Zombies are the in thing these days, and one series of games has always been popular for killing zombies and that’s House of the Dead. The HOTD series of games date back pretty far, about 13 years since the arcade version made it’s debut, and they are still playable today and still lots of fun. Along comes the Wii and light gun games are making a comeback, so of course there must be a new version of HOTD, this one though is what you would get if Quinten Tarantino created a video game, it’s not much like the other HOTD games, and it’s way over the top with violence and adult themes.
Imagine if you will a game that combined House of the Dead with Grindhouse and Pulp Fiction, threw in a drop of Left4Dead and a pinch of Shaft, throw in some extra violence and blood, then throw in some more for good measure and you’d have House of the Dead: Overkill. HOTD: Overkill is a raunchy, bloody, over the top, zombie killing gore-fest that will have you coming back for more time and time again. This game is not for children, it’s barely for adults, at least those with a shred of decency in them, but that’s what makes it great. If you have a Wii, if you like to kill zombies, this game needs to be in your collection. *Fair warning before you continue, this review, at least the videos, might be considered NSFW for obscene language.*
Start of with box shots for you:
The House of the Dead: Overkill is not for children, and you don’t want to be playing this game if your grandmother is over visiting, or even in front of your parents for that matter. You’ll probably hear the F-Word twenty times before you even start playing, it is rated Mature for Intense Violence, Blood and Gore, Partial Nudity, Sexual Themes and Strong Language. I must have missed the Partial Nudity in the game, or at least I don’t consider naked decaying body parts nudity, but everything else is in there in exponential amounts I assure you.
HOTD: Overkill is the prequel to the original 1996 arcade game, it takes us back to just as Agent G was getting out of the academy, and when this all started. G gets partnered up with an obviously Shaft influenced local Detective named Washington.
Overkill is single player or multi-player co-op in story mode so you can have some zombie killing fun with a friend and you can even play with up to four people in the included mini-games.
Let’s take a quick look at the three included mini-games, Victim Support, Stayin’ Alive and Money Shot II:
Here’s some video for you of the mini-games:
(I upscaled the videos to 720P, and again, there is foul language in these videos so you were warned, basically if you are at work lower the volume before hitting play.)
Money Shot II
I have to say now that I love the soundtrack, it’s just awesome, all of it, I love it. It’s obscene, dirty, and raunchy, just the way I like my women… err soundtracks…
Speaking of women and soundtracks, Overkill introduces us to the lovely and busty Varla Guns, a very finely shaped set of pixels if I say so myself. At the title screen are your options, Story Mode is there along with system options and Mini-Games when you first start, the Director’s Cut gets unlocked only when you complete story mode first.
Overkill is done in movie style, each level is like a mini movie, sort of like Left4Dead, but done a bit better I think. On the level selection screen is also where you can view other things you’ve unlocked in the Memorabilia section.
After you select the level you’re taken to weapons selection, here you can choose a weapon to use or go to the store to buy a new weapon or purchase upgrades for a current one. There are several weapons in the game to start off with, and more can be unlocked by playing.
The House of the Dead: Overkill is a prequel to the well-known SEGA arcade series, The House of the Dead. Set before events of the original House of the Dead game, OVERKILL tells the story of series star Agent G’s first assignment on leaving the AMS academy.
Detective Washington is a local cop in Bayou city, a small-town Deep South backwater of a place pretty much entirely run by local plantation owner and criminal mastermind Papa Caesar.
Washington’s investigation into the murder of his policeman father leads him directly to Papa Caesar’s mansion on the edge of town. Arriving just in time to meet the mysterious Agent G, whose own investigations into a series of missing people have lead him too to Caesar’s front door, the pair team up to take the kingpin down and uncover the whole disgusting truth.
