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Review

Lollipop Chainsaw Review (PS3, Xbox 360)

My girl lollipop.

‘Hey perv, don’t be looking up my skirt!’ admonishes Juliette to a crawling, bleeding zombie whilst doing a back flip and giving me the best view of her panties possible without sitting on my face. Surely the most ‘arcade’ game to hit consoles in years, Lollipop Chainsaw throws realism out of the window and explodes onto the screen in a riot of  rainbows, zombies and collectible gold coins.

Enemies and objects vanish when destroyed in a puff of sparkles, characters spout ‘amusing’ one liners and the way forward is subtly signposted with gigantic bouncing yellow arrows. Transport the game back to the 1990′s, slap it in to a SEGA arcade cabinet and no one would bat an eyelid.

A bizarre combination of Buffy The Vampire Slayer, My Little Pony and a third person beat ‘em up, the game finds perky cheerleader Juliette in the centre of the zombie apocalypse when a dimensional tear pours evil gas over her high school, a situation I’m sure you’re all familiar with.

Armed only with her trusty chainsaw and pom poms Juliette goes in search of her beloved boyfriend Nick Carlyle, finds him, then cuts his head off and keeps him as a talking trophy dangling from a chain attached to her skirt. Conveniently this means every time we have cut scene in which Nick speaks the camera has to focus on Juliette’s rear end.


Visual effects a plenty, the game certainly knows how to crank up the colour.
To destroy the zombie menace our heroine can use her cheerleading flair to stun the zombies and finish them off with a chainsaw to the crotch.

There are a limited number of combos at the start of the game, but more can be purchased using the medals gained by defeating enemies and rescuing class mates.

Sadly the combat is rather clunky with annoying pauses at the end of combos that leave Juliette vulnerable to attack. It is all to easy to get surrounded by a horde of zombies and be continually knocked to the floor, whilst some of the enemy attacks (such as the cops who fire guns) seem to be unblockable. The combat improves when enough coins have been collected to unlock new moves but at the start of the game it is rather like chainsawing through treacle.

That said, whilst the slashing through the undead gets boring rather quickly, the game breaks up the combat with the occasional bout of zombie basketball, baseball or some quick time events.

The second act also bestows Juliette with a ‘chainsaw dash’ move which sees her flying over ramps and picking up fuel whilst following trails of large gold coins – I was quite suprised Juliette does not wear a blue hedgehog costume for that sequence.

Lollipop Chainsaw runs off the Unreal engine and whilst quite colourful and inventive it’s not the best looking game and there are plenty of generic alleys and rooftops. Other bugs include occasional screen tearing and once I had to reset my PlayStation after Juliette died and the game refused to display the game over screen, leaving me spinning the camera over her lifeless corpse.

The game also takes an age to load and there instances when the game will load a cutscene, play for ten seconds, then load another cutscene. The checkpoints are rather sparse and combined with the lengthy pauses the game can test your pateince.

The AI is pretty much non existent with zombies running straight for Juliette and onto the end of her chainsaw. Lazy programming or accurate zombie behavior, I’ll let you decide.


Juliette's deadly.
The most bizarre aspect of the game (and bear in mind this is game in which you can castrate linebackers with a chainsaw between the legs) is that at certain points you cannot pause. Press the button and a small icon flashes on screen with the word ‘Pause’ crossed out. That’s just weird, I can’t think of any other game that refuses to let you pause.

The game is packed full of pop tunes and pretty much any song from the last fifty years containing the word ‘Lollipop’ is featured. When Juliette goes ‘Sparkle hunting’ you get a blast of Toni Basil’s classic cheerleading tune, “Hey Mickey” and there is a borderline genius pairing of a combine harvester and Dead Or Alive’s “You Spin Me Right Round (Like A Record)”

But hey, enough about the gameplay lets talk tits, arse and swearing.

Lollipop Chainsaw features some of the crudest language ever heard on a video game, barely a moment goes buy without an insult being flung and this is perfectly demonstrated by the first boss battle. Zed, a punk rocker who attacks by uttering curse words which then appear on screen in huge letters and rush towards Juliette.

You can literally be killed by the word ‘Cocksucker’.

I don’t have a problem with swearing and the countless upskirt shots (swerving the camera underneath Jullliete for a good look results in a trophy, for example) – from the very first trailer we knew what type of game to expect, however I do have a problem with repetition.

When Juliette meets her Sensai the cutscene ends with him landing face down in her cleavage. It’s not exactly amusing but raised a smirk, that is until moments later he is flung across the courtyard and ends up – yes you guessed it – face down in her cleavage again.

Much like People Can Fly’s sweary shooter Bulletstorm, Lollipop Chainsaw could do with a decent script editor. If you hear a swearword too many times it loses any impact and after the hundredth ‘cocksucking bastard whore’ I began to wish there was a mute button for the zombies.

The script has been created to amuse and shock but actually does neither, the only time I raised an eyebrow was when a Fireman zombie informed Juliette ‘I’m going to fist my arse with your head’, kudos to the writers for that particularly inventive and vulgar image.

