Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice review roundup

The game that caused quite a ruccus today, a brainchild of Ninja Theory, Hellblade: Sensua’s Sacrifice, has received its first reviews. Ninja Theory have previously stated that it is not a long experience and therefore it costs “only” $30, while it provides a “AAA experience”. Let us see what the consensus regarding the quality of the game seems to be at the moment. Note: the results are out of 10, unless stated otherwise.

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The game’s heroine, Senua, is battling her own internal demons manifesting in the real world.

  • Destructoid – 7 – “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
  • Game Informer – 8 – “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.”
  • Gamespot – 8 – “Hellblade’s most notable achievement is the handling of an incredibly sensitive subject matter within an engaging and well-crafted action/adventure game.”
  • PCGamer – 78/100 – “Hellblade could benefit from more exploration and enemy variety, but it’s a powerful portrait of the strength of will over personal demons.”
  • Pushsquare – 8 – “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.”
  • IGN – 9 – “Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice is 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.”
  • Eurogamer – no number rating, marked as “Essential” – “Hellblade is a remarkable game. Despite some frustrations in execution and some design decisions that are likely to drive some players away, Hellblade is a superb exploration of mental illness told with poise and poignancy.”

The game has caused different reactions, with some people strongly opposing the system of dying a lot leading to permadeath – which is something that the game claims is the case, however, some people say is not actually true. Which kind of fits a game dealing with mental disease.

Expect more discussions on this game in the days to come.