dark tones and its unusual emotional intensity - but at the same time unfortunately quite weak and questionable in terms of pure gameplay.
Metro GameCentral - 60
A technical masterpiece with some of the best swordfighting combat in years, but the storytelling and puzzle elements come across as muddled and awkwardly mismatched.
The Jimquisition - 10
An unplayable, broken piece of crap.


So About That Time I Gave Hellblade A 1/10...

Sometimes you don't quite consider every facet of something until the thing is done. Unfortunately this was the case with a previously published review for Hellblade.
 

Jawbreaker

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Mar 22, 2013
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Yeah, it should be noted that Jim enjoyed the game enough that he would have scored it a 7.5-8/10 — if not for a late-game bug that tarnished the entire experience. I think the 1/10 is reasonable given his experience.
 

Greddleok

Member
Mar 13, 2015
6,303
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According to Total Biscuit's Twitter, the game delete your save file if you die too much, is that true ?
According the the Jimquisition review, I doubt it. He died over and over on the same section and never mentioned anything about deleting the file.
 
Jun 5, 2013
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Before people complain about Jim's review. He enjoyed the game, would have been ~8/10 but he ran into a gamebreaking bug.
 

Hanmik

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According to Total Biscuit's Twitter, the game delete your save file if you die too much, is that true ?
It is in the game yes.. and as someone on twitter put it.

The threat of permadeath is a reflection of Senua's fear of the dark. It's a way to make the players as scared of failure as she is.
but it sucks if you encounter a bug that makes you die over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and again and the file gets deleted because of that.. then you get a score of 1/10 ..
 

Endo Punk

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Sep 4, 2011
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A game breaking bug would ruin anyones experience especially if it appears like nothing triggered it.
 

Theorry

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Dec 4, 2014
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Metro GameCentral. 6/10

A technical masterpiece with some of the best swordfighting combat in years, but the storytelling and puzzle elements come across as muddled and awkwardly mismatched.
http://metro.co.uk/2017/08/08/hellblade-senuas-sacrifice-review-the-road-to-hell-6836027/


Destructoid. 7.5/10

Slowly but surely Ninja Theory has moved into film territory, but they can't let go of their need to shove action mechanics into everything they do. With the increased focus and acceptance of so-called "walking simulators" there's a huge market they can tap into, and I hope they end up doing that in the future. I enjoyed pretty much every facet of Hellblade that didn't involve combat, which unfortunately pops up a little too often on top of the aforementioned technical problems -- just enough to grate.
https://www.destructoid.com/review-hellblade-senua-s-sacrifice-452614.phtml
 

LordKano

Member
Jul 11, 2016
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Brussels, Belgium.
Wow, seems completely unnecessary and stupid no matter the context given. Sours me of even trying to play it considering my progress could be lost if I'm not good enough.
 

Dusk Golem

A 21st Century Rockefeller
Sep 15, 2011
19,008
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For anyone curious on Jim's review, for the moment he gave it a 1/10 because he encountered a game breaking bug which made it where he couldn't continue, and he ran into it multiple times. If they fix it, he says he'll change his score.

His score up to the point he got to before running into this bug would've been an 8/10 he says.
 

Mdk7

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I'll copy my post in here too. :d

I gave the game a 6.5 (out of 10) on Everyeye.it

The performance capture truly adds a special touch to the already intense cutscenes, the audio department is stunning and visually it's kind of a treat: too bad that the gameplay elements in Hellblade: Senua's Sacrifice are just so shallow, bland and uninteresting, dragging down an otherwise deeply fascinating project.
Honestly, as a fan of Ninja Theory (who particularly LOVED DmC) I was quite disappointed by Hellblade. As I wrote in my quote, some of the elements are definitely there and are also very high quality - above all the audio design is simply stellar, with David García proving to be one hell of a sound designer after his already amazing work on RiME, but the performance by Melina Juergens in the role of Senua is basically at the same impressive level of the audio department - but unfortunately the gameplay is just pretty mediocre and absolutely not on par with the rest: it's by far the worst aspect of the project, and considering we're talking about a video GAME I think it's a significant problem.
More so if you consider that this is a traditional "gamey" game, not something along the lines of a walking simulator (despite sharing quite a few things with those).
Simply put, the puzzles - or I should say the puzzle, considering it's basically just one kind of puzzle repeated all over the adventure, with some minor twists to the formula here and there - are simplistic, uninspired, repetitive and never particularly rewarding, and the very same adjectives could be used to describe the shallow combat system (which is however NOT the focus of the game, with combat being probably around the 30% of the experience). And the slow rhythm unfortunately doesn't make things better in that sense.

