Lollipop Chainsaw Xbox 360 Review
Lollipop Chainsaw is a new game by Grasshopper Manufacturer who's other game's like Killer 7 and No More Heroes are known for perhaps emphasizing style over substance. Which is certainly the case with Lollipop Chainsaw which has a fairly interesting story and humorous dialogue, but is bogged down by a slow, basic hack and slash game with an unsatisfying combat system that somehow makes roaming around a town, mowing down zombies with a attractive chainsaw wielding cheerleader not very fun, and often quite dull. The short campaign and very linger levels make the game a bit of a chore to play through at times, especially during the many tedious minigames. Lollipop Chainsaw reminds me a lot of other games like Monster Madness for 360 or Stubbs the Zombie for the original Xbox. The difference between those games and this one is that they both had more weapons, more enemies and most importantly co-op, which is something the game sorely lacks.
The game takes place on the main character's Juliet's 18th birthday. She hopes to have a pleasant day at school and later a nice romantic date with her boyfriend Nick. That plan goes horribly awry quickly though when the small town of San Romero that they live in is quickly overrun by a zombie outbreak. Luckily head cheerleader Juliet came prepared and for some reason always carries a huge pink chainsaw with her at all times. Tragically her boyfriend Nick gets bitten by a zombie on his wrist, and then Juliet makes the insane command decision to decapitate him so that he won't turn into a zombie. Then even though she only admits to being a zombie hunter, Juliet must be some kind of witch since she casts a magic spell to reanimate Nick's severed head, and then straps his head to her waist like some sort of macabre fanny pack or good luck charm. Why not just cut off his arm, or use some of her apparent sorcery skills to stop him from turning into a zombie and cure the infection? Anyway Juliet travels throughout the game looking for the source of the zombie plague, while Nick hangs by her side offering commentary about their current situation and the occasional joke or gameplay tip. I find it odd that although Juliet and Nick will often have humorous exchanges during the game, it's almost never flirty, and they don't seem have that much chemistry, and it even seems like they aren't listing to each other most of the time.
It turns out that evil Goth kid Swan has opened a portal to Hell and summoned five rock and roll zombie demon lords to do his bidding and destroy the town.
Throughout the game you'll run into Juliet's family, All of them Witches. [Rosemary's Baby reference.] Juliet's motorcycle riding father seems suspicious of Nick's intentions despite him only now being a severed head. Cordelia Juliet's older sister is a sniper, and is also a straight talking no-nonsense kind of person. Rosalind Juliet's younger sister is crazy hyperactive and impulsive which makes her kind of loose cannon wildcard. Juliet's mother is underdeveloped, but seems good natured and doesn't seem to be a part of the monster hunting family business.
Also popping up now and then are Juliet's disgruntled and now zombiefied classmates, teachers, and townsfolk. I question the choice of zombies in the game being able to talk as well as mock and threaten Juliet. Zombies also use tools, weapons and firearms in the game which might annoy some purist zombie fans such as myself. However I understand that the game would be less interesting without those elements.
When you first start the game combat feels slow sluggish, but once you buy the upgrades it gets a little quicker and it's more easy to do combos. However the battle system never really clicked with me. Early on the combat is too difficult, it feels cheap and unfair and later it's far too easy once you've bought all the upgrades, combos, and discover how useful Nick Tickets are. Maybe I upgraded my character too much, but my main complaint really is that it doesn't feel very rewarding to do well at the game, and of course it's never fun when your bad at a game, so it's passable but not really noteworthy or particularly entertaining. That's why the game could really use a two or four player co-op multiplayer mode, since that would really spice things up and give the short game some much-needed longevity.
There are four basic attacks. The Y button is a slow upward slash with the chainsaw. The A button is a slightly faster downward slash with the chainsaw. The B button is a jump/dodge move. The X button does quick attacks with pompoms that will often stun enemies. Juliet's attacks desperately need to be faster since they are so slow that your combos will constantly be interrupted in the middle by zombies early on in the game, which makes it a good idea to be cheap and spam the same effective move over and over again. There are several really cheap moves in the game, that most enemies have no way of countering. The most basic strategy is to jump over their head, downward slash them in the back, and then jump over their head again once they turn to face you and then downward slash them again. Repeat the process until they're dead. It takes a while to kill enemies this way but it's really simple, and very safe. The jumping chainsaw stab move is great and easy to chain, you just have to jump up and do a upward slash and you'll get a guaranteed three hits, sometimes even to groups of zombies. Another great move is to do one downward slash and then two pompom attacks, which will cause Juliet to do a low spinning chainsaw attack that does crazy damage and will usually sever the legs of zombies and often even their heads was they're on the ground. The easiest cheep move by far is the basic heavy attack combo. Once it's fully upgraded all you need to do is simply keep pressing the same button seven times, and practically everything will be dead by the end of the combo, with most zombies being taken out after only the first three hits. You can try fancier combos that alternate which buttons you press, but zombies hate to wait their turn and constantly hit you from behind in the middle of a attack, which will break your combo and force you to start over. So I find it simpler to just use the cheap moves on small groups of enemies, and use Nick tickets on large mobs in order to get more platinum coins.
