Nov 21, 2007
Looking to cure to those Trauma Center withdrawal shakes? Look no further than Trauma Center: New Blood. With heavy emphasis on ‘affairs,’ Lifesigns is the soap opera General Hospital to Trauma Center’s pulsating thriller ER. Where the latter pulled you from emergency to emergency with frightening efficiency, we find the staff of Seimei Medical University so gossip-hungry that it’s incredible any surgery gets done at all.
In truth, little medicine is practiced. With only a couple of operations per chapter, the surgery is far more muted than Trauma Center’s arcade-y, time-attack sensibility. Nurses hand you the correct tool and you simply follow the instructions. Sure, it looks more gory and realistic, but it plays terribly - a bizarro surgical Cooking Mama.
The meat of game lies in the corridors, where idle chit-chat and surprisingly raunchy flirting - the opening cinematic isn’t far off X-rated material - propel you through the day. Yes, it seems odd to prattle on about so-and-so’s mystery beau when a woman is coughing up blood in a bed right next to you, but this is all part of Lifesigns’ strange appeal.
The writing lacks flair and the point-and-clicking holds little interest, but there’s no denying the satisfying oddness to the proceedings. Hunting through the hospital for ingredients to make a baked potato may not make a great medical thriller, but neither is it morgue-dull. Our diagnosis? Cult hit.