The House of the Dead: OVERKILL charges you with mowing down waves of infected, blood-thirsty zombies in a last-ditch effort to survive and uncover the horrific truth behind the origins of the House of the Dead. Survival horror as its never been seen before, The House of the Dead: OVERKILL is a pulp-style take on the best selling, classic SEGA light-gun shooter series. Back when the famous Agent G was fresh out of the academy, he teamed up with hard-boiled bad-ass Agent Washington to investigate stories of mysterious disappearances in small-town Louisiana. Little did they know what blood-soaked mutant horror awaited them in the streets and swamps of Bayou City.
* Pulp funk horror: Zombie cool at its finest as one of the most popular shooter classics returns injected with a whole new retro b-movie look.
* An utterly in-your-face zombie-dismembering blast: Non-stop light-gun shooting action on the Wii as you blow apart zombies for high-score thrills.
* Gripping co-op action on the Wii: Grab a friend and play the game as intended in your own buddy action movie as two of the coolest characters in video gaming.
* Relentless, gore-drenched, over-the-top action: Only the coolest, most cold-hearted agent’s going to keep his head against the zombie flood. Use "Slow-Mofo Time" to make the perfect head-popping shot and "Evil Eye" to spot moments of opportunity that’ll send the whole environment up in flames.
* Lightning quick Wii Remote reactions: Get knee-deep in the dead with motion-sensitive Wii controls. Pump your shotgun, slam a fresh mag home in that 9-mil and work your lever-action rifle. When the zombies get too close, pistol whip their jaws off or cave in some heads with the butt of your gun – all in sickening close-up range!
Actual game play for HOTD:Overkill is decent, but it could be better, I found the gun not the most accurate, but it works. I’ve got two Nyko Perfect Shot grips for my Wii, having them makes the game much more fun and I can highly recommend them if you’re planning on doing any kind of shooting. It not only adds to the realism, but just makes things easier.
You can calibrate the gun from the options settings, but I had a difficult time with getting to to calibrate correctly, not sure why exactly, but even if it’s a bit off the game is still playable.
You can play Story Mode and Director’s Cut in two player co-op, when you do there will be two gun sights on the screen, one will have a blue dot and same colored streaks, the other red.
Throughout the game you will run across many civilians to save, saving them requires you to shoot the zombies and not them, doing this successfully earns you points which in turn give you more money at the end of the level.
Each level has a boss at the end, and they’ve got a weakness that you must shoot to cause damage. The weakness is circled in red for you, and you usually only have a certain amount of time to hit the target before it disappears. Here’s a few stills and a movie fighting one of the bosses:
While you’re playing you can pick up grenades, and health packs. You’ll also find brains lying around that you can collect for a bonus, and small green DNA like strands that you can shoot to give you ‘Slow-Mofo Time’ which is just slow motion or bullet time as it’s called in other games. If you look closely in the following picture near the standing zombies head is the little DNA strand thing.
Overkill is gory, gruesome and bloody, and it’s got a lot of foul language in it, but the best part is that it’s a lot of fun to play. There are many unlockables in Overkill, and several bonuses as well. The main unlockable is the Director’s Cut, just complete Story Mode and it’s unlocked, Director’s Cut is the Uncut game. Completing Director’s Cut will unlock Dual Wield mode so single player can use two Wiimotes or guns and have only one life bar. Of course there are other unlocks as well which I’m not going to list, many sites have already listed them, no sense in repeating things again.
There’s quite a bit of banter between G and Washington during the game, it tries to be funny and at points it is, but it’s usually just goofy. Washington drops the F-bomb just about every other word, and as you’re playing G will even mention this to him, and well he tell him to F-off basically. If you’re offended by foul language then this game isn’t going to be for you.
The House of the Dead: Overkill is a game like no other, it’s a totally F’d up gore-fest of blood and carnage, and that’s a good thing!
Overkill is a game that most will enjoy playing, and it’s a game that many people will hate, including your parents and grandparents.
HOTD:Overkill isn’t perfect, but what it lacks it makes up for in pure fun, I loved playing this game and I go back every once in a while and play some more for a cool zombie killing fix.
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Bloody, gory, and obscene
Lots of fun
Zombie killing fun
Not for children or closed minded individuals
Dialogue can get old and be goofy