Metascore
42

Generally unfavorable reviews - based on 44 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 44
  2. Negative: 25 out of 44
  1. 75
    The recurring annoyances that result don't bleed all the joy from clobbering, but they do keep this third-person action game from develĀ¬oping a more natural flow and better exploiting its gruesome graphic-novel aesthetics. Luckily, such issues are diminished when you try to chop down massive bosses inspired by Celtic mythology.
  2. Apr 24, 2012
    70
    Bloodforge isn't a game for anyone, starting from its gory, desaturated visuals to its highly difficult gameplay. Too bad that some flaws, like a bad saves management and imprecise controls, help to steer it more towards a frustrating experience rather than a challenging and rewarding one.
  3. Apr 24, 2012
    69
    Do you like to hack, do you like to slash, do you like to chop heads, do you like sharp fantasy artwork? Then you might like to spend a few hours inside Crom's skull.
  4. May 7, 2012
    65
    Although it is not one of the best in its genre and doesn't bring anything new, it is a good game to pump adrenaline. A solid adventure with a noteworthy visual design that although is quite limited in game modes will be liked by genre fans.
  5. Apr 25, 2012
    65
    There are far better combat games on the system, and the only reason left to check this out is if you've gone through them all and are craving something new.
  6. Apr 24, 2012
    65
    Still, if you can stick with it and become accustomed to the way you are forced to rely on instinct, there is a pretty fun and solid game here. The barrier to entry is just too high to recommend it to everyone.
  7. Apr 23, 2012
    65
    Despite lasting only a couple of hours, Bloodforge still feels like it outstays its welcome thanks to its duotone environments and the feeling that everything on offer has been offered countless times in better packages. Still, if you love old school brawlers enough, you will have a solid, if fairly unremarkable, little button masher that will at least justify the asking price.
  8. May 21, 2012
    60
    The Climax production is a virtual slaughterhouse filled with buckets of blood and even more gore effects. But behind the extreme violence there is hardly any substance.
  9. Apr 27, 2012
    60
    Attempt to play this style-over-substance offering as thoughtfully as its creators intended, and you'll wind up disappointed. Accept it as a button-masher, rather than the deep brawler it wants to be, however, and working out Crom's anger issues might become your next go-to guilty pleasure.
  10. Apr 30, 2012
    55
    Boring hack 'n slash with clunky combat system, frustrating camera and choppy framerate. Art style is very good and someone will like the massive gore.
  11. Apr 27, 2012
    55
    Bloodforge is a game with great potential, unfortunately a very bad technical realization, states the failure of the product.
  12. Apr 24, 2012
    53
    The feature in Bloodforge that lets you create and send online challenges to friends stands out as a great idea, but given all the other ways that the game falters, it's not enough.
  13. Jun 25, 2012
    51
    Snore. [Aug 2012, p.77]
  14. Jun 6, 2012
    50
    A mediocre, low budget attempt to give X360 users their own God of War. [July 2012, p.70]
  15. Jun 4, 2012
    50
    Despite nice graphics Bloodforge suffers from control issues, bad camera work and a poorly told story.
  16. May 19, 2012
    50
    Bloodforge can be described as the following: take God of War, and just hammer on it until it fits in an XBLA-game. What remains is an imitation with a Celtic taste. Unfortunately the game is way too hard, caused by dumb design choices.
  17. 50
    This God of War-inspired adventure falls apart as soon as the camera begins swerving about in confusion.
  18. Apr 30, 2012
    50
    Conan the Barbarian meets the Phantom of Sparta in this good-looking action gameā€¦ unfortunately its technical problems blow-up everything else.
  19. Apr 23, 2012
    50
    While it drips with cinematic style and unrelenting action, the game is held back by camera issues and a game-breaking exploit that can't be ignored.
  20. May 5, 2012
    45
    Bloodforge is too hard and too frustrating to enjoy. It's impossible to change the difficulty of the game, there aren't enough places to heal and the gameplay keeps repeating itself. The graphics are great, but the camera is not. Another great part of the frustration is the boring music, that starts when there are enemies on screen and ends when they have been eliminated.
  21. May 3, 2012
    42
    I cannot stress this enough, Bloodforge is a game that could have been absolutely amazing and could easily have been a contender for the top game on the Xbox Live Arcade, but sadly this title gets ripped limb from limb with everything that is wrong with it and then it gets impaled on the massive 1200 MS price point and has nothing to help it recover.
  22. Jun 19, 2012
    40
    A good-looking but boring button masher that should be avoided. [Issue#86, p.100]
