BlazBlue: Continuum Shift
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Game Reviewed: BlazBlue: Continuum Shift
Publisher: Aksys Games
Developer: Arc System Works
Platform: Xbox 360 (also on PS3)
ESRB Rating: T
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BlazBlue: Continuum Shift is a one-of-a-kind fighting game with high definition, hand-drawn visuals and an expansive story. Continuum Shift is the second game in the BlazBlue series. The gameplay is distinct from other fighting games, such as Super Street Fighter 4 and Tekken 6, featuring a more versatile, albeit more complex, combat system that presents the player with a wide selection of options. It can be quite daunting to learn this complicated fighting system, but Continuum Shift has a Tutorial mode and a Beginner mode to help new players learn quickly and settle into the game. Continuum Shift’s character cast of 14 seems dwarfed compared to other fighting games such as Tekken 6’s cast of 40 and Super Street Fighter 4’s cast of 35, but the characters in BlazBlue are so starkly different from one another that the small cast is an excellent feature among so many games that just have repeats or near-copies of other characters.
BlazBlue: Continuum Shift takes place shortly after the events of the first game, BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger. The game is set in Kagutsuchi, a city under the governance of the Novus Orbis Librarium, which is an upper-class organization of Armagus wielders. Armagus is a combination of magic and technology that can only be used by a limited number of people. The game’s central character, Ragna the Bloodedge, possesses a form of Armagus known as the “Azure Grimoire,” or the BlazBlue. Ragna seeks to destroy the Novus Orbis Librarium and the Novus Orbis Librarium wants to capture Ragna to obtain the BlazBlue. The 13 other characters in the game have stories and goals of their own either related to the main storyline or something completely off-beat or humorous.
What Parents Need to Know
Since this is a fighting game, the gameplay itself is defined by violence. Some characters fight with just their hands while others fight with swords, guns, magic, and claws. There is no blood during gameplay, but one cut-scene in the Story mode shows a bloodied character.
There is an extensive use of bad language in this game. The following words and phrases are used at least twice: hell, damn, a**, a**hole, s**t, d**k, piss, bas***d, b***h, p***y, and “godd****t.” This language is used in the Story and Arcade modes of the game. One character, Hazama, also says questionable things like “tear her into bloody strips” and “earn you a knife in the gut.”
Like many other fighting games, some of the female characters wear revealing outfits. One character, Litchi-Faye-Ling, shows a lot of cleavage in a dress. This prompts one of the female characters, Taokaka, to refer to her as “boobie lady” and make comments such as “everything but your boobies is sagging.” Litchi’s breasts also bounce during gameplay, even while standing still. Taokaka is another character that wears a revealing outfit. She is a cat-person with a human body and she wears a very short skirt. In cut-scenes during the Story mode of the game, she will sometimes be in a position with her leg up in the air, completely exposing her underwear each time. Her underwear can sometimes be seen during normal gameplay as well, but usually for less than a second. In the Gallery mode, there are pictures of female characters in provocative positions. One of the cut-scenes at the end of the Arcade mode shows a completely naked girl, but none of her extremities are revealed. There are also references to puberty and perverts in the Story mode for Bang Shishigami.
In the game there is a force known as “Armagus,” which is a combination of magic and technology. Two characters also say they release something called Restriction 666, which deploys a magical protective force field. One character is a vampire, but she never eats, kills, or sucks the blood out of anyone. A device known as the Cauldron is said to “gather souls.” There is also mention of “Susano’o” and “Amaterasu” multiple times in the game, which are the names of the Shinto god of the sea and destruction and the goddess of the sun respectively. They are not, however, used in the context of the Shinto religion in this game. There are also some other questionable phrases such as “sword of the god-slayer.”
There are few T rated games that I have played that have this much content for parents to consider. The game has truly unique visuals and an awesome soundtrack, but the extensive amount of questionable content is enough, in my opinion, to recommend that parents keep this fighter out of younger hands.