Pros:

  • Old school gameplay
  • Great music

Cons:

  • Long loading times
  • Repetition

Such is the fickle world of gaming that the game can be found – one week after release – for £19.99. At that price, despite its flaws, the game is well worth a look, so the score’s a cleavage heaving, upskirt looking, foul mouthed…

Score: 6/10

(PS3 version reviewed)

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26 Comments
  1. LTG Davey
    andUandU
    Since: Aug 2008

    Picked up a copy for the 360 day of release for £25 and I consider it money well spent. Sure the combat is a bit flat but, as you say, the boss fights and mini-games make up for it. Plus it’s Suda51 and I love his sense of humour :D Oh and the soundtrack is awesome.

    P.s. load times on the 360 version were only a few seconds long, though this was when the game was installed to HDD

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:09.
    • Kamokazi-UK
      Member
      Since: Sep 2009

      Likewise, got it for £25. Thought pretty much the same as you.

      Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:47.
  2. matthangzhou
    Member
    Since: Sep 2010

    “That’s just weird, I can’t think of any other game that refuses to let you pause”. You’ve obviously never played Demon’s Souls or Dark Souls.

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:15.
    • tonycawley
      Pint! Pint!
      Since: Feb 2009

      What about pressing ps button? does it carry on running in the background or does it force a pause?

      Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:21.
      • Origami Killer
        Member
        Since: May 2010

        No they still play regardless, you have to make sure you are safe.

        Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:23.
      • matthangzhou
        Member
        Since: Sep 2010

        Still carries on running. There is no respite in those games.

        Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:23.
  3. Origami Killer
    Member
    Since: May 2010

    Would love to get this game for a laugh but cant quite bring myself to buy it

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:22.
    • gaffers101
      Member
      Since: Oct 2008

      Sane here, I just can’t quite imagine my mrs would let me get away with it!!!

      Comment posted on 28/06/2012 at 12:29.
      • Izorpo
        Member
        Since: Jun 2012

        Well I’m a Mrs. and I’m the one that bought the game…but then I also bought Shadows of the Damned and had to have the hubb finish the big boner gun bit because I couldn’t stop laughing. Seemingly my first name is Beavis (heh heh).

        Lollipop Chainsaw combat is similar to Onechanbara except Onechanbara is far more pervy with more jiggle

        Comment posted on 28/06/2012 at 13:58.
  4. theberzerka
    Member
    Since: Dec 2009

    I’m loving it but once it’s been platinumed it will be traded in.

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:28.
  5. bunimomike
    Member
    Since: Jul 2009

    I’m waiting for the white panties collectors edition or no deal.

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:43.
    • TSBonyman
      Member
      Since: Dec 2009

      Pre-ordering the pre-owned one then.? ;)

      Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:06.
    • Bladesteel
      Member
      Since: Sep 2008

      Lingerie, Swimsuit and S&M DLC or no sale.

      Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:52.
    • Forrest_01
      Member
      Since: Jun 2009

      Actually there are a number of different outfits that you can unlock simply by playing the game – It wouldn’t surprise me if there was all the sorts of coustumes that you guys are looking for. :)

      You might have to work for them though, which i know would put some people off! ;P

      As for mike, i think you have to go to japan to get used schoolgirl undies.

      Comment posted on 28/06/2012 at 09:30.
  6. TSBonyman
    Member
    Since: Dec 2009

    I picked it up at a reasonable €29.99 and i’m enjoying it so far, combat could be a bit better but it’s quite playable and i like the crass humour.
    Good review although i always thought arcade=repetitive anyway.. :)

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 17:58.
  7. OneShotWook
    Member
    Since: Jun 2010

    Weeks worth of lots of fun out of this,can’t really complain actually.
    Did find the literal objectification of the lead male Nick very funny,especially when he gets upset.

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:07.
  8. The Lone Steven
    Never heard of him.
    Since: May 2010

    Tuffcub, Dark and Demon Souls both say hello. ;)

    I’m not a fan of repition and would probably have to force myself to play it and not enjoy it very much. But it has proven my theory on using sex as a selling point results in an average game. :)

    I think a sequel should be able to fix the faults and could even surpass the original if there is one. Shame that there is not a demo. :(

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:13.
    • Forrest_01
      Member
      Since: Jun 2009

      Actually, a 6 is above average. :P

      Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:57.
      • The Lone Steven
        Never heard of him.
        Since: May 2010

        I know but it’s not good but better then an average game. Still proves my theory right. *climbs off his soapbox*

        Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 19:06.
  9. TheLig
    Causing trouble is my business and business is good
    Since: Dec 2008

    This game is dreadful. I think a 6/10 is far too generous. I picked it up on release because my friends a huge Grasshopper fan and talked me into it, and it’s the worst mistake I made. The combat is shockingly bad, the “humour” didn’t even raise a smile and the boss fights are the worst kind of retro. The fights are repetitive and even have “phases”. I cannot recommend staying away from this enough. On top of that, it is only 5/6 hours long and the replay value that’s much flaunted just doesn’t exist. The gameplay is far too terrible to warrant anything more than a struggling through it once.

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:15.
  10. element666
    Member
    Since: Mar 2012

    I won a copy from bizarre magazine.I can’t wait to play it :)

    Comment posted on 27/06/2012 at 18:25.

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