Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood – Review
Follow Genre: Action RPG
Developer: Cyanide
Publisher: Nacon
Platform: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S
Tested on: PS5, PC

Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood – Review

Site Score
3.0
Good: Concept, Nice menu music
Bad: Crappy and buggy graphics, No real RPG elements, Boring
User Score
1.5
(2 votes)
Click to vote
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Rating: 1.5/10 (2 votes cast)

Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood is a mouthful for those having a look at this new Nacon published title. In 2019 still a highly anticipated title for the somewhat ‘budget’ publisher, but in 2021 it’s finally here for us to try out. While we were thoroughly impressed with the introduction cutscene and the explosive music by Alien Weaponry, things went downhill after that and we’ll try our best to tell you why. Put on those furry pyjamas, sprinkle some ritual blood around your gaming setup and then try not to be disappointed with the missed opportunity Werewolf turned out to be.

Story

In Werewolf you’ll be playing as Cahal, one of the strongest members of a werewolf cairn, taking up arms against Endron, a massive corporation basically destroying the planet as we know it. Of course, a massive powerhouse like Endron has connections, its own security detail and enough money for the government to let them do as they please. You manage to infiltrate their facility, but it ends up with you giving in to the rage that courses through the veins of every werewolf, killing one of your own. You have already lost your wife earlier, and now you have the blood of one of the other werewolves on your hands. You decide to leave the tribe to properly gain control of yourself again, only to return later and continue the fight against Endron, at the side of your now estranged daughter.

The story flow is properly handled, albeit with a few low-quality dialogues here and there. The game does have some underlying lore with deities, that give it a tiny bit of charm. Overall the story portion is okay, but it feels like a cheesy action/horror movie plot that involves occult creatures.

Graphics

As stated in the introduction, we were very much impressed with the game’s opening sequence and our expectations ran even higher. Sadly, when actually being dropped into the game, we were treated to subpar PlayStation 3 graphics that didn’t hold up at all. Cahal, the main character had different textures than all the other characters, and this was painfully clear the further you progressed into the game. Other characters, even the important ones, often did not move their mouths, had lifeless expressions, even missed their eyelids and were clearly just base 3D rendered models with a cheap lick of paint.

Not only the over-repeating characters were handled with zero care, but the environments also were not much better either, with one clipping issue after the other, and assets that seemingly came from a free Unity marketplace. We don’t understand what exactly went wrong to make this game look so horribly bad.

Other than that, the combat sequences also look very tame and repetitive. You’ll be limited to a handful of moves and even though blood is being splattered around, the enemies never show signs of wounds or never even get soaked in blood themselves for that matter. The items you run into, not even bash or claw your way through, just disintegrate and disappear after a second or two. After a battle, you’ll be left with some blood on the floor, no bodies, no destroyed objects, but just an empty room with a new red tint.

Sound

When hearing a track by Alien Weaponry blast through the speakers in the main menu, you do get in the mood to gut some baddies with your werewolf claws and fangs. And truth be told, the sound design is actually fairly decent. The soundtrack eventually becomes quite ‘meh’ the longer you play, but the voice acting has been decently handled. There are instances where the characters are void of any emotions, but for the most part, it’s a somewhat pleasant experience to listen to the (poorly-written) dialogues.

We did notice some dialogues do not make sense or are not adapted to the way you have handled a mission. For example, after murdering an entire facility, we still got to hear the dialogue that Endron seemingly ‘scared us off’ before we could do any damage. We reckon that the mass grave filled with Endron employees would disagree.

Gameplay

Wrongfully advertised as an Action RPG title, we expected to be able to flesh out our werewolf skills and become the ultimate predator on the side of righteousness. Sadly, we soon found out that the game consists out of going through different areas, trying to sneak around in your human or regular wolf form, hoping to avoid detection. If not, you can transform into werewolf form and tear the opposition to bits in a very bland hack and slash kind of fashion.

The first set of issues already lie in the gameplay format and the progression throughout the game. You are supposedly playing an ARPG, but for the most part, especially on higher difficulties, the game expects you to sneak around and avoid detection as best as you can. On easier difficulties, it’s recommended to just claw your way through the boring stealth sections that are basically everywhere. If you then enter combat, you have two different stances for your werewolf, and these are mainly a nimble and a power stance, creating a small diversity when it comes to combat. Sadly, even as you gain more experience (spirit points), you do not noticeably get stronger and actually don’t see that much difference between your first battle and the final one. You do get a few passive upgrades and an unlockable skill or two, but these do not give you the feeling of actually growing your character. You will also gain a few other tiny skills for your human and wolf forms, which you probably never end up using anyway.

Even though sidetracking in most of Endron’s facilities is pointless, seeing many rooms are just empty or just have a bit of clutter in them, you can harvest spirit points by communicating with actual spirits you find scattered around. This is a fun way to actually motivate exploring your surroundings, but the entire spirit vision is just a gimmick that isn’t properly fleshed out and sometimes also very tedious to work with.

You’ll be able to finish the game in a matter of hours, not making any visible progress, outside of some scenery changes when you get past the halfway mark. The game does play smoothly in terms of it being short and ‘beatable’, but it just isn’t a well-polished experience.

Conclusion

While the game was somewhat being pushed out as a triple-A game, it is actually a very bad game. Everything feels so barebones from start to finish and it’s clear that not a single concept or idea has been fully fleshed out. The game has a useless skill system, very boring gameplay, a short duration, and above all, the graphical quality of a game that is more than a decade old. This game could have been something nice and interesting, but it ends up being very bad in every possible department. This is one of those budget-bin games for when you are looking for something that could have been nice. In short, this is a poorly made stealth game, where the stealth portion is actually useless and the battles that you eventually have to engage in are even worse.

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Rating: 1.5/10 (2 votes cast)
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Rating: +1 (from 1 vote)
Werewolf: The Apocalypse – Earthblood - Review, 1.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings
Ibuki


Aspiring ninja.

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