Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition is a remaster of a game that originally released in 2011, it is a first person shooter with an emphasis on dispatching enemies in a creative fashion. When it released six years ago it was overlooked due to its average graphics and similarities to other games at the time, like Call Of Duty and the Gears of War franchise, despite its terrific gameplay.
Release date: April 6th 2017
Price: $59.99, $64.99 (With original pre-order DLC)
Approximate Size: 14.13 GB
Genre: First Person Shooter
Developed by People Can Fly, Epic Games
Published by Gearbox Publishing
Reviewed on Xbox One; also available on Playstation 4 and PC.
The story of this game really deserves some praise because when it starts it seems cliché and you expect it to go a certain way but as it unfolds, it adds some interesting twists and fun elements. You play as Grayson Hunt, a man who became a space pirate with his squad after discovering they had been murdering innocent people at the orders of their commander. Several years later, you and your squad see that very commander’s space ship in space and, in a drunken state, you attack that ship which leads to several casualties and you both crash landing on a planet.
This is where things get interesting and unpredictable. One of your squad members nearly dies and is transformed into a half android half human hybrid who internally battles for control against the A.I. that attempts to take over him. All of this while in excruciating pain. Grayson now must help his comrade while dealing with the guilt because he caused all of this. It’s a different story than I expected and its better for that.
With that being said, there are some issues with the story. Its dialogue isn’t perfect, the plot is completely wacky, and there are a lot of elements tied to the story. Some are better and some are worse but at least they tried. The ending is its biggest problem, however, and I can see a lot of people frustrated that they enjoyed a great ride to only be let down in the end.
Bulletstorm isn’t your average FPS. It’s actually much, much, better. The game runs beautifully as I had no framerate issues or stuttering and its progression and gameplay are wonderful. In this game, like all FPS, it’s about getting to point B from point A but it does so in a way that you forget about that simplistic view on your in-game travel. As you traverse the world you engage in combat but gone is the usual kill all enemies quickly and in its place, is kill all enemies as creatively as possible. Yes, you can get pretty creative and each moment of creativity gives you points.
Skillshots are you chaining events together to get your kill. Doing so will give you points, the more creative options garnering more points, and you use these points for everything from replenishing your ammo to getting upgrades. It’s a breath of fresh air and it’s not simply in the game to be different for the sake of being different. The story explanation for this tactic is to give more to the soldiers who do more and to leave the slackers to their own means for survival. Either way, you learn to dispatch your foes creatively even in the narrative of the game world.
Now, let’s talk weapons. The game has a nice variety of weapons that each sound and feel different. This isn’t variety in the sense of ammunition swaps or variety for the sense of variety, no, this is a selection made by a group of people who excel at allowing their imagination to come up with exciting gameplay situations. My favorite of course would have to be the four-barreled shotgun known as the Boneduster that shoots air or, well, I do also like the Screamer quite a lot. Very view games have such a satisfying set of armaments like this game and the smooth flow of combat makes for an extremely enjoyable experience.
Besides the fun guns your allowed to play with, there is also a whip at your disposal. It becomes quickly apparent how satisfying it is to use the whip to pull an enemy towards you and then launch a kick right into their corpse. It’s also nice to pull enemy into the environment and watch them splatter into pieces. The game does great in making you feel like an amazing killing machine.
Overkill mode is nice as you have all weapons available at once from the beginning and if you’ve done all the associated Skillshots with each weapon, you get unlimited ammo with those weapons. This is a nice addition but I do wish it was available from the start or unlocked with a series of button combinations but it’s not. It acts like a new game plus of sorts, so you will need to complete the campaign to unlock it. At best, you can play through the game again down the road with this mode or, if you loved the campaign you can play it again right after.
I have very little to complain about in this single player experience, its wonderful and the gameplay is fluid and varied. The set pieces are nice and the in-game dialogue when traveling the planet is good and gives you a connection to the character and how he’s feeling. The lack of a jump button is a minor annoyance that does have you scratching your head as to why it was omitted. The use of profanity is a bit of a turn off and sometimes feels as if it’s in the game just to be in the game but I will give them credit, their use of profanity like all aspects of this game is creative. There is an option to turn it off and that’s nice but not if you play as the Duke.
Single player (Duke Nukem)
In this remaster one of the main selling points for preordering was to allow you to Hail to the King in the single player campaign. Duke Nukem is not to be silenced and his vulgarity reigns supreme. They didn’t add anything new to this single player experience and simply swapped main character Grayson Hunt out for the Duke but he is fully voiced with unique dialogue from original Duke Nukem voice actor Jon St. John.
