PAX West 2019 - Code Vein Preview

PAX West 2019 - Code Vein Preview

Many of you may already know about the newest title coming soon by Bandai Namco, Code Vein. This action RPG is set in a post-apocalyptic dystopian setting with a whole lot of vampire themes, including "gifts" from the consumption of blood. The game holds a few other supernatural abilities that players will have a blast with.

I played the newest demo and had a chat with Dmitryi Khlynin, Community Specialist, at PAX West. He took me on a first-hand tour of this dystopian vampiric world.

Let me be the first to admit:

I’ve been waiting for this game ever since they announced in 2017.

It lived up to everything I could have hoped for and more.



As I stated before, Code Vein takes place within a post-apocalyptic world. The world as we know it goes through total destruction.

After which, a secret society, known as “Vein,” has risen from the ashes. This organization is run by “Revenants,” who are immortal creatures that were once human but have taken on the properties of vampires.

After coming back from the brink of death, Revenants fight for survival by acquiring various gifts. The gifts are the powers in the game.

Unfortunately for our main characters, in this process they have lost all their memories. If your characters don’t give in to their vampiric desires, he/she will transform into a mindless ghoul known as the“Lost.”

So, collecting the blood of all the monsters is key to your survival. This will help you level up in the game as well.

As the main protagonist of the story, you set out with a number of allies. Many of which you meet later in the game as you try to recover your (and their) lost memories and discover the source of the world’s damaged state.

This was just the little that I gathered while playing. There is so much more to this game.


The characters and artwork in Code Vein are pretty incredible. While I was only privy to a short demo here at PAX West, this game has such an in-depth character build that I can’t wait to unravel it all. 

While you will obviously develop your own feelings towards certain allies, it's good to figure out which teammates are better suited for the task at hand. Each AI character comes with their own combat style and interesting story thread as well.

I found that while Io was better at handling the normal map monsters, Jack was better suited for a boss fight because of his aggressive actions. 

jack-rutherford-code-veinBleeding Cool

There's going to be more allies in the full release then there was in the demo, so players may need more than one run-through to really get a handle for them all.


Code Vein
 embraces a fairly well-paced (and yet, still, punishing) action RPG mechanics of Souls-like games. However, it's kind of unfair to compare it to just Dark Souls. There is so much more to this game than a character who feels like a walking refrigerator that just rolls around enemies for 30 hours.

Your character will explore all sorts of varied dungeons, mountainsides, and other areas while engaging in tough combat scenarios with a myriad of enemies. These melee-focused battles will test your mastery of different weapons and armor. Players will find a variety of weapons, from a basic sword to a glaive, hammer, naginata, and even a bayoneted rifle.

Your character’s survival is based on how efficient you are at attacking, dodging, and parrying during intense skirmishes against normal foes and massive bosses. I will say that I am terrible at parrying in most games but in Code Vein, it's imperative that you learn! You can get some cool quick-cut animations out of it too.

Code Vein actionGaming Bolt

The Revenants “Blood Veil” will play a central role in combat. The armor that you wear is as different as the weapons you use. This will help players unleash special abilities and grow in strength by sucking and stockpiling blood with a push of a button. This is the collection of souls that you could compare to Dark Souls

This is a two-lane road though. While you play under the influence of the Blood Veil, yes, the damage dealt and blood drawn from enemies are both greatly increased.

You will also carry the risk that the damage dealt to you is greatly increased. It will take practice and skill in mastering this otherwise risky but excellent offensive weapon.

I asked Dmitryi, “What advice would you give to beginners when going into Code Vein?”

He told me, “Learn to parry, rely on your allies, level up as often as possible, and take advantage of the Blood Veil. All of this will take time to master but it will help you in the long run.”


Code Vein has a few different loadouts that I was able to run through during the demo.

If you want to play as a power type, your Blood Code is called Dark Knight.

If "magic" is more your RPG playstyle, then the caster type, Harmonia, will be something you stick to.

Like playing as a "rogue"?

Well then look no further than Prometheus, the well-balanced light armor class.

Your passive and active gifts will help you play to the style that feels most comfortable to you. If you play as the Dark Knight, you’ll have to get Batman out of your head and think more like heavy weapons and powerful gifts like the “Triple Annihilator.”

Personally, I played with Harmonia, and I had a tougher time keeping the monsters at bay. However, I was able to buff myself to rip through monsters without too much worry. Also, there's a wonderful gift that I could give myself that gave me extra armor made of ice. 

The best part about Code Vein is that not everyone is going to play the exact same way. Bandai Namco was quick to decide that, just like their characters, everyone is different and has different playstyles. So, they made their game accordingly.

code vein blood code
Mana Journal


Code Vein has a lot of promise, and I can’t wait to see what the full game has to offer.

If you're looking for a fun, challenging, and a beautifully-crafted world and characters, then do yourself a favor and pick up Code Vein.

Don't forget there's also a multiplayer aspect. You and a friend can play together, but this will also up the toughness factor of the baddies. 

The game releases on September 27, 2019 on Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC. If you weren’t here at PAX West, don't worry. Bandai Namco is letting console players download the demo on September 3rd.

Did you get to play Code Vein at PAX West?

Tell us what you thought about it in the comment section below.

And while you're at it, don't forget to pick up a tub of our Code Vein-inspired G FUEL Type-O!



Top image via Bandai Namco

This article was written by John D. (AKA SomeBeardy2Love). John has been gaming for 30 years, has a bowtie tattoo, and watches nothing but Bob’s Burgers. He co-hosts a mostly weekly podcast and has a sponsored beard.