NPR: Going Mad, Together: Finding Quarantine Connections In 'Bloodborne'


Well-known member
Dec 11, 2018
Now, huddled at home, keeping my social distance, I've returned to Bloodborne. A friend suggested I try it again — and, well, I guess I missed those monstrous scamps. I enter their world strapped to an operating table, injected with strange blood, equipped only with my wits and a charge to hunt beasts. A werewolf on all fours greets me as I stumble through the clinic and I'm delighted to see the familiar adversary. But I'm out of practice: It kills me — sending me to a surreal home base which offers respite and a burgeoning arsenal. I teleport back to the streets of Yarnham (think Victorian London, with far more serrated weapons) and eagerly commence my bloody work once more.

Here my grotesque escapism fully begins to resonate with reality. I notice that Yarnham's sane survivors have taken refuge behind closed doors — and while Bloodborne has nearly no exposition, I piece together a grim backstory from brief cinematics, obtuse notes, and snatches of dialogue. I knock on windows and the residents pity me, curse me, or laugh derisively at my plight to be out on the night of a hunt — a night that never seems to end. These people are in quarantine, and I'm the closest thing Yarnham has to a first responder.


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