For every zombie that you kill you'll receive a star that will fill up your super meter. Once it's full by activating it with the right trigger, Juliet will start flashing all the colors rainbow, every attack except against bosses will be a one hit kill decapitation, and the song "Oh Mickey you're so Fine" will play for the next 30 seconds. Obviously this is great for killing large groups of zombies, but it's also particularly useful for collecting platinum coins since it's really easy to kill many zombies at the same time when you only have to hit them once.
The game isn't really too hard. It seems difficult at first before you get used to dodging zombie attacks. If you get low on health though at any time you can use a lollipop from your inventory to refill your health. On easy mode you can carry up to ten lollipops, on normal five, on hard three and on very hard you can carry only one lollipop at time. However by exploiting Nick Tickets you could always refill your health with the lollipops that Nick Shake randomly drops, which is sometimes as much as six depending on how fast you mash the buttons.
There are two kinds of currency in the game, gold coins and platinum coins. Gold coins are pretty easy to acquire. You'll get some from killing enemies, completing QTEs, saving survivors, and you'll even find some just lying around the levels. Platinum coins are much more difficult to obtain, since there are only about two or three methods of acquiring them, all of which are time consuming. The easy but tedious way is to kill a zombie with a name over its head, which means it's part of the zombie dictionary which will reward you with two platinum coins. Also every tme you replay the stage and kill them again you'll still get two more platinum coins. The other way to collect platinum coins is difficult and complicated but more efficient and faster in comparison to the first method. Any time during the game when you kill three or more zombies at exactly the same time the game will slow down, the background will change to outer space and you'll be awarded a bonus of gold coins and at least one platinum coin. This process is bizarrely called sparkle hunting. The more zombies you kill the same time the greater the bonus, even just killing four zombies instead of three will get you two platinum coins. The big prize however is to kill nine zombies at the same time, which will give you nine platinum coins. Of course it's pretty difficult to take out a large number of zombies at the same time with one hit, so that's where the super meter and Nick Tickets come in. Also certain combos are more likely to trigger sparkle hunting than others, and once a zombie is stunned the next hit will kill them. Also keep in mind that you can soften up zombies beforehand, just as long as you inflict the final blow to a group of three or more at the same time you'll still be awarded platinum coins. You can also be awarded one platinum coin for shooting three zombies in a row without missing with the chainsaw blaster, or running over three zombies with the chainsaw dash move at the same time.
Coins can be spent in the stores scattered throughout the levels in the game. Gold coins are used to buy new moves, stat upgrades, and spare lollipops and Nick Tickets. Lollipops and Nick Tickets are cheap at only 30 coins apiece. However upgrades and special moves usually cost between 200 and 500 per item. Platinum coins are used to buy new music, concept art, and the main prize new costumes for Juliet. Juliet's costumes are really expensive, especially considering how hard it is to get platinum coins in the first place. Most costumes cost about 30 coins, with the more desirable ones being about 80. Whether or not it's worth it to go sparkle hunting all the time, just so you can play as Juliet in a skintight dirtier costume is up to you. I will point out however that she will use the new costume in both gameplay and cut scenes, if that helps your decision process. Music and concept art are comparatively cheap usually only costing five, three, or even just one platinum coins apiece.
Early in the game will have the option spending your gold coins on either stats or skill upgrades. Skill upgrades and new moves will make the combat slightly more complex and a lot easier, whereas stat upgrades like to your health or damage output are more subtle and don't do much to directly affect the difficulty. I chose to max out my base stats first, and the game was consistently challenging during my first time through on normal. Looking back though it seems like buying new moves, combos and skills would have probably been a better idea, especially since the Nick Shake upgrade is the key to making a lot of money quickly and getting high scores in the game so that you can unlock everything.
