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Killer Is Dead

The meaning of the name is ambiguous just as the game itself. This is a Suda51 game and its not a sequel to Killer7 but they do share the same theme of assassination,conspiracy and complex story lines.

The Game is inspired by Ian Fleming's James bond series and the title is named after The Smith's song "The Queen Is Dead."

The story is confusing a lot. The tone shifts from a cool dark and edgy style. To a lighthearted and bizarre story at times. I went from violently executing a man in a alleyway to fighting an Alice in Wonderland like character in a bizarre house.

And that’s another thing the level design can be really confusing I had a hard time with the Alice in Wonderland mission the place is tricky to navigate and along with really bright visuals and a confusing layout. It does use the point a to be way of completing objectives and you have to fight enemies to progress through and the side quests in the game are mainly just fight a certain amount enemies and beat the time limit nothing really special.

The main story is overarching you play as Mondo Zappa a James Bond like assassin who is recently hired to a government sponsored execution firm. Where he takes out targets and he later takes on a contract from a exiled princess who wants to reclaim the throne in the dark side of the moon from a outsider. And each target you kill is somehow related towards a mysterious material from the moon known as "Dark Matter" which corrupts them and makes them monstrous.

Now the story sounds to be pretty straightforward. But earlier as I said before the story is highly complicated and it has a lot of bizarre plot twists in it. They often are surreal and unexplainable leaving them often to be implausible as a result.

The characters are meant to characters you can see in other espionage stories. Mondo Zappa is the cool calm collected mysterious assassin who sleeps with a lot of women in his spare time which I will get to soon. His assistant Mika shes cute but over excitable and ditzy. Vivienne is the femme fatale sophisticated British assassin. And their Boss Bryan is a cyborg and veteran assassin who makes wisecracks from time to time. The main antagonist is really cliché his outfit it honestly does look like a cheap bathing suit model I couldn’t even take him seriously he is the evil that must be stopped villain who wants to take over the moon and use Dark matter for his own goals instead of being a multi layered antagonist. And all of this is on purpose as the game doesn’t really takes itself seriously at times. A lot of the women in the game is sexualized highly as part of the espionage nature of the game. And many of them are able to be seduced in the gigolo missions.

It does have entertaining moments in it from time to time with its lighthearted and quirky sense of humor. From Mika's antics to the unexplainable plot twists at the end of each mission.

It’s tone often shifts from one point In the first mission like I have mentioned earlier. It was this dark and brooding level where you play as a shadowy assassin going to kill his target. The next was lighthearted and quirky stories where you have to kill a variety of eccentric targets.

The game can actually take about a day to finish as it only has about 12 missions in the game and its mainly contract killing missions and a few dream sequences.

Now the Gigolo missions I was not offended at all by them. The main goal is to seduce women and secretly look at them to fill the heart meter in order for them to seep with you while they are not watching and give them gifts that you buy with the money you made as a assassin. You can see their lingerie with your x ray glasses and the entire tone of the missions is highly sexual. But that’s the point its supposed to be parodical and not serious. It was supposed to be over the top and silly its not supposed to be developing a romance like its Mass Effect or Dragon Age where you can have a sexual relationship with your teammates. The whole thing is supposed to be one-night stands.

The dark neo noir visuals I did like along with its cel-shaded anime like style. It looks shadowy a lot in the game because of the neo noir style and dark storyline.

The combat is Hack and Slash you can kill enemies violently and decapitate them its fast paced and fun but it needs refinement. Your cybernetic arm acts as a multi tool you can shoot enemies with it and use it as a drill to kill them.

You are not going to be use your sidearm as much in the game as it’s a secondary weapon. You can also use it as a drill at certain points in the game as well as you progress through it.

You can absorb blood from your enemies while slashing away and killing them so you can unleash a adrenaline burst attack where the screen turns black,white and red. And you can instantly kill enemies and deal heavy amounts of damage.

You can get upgrades to learn new moves,increase damage or health I enjoyed it. But having to unlock them by doing gigolo missions I think it would be better if you can get them through the main story it makes it feel like you are getting more powerful as you go on through the game.

Its often button mashing combat and you have to use execution moves to kill bosses and take part in mandatory qte sections in the game.

The camera angles in the game is disjointed and it has to rebalanced from time to time. And you are not able to lock onto enemies.

The screen tears from time to time and It can be glitchy too from time to time.

The musical score is done by a variety of artists I do like Akira Yamoka's score. The Jazz style music is film noir style but not particularly memorable or energetic like Cowboy Bebop. (Even though I am not at all into Jazz music at all. I do understand the relevance to the film noir genre)

Missions are played out mainly straightforward. It's you have to run around and kill all the enemies and go to the next point until you reach the boss. You can also do challenge and side missions which are a test of skill so you can unlock more bonuses like upgrades.

Each boss fight is unique and challenging and requires a different strategy. I found the Alice boss fight to be creepy and at the end it feels pretty gory as well.

After you defeat a boss you have to use your special ability in order to fully kill them in a stylish way. Each kill does look unique and over the top as well.

I do find this game this game to be one of Suda51's showcases of quirky bizarre stories and unorthodox gameplay.

It gets 3 stars.

I liked some aspects of the game and I couldn’t really like the other aspects. If you like Suda51 or hack and slash check this game out.

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