Winter!: Prepare for holiday gaming!
Do you enjoy 'B' rated movies? How about hot girls in bikinis carrying swords or guns? Do you have a obsession with killing zombies? Then Onechanbara: Bikini Zombie Squad is for you! Onechanbara: BZS is the next addition to a series of Onechanbara video games designed in Japan. Developed by Tamsoft and published by D3 Publisher of America, Onechanbara: BZS has finally made its way to America.
The Onechanbara: BZS story takes place in a city where a wicked corporation has been doing wicked deeds by creating zombies. The main characters; Aya and Saki, who are sisters with special blood called baneful blood, and Annna who is a special force member and is the only gun user in the group; go head to head with this corporation. The corporation is interested in obtaining baneful blood; so starts Onechanbara: BZS. So you ask, "why do the girls wear practically nothing while fighting zombies?" As the girls slash, chop, and dismember zombies throughout the game they must allow the blood of their enemy to spill over their skin. This awakes the baneful blood within them. This makes their combat faster and stronger. Sounds like there should be no problem with eliminating their enemies, right? Wrong! Once the girls have transformed, they slowly lose health until they die unless they use a goddess statue or goddess artifact to revive themselves.
Once Onechanbara has begun, you're allowed to choose different modes. Story mode takes you on a quest with the girls. Survival and Free Play modes set different requirements you must meet to unlock items for the girls. A Practice Mode lets you get comfortable attack timing and learning combos. Dress Up Mode allows customization of the girls' hair, skin, and clothing. The last mode is Options (which is pretty self explanatory).
Game play, for the most part, is fairly smooth, and anyone who has played Dynasty Warriors will feel right at home. Attacks are set to two buttons; one is your primary attack with sword play, and the other is more of a stun attack. Enhancing these attacks are a jump button and a special move button. As a single player, you can easily switch between the two characters that you pick at the beginning of each level. Since Aya and Annna have two sets of weapons, they switch between them quickly for different combat modes. As the girls hack and slash their way through zombies, a sword meter on the screen will slowly fill with blood. This meter represents how much blood is on the sword and, once filled, their sword will start sticking into zombies. (Needless to say when 20 zombies are coming for you and the sword gets stuck in one zombie, getting pummeled isn't the way to go.) You can take care of this problem with a simple cleaning of the sword and then flinging blood off your blade so you can carry on with your massacre. When attacking a horde of zombies, the girls can lock onto a particular zombie (I found myself using this feature during boss fights or with Annna only.) The D-pad is used as well to access the map, seeing the girls' status, and viewing the item screen.
Combos are executed in several different ways; one is timing the primary attack, and the other is moving the joy stick in different directions to create spinning attacks or to change direction to attack enemies behind you. Once levels are completed, you get to upgrade skill, health, power, and reach. Onechanbara doesn't feel like your common button masher. Executing the timed attacks is easy and, with a little bit of practice in practice mode, learning combos becomes quite entertaining. Combat never feels so hectic that you feel you must start button mashing. Even when you're surrounded by zombies, you'll never have a reason to mash the buttons to work your way out of trouble.
The adding of co-op to the game is very fun. Having a friend play alongside you is very engaging. Unfortunately, there is no Xbox live feature for co-op, and this might be a turn-off. Although both players can walk around freely in levels if one of them heads to the next level the other will have to follow. This is annoying if you're still battling for experience points and your friend decides to leave the level your on.
So if the game sounds fun, what does it look and sound like? Well, for the most part the graphics are a mix of good and bad. All female models in the game are nicely rendered. They move smoothly and every item of clothing and skin is well depicted. Blood dripping from the girls is a nice feature, and the sword slashing looks nice, but they're not the best models ever seen. The zombies are very bland. You will see the same zombie a million times before the game ends, and they look very square. The levels are just as featureless. Most of the game has you running back through the same areas and you will be surrounded with flat textured walls and plain atmospheres. The game overall looks generic and the brightest design graphics in the game are the girls themselves. The cinematic parts of Onec
Game Traits applied to Onechanbara: Bikini Zombie Squad (X360) by DarthOdium