Most of the time the new moves you buy in the store will only extend existing combos, but that's still pretty useful. For example at the start of the game you can only hit with the heavy attack three times, but at the end of the game you can get by with simply mashing the Y button since it's combo can hit up to seven times which will kill most enemies. The heavy attacks slow speed means there's a high chance that you could be countered attacked by a zombie mid-combo, but it's made up for by the terrific damage output. Quick attacks are great for whittling down zombies health or severing their legs, which of course makes them move a lot slower. Pompom stun attacks are supposed to be very fast and hone in on targets, but are difficult to aim which makes using them is set up finishing moves often more trouble than it's worth.
Throughout the game you'll acquire various upgrades to your chainsaw's abilities, or new special moves involving Nick that require Nick tickets.
One upgrade allows you to aim and shoot bullets from your chainsaw, which is called the chainsaw blaster. I don't like the concept of having your chainsaw turn into a shotgun of sorts. I also don't like how introduction of the chainsaw blaster makes the games remaining levels sometimes become a shooting gallery and there are some enemies, including bosses that are only capable of being hit with the blaster. To make matters worse the chainsaw blaster has a maximum capacity of only 36 shots, which I think is a reference to Juliet's measurements. Regardless the game often puts you in situations where you would need at least 50 shots if you didn't miss to complete a section, without going to look for more ammo. Worse still you cannot collect more ammo while you're aiming with the chainsaw blaster, even if you walk over it while aiming. You have to stop aiming, run over the ammo to pick it up, and then resume shooting, which is a terrible mechanic during an escort mission or a boss fight.
You might notice early on in the game that Juliet runs pretty slowly. I guess you could attribute this to her having to lug around a 6 foot long and presumably very heavy pink chainsaw everywhere, but regardless her slow movement speed becomes a problem when you have a limited amount of time to save survivors or complete objectives. So the chainsaw dash is introduced which is a short sprint that causes you to run at about twice your normal speed. The sprint however only lasts for about half a block, which is rather useless, but can continue in definitely if you keep collecting fuel cans for your chainsaw while dashing. In certain areas in the game you'll be expected to continuously chainsaw dash, and even do jumps off of ramps, which is kind of fun but feels out of place.
In addition to being the pessimistic voice of reason counterpart to Juliet's bubbly optimism Nick can also be used as a screen clearing super move of sorts. When you have a Nick ticket by clicking the left analog to use it
When you have a Nick ticket clicking the left analog stick will start a minigame where icons of all four Nick moves rapidly scroll across the screen and you have to press the A button at exactly the right time to hopefully use your desired move. Generally I usually land on the ability I'm after if I press the button on the icon that's just in front of the one I want. The most useful special move involving Nick is definitely Nick Shake, which is also the only one that isn't acquired by advancing in the story and must be bought as an upgrade in a store instead. Using Nick Shake causes Juliet to rattle around Nick's head like a piggy bank when you mash buttons on the controller which results in a shower of hundreds of gold coins and one to six lollipops. Besides refilling your health with the extra lollipops, you can easily beat the high scores for each level by abusing the Nick Shake move thanks to all the coins you'll have collected. What makes the moves even better, is that you can buy a Nick ticket from the store for 30 coins, you'll make a profit of about 150 coins when you use it. The only drawback is that it seems like you can only use the Nick Shake move once every three minutes, but considering that you can carry nine Nick tickets at once and that levels are usually 30 minutes to a hour long its really hardly a limitation at all.
Nick Shoot is the second most useful special move, and is the best special move for getting platinum coins. Once the move is activated Juliet will shoot Nick's head out of her chainsaw like a cannon, and moving the left stick will hit any zombies onscreen which will cause them to be stunned and ripe for decapitation. Nick Shoot is great because it stuns the zombies at their current location and it hits all of them with very little targeting. A good strategy have them all the zombies swarm around you in a circle, activate the move, and then go to town sparkle hunting and take out nine zombies with one swing of your chainsaw netting you nine platinum coins.
Nick Popper is very similar to Nick Shoot but is less effective. When activated Juliet will shoot Nick's head out of her chainsaw like a cannon again, but this time the barrel of the gunsaw looks different. When the move is initiated the camera will shift to a second person perspective that puts Juliet on the far left side of the screen, with the targeting reticule for firing Nick's head in the center. Shooting an enemy will stun them, but it unfortunately also causes a fair amount of knockback, which makes it difficult to line up zombies in a neat little row, which is of course the key to sparkle hunting. To make matters worse there also isn't much time to shoot, and zombies don't stay dazed very long even when you do hit them. You could also attempt to just focus on one enemy and try to kill them with repeated shots but I find that it's not very efficient since it takes about three or four shots to kill anything with Nick Popper, so you're probably better off just using the chainsaw.
