Oh Japan, we do love how you manage to twist such beloved sexy ideas such as Librarians and treasure hunters into bizarre games with an overabundance of weirdness. That’s the case with the latest game from legendary developers Akira Yamaoka and Suda 51, as they set out to reinvent the Cheerleader as magical girl that slays zombies with her enchanted chainsaw.
Scott War is our host for the day, as he shows us an early build of the upcoming zombie-killing game. Our heroine is one Julie Starling, cheerleader at Romero High when the zombie apocalypse hits, and it’s up to her to chainsaw her way through to victory. War would give us scant few details surrounding the plot, but he was more than keen to show us some gameplay, right after letting us watch a quick clip of Suda 51 apologising for not being there to demo the game.
And yes, Suda 51 can even make an apology insane, but the less said the better. So we watch some Lollipop Chainsaw action, as Julie slices and dices her way through her former schoolmates. They are hungry and relentless, and the zombies will quickly swarm you. Fortunately Julie has managed to learn some sort of cheerleader kung fu, as she pep rallies her way through the horde using flips, acrobatics and light and heavy chainsaw strikes.
But while the game is quite gory, it’s also quite amusingly bubblegum. A zombie decapitated will spew buckets of blood, only for his dismembered corpse to start shooting rainbows and glitter from his severed stumps once Julie uses a Star attack on him, a special attack earned through constant kills and combos.
Boss characters look thoroughly twisted, with one maths teacher attempting to shield himself from your attacks with a desk, while he spouts twisted vitriol about incomplete homework and how much he hates kids.
War shows us a main boss fight, in which Julie must face off against a Sid Vicious wannabe punk rocker, who happens to be a much stronger type of zombie. The battle is intense and bloody, with the punk rocker trying to beat you up with microphone stands, amps and solidified words, further emphasising the rather cartoony look of the game.
With the short demo over, Yamaoka comments through his translator that he is still seeking to finish the soundtrack, and that it’s â€œNot in yet, I’m still looking for ways to incorporate it betterâ€.
Lollipop Chainsaw is a bloody, fun looking title that pops out of the screen thanks to its cheerleader aesthetics. It’s still early in development, but expect it to release next year.
Last Updated: August 18, 2011