Friday, March 27, 2015

The Nightly Hunt Journal: Entry #1

As the intensity and craziness of playing the first couple of days dies down, I can finally find time to post my first Nightly Hunt Journal entry, a record of my thoughts and speculation on the story and lore as I'm playing Bloodborne. This entry is coming a bit later than the others will, but I think it made sense for me to just dive in and get a feel of the world before I started posting impressions/speculation. The following will cover the beginning of the game.

Entry #1 

"Oh yes, pale blood...heh. Well, you've come to the right place, Yharnam is the home of blood ministration. You need only to unravel its mystery. But where's an outsider like yourself to begin? Easy, with a bit of Yharnam blood of your own. But first, you need a contract. Good, all signed and sealed. Now, let's begin the transfusion. Oh don't you worry. Whatever happens, you may think it all a mere bad dream." (Laughs)

I've seen this dialogue in plenty of pre-release content, but as this is the opening cutscene of the game, this is likely to be as much directly told to us as we are going to get before being thrown into the world. From this, I get that Pale Blood will be a big deal, and that things are going to get crazy. The transfusion is not pale blood, but it is something we are seeking, and to start we need some Yharnam blood. Then, the opening shows us a wolf beast coming at us (the intentions are unclear to me, it doesn't seem aggressive or friendly) and the messengers choose us to be a hunter. I can't be certain if these events are symbolic in a dream or if this truly happened after passing out from the transfusion. My feeling is that it is symbolic of the messengers intervening and keeping the wolf beast, representing the Scourge, from us, and choosing us as a hunter. To be honest, I'm not sure if it ultimately matters either way.

From all of this I have plenty of questions, but there is one question here that sticks out to me:

Why are we seeking Pale Blood? We are coming into the narrative media res, with our previous actions being unclear and our motivations remaining a mystery. This is intentional (to what end I am still uncertain), but our starting apparel provides some clues: 

Black Hood 

Hood worn upon awakening to the nightmare
of blood and beasts.

Perhaps its wearer had to stay out of sight,
and travel by cover of darkness.

Without memory, who will ever know?

Foreign Garb In-Game Description

Clothing worn upon awakening to the nightmare
of blood and beasts.

Not typical clothing of Yharnam, perhaps it is of
foreign origin, It is said, after all, the traveler
came to Yharnam from afar.

Without memory, who will ever know?

Sullied Bandage In-Game Description

Bandage worn upon awakening to the nightmare
of blood and beasts. Terribly worn and unsanitary.

A faint memory recalls blood ministration,
involving the transfusion of unknown blood.
Not long after, the nightmare began.

*Item descriptions borrowed here from Bloodborne-wiki.com

I will not make a habit of this, but I must express a tiny pet peeve. I don't particularly like questions in item descriptions. Personally, I like the process of figuring out what is unknown. Sign posting it this way feels like mystery is being forced, and I think mystery works best when it is the void between information, not information itself. Either way, there is purposefully mystery as to your origin. You seem to be foreign, and it seems like you were escaping soemthing based upon the clothing descriptions. Interestingly, it also seems that a lot of time has passed since the transfusion occurred, because your bandage is "terribly worn" even though you only received the transfusion in the scene before.

Then there is the phrase repeated in each description, explaining that this is what you were wearing when "awakening to the nightmare of blood and beasts" after "the transfusion of unknown blood". First of all, shame on you for getting transfused with some shady blood. Secondly, this line, combined with the Blood Minister saying, "whatever happens, you may think it all a mere bad dream" really calls into question if what will follow is even actually happening. This question will only get more complicated, and it will do so very quickly. 

I love the story and lore of these games, but I never claimed to be good at them. I died to the wolf beast inhabiting the extremely messy and seemingly long deserted clinic, and I think that is canon order of events. This then brings us to the Hunter's Dream (previously called the Dream Refuge pre-release), which I will cover in The Nightly Hunt Journal Entry #2.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks for reading! Entry #2 should be out in the next day or two!

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  3. Just found this and wanted to show my appreciation. It is an interesting look on the lore. I just started playing have a slightly different take on the intro sequence, but I am not sure if you want it posted here. Anyway, thank you for the read.