The written equivalent of upside-down film of an oil well fire

Killer7

By S.A. Renegade on January 25, 2009 in Reviews

Final verdict: C-
Final playtime: Doesn’t say. I’d peg it at around 20 hours.

Hokay, so I said I would eventually play this game, and now I have. All I can say is, Jesus. From now on, Killer7 is a synonym for fucked up.

“Dude, the other guy was speeding way more, and the cops only stopped me!”

“Man, that’s Killer7.”

“Dude, I spent days on my report and got a worse grade than the guy who just copy pasted the Wikipedia article several times over!”

“Damn, that’s so Killer7.”

“Dude, I was just robbed at gunpoint and the only thing the thief wanted was my underwear!”

“What the hell?! That’s completely Killer7!”

First, the gameplay. Clearly not intended to be the game’s forte. It ranges from passable to did-they-make-this-during-their-lunch-break. When you start, you’d think you move your character with the control stick like, oh, I dunno, every other fucking game in existence? Yeah, you’d think that. But nope. Turns out you move with the A button. Yep, the fucking A button. Now you might be thinking “Wait, how does that make even a shred of sense?” Or, if you’ve been paying attention, you might think “Dude, that’s so Killer7″ The answer is, of course it doesn’t make sense. Because that seems to be the developer’s modus operandi throughout the game: making as little sense as possible (I’m treating them as if they were criminals, see what I did there? Oh yeah, I’m so clever), while keeping the most basic semblance of coherency so people don’t immediately dismiss it as a coked up clusterfuck.

The reason you move with the A button is because this game isn’t free roaming. You can’t move around however you want like most games, nah. You’re on rails and your only options are either to press A to move forward along the rails, or press B and turn around and go the other way. And then sometimes you get to a fork and can choose which of the two new rails to move along! Oh my fucking god, it’s the epitome of freedom! Good job, developers! At being a bunch of lazy assholes, that is.

Then the fights, which use FPS-like gameplay. Since the GCN controller isn’t exactly the pinnacle of FPS control, not to mention whoever designed the gameplay was clearly on drugs (as was the rest of the team), the controls here are unorthodox to say the least. Normally you aim with the right stick, here it’s the left stick. Normally you fire with the right trigger, here you keep it pressed to go into first person and shoot with the A button. And you know what else? Normally you don’t have to press the L button to make the fucking enemies visible. I mean fuck. What exactly is the point of that? Just let me shoot them from the start without having to press so much needless shit. Every fight is like. Press R to go into first person, press B to move the camera towards the general direction of the enemy because they’re invisible and the only way you know they’re there is because of their laughter, press L to make them corporeal, then press A to shoot them (aiming optional). So why all the excess button presses? Fuck you, this is Killer7!

And then the god damn hit detection is off. Sometimes I’d hit an enemy’s weak spot and it wouldn’t register, other times I’d be way off and get the kill. But oh fucking well, because later on you get an ability that automatically locks on to an enemy’s weak spot, letting you kill everything with zero skill. Not that the game required that much skill in the first place, even on hard mode (which is what I played). And not that making the game harder would fix this gameplay. If anything it’d only make it irritating.

Boss fights are shallow affairs that usually consist of either wasting a lot of time trying out a bunch of different shit until you find the enemy’s obscure weakness/spot (at which point they die easily), or shooting the fuck out of it and hoping it dies before you do because good luck trying anything like dodging with this bad gameplay.

Then we have the story. Oh my fucking god, the story. If you thought the controls didn’t make sense, you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet. The story in this game is so unbelievably messed up that you rarely have any idea what in the ten thousand fucks is going on. The entire god damn thing is one big, never-ending clusterfuck of confusion. The story is deliberately made to be as vague, ambiguous, confusing, and bewildering as possible. Basically, nothing is ever explained and everything is left up to interpretation. I don’t have anything against convoluted stories, but this takes the motherfucking cake. It’s beyond ridiculous. There is only one word that can describe the story and how it’s told: Killer7.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’d rather have a story like this than a simple and boring one (lesser of two evils, yeah?). The basic concept is interesting, and the way the story is presented at first is intriguing enough that I wanted to keep playing to learn more, hoping that everything would gradually be explained and that I’d be saved from all the confusion. But as the game goes on, you start to realize that it will never stop being confusing, and that nothing will ever be explained. Because fuck you, this is Killer7.

The story might be deep, but good fucking luck understanding it without the help of a plot analysis guide. The one on gamefags is nice, but even that one is disputed, and consists of a lot of theories and conjecture. Some have even gone so far as to label it fan fiction.

To make matters even more complicated, and to prove just how fucked up this entire thing is, Capcom later published an official book to explain the story. Except this book didn’t actually explain jack shit. Now, needing a complementary book to explain your game is already bad enough, but then when the people who wrote the official book don’t seem to understand what the shit is going on either? That’s an entire different fucking plane of incompetence. Not only does the book supply information that invalidates the nice (though fan made) theories I mentioned above, but it also contradicts information in the motherfucking game itself. And this is supposed to be an official document? What in the shit? It’s like not even the writer himself understands his own story. It’s so bad that some have gone so far as to regard the book as non-canon. Others have taken the approach of some non-fundamentalist Christians towards the bible, accepting some things as canon, and ignoring others.

“Oh, in this part god condemns all homosexuals? Nah, that part ain’t canon!”

“What, this part encourages slavery?! Let’s just ignore that part. The rest is the truth though, I swear!”

“Nah, fuck the entire old testament. The new one is where it’s at, B.”

That’s right. Killer7’s story is so fucked up that it has reached biblical proportions.

There is only one logical explanation for all this madness: Killer-motherfucking-7.

The only things I can in good conscience praise about this game are the art and the atmosphere. The cel-shaded style is nice, and dispels any preconceptions that a game can’t be cartoony and dark at the same time.

Anyway, if you like getting mindfucked and feeling completely lost and confused, get this game. Otherwise skip it and play a game that’s actually good.

Final Verdict: C-

Final Playtime: Doesn’t say. I’d peg it at around 20 hours or so.

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