Code Vein is developer Shift’s third series that throws good looking guys and girls in a post-apocalyptic dystopian setting. This time we have a Souls-like game with vampires facing the threat of extinction.
When Code Vein was first announced a couple years ago, I expected it would be more of what God Eater was to Monster Hunter when it came out. Basically a flashier “anime Souls,” if you will, but they ended up making something more tame that leans towards the Dark Souls side. However, given that the developer is Shift, you can certainly see influences from their past work which gives it a bit of its own identity, similar to what set God Eater apart from the other MonHun clones back in the day.
The game throws you into the character creator at the start and it is overall solid. While not as in-depth as the creators from more realistic games out there, it offers plenty of options and most of it actually looks good. It’s kind of similar to Final Fantasy XIV where you have to go out of your way to make an ugly character. In terms of style, it totally reminds me more of what we had in Freedom Wars, which Shift worked on alongside Dimps and Sony’s Japan Studio for the PS Vita.
The two guys in the above official screenshots of Code Vein and Freedom Wars are basically custom protagonists with close to default looks. I like to think of it as if Freedom Wars were to have a current-gen game, its character creator would be exactly what we have in Code Vein. If you liked Freedom Wars for its character customization and style, you’ll feel right at home with Code Vein in that regard.
What stood out next was the unexpectedly good story parts of Code Vein, which was actually made to be more of a story-driven adventure. The story itself isn’t anything mind-blowing since the game still focuses more on the action and map-exploring parts, but I felt it was told at a good pace and kept me entertained through and through.
To give you the tl;dr of it, Code Vein takes place in a post-apocalyptic world where mankind is mostly wiped out. The few remaining survivors were previously human but revived as vampires called “Revenants.” There are monsters called the “Lost” that roam the world. They were originally Revenants who turned after succumbing to their bloodlust and suffer a never-ending thirst for blood.
In order to prevent turning into a Lost, Revenants need fruit-like “Blood Beads” that contain blood and acts as a substitute to human blood. However, there’s been a shortage of it in the world and Revenants have been fighting amongst each other, with the wealthy and powerful getting the best of it. This is where your character comes in with a one-of-a-kind special ability to revitalize the plants that grow Blood Beads. From there you join up with other Revenants looking to help the world.
Most if not all of Code Vein’s characters have that “dead inside” spacey look to them, which something we also saw in Freedom Wars, but it actually works out nicely. I mean it made sense with Freedom Wars since everyone was sentenced to 50 bajillion years of jail at birth, but in Code Vein all the characters pretty much died at one point and came back to life as immortal vampires with no memories, so you’re not going to see any characters with bouncy personalities as you would in God Eater games. On a now related note, the jiggle physics are pretty great, but the boob slider feels a bit limited as it doesn’t let you go anywhere near the level of some of the other rockets in the game:
Code Vein releases for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC on September 27, 2019. A demo is now available on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. Check out details about its New Game Plus and more in our previous report.