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Shadows of the Damned Member Review for the Xbox360

By:
Ivory_Soul
08/11/12
PRINTER FRIENDLY VERSION
EMAIL TO A FRIEND
GENRE Action 
PLAYERS 1- 1 
PUBLISHER EA 
DEVELOPER Grasshopper Manufacture 
RELEASE DATE Out Now
M Contains Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Nudity, Sexual Themes, Strong Language

What do these ratings mean?

The Good: Childish but funny mature humor, grotesque setting and atmosphere, great play on light and dark, story is entertaining, fun boss fights

The Bad: Repetition throughout, Garcia is a hard character to like, story is simple and straightforward, no reason to really go back

During the first 10 minutes of the game the first thing you will think is "WTF?" There's nothing else to describe this game full of childish mature humor and sick twisted ideas. That's not to say that it is bad. Most of the humor in the game is actually so childish and gross that you can't help yourself and laugh. Some stuff is downright hilarious such as Johnson's Boner gun. Before I get into any detail, I have to say the story is pretty entertaining if straight forward and simple. You play as Garcia Hotspur who is a Mexican demon hunter and has a demon accompanying him in form of a floating skull named Johnson. I didn't really care much for Garcia because he is a typical potty mouthed action hero, but I found Johnson to be the steal of the show. He's a posh British demon that uses clean cuss words and is a stark contrast to Garcia which makes him more likable and hilarious to listen to. Garcia is trying to get his stolen girlfriend, Paula, back from the demon lord Fleming, and of course you follow him into the depths of Hell.

That's about as far as the story goes. There's a small twist at the very end after the credits, but after you see it you won't be surprised it happened. The main attraction is the banter between Garcia and Johnson and the stories you read throughout the game. Some of these made me bust up because they were so funny. Other than the story I have to say that I really love the guns in this game. The creators force you to use all three, but they are upgraded so much that they feel like whole new guns throughout the game. Boner is your pistol, Teether is your machine gun, and the Skullblaster is your shotgun. These can get upgraded by finding blue gems from bosses. Boner turns into Hot Boner that can set explosive mines, Teether can get a homing upgrade, and Skullblaster will eventually get an upgrade to create giant bombs. You can find red gems throughout to upgrade your weapons and health. Gracia guzzles down alcohol to heal himself because apparently alcohol keeps you alive in Hell.

The game works around a light vs dark gameplay idea and it works well. When you are surrounded in darkness your health depletes and you need to shoot a goat candelabra to return the light. Yeah, it's weird and that's only the beginning. Gate keys consist of shoving strawberries, eyes, and brains into creepy baby faces that are guarding the gate. One level even has you walking over a giant naked Paula. The game never stops delivering weirdness, and that's exactly what makes this game so fun, because hey, it's a Suda 51 game, what do you expect?

There are a few puzzles thrown in that can be fun because they are straight forward. I didn't even need a walkthrough to get through this game. Even the boss fights use light and darkness to be beaten. In darkness you can only see the weak spot on enemies so you have to quickly shoot it because you die. This sounds frustrating but it's not. You get a darkness shield that depletes before your health starts going down. The enemy design is pretty crazy, but repetitive. I got tired of shooting the same demons all the time. The whole game overall is repetitive in nature because it uses the same few elements mixed around a lot. My least favorite idea was the 2D shooting levels. These were frustrating and felt like pointless filler. There's a fun boss fight at the end of the third level, but I could have gone without these.

After you beat the 8 hour game there's no reason to go back. There's no multiplayer or extra modes which is a shame. I guess if you want to collect all the red gems you can, but why bother? This is a fun weekend rental or cheap bargain bin purchase and nothing more. If it weren't for the repetition set throughout and those pointless 2D levels I would have liked this a lot more. Garcia is a hard character to like and the story is simple and straight forward. Overall through, this is a solid game and highly entertaining. Just be warned that the mature content isn't for everyone.


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