Published July 30, 2013
A new game allows you to put your face directly into some vampire-slaying action.
Square Enix’s new title “Bloodmasque” for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch is an action RPG from the company behind the massively popular “Final Fantasy” series. Set in an alternative 19th century Paris, the player -- as a vampire-human hybrid -- teams up with others of his ilk to slay hoards of vampires and explore different areas on a quest to repel a blood-sucking takeover.
The unique hook of the title consists in the ability to make the protagonist look exactly like the one playing the game. This is done, at the start of the game, by taking three photographs in different emotional states: casual, happy and angry.
These photos are then directly grafted onto the 3D model of the lead character, before choosing a hairstyle and a name and setting off on the adventure.
“Players take their own photographs and create their character’s face in 3D, literally bringing them into the game,” producer Ryutaro Ichimura told FoxNews.com.
Although not the first game to use photographs to make a character resemble the player, "Bloodmasque" ups the ante: It doesn’t just use the photographs as a basis for player design, but actually moves the entire photo onto the character, warts and all.
Depending on how well one takes the pictures, the results range from downright silly to eerily accurate. However, what is refreshing about “Bloodmasque” is that the game does not base itself on the photo technology alone, but tacks it on to an already plump action role-playing game as a way of getting the player even more immersed.
The game can take approximately 20 hours to finish, and with a delightfully unique Parisian world to explore, “Bloodmasque” is by no means a one-trick-pony. Although the combat is a bit simplistic, and the characters two-dimensional, the game comes with solid graphics, an excellent soundtrack, and gameplay that is surprisingly easy to get sucked into. This isn’t going to be on anyone’s Game of the Year list, but it’s definitely entertaining enough to see you through a few bus rides.
The $6.99 price tag in the App Store might put off a lot of gamers, especially as this doesn’t include the optional in-game purchases offered to the player. However, “Bloodmasque” has a lot of unique aspects beyond the photo technology, and fans of the genre may want to take a look -- even if it's just so they can show friends their visage slaying demons.
Bloodmasque is available now for iOS, priced at $6.99.