Killer is Dead is a… different game. Grasshopper Interactive have adopted a very unique art style with a weird and complex story and strange characters. Unfortunately, issues with pacing and an overwhelming amount of tightly packed plot points make the game confusing and difficult to enjoy. Read on for our full review…

You play as Mondo Zappa, a mysterious assassin who takes on the task of executing strange mutated creatures who begin to invade the world. He is a very dapper character, and with the unique art style (similar to cel-shaded) it bring a very unique and interesting atmosphere to the game. Your sidekicks include a robot and a Japanese schoolgirl who both assist in your eliminating of the monstrous invasion. I will give the game merits for its bravery, constantly getting weirder and weirder as you progress through the game, which does help to keep the player attentive. It is a peculiar experience which is VERY unpredictable.

The range of enemies presented in Killer is Dead is, unfortunately limited. Apart from the boss fights, which are a particular highlight of the game, the regular enemies are used over and over within the levels. The boss enemies make up for this however; whether they are giant mutated insects or armoured robotic enemies. The boss fights are quite long and complex, and happen to be the most fun gameplay sequences in the game. The unpredictability or their attacks and appearance are what make them so fresh and exciting to play through. Mondo uses his samurai sword effectively for hacking and slashing, and the combos look quite epic when executed successfully.

Now, while the graphics are fantastic, and have a very unique air, there are unfortunately a few issues with screen tearing. I know it isn’t the biggest issue, but it can be an annoyance when you are trying to concentrate on a boss battle. It is definitely something worth taking note of, if screen tearing is something which is a major issue for you when thinking about purchasing a game.

Killer is Dead does also feature gun elements, but you probably won’t use them. The sword is the most effective and unique weapon to use, so, the team focused on making it the best option for combat. Upgrades are also available, giving something for perfectionists to replay levels for. Unfortunately, the game is not very long. While each and every level has extremely fun combat and action sequences, there are only 8-9 hours of content in the game.

Pacing is also an issue. A lot of the plot points are revealed close together in the middle of the game, while the end of the game is a little short on story. The ending also isn’t great; you would be expecting something a little more wacky from such a crazy and unpredictable game. The final levels do make up for this lack of story through lively and enjoyable gameplay. Additionally side missions (or more, combat levels) do provide a nice supplement for the short story, however. They mainly involve repeating levels in the game with more enemies or with a time limit. Since the gameplay is the best part of the game, these extra combat missions are just as fun to play as the main story.

Overall, Killer is Dead is an extremely unique title, with very fresh gameplay elements, boss enemies and graphical elements. Unfortunately, the issues with screen tearing and short story may hold some people back from purchase. If you would like to experience something different, it is still a very worthwhile play!