Five years on, and a Bloodborne PC release still only looks marginally more likely than it did on day one. But while From Software's best game remains locked down on Sony's hardware, developer Lilith Walther's crunchy 90s demake of the gore-soaked monster hunter looks like one hell of an alternative.
Okay, yes, it's called Bloodborne PSX, but no-one's going to be playing through this lo-fi hunter's dream on old PlayStations.
This Bloodborne PSX dev thread starts with loading and a proper loading screen! Now that we're hopping between levels I need to write a save and load system that passes data around for proper navigation 🧵 pic.twitter.com/MHhMC1ouUEJanuary 16, 2021
For the past few weeks, Walther's feed has been steadily granting a peek into a world where Bloodborne comes out in 1995, not 2015. It's a little blockier, the environments a little more barren, and it's all very work-in-progress so far. But the core of the game (that is, battering nightmare dogs with a rusty saw) is all there in its 420p glory.
Developed using the Unreal Engine, Walther's demake isn't strictly a snapshot of what Bloodborne would look like in the mid-90s. But it's convincing, with enough of the same graphical quirks and crunchy textures to pull at the nostalgia of anyone with a fondness for that era.
An impressive project in its own right, Bloodborne PSX also stands in conversation with a wider movement to bring back the wobbly vertices and fog-drenched environments of early 3D games—a movement that, through games like Paratopic and the Haunted PS1 label, recognises the visual style's ability to create powerfully unsettling spaces. It's also just fun to compare it to the stuff Fromsoftware was actually making in the 90s. No shade on King's Field, but we've come a long way since then.