It’s a nice addition to the game but something that should have been a nice secret unlockable instead of being locked behind a pay wall in the form of preorder DLC. Or, if they were dead set on making it DLC maybe they could have made some differences in the campaign’s story or connected it to the old Duke Nukem games. They should have done something, anything, to truly justify the price point in the eyes of the players.
Anarchy Mode is where up to four players work together in gathering points with Skillshots while surviving twenty waves of enemies. This is the games take on Horde mode that was popularized by Xbox exclusive Gears Of War. As you and your team go through a wave, there is opportunity to accept a sorts of team challenge in an attempt to motivate cooperative playing. It’s a nice challenge and brings people together in those moments where we all get lost doing our own things.
Echoes Mode is you going through a level pulled from the single player campaign and trying to achieve as many points as possible. Your high score is then put on a leaderboard to compare your score to those on your friends list. This mode is basically an excuse to play through a quick level and enjoy some more time with the awesome weaponry that the game provides. It’s a nice touch and the combat in the game is strong enough to support this mode.
The original release wasn’t the prettiest game when it launched but this remastered version is well done. It comes across as a complete graphics overhaul and it looks damn good. This isn’t a halfhearted effort from the developers but instead is them taking their game that was overlooked the first time it was released and forcing it to be a beacon of intrigue to a new audience and an attractive offer to those who purchased the original in 2011.
The textures in the game are beautiful, the world feels alive and spacious, and the lighting in this game is gorgeous. With its silky-smooth gameplay and nearly locked 60 FPS, it doesn’t look out of place when compared to other releases this year. From the moment I started up the game to the end, with several disemboweled corpses and heavy set pieces along the way, I was always finding myself impressed with the graphics of this game. There is a lot going on in the game as your moving around trying to creatively kill the enemies out to get you and it all holds up impressively.
The character models are nice, though enemies are not as varied but that’s expected in these kind of games, and the nonhuman models are very creative. Overall, I’m pleased with the graphics of this game. One thing I found odd and off putting was that the in game cutscenes did not receive the same love and care the rest of the game got. They look washed out and it really takes you out of the experience when you’re playing through the beautiful campaign and then transition to a poorly rendered cutscene. Cutscenes are usually big payoff moments but here it feels as if they just brought them over from the original release and left it as is.
The voice acting in this game is cheesy and weak. It does add a bit of charm to the game but it is the games weakest aspect in terms of sound. The dialogue written for this game is questionable but it surprisingly fits the characters. Where at first I found it jarring and surprised at how they could come up with new ways to use the word d*** by the end of it the new ways were befitting of the characters. It ultimately comes across as a parent giving their child permission to curse and, having never done it before, they go above and beyond the extreme. Some of it will make you chuckle, some of it will have you shaking your head, and some of it will express your exact feelings in some situations.
Enemies exploding have a nice sound to it, a healthy crunch, and each gun sounds different and fulfilling. The sounds of the world are good and the rise in both temp and music when battles engage are motivating. When it all flows great, it’s as if you’re in a trance as you enjoy the maneuvering and murdering of your foes. It’s exactly what t sets out to be and what it needs to be but, that being said, there is nothing spectacular about the music that puts it above other shooters in its category. It’s a solid effort nonetheless.
Bulletstorm: Full Clip Edition is a remaster that does as much right as it does wrong. It is a well done update to a six year old game with some things that were overlooked that shouldn’t have been. They took their time to make sure the game looked and ran well when being played but seemingly didn’t think, or have time, to update the in game cutscenes. They also chose to release this at a full price of $60 when other remasters have opted to release at $40, which is a more reasonable price. Usually remasters that have more than one game, like the Bioshock remaster, are the ones that can get away with the hefty price tag because of the massive amount of content included.
The game is great with its short story at roughly seven hours but it’s poor constructed cliffhanger ending really hurts it. it also doesn’t help that it was impossible to get into the online mode of the game and it wasn’t wise to lock such a cool piece of content, the Duke Nukem story DLC, behind pre-order DLC.
Ultimately, I enjoyed what this game offered and am hopeful we’ll get a sequel someday that’ll justify this game’s ending. If you want a game that’s all about creative killing and Michael Bay level set pieces, then you’ll enjoy the ride this game offers.
Graphics & Sound9.0 /10
Single Player9.0 /10
- Fluid Gameplay
- Satisfying Gunplay
- Motivating Creative Killing
- Beautiful Game
- Variety In Locations And Gameplay
- Inability To Access Multiplayer
- Price, Locked Pre-order DLC
- Use Of Profanity For The Sake Of It
- Some Archaic Gameplay Missions