Did we mention how many different ways there are to block? Nope, but there is normal blocking, normal blocking in the air, instant guard when you block at just the right time and you get a frame advantage, plus then there is the Barrier system. The Barrier system is a stronger block which negates chip damage, but it's on a meter and if that depletes then you're at a serious disadvantage as you'll enter the Danger Condition and take more damage for the rest of the round. It's useful for ending opponents' combos and pushing them back, and you can even totally disperse it to knock them flying, again at the cost of taking extra damage. Despite all this incredibly tech defence stuff it's still not as fun as the parry system in Street Fighter III. Oh and you can't block too much thanks to the Negative Penalty system that sees you taking double damage if the Guard Libra bar fills.
BlazBlue is so filled to the brim with all sorts of tech stuff that you really begin to feel tired if you think about them all for too long. But once you start getting into it the whole thing begins to open up and all of a sudden you're playing one of the best 2D fighters around today.
When that happens, and it eventually will, you've got various modes to play through. It's probably best to stick with Arcade mode for a while because you just get fight after fight without any of the total and utter Japanese-ness of the Story mode, and you'll unlock those match ending Astral Heat attacks for the characters. The Story mode is confusing and the scenes have more in common with a JPRG than anything else, which means lots of cut-outs of the characters blankly staring at you while they say things like "..." and even more nonsensical stuff. It's bizarre and it doesn't really add anything to the fighting; in fact it kind of detracts from the whole experience because you're still wondering what the hell is going on when you're busting out a juggle combo.
BlazBlue does, however, make a case for 2D sprites, much more so than King Of Fighters XII because the graphics are a lot smoother and they don't go all pixelated if you get too close to the screen. Also when in battle the characters talk to each other; a lot of it is just shouting but occasionally a reference pops in there and it makes the fights feel a bit more personal.
This whole fighting game revival has been instigated by Street Fighter IV. And while it's great to see many more fighters being released such as KOF XII and the recently announced XIII, Marvel Vs Capcom 3, Samurai Shodown Sen and of course BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger (and its sequel BlazBlue: Continuum Shift which is getting released on consoles in America and Japan in July) there is a limit to how many of them you can take. But really that's up to you to decide.