  23. May 21, 2012
    40
    Bloodforge is gorgeous and has high production values, but in the end it lacks depth and the story is so lame it's outright impossible to care about anything that happens on screen.
  24. May 13, 2012
    40
    Repetitive, boring and betting a lot on its violence and gore. Better stick with Kratos.
  25. May 8, 2012
    40
    Bloodforge has an interesting world concept that is completely wasted. The game suffers from a chaotic fighting system, brainless AI and a flawed camera. Artism is buried under a pile of bugs and bad decisions. Perhaps the developers would try more if the game was to be something more than just a digital distribution product?
  26. May 6, 2012
    40
    All in all, Bloodforge feels like a love letter to the God of War series written with an oversized Sharpie marker. Clunky and unpolished controls mixed with a nearly broken camera make a somewhat enjoyable hack and slash adventure frustrating and monotonous, and with its 1200 MSP price tag, it's hard to justify a purchase.
  27. May 1, 2012
    40
    If you're into mindless bashing, you might somewhat enjoy Bloodforge, but I think most people will be fine with just skipping the title and saving their Microsoft Points for some of the other great stuff coming soon to the marketplace.
  28. 40
    Your moves are clumsy, and unresponsive. Arenas wear you out, rather than challenge you. Boss battles are overwrought and underwhelming. The God at the climax of the Land of the Dead is defeated by a drawn-out process of ranged health-whittling and dodge-rolling.
  29. Apr 25, 2012
    40
    It can't even craft a halfway competent action game out of the myriad things it stole from much better action games.
  30. Apr 24, 2012
    40
    Bloodforge is an impressive technical demo; unfortunately games are all about gameplay and this is not very good as an adventure game, or even as an action title. The camera problems are usual and the mechanics are far away from being something special.
  31. Apr 23, 2012
    40
    While it gets props for an interesting visual style and graphics, Bloodforge also brings with it an awful camera, weak story, and extremely derivative gameplay. Bloodforge's gameplay never strives to attain more than "me too" status, bringing nothing new or interesting to the table.
  32. May 22, 2012
    30
    Bloodforge is nothing more than a disastrous banality.
  33. May 9, 2012
    30
    Bloodforge is a God of War for Xbox, except that it's not very good at all. It's a promising idea turned to nothing by too many mistakes.
  34. May 1, 2012
    30
    I suppose if you absolutely have to buy Bloodforge because you're dabbling in a unique form of economic S&M, you might find some guilty pleasure here.
  35. May 1, 2012
    30
    The most frustrating thing of all, though, is that Bloodforge could so easily have been better. No one would begrudge the tepid level design and repetitive gameplay if it wasn't so arduous+. If Climax had halved the number of opponents, lowered the difficulty ever so slightly and let you respawn with a full health bar, Bloodforge could have been good throwaway fun.
  36. Apr 30, 2012
    30
    A sad example of style over substance. Bloodforge looks cool with its over the top violence, but actually it's a boring, uninspired and repetitive game.
  37. Apr 27, 2012
    30
    There's no excuse to the get the basics this wrong and there's no reason why slicing your way through a wall of enemies shouldn't be fun. Yet there's nothing that's fun here, only a monotonous bloody grind that copies everything from its peers except their polish.
  38. Apr 26, 2012
    30
    Bloodforge's striking brutality doesn't stand a chance of overcoming its crushingly dull gameplay.
  39. Apr 24, 2012
    30
    A Celtic take on God Of War sounds like a great idea, especially with these graphics, but Bloodforge's only triumph is making its inspiration look even better by comparison.
  40. Apr 23, 2012
    30
    From the dysfunctional camera to the bland and uninspired combat, it's an absolute chore to play through this game. It doesn't matter how great it looks on the outside - Bloodforge is rotten at its core.
  41. Jul 19, 2012
    20
    The style is problematic and the substance is all but absent. [Aug 2012, p.78]
  42. Jun 21, 2012
    20
    I slogged onward in the hopes for some spark, but at no point does the game get better, more polished, or less uninteresting. Bloodforge is just one meaningless fight after another, listening to the lines of banal dialogue and post-mortem one-liners.
  43. May 16, 2012
    20
    If I've come across as harsh or bitchy in this review, that's because the game genuinely angered me whilst playing it. Not only was it boring and a chore, badly written and animated, and full of glitches, but it just seems so lazy.
  44. Apr 26, 2012
    20
    It's a game full of shoddy mechanics, poor design decisions, and absymal technical execution. It serves best as a warning of all the things that can go wrong in an action title, all in one place.
User Score
5.9

