Over the moon
In a future where technology is so advanced that travelling to the moon is an everyday occurrence, you take control of 35 year-old Mondo Zappa.
Mondo's job at Bryan's Executioner Office involves killing criminals from around the world on behalf of clients, but neither the clients nor the targets are what you'd call ordinary. They include a ghost who wants you to avenge his own death, and a charming gentleman called David, who is the king of the moon.
It isn't long before Mondo and his co-workers Bryan, Vivienne and Mika realise that the moon connects these seemingly unrelated jobs, and Mondo's own forgotten past and childhood memories begin to interfere with the present. Can Mondo hold himself together while completing these increasingly bizarre contracts?
From Suda51, with love
From renowned game designer Suda51, the writer/director of killer7, comes KILLER IS DEAD, a brutal and bloody hack-and-slash action game.
The cel-shaded visuals are a treat, and extra touches such as the use of saturated colour result in one of the most stylish games on PlayStation 3. The graphics perfectly complement the surreal situations you find yourself in: there's an Alice in Wonderland-style mansion complete with upside-down rooms and stairs that lock together after you complete tasks, a girl who transforms into a mutant spider, rainbow-patterned unicorns and even a demon train.
Unlock eight costumes by completing missions or scoring highly on side missions, unlock an extra difficulty level and upload your level scores to the online leaderboards. For the real completionists, there are 48 trophies to tick off your list. Purists will appreciate the option to select the original Japanese voiceovers, plus the ability to change the difficulty level before each mission.
Get the girl
Fans of Devil May Cry and Bayonetta will feel right at home slicing and dicing enemies in KILLER IS DEAD. Newcomers will also pick things up extremely quickly thanks to a gentle learning curve, on-screen tutorial prompts and simple controls for attacking, dodging and shooting. Mondo's katana is his main weapon, but his cybernetic left arm can also be used as a gun or later upgraded with other objects such as a drill.
Defeating enemies, known as Wires, across the 12 missions lets Mondo absorb blood, which is used up whenever you shoot or perform a finishing move. Later in the game, enemies are only vulnerable if you manage to dodge their attack at the last second, allowing you to unleash a combo of your own.
Gigolo missions are your chance to earn extra weapons. The game switches to a first-person view as you attempt to woo a female character by gazing at her face and body. This raises your guts meter until you're courageous enough to give her a present, which in turn fills a series of hearts. Fill all the hearts and a new weapon is yours, but if she catches you gawping for too long then you lose out.
There are also special challenges against the clock for further rewards, such as defusing five time bombs, shooting down 50 power cells, or crashing into at least 25 Wires across four laps on a motorcycle.