Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice VR Edition is a downloadable 3rd person, story-based hack and slash title (in VR) from the developers over at Ninja Theory, the same team behind Heavenly Sword, DmC: Devil May Cry, and Enslaved: Odyssey to the West. Originally released on Steam on the 31st July 2018, the VR version of the game doesn’t change up the perspective of the game, but instead uses the player’s VR headset as the camera, allowing them to look around the in-depth landscape and see parts of the world of Hellblade that they wouldn’t have been able to see otherwise.
How to Download Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice VR
You can download the game from Steam. There is also, of course, the original non-VR version for you to enjoy (read the original review). The game can be also downloaded from GOG.com. To start simply click on the Download button at the end of the review.
The Game Review
So, what’s the deal?
The story for Hellblade follows a young woman named Senua.
However, some would say that Senua’s not sane. Why?
Senua suffers from a condition known as psychosis. This is a nasty illness that causes her to experience voices inside of her head and to potentially see things that aren’t really there, skewing her perception of reality.
Only perhaps they are all there.
Shortly after this is revealed to you, Senua explains that she’s on a quest to reach a tree that has a lot of meaning to her. Along the while she will have to deal with the voices in her head, gods, the black rot, and other warriors that wish to do her harm. There is a lot more to the story, but for the sake of skipping any spoilers, this is the general idea for the game.
Wanna know the best part?
At the start of the game, the developer introduces to you a mechanic called the black rot. The black rot is told to be an affliction for which there is no cure and that it will slowly take away the life of the individual afflicted.
What this means in gameplay terms is that if you, as Senua, die too much, the black rot will become worse and more pronounced on Senua, eventually killing her for good.
It means that it will reset your progress back to the start of the game!
Or will it?
It turns out it was a huge lie by the developers! They did it just to keep you on your toes.
It has been officially debunked that the black rot does not actually reset the player’s progress but is more designed to keep them on their toes for the threat of losing everything; creating a sense of general paranoia with every fight. Now forget we told you that.
OK, but is the gameplay cool, you’re wondering.
When it comes to the gameplay of Hellblade, most of the time you will either be solving a puzzle, exploring and walking to your next objective, or fighting enemies.
By exploring, you can find pieces of lore that house true Norse mythology within them.
Puzzles are typically solved by finding a set of runes in the environment out of shapes that wouldn’t normally create anything.
We’re not through yet.
Next up is the combat that takes place in a 3rd person perspective. Around Senua will be a number of enemies, all of which can surround her at a 360-degree level, whereas she can only see 180-degrees at any one point.
Now, for some important stuff:
Using a mixture of basic and heavy attacks, you can create small combos to try and kill the enemies, all the while dodging their attacks.
When being attacked from a perspective you can’t see, the voices in Senua’s head will chime in to say that an attack is coming, letting you know to get out of the way.
But is the VR thing any cool?
With the addition of VR, not much changes with the overall gameplay, but it does allow you to use your head as the camera to give you that much more of an immersive experience.
When it comes to the visuals, Hellblade: Senua’s Sacrifice VR Edition is designed to look great, and the developers managed to nail it perfectly well.
The environments are typically dark, gritty, and practically desolate while making all of the characters in the game give off a hint of realism, without taking too much away from the immersion. Even now, Hellblade is still one of the best-looking games on PC, without too much competition to say otherwise.
For anyone that’s on the lookout for a fantastic story-based hack and slash title that really plays with the players head, then this is the game to pick up. VR doesn’t do too much for the overall experience, but it’s a nice extra that can be enjoyed for anyone looking to get some more use out of their VR headset.