Nick Toss is the worst special move because ironically it's too affective at killing zombies. When you start the move Juliet will swing Nick's head around like a tether ball wildly hitting any zombies in a large circular area around her. Once a zombie is hit by Nick's head they will be stunned, however there's no way to steer or cancel out of the move, so Juliet will keep on hitting the zombies for the duration of the attack, which will usually wind up killing all of them. Nick Toss is great crowd control, and if you simply just want to beat the game, and don't care about collecting coins or costumes, then I suppose Nick Toss would be pretty good for killing large groups of zombies, but otherwise it's not that useful.
If you lose all your health and die during normal gameplay, and not during a minigame or because of a failed QTE, as long as you have a single Nick Ticket you'll have a chance for him to revive you and respawn exactly where you were, which is pretty useful and a good reason to carry around a lot of Nick Tickets.
One of my biggest complaints about the game is how little enemy variety there is. Although basic zombies have several outfits such as jocks, punks, or farmers. They usually all behave the same, and can be killed with identical tactics. There are some stronger zombies that will telegraph a special move by glowing blue or red right before they let out a area effect super attack. Fireman and oddly hazemat zombies both have fire breathing attacks which do a lot of damage and will cause you to get knocked down. Football player and construction worker zombies both have tackle moves that are hard to dodge since they have a wide area of attack. Bomber zombies will attempt to self-destruct near you. Fat guy zombies try to belly flop onto Juliet and therefore crush her. Anarchists hipster zombies throw Molotov cocktails around. Boom box zombies make other zombie allies near them invincible until their boom box is destroyed. Old men zombies have a spin attack that is very hard to dodge it is pretty cheap. There are even flying zombies which most of the time can only be taken out with the chainsaw blaster, unless you're lucky enough to clip them with your chainsaw when they try to dive bomb attack you. But the most annoying special zombies are the police officers, who tend to travel in packs. The problem is that they love to shoot you with their rapidfire pistol in unison with each other and that will do tremendous damage to Juliet's health. This is why I recommend just using Nick Tickets to take out zombie cops, since it isn't worth the health loss to fight them normally.
There also some regular zombies that are armed with guitars or knifes, props really. Sometimes when they attack you, a duel of sorts between your chainsaw and their weapon will ensue. You'll then have to rapidly press the Y button to overcome the obstacle. What's really annoying is that it frequently happens during the middle of a combo, which really throws you off. You can also be grabbed by zombies, and you'll have to quickly press the B button to escape. Fail to do so and the zombie mob will descend upon you, you'll lose a lot of health and you'll have to rapidly press B to escape, instead of just a single time had you pressed it earlier.
I suppose the bosses in the game do offers some much needed variety, but however I found most of them to be unfortunately disappointing in both scope and difficulty.
Before the end of the game Nick asks if Juliet's ever fought any other monsters, and she says that she's also faced vampires, aliens and other monsters. Why aren't any of these in the game? There desperately needs to be more enemy variety in the game, or at least different tactics when fighting different zombies, but as long to press B you'll always dodge, and every enemy relents to the blade of your chainsaw. It just gets boring after a while. I just want to see a enemy, fear them, and then panic at the thought of how I'm going to deal with them and the rest of enemy horde at the same time. What I'm saying is that combat in the game never really gets intense, or gets my heart racing like a proper action game should.
There are a lot QTE's in the game. Every time a strong attack from an enemy knocks you down, you'll have to quickly tap the B button to get back on their feet, which as you might imagine can get pretty annoying. Often your progress will be halted by obstacle in front of you, perhaps falling on you, and you'll have to quickly press the button displayed on the screen to escape. Periodically throughout the levels you'll come across a headless blue zombie body, which you can then attach Nick to so that he can destroy the debris blocking the path ahead. Unfortunately every step and action Nick takes requires different button that you only have two seconds to press. Sometimes these sections go on way too long, especially in Stage 3 and where you'll have press nearly 40 buttons to advance. Juliet cheers Nick on during these sequences, but it doesn't help that she stops counting after the first ten buttons. For some reason that really throws me off, and I find that I do a better job with the sound is off. Occasionally you'll also run into a trampoline that Juliet can bounce off of and onto zombie heads, which kills them. Each jump requiring a different QTE action. When you've finished the jumping sequence will be expected to perform tricks in the air before you make your final landing. The more tricks you pull off the more gold coins you'll earn. Trampoline sequences are far less annoying when compared to the Nick sections, but they are still not very fun. There are also many dodge move QTEs during boss fights, and every boss has to be finished off with a directional slash and mashing the Y button.
