Top Critic Average
There's lots to appreciate about Bladestorm: Nightmare, with only its drawn-out gameplay and technical issues holding it back. Until those are worked out, perhaps this series is destined to remain with simply cult appeal.
You get loads of content in the game, and in following the tradition of recent Koei Tecmo games there is loads of character customisation options. Bladestorm has a unique flavour, and it's one that takes a while to really settle in. But, once you get into its rhythm it has just the right mix of history and fantasy elements so that it does respect to one of the most fascinating periods of historical conflict, while letting you have some fun with it too.
Bladestorm: Nightmare offers a fun romp across expansive battlefields, with solid if unspectacular combat and character progression mechanics. The Hundred Years' War campaign doesn't know how seriously to take itself, but the excellent, over-the-top Nightmare campaign more than makes up for this. Recommended if you're in the market for something quirky and haven't experienced the original game.
As a remaster for new consoles, there was only so much Omega Force could do in trying to make Bladestorm relevant once more without having to rebuild the game from scratch. What new feature Nightmare has to offer are intuitive and gel perfectly with Bladestorm's existing mechanics. The demonic campaign is admittedly underwhelming in parts yet gives Bladestorm fans another series of unique battles to play through. If undecided, try the demo – it even extends the option to carry your progress into the main game.
Bladestorm: Nightmare can appeal to both Warriors fans and those who don't even get into Tecmo Koei's flagship series. Its brilliance exists in those moments of storming enormous strongholds with an army of 100-strong at your back, ready to slice and dice through wave after wave of enemies.
Bladestorm: Nightmare's vast battlefields only become truly welcoming once you're embedded deep within its progression system, but those who are on the lookout for a bit of tactical action will definitely want to test their mettle as a mercenary all the same. While combat's never spectacular, and the game isn't quite as strategic as it perhaps promises to be at first glance, it's still easy to get lost in this historical hack-'em-up's rewarding gameplay loop.
Bladestorm: Nightmare is thoroughly enjoyable throughout. From its awful voices to its crazy fantasy mode about fighting dragons, or its more down to earth medieval tale, the game really tries to make up for any shortcomings the original release had. The updated visuals are very good, even with its downfalls, and the gameplay, once it's been deciphered, is fun. All in all, it's a great title for fans of the Warriors franchises, but be prepared for the differences and enjoy the new experience. Here is hoping for a sequel!
I walked away from Bladestorm surprised and also eager to jump back into. If the gameplay doesn't dig its hooks into you after a few hours, you might find little reason to keep going. Players that get sucked in though will already be thinking of their next plan of attack.
Bladestorm: Nightmare is a game with a limited audience. RTS fans will find it too simplistic, and Warriors fans will find the pace to be too slow. It doesn't hit the correct buttons to competently fill either role. The Nightmare-exclusive additions are almost all positive and well-implemented, but they're a thin coat of paint on an increasingly dated product. The game lacks any punch, and it has too many problems for its strengths to shine through. If you're desperate for a RTS on consoles or were a fan of the original, then give this a shot, but most fans will get more enjoyment out of playing as Joan of Arc in Warriors Orochi 3.
While you will enjoy playing Bladestorm, it ultimately ends up being an previously released game that's getting a new-gen "fresh coat of paint" release with a limited update that, while not being a nightmare, is definitely not a dream.
The best feature of Bladestorm: Nightmare is the fantasy campaign about Joan of Arc and her monster army, showcasing the fun to be had with changing history, while at the same time supplying a ton of content to get through, but sadly, this unique title from Omega Force doesn't effectively blend action and strategy together, leaving us with mindless action that can't offer the high-octane fun of Dynasty Warriors nor the challenge of a tactical battle.
Even had Bladestorm: Nightmare came out several years ago on PS3 I don't think I would have enjoyed it much. But, for those who like Dynasty Warrior-esque games and want more unit control and strategy, Bladestorm is worth checking out.
More than anything else, from a technical standpoint Bladestorm: Nightmare is a disappointingly subpar port of what is effectively a last-gen console game. With the tremendous amount of grunt available to them, the developer should have produced the definitive version of the game, instead of the poorest which really, is a position that no PC gamer should ever find themselves in.
While at its core there is a great idea, Bladestorm: Nightmare has too much going on both during battle and off the field. The game tries so hard to juggle story, character levelling up, massive battles, and strategy that in the end, it doesn't do anything particularly well.
The game doesn't even fulfill the bare minimum requirements to be considered a decent port. If you want to spend on your money a game with large scale combat during some obscure historical warring era then stick with Dynasty Warriors instead.
Bladestorm Nightmare is an anachronism. It tries to do a lot of things, but does nothing terribly well. The opportunity porting the game offered was pretty much squandered, as it drags most of the original games shortcomings up with it. It's not a game for the uninitiated and it's probably better left as the cult title it always was.
That is the problem with Bladestorm: Nightmare – it loses its appeal too quickly. Between the monotonous battles, boring story, and ugly visuals, there isn't much there to hold someone's attention. If you want to have some fun with it, rent it for a day or so. After that, Nightmare is pretty much worthless.
Rampaging through the French countryside is entertaining enough for a quick rental. Otherwise, it doesn't have much else going for it and squanders its fantastical setup with a lackluster plot, limited online options, restricted strategic choices, and neutered dragons.
Bladestorm: Nightmare is almost impossible to recommend to anyone but the most die-hard fans of musou games. While the game's story and setting does have some potential, it takes a backseat to the action and is left to a few throwaway cutscenes before battles. Gameplay becomes tedious far too early, and when combined with a combat system that requires little thought, it makes for a boring experience. When you throw all these monotonous elements into a game that also isn't very easy on the eye, then you get an example of a bad videogame. If you are a huge fan of these types of videogames then maybe you'll find something to enjoy, but anyone else should stay very far away.
Bladestorm: Nightmare is a game that suffers from its fundamentals. The act of moving your troops around the battlefield, and engaging in combat, is too far removed from the player's input – leading to frustration rather than gratification. Adding dragons to the mix doesn't shake up the formula, and highlights that not all games can act as frameworks for other concepts.
It's a half-hearted attempt at bringing the series into the current generation, and is only barely recommended for the absolute die-hard fans of the original. This is a real shame and even if you can get past the bare-bones approach to remastering that Omega Force have taken, you probably won't get past all the bugs.
Bladestorm Nightmare is neither interesting to play nor good looking in any way, shape, or form. There are books that offer more visceral medieval combat than this. Seek those out and do anything else with your PS4.