Review: School Girl/Zombie Hunter (PS4)

Review: School Girl/Zombie Hunter (PS4)

Platforms:

  • PlayStation 4

Platform/Hardware Used:

  • PSN Download
  • PS4
  • HDTV

Extras:

  • DualShock 4 Required (1)
  • Move None
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Title: School Girl/Zombie Hunter
Format: Blu-ray Disc / PSN (2.43 GB)
Release Date: November 17, 2017
Publisher: Aksys Games
Developer: Tamsoft
Original MSRP: $39.99
ESRB Rating: M
PEGI: 16
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.
PS Nation Review Policy

Gameplay:
School Girl/Zombie Hunter isn’t trying to be the Citizen Kane of games, it’s campy and it’s well aware of it. The plot jumps right into the thick of things, with the girls’ school being invaded by zombies with little to no explanation.

Oddly enough, the girls don’t seem all that disturbed by the sudden zombie invasion as their survival instincts kick in and the action begins.

The plot is thin and does little to build the world. We don’t really get much in terms of answers, instead everything relies on the gameplay for better or worse.

This is a third person shooter with bad controls for a modern shooter. Everything from the character movements, default control scheme, and act of shooting feels sluggish and clumsy. If you’re used to any other third person shooter I’d recommend changing the button layout right away to save yourself some early headaches.

Altering the controls only does so much though as the actual shooting from a feel perspective is generally unresponsive. Moving the reticle is stiff and even when you target an enemy the shooting is lackluster and will occasionally miss targets for no reason. Multiple times I would have the reticle aimed perfectly only for my shot to clip through an enemy or just somehow miss.

Eventually I would adapt to the poor shooting and begin to have some fun with the game, thanks to its weapon variety which helps change things up a bit. This only takes the game so far though because it also suffers from a general lack of variety and creativity in the level design and mission structure.

Levels are linear and uninspired. Missions usually just ask for you to survive a timer, defend an objective or reach a destination. These are all standard mission types, yet with boring linear level designs they can feel tedious.

There are five characters to play and level up, each with customizable loadouts and costumes. Oh, speaking of costumes, at any point in a mission you can strip your character’s clothes off to distract the zombies… it’s a thing.

Apparently zombies like school girl outfits. It’s a tool at your disposal since it will pull zombies off of you and onto your discarded clothing. It’s creepy, but standard for these types of Japanese school girl games, it’s something I barely used because I was almost never in enough danger to bother with it.

Completing levels was rarely a challenge and my enjoyment mostly came from mindlessly shooting stuff, trying new weapons, of which there are a lot, and watching the cheesy cutscenes.

Visuals:
School Girl/Zombie Hunter doesn’t look like a PS4 game, its visuals are more akin to a budget PS3 game at best. The levels are small and lack details and flare while the character models aren’t much better. The main protagonists have a plastic look to them and the zombie hordes have little variety with only a handful of character models for them.

There are also performance issues with framerate drops when the action gets intense or confined to a small area. Overall it’s a real lackluster show in the visual department.

Audio:
The game features the original Japanese voice work only and it’s okay. The actors don’t deliver any standout performances which is not shocking due to the material they were given.

The music doesn’t impress much either, outside of the opening pop song that I found rather catchy and wished there was more of.

Online/Multiplayer:
Everything can be better with friends, even a game like this, so how does it falter? With five player online co-op this game can be fun though that won’t last because of all the reasons stated above and a limited amount of mission types.

The lobby system feels dated to go along with the visuals since it uses a one that generates a room number (code) that you can share with your friends to join you. You’ll need friends though as I tried to find public games and was never successful finding random people playing it.

Conclusion:
A campy story can only take you so far if the actual gameplay is too buggy to enjoy it. I found some fun here and there though it required too much of me digging around for it instead of being fun from the start.

There could have been something here, it has a potentially fun premise with a surprisingly large variety of weapons akin to an Earth Defense Force, but the execution for everything isn’t there.

I usually enjoy weird silly games, however School Girl/Zombie Hunter has too many flaws to be worthwhile. It’s a game that desperately wants to be a “so bad, it’s good” title, but it fails on the latter portion and is just bad.

Score:
4.0

* All screenshots used in this review were taken directly from the game using the Share functionality on the PlayStation 4.

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Written by Michael Cwick

Michael Cwick

Just a nerd from the Windy City. I’m actually really bad at describing myself because I get all self-critical and self-conscious. Follow me on Twitter, @The1stMJC, to see my borderline insane rants on tv shows and other non important subjects. If I’m not tweeting I’m probably just watching Buffy or Firefly for the millionth time.

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