The newly rebooted version of Vampire: The Masquerade Bloodlines 2 will no longer be an immersive simulation game
The newly rebooted version of Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 in the style of The Chinese Room will not present itself as an immersive simulati...
The newly rebooted version of Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 in the style of The Chinese Room will not present itself as an immersive simulation game as announced in the version developed by Hardsuit Labs.
The past few years have not been good times for Vampire: The Masquerade fans. Not only did Bloodhunt fail to make a significant impact in the realm of battle royale games, but the long-awaited sequel to the cult classic Bloodlines was stuck in development hell for years, hindered by allegations of sexual misconduct against one of the writers, Chris Avellone, and other circumstances. This eventually led to the original developers of the game, Hardsuit Labs, being replaced by The Chinese Room—a change that was only announced earlier this month.
As great as it is that we could finally release Bloodlines 2 after all these years, it seems that The Chinese Room's version of the successor deviates significantly from both the original game and what Hardsuit Labs had prepared. During a conversation with TheGamer at PAX West, Bloodlines 2 Game Director Alex Skidmore revealed that the rebooted version of the game will not be an immersive simulation game like the original, nor will it be like the successor version that was planned by Hardsuit Labs.
After being asked whether The Chinese Room considers the successor in terms of its immersive simulation properties, Skidmore responded, "I'm not sure if we would use the term 'immersive simulation game'" before giving examples of how the game's combat system can be approached in various ways and discussing how the role-playing sections of Bloodlines 2 can lead to different player experiences.
Although Skidmore's statements indicate that Bloodlines 2 offers different approaches to combat and role-playing mechanics, it sounds more like a role-playing game than an immersive simulation game. This is further supported by Skidmore's statement that Bloodlines 2 provides The Chinese Room with the opportunity to "plant our flag in the role-playing space" during the same interview with TheGamer.
This is an interesting direction for the successor, as the original game was one of the most popular immersive simulation games of all time, which Hardsuit Labs seemingly tried to follow. Numerous previews of the original version of Bloodlines 2, such as the one from Eurogamer in 2019 and another from PCGamesN in the same year, confirm that an attempt was made to create an immersive simulation game like the original. This new approach for Bloodlines 2 is not necessarily bad, but it suggests that it will be a very different game than what Hardsuit Labs had planned.