There are awful lot of minigames in Lollipop Chainsaw. Usually minigames are supposed to be a refreshing diversion from the normal gameplay. Here however mingames are often too frequent, not fun, and frustrating, and actually deter me from wanting to replay the already short game, since they're so bad.
Compared to some the other minigames zombie basketball isn't that bad. The goal is to keep pressing the Y button in order to sever zombie skulls and launch them into the basket. Unfortunately zombie point guards will attempt to block and deflect your shots. You can get around this by simply killing the point guard, but in the second match they're super difficult to kill and it takes too much time to do so.
Another minigame has you protecting a birthday cake wired with explosives, from zombies that are on fire. Most of the time there will only be one or two zombies going for the cake at once, so you only have to stun one with a pompom attack, kill the other, and then return the first one. Eventually there'll be some fast running zombies and at one point five will rush the cake at once That's what really screws you over, unless you're super meters full. After beating the game six times, this is the only part that I still die on occasionally.
Then there is the infamous zombie baseball minigame. Juliet must fend off attackers using the chainsaw blaster, while Nick possess the body of a baseball player and tries to run the bases unharmed. Nick moves slowly, and the zombies are relentless so you'll have to keep a eye on your ammo and wait for a brief lull to stop aiming and pick up some more ammo whenever you get low, which conveniently spawns right next to you, since you don't want to run out with four guys approaching Nick at once. Apparently a lot of people had trouble with this part, because they have auto aim turned on, and it will mess up and target the zombies farthest away from Nick and not the ones that are about to attack him. The minigame isn't too hard with auto aim turned off however.
Stage 4 has a lot of classic arcade game parody minigames. The hardest of which is the gondola section. You control what I think is a window washer rig that scales the side of a building, while open windows, UFOs, and zombies that drop bombs try to knock you off and kill you. You can move up or down, and left or right while dodging obstacles trying to get to the top of the building. The problem is that you move very slowly and if any obstacle is two rows or less above you you'll get hit, and have to start the whole section over again. You can fire lasers with the Y button to destroy oncoming hazards or zombies which makes things a little easier but it's still pretty tough. God help you if you attempt to get the achievement for being the section without firing a shot, as it's incredibly frustrating, and hard to do. Particularly because the zombies throw things randomly with no pattern, and will sometimes screw you over with a no win scenario when two or three of them throw bombs in the same row at the same time, so there's no way to possibly escape.
There's even a minigame where you ride a tractor and mow down zombies while harvesting crops. It's not as fun as it sounds since the turning radius is so bad, and you'll also have to avoid hitting explosive barrels. It really just serves to break the pace of otherwise good level. That's my main problem with the minigames. I'll think about how I'd like to replay a level because most of it was fun, but then I'll remember how much I hated at least one of the minigames and then decide against replaying the level at all. The minigames are awkwardly shoehorned into the levels and feel so out of place when compared to normal gameplay, to the point where I'd prefer it if they weren't in the game in the first place, or if I were at least able to skip them after I complete them once. Even now what I'm actually good at the bad minigames I still dread the thought of replaying them due to the terrible memories of dying so much on them during my first playthroughs of the game.
Levels are really linear, to the point where there is almost no exploration and you pretty much just have to walk forward all the time. Which is a shame since sometimes there are some pretty cool environments, like an arcade, construction site, farm, or the school.
One of the selling points of the game to me was that you get to save survivors. Which I thought meant that the game would be like Dead Rising which I of course love. I was disappointed to learn that there are actually hardly any survivors in the game, only about 12 really. Plus almost all of them look the same and the only say one sentence when you rescue them. There is an achievement for saving survivors, and unless you rescue all of them you won't get the "good" extended ending, but after seeing both I actually think that the bad ending is cooler.
