- Publisher: Focus Home Interactive
- Developer: HeSaw
- Release Date: June 24, 2014
- PlayStation 4 (PSN)
First things first, Blue Estate is based on a comic by Viktor Kalvachev. I will admit that I had never heard of Viktor Kalvachev or the comic until just before this game was released. That being said my impressions of this game are based solely on the time I have spent playing it and not whether or not the game is a faithful adaptation of the comic.
Blue Estate The Game is an on the rail shooter that is in the vein of House of the Dead and Time Crisis. However, unlike House of the Dead and Time Crisis, Blue Estate has an actual story behind it that doesn’t feel like it was just tossed in as filler between action segments. The story puts players in the roles of two main characters, Tony Luciano and Clarence. Each player starts with a default weapon with unlimited ammo (a decorative Desert Eagle for Tony and a silenced pistol for Clarence) but each level has a unique weapon with ammo that can be collected as the level progresses. The game uses the gyroscope in the Dualshock 4 controller to aim and the left and right triggers to reload and shoot. The touchpad is also used for context-sensitive actions. Getting the hang of aiming and shooting does not take very long although at first, it seems a bit touchy. Early parts of the game you will face enemies that stand in right in front of you shooting wildly but never hitting you. These guys are just begging for you to take your time and lay them out with a well-placed headshot but don’t let that fool you. Moments like that serve as your tutorial because the pace quickly picks up and you will find yourself swarmed by killers looking to take you down.
While the difficulty does pick up it never gets to a point where you aren’t able to handle it. This makes you feel like more of a badass when you are picking off the enemies that are coming at you from all sides. There is also a co-op option if you just can’t handle it yourself or if you want to prove to a buddy who the better shot is. The one thing that some players may find frustrating is what happens If you do get overwhelmed and get gunned down. You do not regenerate health as you do in the majority of today’s games so survival depends on timing your shots and picking up the health packs that are scattered throughout the levels. If you do die you continue immediately from where you were but you do have a finite number of lives. Once you run out you have to restart the entire level (welcome to the arcade era youngsters), which can prove to be a pain on the game’s longer final stage. The good news is when you restart the level you are granted an additional life to help you last longer on your new attempt for up to a total of 9 lives (I played through on normal difficulty so this may change on other difficulties).
Blue Estate can be finished in just a few hours, which is just long enough to keep things from getting repetitive. Each mission does a pretty nice job of mixing things up with locations ranging from a cemetery to a spoof of a KFC chicken warehouse all the way to the jungles of Jamaica. The game even tosses in a few boss battles that are not overly challenging but are a lot of fun to shoot your way through. The game has a unique sense of humor that comes through in each other the character’s dialogue. You do not get to choose to play as Tony or Clarence, you play as one or the other depending on the mission. That being said I had more fun playing through Tony’s missions as they were filled with more humor and more over-the-top moments than the ones where I played as Clarence. Using the touchpad to keep Tony’s hair out of his face or to keep Chihuahuas from humping Clarence’s leg were the one thing I could have lived without. They are both cute at first but the novelty wears off fast.
Overall Blue Estate is one of the best downloadable games to come out recently and is a really fun addition to the PS4 library. Collectibles THAT YOU WILL MISS beg you to go back and play through the game multiple times as do unlockable difficulty levels. Blue Estate came out of nowhere and it ended up being the most fun I have had with a shooter like this in quite some time