Lollipop Chainsaw

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I promised poor Donna that I would write a post umpteen days ago about Botanicula; the truth is, I haven’t finished the game yet. I started it when I was visiting family – and things got busy. My grandfather was ill. So first it was I-has-a-sad (he’s much better, don’t worry) and then it was I-has-a-new-job and then it was – honestly I am just a horrible person and I have no excuses.

So here’s a review for an entirely different game!

Most of Lollipop Chainsaw was lost on me. By “most”, I mean boobs. I am unfortunately straight as a plank, and could not appreciate the eye-candy laid out (heh. heh.) before me. It was designed by the flashy exuberant sexy-obsessed Suda51 (Goichi Suda), of Shadows of the Damned and No More Heroes fame, and James Gunn (PG Porn), and was originally written in Japanese – as an English-speaking straight girl, I am entirely not the audience for this game.

Here are the things that didn’t get lost in translation:

1) The zombies actually talk. OMG! And everything they say is amusing. Congratulations to all concerned: translators and scriptwriters both.
2) Juliet is such a sweetheart. And her voice actress is amazing. Really spot-on.
3) Zombie concepts were so good! I loved the fact that different bosses got different levels based around different musical styles.
4) The music for this game includes The Human League, which, given my obsession with New Wave, means the game gets one billion bonus points. Also, Jimmy Urine is involved, and don’t you even start dissing MSI. The first guy I ever fell in love with introduced me to them – I will always be a fan.

The sentient A.I. I live with – slash my other 1/2 – reports that the fighting system is complex enough to warrant replay in the harder difficulties. (I suspect this translates from straight man into “SO MANY BIKINIS,” but I digress.)

Pictured: so many bikinis

Pictured: so many bikinis

Plus, you get to kick righteous ass with a sparkly chainsaw. Alas that you can’t choose what flavour of kawaii decorates your gore in the US version, but I thought the pink hearts were a nice touch.

Pictured: kicking righteous ass

Pictured: kicking righteous ass

I thought the story was a little short, and the graphics weren’t really up to par. Seriously, loves, you can do better; I know you can, because I played Shadows of the Damned a few months back. Sentient A.I. defended the length of the storyline (“BIKINIS”), and the graphics were playable (unlike the E3 gameplay preview for Dishonoured, wtf, welcome to 2004) – so I’m going to give it a 7/10 for people uninterested in boob physics, and an 8.5/10 for those who get the upskirt trophy without knowing there is one.

~ Alice M.

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7 responses

  1. See… I’m most assuredly not straight.. but this game doth not appeal to me in the slightest, mainly by default due to its apparent misogynistic theme and design.. yet I enjoyed (whilst being baffled by) Bayonetta (with the music turned off, lol)

    However. I have not played this, ergo cant really comment.. but in terms of it luring me.. not at all 😦

    Like

    June 20, 2012 at 9:16 am

  2. Whilst I realise that many people might find this game (and “Bayonetta”) sexist, I don’t really agree. I don’t think making a deliberately sexy girl protag is by default sexist.

    I think I’m more of the opinion that it’s sexist to avoid making games where the male main strips off clothes as a reward for success. I think I’m saying that Solid Snake should live up to his name. Geddit? Geddit? I am so witty.

    Like

    June 20, 2012 at 9:24 am

  3. I think that it maybe gets my nerdy “realism(tm)” back up, like the abominable “Hitman” Nun-tastic trailer.. I’m all like “A cheerleader/Latex Nun outfit with stilettos is *NOT* appropriate apparel for a day’s assassination work!”

    …but then again I minced about the city in “Saint’s row” dressed in Steampunk gear..

    therefore I am a hypocrite 😄

    Like

    June 20, 2012 at 10:40 am

  4. From the trailers I’ve watched, I get the impression this is supposed to not be serious and is a bit of tongue in cheek.

    I have ordered it and look forward to playing it just because it looks like a laugh.

    Like

    June 20, 2012 at 10:39 pm

  5. Lollipop Chainsaw is a fine example of satirical reverse sexism. It also pokes a lot of fun at Ozzie and Harriet era ‘perfection’. It’s more than a little over the top, and does a bit too much objectifying for my tastes, but the creator/designer’s heart is in the right place.

    Kate: Check out any “Let’s Play” of the game on youtube to get a feel for the game. Any first episode will include the cutscenes in which the female protagonist has to save her boyfriend ala the ‘Damsel in Distress’ trope.

    Destructoid breaks the whole thing down pretty nicely in their article: Objectification and Lollipop Chainsaw.

    Like

    June 26, 2012 at 1:15 am

  6. Thanks Gavin. I have now done so ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BNNwYUDkhTw ) – tho watching that video alone wasnt enough to convince me there was anything clever going on under the bonnet. However, the quite excellent Destructoid article was certainly an interesting view, tho as the writer says themselves, the subtext will be lost on most of the target audience due to the top-layer content!

    One thing the video definitely confirmed for me, however.. and maybe its my age, lol, but its just not doing anything for me. To me it seems like just another generic console-style button-basher – albeit one apparently with a clever innocuous subtext.

    Thanks for the insight, nonetheless though! \o/

    Like

    June 27, 2012 at 12:17 pm

    • I agree with you Kate, the gameplay is generic, and most people in the audience this game will reach aren’t interested in (or are unable to read) the subtext.

      I’m happy that the designer(s) were allowed to give the game such a layer, as it is a step in the right direction for the genre, and may (for a few players) give a little depth to what is otherwise a simple button-masher.

      Thanks for listening with an open mind. I think that puts you firmly in the top 0.01% of the internet 😉

      Like

      June 27, 2012 at 1:50 pm

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