Bulletstorm was one of those neglected shooters that ended up as a commercial failure, yet one that was highly praised by critics and enjoyed by the ones that played it. The game was released in 2011 developed by People Can Fly/Epic Games and published by Electronic Arts. It has become well known for its creative ways to kill enemies and its lack of taking itself too seriously. I originally just bought this game for access to the Gears of War 3 back then and didn't particularly care for the game. Luckily, Bulletstorm was given another chance in the Full Clip Edition and I was able to give it a second whirl. Being a remaster it's the same experience as before, but with some visual improvements so still a revisit of the game. I'm glad I was able to as the game was actually much more fun the second time and I even look forward to perhaps playing a sequel at some point.
The story follows Grayson Hunt and his space pirate squad of Dead Echo dealing with being constantly hunted. This bounty on their heads was brought on by their former employer of which they were mercenaries under. After a surprise meeting above orbit of this unknown planet, Hunt engages against their pride and joy ship for ultimate destruction. Despite having a tiny weak ship they manage to take down the large vessel with both parties crash landing. Once on the surface Dead Echo meets horrifying scenes with mutated people, overgrown vistas and creatures to kill. The world was once a great stop for tourists, but due to some bio issues everyone has been mutated.
The game then has you run around a really interesting place of culture and wacky ideas. Some highlights included controlling a giant mechanized robot to blast away enemies or just the vulgar humor. It seemed like nothing was held back on the tone of the game which was certainly different. I was also pleasantly surprised by some of themes explored which were dark. Aside from Spec Ops: The Line very few games go over the impact of your actions in shooters and while it was somewhat of a joke here the ideas were still present. The main antagonist would constantly mock your past and current actions on the lives you've ruined trying to kill him. It was an interesting dynamic and the characters were well developed there. I also found the robot pal with brain confliction to be fun and the twist of the girl you party with being the daughter of a prior target. It wasn't exactly a surprise considering they show off that moment from the start, but it adds another layer. The story was definitely more enjoyable the second time so many years later and I was surprised by the solid amount of length the campaign was.
If you don't want to just play the campaign there was also a full cooperative, yet competitive multiplayer component. Everyone works together to take on challenges whether that's the general goal of getting enough points to complete the wave or doing team-up kills. It was somewhat fun to play when everyone worked together though honestly not that amazing and it certainly didn't hold my attention for very long. This was also true with the game's Echoes that were just segments of the campaign taken out for a quick leaderboard challenge. Extra gameplay sure, but not that exciting to play if you've just blasted through the story. These modes did however help to highlight the focal point of Bulletstorm which were skillshots. There were so many pleasant ways to kill enemies from feeding them to fishes, having them get lasered by dinos or having a planet finish the job.
Bulletstorm was a great game to revisit and the experience improved after having left it for so long. I definitely appreciated the humor more at this point and even found the story to be better than I had remembered it. I recall 2011 being somewhat of a busy year and with this mainly being for the Gears 3 Beta I had probably just neglected it. A final mention on Bulletstorm would be the great launch trailer that made fun of Halo 3's Believe, was just hilarious.
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Read our Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition Review