Titan Comics has published a graphic novel collection titled Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2 available from numerous online retailers and high street book stores. Can the second set of four comic book issues collected together in Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2 deliver what it sets out to by producing a continuation of the graphic novel sequel to the smash hit Bloodborne videogame?

Bloodborne is a third-person action horror RPG developed by FromSoftware and Hidetaka Miyazaki; released in March 2015 followed by an expansion titled The Old Hunters that are both available exclusively on PS4. Bloodborne received worldwide acclaim from gamers and critics alike, living up to the anticipation in the process; especially given the director Hidetaka Miyazaki had previously directed such appreciated games as Demon’s Souls and Dark Souls. Bloodborne earned many awards including Game Design, Original Action Game and Original Dramatic Score in a New IP from the 12th British Academy Games Awards; Game of the Year, PlayStation Game of the Year, Best Visual Design and Studio of the Year at the Edge Awards 2015; and Best Original Game and PlayStation Game of the Year from Golden Joystick Awards 2015. Bloodborne proved extremely successful for FromSoftware, Hidetaka Miyazaki and publisher Sony Interactive Entertainment as it sold one million worldwide within a month and had sold two million worldwide in half a year.

Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2 graphic novel collection is in extremely experienced hands as it is written by Ales Kot; a writer, director and producer of films, television, videogames and comics such as Change, Material, The Surface, Wild Children, Wolf and Zero. Ales Kot’s writing is complimented by artwork from Piotr Kowalski; a dedicated comic book artist with a dark, foreboding style including graphic novels such as Dark Souls, Marvel Knights: Hulk, Robocop, Wolfenstein and more besides. Meanwhile, colour art is by Brad Simpson that provides colour art for Marvel Comics such as Deadpool, The Amazing Spider-Man and Vengeance in addition to 30 Days of Night and The Witcher, while lettering is by Aditya Bidikar having been a letterer for such graphic novels as Empire of Blood, Every City is a Story, Grant Morrison’s 18 Days and Yellow Submarine.

The story places emphasis on a doctor named Alfredius that attempts to heal people throughout the lands through the use of science and medicine, while investigating what is happening in Yharnam in contrast to a Priest who grows gradually more concerned about Yharnam’s Healing Church.

The quality of writing is as impressive as the first volume due to the clever change of pace and switching the lead characters for a different core cast of characters, while simultaneously focusing on the difference in approach to what is occurring in Yharnam from the perspective of science and religion through the creative use of diary entries from the scientist and Priest in between as equally intriguing dialogue. The Healing Thirst only occasionally ventures into the spectrum of action and hunting that had such a huge presence in the first volume; therefore creating a second volume that is most certainly not more of the same, but rather an entirely standalone chapter that is as exciting as the first volume as the reader becomes more involved in supporting certain characters.

Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2’s presentation is as immense in comparison to the first volume of the Bloodborne graphic novel. The front cover artwork provides an immediate change of pace in rather violent imagery as people defeat a monster that is sizably much larger than the people watching on. Back cover artwork features a quite disturbing gothic styled environment with blood lining the ground as multiple figures stand either side of the room; ominously lit by candlelight, alongside a very interesting synopsis of the story. Piotr Kowalski’s art, colour art by Brad Simpson, alongside lettering by Aditya Bidikar collectively perfectly compliments Ales Kot’s writing as it did in the first volume, but remarkably shifts pace in tandem with the story and dialogue of the second volume. The artwork seemingly moves indoors for the vast majority of environments in comparison to the extent of exterior environments within the first volume; therefore providing a far more personal touch to the immediate surroundings of the main characters, alongside showcasing the fear of walking outside for Yharnam’s residents.

Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2’s value originates from Bloodborne fans wanting to see a continuation to the story of the first volume following on from the videogame, alongside cover art representing each of the four individual issues, a cover art gallery mostly focusing on alternative cover art of each issue, cover sketches and a further look at the art process via some character sketches within the 112 pages.

Fans of Bloodborne should also look at other Bloodborne graphic novels from Titan Comics including Bloodborne: The Death of Sleep – Volume 1 at https://titan-comics.com/c/1241-bloodborne-the-death-of-sleep/ , Bloodborne: A Song of Crows – Volume 3 at https://titan-comics.com/c/1415-bloodborne-a-song-of-crows/ and Bloodborne: The Veil Torn Asunder – Volume 4 at https://titan-comics.com/c/1508-bloodborne-the-veil-torn-asunder/

Analysis
• Title: Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2 Graphic Novel Collection
• Writer: Ales Kot
• Art: Piotr Kowalski (Art), Brad Simpson (Colour Art) and Aditya Bidikar (Lettering)
• Publisher: Titan Comics
• Length: 112 pages
• Cover: Paperback

Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2 graphic novel collection can be purchased in the UK from Amazon at https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bloodborne-Healing-Thirst-Ales-Kot/dp/1785869531/ and digitally at ComiXology at https://www.comixology.co.uk/Bloodborne-Vol-2-The-Healing-Thirst/digital-comic/727483

Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2 graphic novel collection can be purchased in America and Canada from Amazon at https://www.amazon.com/BLOODBORNE-HEALING-THIRST-Ales-Kot/dp/1785869531/ and digitally at ComiXology at https://www.comixology.com/Bloodborne-Vol-2-The-Healing-Thirst/digital-comic/727483

You can also find Titan Comics’ official website including a back catalogue of captivating comics and graphic novels at https://titan-comics.com/ and product details regarding Bloodborne: The Healing Thirst – Volume 2 graphic novel collection at https://titan-comics.com/c/1378-bloodborne-the-healing-thirst/

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