Review by MStango

"How good does your game have to be before the prudes will stop hatin?"

I had my concerns about this game after Suda's last outing, which was a unfinished buddy comedy with issues worthy of a couch and Sigmund, but as you might gleam from the title this game handles things a fair bit better.

Graphics: 10
Colorful and Bouncy

Once again we have a game that uses comic book styling during gameplay and as per usual it works well with the over the top nonsense going on. The loading screens also deserve special mention, because they are all incredibly creative as is the map screen and dozens of other little flourishes that most game designers neglect.

I guess I have to talk about the sexy lady thing, because if I don't some one will burn a console on my lawn or something. Yes the main wears very little clothing and is highly sexualized. This is not new nor shocking and much like Bayonetta you‘ll likely not even notice it after the first few minuets.

Arguable licentiousness aside, this just may be the most bloodless zombie game I'm ever played. Considering the prevalence of the rotting buggers in media any fresh ideas are welcome and I have to admit rainbows pouring from neck stumps while hearts and stars fly from freshly freed limps is just exotic enough to immediately make the concept unique and frightening.

Music: 6
Upbeat with a pinch of pain

Pretty much all the songs are zombie themed or bubblegum pop, and while some of the music is quite good, the rest is, um, well, at least easily drowned out by the sputter of school yard delimbing. However the use of songs like Lollop and Mickey should be grounds for harsh words and possibly getting pasted with chainsaw lube. I wasn't exactly expecting German death metal and they are funny in context, but they are in the game way more than is tolerable. In a game like this having a system to collect and listen to the various songs does seem a completely useless, still the sound track does sell the mood and if your really enjoying the game it probably won't bother you.

Voice Acting: 9
Amazing Chemistry

With one exception all of the main characters are well delivered. The badies, extras and such range from darn good to meh, but even the worse are entertaining in their own way. There's so much funny on display that I might have said “It's unfortunate that the overwhelming majority of the dialog belongs to Juliet and Nick“, but their back and forth is some of the funniest stuff I've heard in a game not to mention they have this great chemistry that‘s evident in nearly every line. There are a few smaller issues like some of the one liners get repeated too much and some may find Juliet's grunts to be pain inducing, but the only thing really dragging this score down is Roslyn, her voice is grating which does at least fit her character, but you‘ll still want to hit her with a wreaking ball by endgame.

Gameplay: 9
Like a Classic without the Dodgy Controls

Combat is fun, the controls are solid, capable camera, blah, blah, blah, yes we've all played hack-n-slashers before. The reason to play here is how varied the game play is, Kill Bill style playable cut scenes, twisted reinterpretations of Atari classics, and combine harvester vehicle sections, even the very much spat upon quick time event is drip fed new life. They're easy to land and they are masterfully built into the games main mechanics with the hardies ones being completely optional.

But hey boys n girls this is a Suda game, so the real question is how are the boss battles?

Well smack the rotting cow and call your grandpa Bernice because these are best bloody boss battles since Team Ico started napping at work. Dodging swears and hippy mitosis is only the beginning, before you know it you'll be playing Simon with a zombie pimp in space! The game is overflowing with creativity and nearly every mechanic is a joy to use. Despite what I said above I would be doing this game a disservice to not mention that the core combat is easily the best I've played in years.

Writing: 9
This I like trying to dissect Monty Python

Remember when I said “after the first few minuets you'll stop noticing the sexual aspects of the visuals“? Well part of that is the stellar game play, but mostly it's the fact that you will have busted a gut by that point. I get that humor is subjective, but if your not laughing at woodblock painting special attacks it‘s time to turn in your special edition gamer turnip. It's absurd, but no where near as random as Suda's other works, everything makes sense and ties back together in the end.

As usually I don't do major spoilers, but I will say the over arcing plot is pretty basic with a twist you saw coming from Brussels and yet it works incredibly well. The traditional story being shown from this bizarre couples perspective actually reminds me of Tim Shaffer's early work. Makes me wonder what a game him and Suda made together would look like.

Truth is comedies are hard to dissect, but the long short of it is most of the jokes work and if nothing else I have to respect all the chances the game takes.

Outrage: N/A
Yes I'm doing this again

Thankfully it seems the righteous squad largely left this on alone, part of that might have been the hilarious feigned outrage directed at Tera Online…

though it was less “hilarious” when legitimate gaming publications tried to pretend it was “a thing” (my Game Informer subscription = canceled)

I really am tired of this, there is nothing in Lollop Chainsaw to warrant an M rating. Now some may argue that it has plenty of “harsh language” and “sexual humor”, but there is remarkably little blood, no nudity and the gore is goofy. When compared to things like South Park or haft the Adult Swim line up it's just sooo tame. At the end of the day it's just a quirky comedy with some surreal goings on to complement gaming's least threatening zombie apocalypse.

This is like so may other things, everyone knows why, every knows it's stupid, but it keeps happening anyway: This game is rated M because it sells itself on eroticism and the powers that be regard human sexuality (if not scarier) on the same level as serial murder. This is ridiculous, if there is never another act of human violence toward anther human society would march onward, likely better for it, but human existence would utterly terminate in a single generation without sex. It is irrational to the highest order to fear something which we need so desperately and that only a fool would describe as ugly.

(puts the soap box away)

Pros
Creative as all Get Out
Cuter then a mulcher full of kittens
Great Voice Acting
Fun and Varied Gameplay
Enjoyable Story
Riotously Funny

Cons
Some of the Sound Effects/One Liners get old
The Cindy Lauper looking Girl needs a time out, possibly involving a blast furnace
The Music has Problems

Conclusion: 8.6
This is Suda 51's Absurdist Masterpiece
I do think this is his best game to date and it's just so beautiful to see a concept like this not ruined by soccer moms or by so called gaming industry ‘Standards”. As per my tangent there is a place for erotic games, for many indie games it can be the main focus, but mainstream games can't get away with a truely erotic game so usually it's just window dressing. Here it's used mostly for laughs and in that regard it succeeds(just because sex is beautiful, doesn‘t mean it‘s not great joke fodder). Most of the irritants listed above are almost certainly intentional to one degree or another, but I feel the need to remind any creative types listening, intentionally irritating is still irritating.

Bottom line this is a great game, I highly recommend it, more over if it looks intriguing or you've enjoyed any of this director's previous game you owe it to your self to try this unique gem.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 06/18/12

Game Release: Lollipop Chainsaw (US, 06/12/12)


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