Blue Estate, a rail shooter for B-movie fans (PS4 review)

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I love a good bit of nostalgia when it comes to rail shooters. So what exactly is Blue Estate? Well, to put it simply, it’s a grungy, adult theme rail shooter. If you’ve ever been to an arcade, then you know what a rail shooter is. Think House of the Dead or Time Crisis. You, as the player, have no control of movement, but you are able to aim via Sixaxis controller in this particular title. Fair warning, this game is absolutely not for children or those offended by any of the following:

  • Racial Slur
  • Sexism
  • Nudity
  • Cursing
  • Gratuitous violence
  • Bloody explosions
  • Italians

Story

We begin with Tony Luciano, an Italian mobster living the American criminal dream in Los Angeles. When his days of sunbathing and nude parties are threatened, his first reaction is to shoot everything in sight. Each level of the game will take you to a new, unique location, with a seemingly endless supply of gangsters to annihilate. We’re followed by a much more uptight, professional character, who does somewhat hand over the story quite well. Each level’s transition is illustrated in comic book fashion, telling the tale of Blue Estate. Did I mention a seemingly immortal horse is involved?

Gameplay

For those of us who enjoy rail shooter arcade games, Blue Estate will give you just what asked for. Blue Estate is simply a shoot ’em up with powerups, a few different weapons, interactive terrain such as exploding barrels and traps for your enemies, as well as the slo-mo pop ups which will give you ample time for quick and decisive genocide. Enemies will pour from all directions and usually have about 5-6 different models depending on level. Boss fights won’t exactly make you sweat, but some terrain interaction mechanics are necessary to beat them.

Co-op is something that I believe all rail shooters really need, although Blue Estate’s use of the Sixaxis touchpad is somewhat questionable. Quick-time events will have you swiping the touchpad in different directions with not a moment to spare, creating situations where you end up having to punch a friend who keeps taking every damn health pack due to quick reflexes.

Visuals/Graphics

It’s refreshing to see a rail shooter with this much detail. Blue Estate is beautiful, in the ugliest ways. By that, I mean that while it looks great on the PS4, the settings of these levels really don’t show any signs of pushing the PS4’s graphic capabilities. Some improvements such as additional character models and dynamic environments would have really pushed this game past its current standing.

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Audio

Both the dialogue and atmosphere of Blue Estate are what truly bring it all together. While you may be shooting hordes of mindless thugs, your character or the narrator will begin ranting about some personal issues involving either loose women or their interpretation of the events about to unfold. I understand that it’s trying to be funny, but it does become excessive at times, and begins distracting from actual content. I found that playing this game at night is simply impossible without headphones as the sound of gunfire is actually much higher than the pre-set settings for dialogue.

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Final Reaction

If you’re looking for a new game to play for $20 with a friend who also enjoys old school arcade style gaming and aren’t offended by the pre-mentioned content, you’ll have a blast with Blue Estate. What it doesn’t make up for in story, visuals, or content it does provide respite from first person shooters, which have toned down reality for its majority twelve to thirteen year old audience.

Rating: 3/5 Atoms

NR 3 Atoms - C

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Adam "Kharakov" Kharatian
Adam "Kharakov" Kharatian 397 posts

Adam "kharakov" Kharat is part nerd, part geek, and full awesome. With deadly writing skills and the sleeping habits of a jackrabbit, late night gaming sessions are all but mandatory.