Mixed or average reviews- based on 32 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 5 out of 10
  2. Negative: 1 out of 10
  1. Apr 25, 2012
    6
    "Bloodforge" is an XBLA game, which costs 1200MS Points and that is a Hack and Slash, with a Celtic theme, in black / white contrast tones, much like a graphic novel, with red for blood and other minor details.

    The game's story is about Crom, a veteran warrior, who abandons his life of war to have a family and a simpler life: one day, while hunting, he is resting and have a dream, where Gods (Arawn, the major God) appear angry; scared he awakes. While running back to his village, he see it lit on fire, being attacked by barbarians who are attacking his wife, Alena - after defeating them, he enters his house on fire and kills another warrior ... which was actually his wife. From here begins the story of the revenge game against the Gods of Crom, triggered after this event and to meet a mysterious witch, Morrigan in the form of a raven.

    The overall look of the game is cold and serious, due to the location where it is, in some land to the north, and the Celtic theme (the warriors wear Kilts, and addition of the names used, the protagonist uses a helmet made of a deer skull) - the game's graphics are visually nice, and have some good points in some details, mainly because of the contrast of colors, and of the metallic effect of various things, like weapons and armor - and expect to see many blood, from the bloodstains on the floor and the combat (which are a bit exaggerated).

    But in return, the textures of many things are basic and without further detail, with some square corners, basic textures and weak animations. The camera movement in the game is interesting, swaying from side to side, but the general positioning of it in the battles, is horrible, and confusing.

    The Audio of the game is very good: the game features dramatic orchestral music, with choir, which match the style and theme of the game. The sounds and voice-overs are well done, and give a mood, fitting the theme.

    The gameplay, as said, is a typical Hack and Slash, without varying difficulty when starting a new game: I did not think that it is fluid, actually, but it's robotic and generic, without much impact when you hit an enemy, or that nice feeling of the action in other games when you're in battle. Despite having several possible combinations of attacks (you have latter in the game four main weapons), in practice they're not used much. The game have several animations for executions of defeated enemies, with beheadings and dismemberments (a lot of them).

    Your life does not regenerate, for this, you use green drops, that you find in altars, with the LB to regenerate your life - in the fights you should use a lot the LT, to roll over and escape from enemy attacks. And this makes the game a lot harder than it is, especially in the Boss battles.

    As main weapon we have a sword, who by using the X (quick attacks) and Y (strong attacks) combine to make combos - you also have a bow that shoots with B; in addition to these basic weapons, you can use Rune powers to perform special moves together with powers of the Gods, and can use the power of a "blood bar" to enter the Berserk mode, where you have more resistance and cause more damage.

    The game campaign has several mini-arenas, with enemies that are defeated to move on forth, and with a Boss in the end of the stages (including Gods, with combat sequences in a God of War style, with QTE), but the game have a bad orientation of where to go. Many scenarios possess branches and there is no marker of where to go, and the fact that all scenarios are similar, doesn't heal at all.

    To summarize, Bloodforge is a game that has a nice theme and a interesting visual, but is marred by the lack of better graphic detail, poor controls and a generic gameplay, with a horrible camera - for 1200MS Ponits not advise even for those who like the style, because it is a pretty regular game ("Viking: Battle for Asgard" of 2008 was better game in my opinion). My score: 6.4 / 10.0.
    Full Review »
  2. Apr 27, 2012
    7
    Bloodforge is a XBLA game that was released on April 25,2012. After the success of other XBLA games like FEZ, Trials Evo, TWD Ep.1, American Nightmare, and I am Alive (debated). It seemed that XBLA games were headed in the right direction with its game breaking standards. Bloodforge IMO holds true to the success to the popularity of XBLA games. For 1200ms points (15.00 dollars) you get a hack & slash game that feels like Ninja Gaiden Black (to me) with a Conan the Barbarian feel to it. The graphics are nice. It was drawn to resemble the cinematic effect that you saw in the movie 300. Remember I said resemble. Gameplay was fluid and the action was non-stop. I experienced no frame-rate issues while in some pretty intense battles with multiple enemies on the screen. I have no complaints in regards to the sounds of this game. Everything sounded great while in battle or while traversing to you next location.The game does a great job at making you feel like a complete BAD ASS! The difficulty it was scored the highest points for me. I found no option to increase the difficulty level before you start playing. With ALL my games I always jack the difficulty level all the way up. Having said that, I find that whatever the default difficult level is it will most def challenge the most ardent gamer! Now I cant give a review w/o telling some things that I didn't like. The controls and camera dont work together like they should. I found myself having to readjust the camera to suit my battle performance more than I would like while fighting 8+ enemies. The checkpoint/save system was very weak. In a game like this where you could spend 20mins fighting normal enemies and mid-level bosses at the same time, dying is a effing drag! It would have been cool to be able to save-as-you-go type of feature. Those are the things that I didn't like, and as you can see the issues I had with the game are neither game breaking or game ruining. Sure there are AAA titles that do the same thing Bloodforge does and does it better but, if you wanted those games you wouldn't be reading this review. Now would you? Full Review »
  3. Apr 26, 2012
    4
    This game is meant to be a XBLA counterpart of great AAA retail games. But length and graphics are not the one things that have been scratched down. BlodForge has a very frustating Camera, bad controls and so common gameplay macanisms. Full Review »