Gungrave Gore

Gungrave for the Playstation 2 was one of the first games I reviewed in Gamereactor Magazine along with Need for Speed: Underground and Colin McRae Rally 3. I don’t remember much about it except that it involved shooting, all the time, and that the main character was carrying around the single largest rifle in gaming history.

Gungrave Gore
Grave is like a Dollar Store version of Dante from Devil May Cry.

Gungrave Gore, or GORE (Gunslinger of Resurrection) is the direct sequel to the 2002 adventure and in this game we are thrown into the action that takes place before the Playstation original and the fate of the world is at stake because the evil organization Scum (hahaha!) has unleashed the manically deadly drug Seed, which eats the soul of whoever snorts the shit. Drugs are bad. Keeping his soul is good and it now requires Grave to kill all members of Scum to erase the drug Seed forever. And this is done by shooting, constantly. Everything must be shot. And it will go quickly. The story is just as laughable here as the characters are, and while there are parts of the gore that feel nostalgically retro in the right way, it’s all just a clear testament to how much has happened in the action genre over the past 20 years. I recently played Horizion: Forbidden West and am currently playing God of War: Ragnarok and stepping from those titles straight into Gore feels a bit like going in a time machine to 2002.

In terms of game mechanics, Gungrave Gore is next to lousy. It’s rarely about aiming, or playing with any kind of precision, but rather mostly about clicking the buttons on the Dualsense controller and then watching how the semi-automated Grave shoots all 32 enemies that are circling around like crazy chickens on the screen, at the same time. Developers Iggymob write in the press release for the game that it’s all about “kicking ass” and no nonsense about defensive playing or seeking cover behind things, and that’s how it works. In the role of Grave, I never need to back up, move, avoid enemy attacks or care about anything except clicking the same button, all the time. For 12 hours.

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Gungrave Gore
Stupid, ugly and monotonous. Whatever you do – don’t spend 599 kroner on this.

The environments in Gore are really poorly designed and, just like in the case of the game mechanics, they feel like leftovers from 2002, when we simply had much lower requirements for this type of game and then a rather shameless Devil May Cry plagiarism that Gungrave passed off as ” alright”. Today? Not so much. Especially not after playing through the track in Gungrave Gore where Grave is hurtling around on a runaway train, having to jump over barriers and tree branches on the side of the tracks, while shooting all 2000 onrushing, deathly stupid enemy soldiers that spawn out of thin air. This is the worst gaming moment of the year. The worst designed course in all of 2022 and speaks volumes for how old, ugly, monotonously bland and above all dull this game really is.

Gungrave Gore
Gore is one of the worst games of the year, unfortunately.

There’s certainly value in dialing back the tape, trimming away all the novelties and just focusing on heavy, frantic third-person action at a furious pace, but it needs to be done much better than this. Gungrave Gore costs 599 kroner for the Playstation 5 and it must in every conceivable way be regarded as a belated April Fool’s joke. Had this been released for Android for nine bucks, it would have felt just right.

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