I'm tempted to say that the game doesn't have much replay value, since the combat oddly isn't very fun, merely average and the cut scenes and comments by Juliet and Nick are boring after the second time you've seen or heard them. However I found myself replaying the game six times through in order to unlock everything. So at very least it must be pretty addictive. The main reason to replay the game is to check out in costumes on Juliet, and obtain more platinum coins in order to unlock even more costumes. There are also a few side quests by collecting all the hidden golden lollipops, or finding all the named zombies throughout the stages, by the way some zombies and lollipops only appear on hard mode. There's also ranked mode, where when you complete a level your score will be uploaded to a online global leaderboard. I'm not sure why they just don't upload your score when you complete a stage in story mode, but for some reason they're separate. There are a few differences in ranked mode though, like there aren't any checkpoints, so if you die you'll have to restart the whole level over again. The shop is removed and has been replaced with a evil zombie in a chicken suit and is actually pretty difficult to kill. Basically I doubt that most people will replay the game more than twice, and considering that there are only seven stages counting the prologue and that the game is only five to seven hours long with cut scenes, I would say it's probably not worth my buying at full price and that most people should probably just rent the game since it's so short.
Main characters in the game like Juliet or Rosalynn look great and are technically impressive, but basic zombies and especially survivors have low quality textures and are sometimes poorly modeled. Character models in the game are cel shaded, but they look pretty good, I guess because it's rather subtly done, unlike most other cel shaded games. The level's environments in the game are too technically impressive, they even often resemble a PlayStation 2 or original Xbox game, but they are nicely detailed and feel as though people could actually live in them. The prologue probably has a worst lighting in the game due to the probably intentional green haze everywhere, but Stage 3 at dusk probably has the best lighting in the game. Overall I would say that the game has pretty good graphics because of its impressive character models, but lacks the polish necessary to make the game stand out from the pack, so to speak.
Voice acting in the game is pretty good most of time. Occasionally someone might say something with the wrong inflection in order to make a line funny or ironic, but it doesn't happen that often. What I actually have a problem with is casting. Tara Strong is believable and consistent as Juliet, but sometimes she seems just a bit too perky given the situation. She also doesn't seem to project enjoying killing zombies as the dialogue often suggests, she's just constantly giddy. I also question whether or not Juliet is suppose to sound sexy or alluring given her hyper sexualized character model. If the intention was to de-sexualize her by her dialogue and voice, then she's doing a great job, but if Juliet is supposed to sound sexy, then not so much. Michael Rosenbaum as Nick never sounds like he loves Juliet, in fact it sounds like he has great contempt and resents her, which I suppose is understandable given what she did to him. He does nail Nick's sarcastic and often deadpan humor though. The soundtrack of the game is pretty impressive, featuring a ton of licensed music, notably from the early 80's such as "Oh Mickey Your so Fine", "You Spin me Right Round, like a Record Baby", "Lollipop", and several songs from Jimmy Urine who also voices the boss Zed in the game.
Controls in the game are pretty nice and outside of having trouble with the timing of a few combos, I didn't really have any trouble with them and I think the game handles solidly. The left analog stick moves Juliet, and when you have one, clicking it will use a Nick Ticket. Once a Nick Ticket is activated press the A button to stop the cursor on the desired icon, or press the B button to cancel using the Nick Ticket in case you clicked the left stick by mistake. The right analog stick adjusts the camera, and when drawn aims the chainsaw blaster. The A button does a quick downward slash with the chainsaw. The Y button does a slow but more powerful upward slash with the chainsaw. The X button does a fast pompom attack that isn't very damaging but is good at stunning enemies. The B button causes Juliet to jump when stationary, but it can also be used to dodge attacks, or hop over enemies. The L Trigger aims the chainsaw blaster. The R Trigger activates your super meter when it's full. The Right Bumper activates the chainsaw dash move. Pressing any direction on the D-Pad will bring up a menu to use a lollipop to refill your health by pressing A. Lastly a lot of people don't know how to hear Juliet's phone messages. To check them you must go to Juliet's closet on the start menu or the map screen. Then repeatedly press the Y button until the phone menu is displayed, then press A to listen to a message.
Lollipop Chainsaw has a pretty entertaining story, a great soundtrack and fairly good graphics. The problem is the lack luster combat, QTEs and terrible minigames really mar the whole experience. The game aspires to be like Devil May Cry, Ninja Gaiden or Bayonetta, with deep rich rewarding and stylists flashy combat, but it's actually so limited that it feels more like a arcade hack and slash like Gauntlet or Golden Axe, since there are really only a handful of attacks that are useful or effective. This game really need to have some kind of two player mode to make the game more interesting and give it a lot more replay value. As it is the game is a short shallow experience that only lasts between five to seven hours. You might want to replay the game to use new costumes, but the dull combat and terrible minigames might make you think twice. My personal score is a 6/10. But I'm going to give the game a reluctant 7/10 only because I feel that most people would probably like it more than I did. I would recommend renting the game or waiting until it goes down in price to say $20 since it is unacceptability short and should really be four times as long to justify its $60 price.