Honestly I know that time and money were probably big constrains for a project like this, one that proudly sits between AAA and indie, but I can't help but feel that all the gameplay elements could and should have been better for Hellblade to truly shine. And it's truly a pity because the studio is clearly full of talent and the project is nevertheless a fascinating one.
 

Kenzodielocke

Banned
Dec 24, 2014
22,161
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Wow, seems completely unnecessary and stupid no matter the context given. Sours me of even trying to play it considering my progress could be lost if I'm not good enough.
Well, the game has an easy mode and the default mode is dynamic, so if you die too much, it will set you to easy. Also, if this was a big problem, it wouldn't get so many good reviews. I dunno, I will wait for a sale anyway.
 
Jul 7, 2014
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United Sates
For anyone curious on Jim's review, for the moment he gave it a 1/10 because he encountered a game breaking bug which made it where he couldn't continue, and he ran into it multiple times. If they fix it, he says he'll change his score.

His score up to the point he got to before running into this bug would've been an 8/10 he says.
Metacritic doesn't allow score changes so he might as well leave at 1. Kinda messed up to be honest.
 

OrbitalBeard

Member
Jun 2, 2013
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Yeah, but maybe it could've been a good idea to contact the devs about it.
As far as I'm concerned, if your embargo ends on the day a game releases, anything is fair game. If the embargo had lifted pre-release, it would have made sense to hold back the review until launch, in order to see if Ninja Theory could address the issue before consumers can purchase it.
 

Fezan

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Mar 18, 2010
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Jim may increase his review later on but it has effected metacritic badly which is not fair especially for a mood budget games like these
 

THe_DeiCiDe

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Oct 2, 2014
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Game looks amazing. Absolutely loved Heavenly Sword as well.

Now I just need to come up with some extra cash.

The permadeath thing actually sounds cool to me, since it ties into the narrative. I mean, it's not like it's a 40 hour game, that would be brutal.
 

shmoglish

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Oct 29, 2013
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"Game is great. Story is interesting, the fights are fun, visuals are awesomne but 5 minutes before the end of the game I had a save deleting bug sonI ignore everything else and just rate the bug. 1/10"

Legit


(Yeah I know, thats not exactly how it was, but turning a game from 8/10 to 1/10 because of a bug is not the right way. And it doesnt turn the game into an unplayable mess)
 

GhostTrick

Banned
Jan 11, 2012
16,582
3
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As far as I'm concerned, if your embargo ends on the day a game releases, anything is fair game. If the embargo had lifted pre-release, it would have made sense to hold back the review until launch.

As far as I'm concerned, QA can miss a bug or two. No harm to contact a small team of developpers about it. We're not talking about a huge AAA publisher here.


Why? Should he not let us know about it? He found out the reason behind the bug, the bug deleted his only save (you only get one save)

Why ? To fix it before release of course !
 

Wanderer5

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Aug 31, 2014
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Oh yeah, this game is still a thing. Might get it on wishlist for now and keep it in mind later, especially after the apparent gamebreaking bugs are fixed.
 

Kintaro

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Jun 10, 2004
27,928
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"Game is great. Story is interesting, the fights are fun, visuals are awesomne but 5 minutes before the end of the game I had a save deleting bug sonI ignore everything else and just rate the bug. 1/10"

Legit


(Yeah I know, thats not exactly how it was, but turning a game from 8/10 to 1/10 because of a bug is not the right way. And it doesnt turn the game into an unplayable mess)
A bug that no longer allows you to play..makes the game unplayable.
 

