Lollipop Chainsaw is a game that has SUDA51?s creative stamp all over it. If you?ve ever played, enjoyed and become immensely hooked on the crazy blood-splattering nature of No More Heroes, then this is a game that will feel familiar the second you pick up the controller.
There?s just one crucial difference - Lollipop Chainsaw
is even more bonkers than Travis Touchdown?s assassin adventures. You play as a scantily-clad cheerleader called Juliet Starling, who has been forced to rescue the faculty when the place becomes overrun with rock and roll-influenced zombies.
She accomplishes this using sweet chainsaw justice, with every move she makes highlighted on screen with streams of pink hearts, sparkles and confetti. Dark and dingy school corridors get redecorated with gallons of blood and dismembered body parts, with the comic book presentation and rocking soundtrack bringing a real grindhouse movie feel to the proceedings. Put simply, the design is classic Grasshopper Manufacture.
Juliet has basic melee attacks which are executed in true cheerleader fashion, with combos involving kick flicks and pom-pom pushes, but if you mash the heavy attack button she cracks out the chainsaw and starts to really bring the thunder. Individual limbs and body parts can be sawn off, with enemies limping and crawling on the floor to reach you if their legs happen to be disposed of.
Points and awards are handed out for killing enemies in fresh and inspiring ways, however. It?ll do you no good to just run in and spam a few buttons for a simple combo. Jump and attack for a mid-air kick, before using the chainsaw to take out the legs and then press the close-up ?stab? button to slam your weapon on the ground and through the enemy?s torso. That?s an example of how elegant you can make your kills... erm, I?m not mental. Honest.
The game will commend you on performing special acts during combat too. I was able to decapitate three zombies with one swing of the chainsaw, which resulted in a pause in action, massive text congratulating me on my skill and a huge fanfare. It?s clear that this game is bent on ensuring you have as much fun as possible.
One stage I played involved a ?simple? dash through the schoolrooms and corridors, trying to rescue fellow students from the undead chaos. Along the way, you?ll be challenged with mini-missions that ask you to kill a group of zombies before they munch on an innocent human.
These segments lead to a classroom bout with Mr. Fitzgibbon, a zombified teacher who is constantly giving Juliet lip (?You?re getting a D, bitch!?). Your kills charge up a special meter which can be used to send Juliet into an invincible, super-powerful rage for a limited time, so with Fitzgibbon being a bit of a long-reaching monkey I made full use of that feature.
The action is peppered with some strange dialogue provided by Juliet?s boyfriend - who just so happens to be a disembodied head swinging on a chain by her hips. As you do. There?s some famous talent here in the voicework, that I can?t quite put my finger on (and Grasshopper isn?t talking), so be prepared for some big names to be present in the credits list.
SUDA51 has previously said Lollipop Chainsaw
will use sound in a creative way. He wasn?t kidding. I played a boss fight against an undead clown-styled punk who used a microphone and an amplifier to scream physical obscenities at Juliet. To reach the dude, you have to be able to deftly dodge the massive ?FUCKING BITCH? and ?COCKSUCKER? letters that shoot towards you with electrifying force - that is, if you can avoid laughing at the sheer hilarity of it all.
Later, you have to take this goon down from atop a massive amplifier skyscraper, by approaching it and smashing it from the ground with your chainsaw. When this happens, you have to use the left stick to guide your weapon across the amp so that you slice it right open. You?ll need to exhaust the boss and perform the same visceral chainsaw-guiding motion on his zombified body no less than three times to truly kill him, making the end sequence quite a gruesome mess of blood and gore.
It?s largely gameplay ground that we?ve covered before, but Lollipop Chainsaw
is incredibly quirky and commands your interest with the refined combat and frankly absurd set pieces that you?re asked to get involved in. The game?s looking like a hilarious sendup of teenage flicks and horror films, and given SUDA51?s clear affection for rock and roll, it seems that the affectionate anti-rock vibe presented here makes for one hell of a meta-concept.
Keep a close eye on this, it?s bound to get even crazier from here.