OrbitalBeard

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Jun 2, 2013
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As far as I'm concerned, QA can miss a bug or two. No harm to contact a small team of developpers about it. We're not talking about a huge AAA publisher here.
In the context of a review, the consumer is always more important than the developer. The size of the team does not change this in the slightest.

Then I think he should have given it around that score or contacted the devs instead of nuking its meta/opencritic averages and having his short quote be "An unplayable, broken piece of crap."
Some of you are making me very sad.
 

HeavenlyE

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Nov 11, 2016
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Before people complain about Jim's review. He enjoyed the game, would have been ~8/10 but he ran into a gamebreaking bug.
Then I think he should have given it around that score or contacted the devs instead of nuking its meta/opencritic averages and having his short quote be "An unplayable, broken piece of crap."
 
Jun 5, 2013
12,780
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"Game is great. Story is interesting, the fights are fun, visuals are awesomne but 5 minutes before the end of the game I had a save deleting bug sonI ignore everything else and just rate the bug. 1/10"

Legit


(Yeah I know, thats not exactly how it was, but turning a game from 8/10 to 1/10 because of a bug is not the right way. And it doesnt turn the game into an unplayable mess)
Uh yes it does? It literally broke his game and he couldn't play it anymore other than restarting the whole game.

Then I think he should have given it around that score or contacted the devs instead of nuking its meta/opencritic averages and having his short quote be "An unplayable, broken piece of crap."
Why? He has his scale, he's used it. Why should he protect the developers, it shouldn't be a reviewers job to protect them.
 

SZips

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Jun 27, 2012
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"Game is great. Story is interesting, the fights are fun, visuals are awesomne but 5 minutes before the end of the game I had a save deleting bug sonI ignore everything else and just rate the bug. 1/10"

Legit


(Yeah I know, thats not exactly how it was, but turning a game from 8/10 to 1/10 because of a bug is not the right way. And it doesnt turn the game into an unplayable mess)
The bug has literally made it so that he cannot finish the game.

I don't know what you would consider "unplayable" but that's about as damn close as you can get to a textbook example.
 

GhostTrick

Banned
Jan 11, 2012
16,582
3
0
In the context of a review, the consumer is always more important than the developer.


Eh, that also benefit the consumer though. Say Jim got wind of the bug like 3 days ago. Maybe contacting devs about it could've meant said bug wouldn't exist anymore. And yes, the size of the devs matter because it means they might have skipped a bug that they couldn't replicate and telling them beforehand, to fix it before release, instead of keeping it as a surprise until release isn't a good thing to do imo.

Now, maybe Jim did contacted them about the issue.
 

Jawbreaker

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Mar 22, 2013
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As far as I'm concerned, if your embargo ends on the day a game releases, anything is fair game. If the embargo had lifted pre-release, it would have made sense to hold back the review until launch, in order to see if Ninja Theory could address the issue before consumers can purchase it.
Yeah, this is a good point.
 

OrbitalBeard

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Jun 2, 2013
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Eh, that also benefit the consumer though. Say Jim got wind of the bug like 3 days ago. Maybe contacting devs about it could've meant said bug wouldn't exist anymore.
Heck, I can agree to this. But if the bug isn't fixed by launch, the 1/10 should absolutely stand. And I also don't think his avoidance to do this makes his current score any less valid.
 
Jun 5, 2013
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Eh, that also benefit the consumer though. Say Jim got wind of the bug like 3 days ago. Maybe contacting devs about it could've meant said bug wouldn't exist anymore.
Who knows if he did or not? Seems, I say seems because I don't know for sure, he did because he knows exactly what the bug is and how it was caused.

This is only Ninja Theory's fault. The embargo ended today, release day. The bug exists. 1/10 is a fair score in light of that.
 

SZips

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Jun 27, 2012
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Y'all really, really shouldn't worry about the permadeath stuff.
I'll take your word for it. Just seems like an incredibly odd choice that will definitely sour a fair number of people who happen to encounter it. I'd personally rather have that be an option that I can disable so that I can enjoy my experience even just a little bit more.