People say ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’, in this case, you get exactly what it says on the tin! The game involves school girls and zombies. It’s as simple as that. School Girl/Zombie Hunter came out in Japan back in January this year and I really wanted to pick it up due to being a massive Onechanbara fan (set in the same universe), but because it was all in Japanese with no English subtitles I decided to wait and see if it ever hit our shores. As soon as I realised we were getting it I was so happy! Yeah, it’s a budget game where you shoot anything that moves, but it combines a few of my favourite styles of games – Action, Anime, Anarchy…. So i’m going to call it a triple-A game!
The story focuses on five school girls who are trapped within their prestigious school, Kirisaku High School, which is conveniently known for its balanced curriculum of sports and academics (which involves a lot of martial arts and learning how to handle weaponry). They are cut off from the outside world and must fend off an almost infinite flood of horny, brutal zombie hordes as they move through the school looking for survivors and discovering the source of the attack.
The girls must learn to work together as well as complete missions on their own if they wish to survive this night of horror! Each of the girls have their own agenda and goals, however, they all have the same common goal – find the source of the undead infestation, annihilate them with overpowering weaponry and fashionable undergarments, and put an end to this crisis.
The game revolves around the five schoolgirls which I have pictured above. They all have very similar character models but you can customise all of their weapons and clothing to make each one as individual as you wish. It appears all of the really ‘sexy’ clothing is locked behind DLC, it isn’t expensive but if you really want to wear nothing but a fig leaf and cherry tomatoes over your nipples then you will have to pay for the privilege.
Before each mission, you can equip your character with up to four guns (which range from handguns all the way to Flamethrowers and rocket launchers) and a melee weapon. You can also change the girl’s hair colour, outfit, shoes and underwear (I’ll get into this later as it’s actually really important). During the game the combat is simple, you can swap guns on the fly (there are no ammo requirements, they are all infinite ammo but various reload times), use various accessories such as grenades and tripwire traps, jump and dodge. If you have played Earth Defence force before, the game controls very similarly to that – you can also fully rebind all of the controller buttons to your preference (something a lot of games still don’t offer).
As this game is set in the Onechanbara universe, you would expect there to be wacky and crazy things you can do (if you haven’t played that game, go look up Onechanbara Z2 – you are bikini wearing demon slayers) and this game doesn’t fail to deliver! As above, your clothes and underwear are incredibly important – at first, you have the ability to strip off mid-game and throw your clothes at a horde of zombies. This will cause the male zombies to go crazy and all jump at your clothes (this causes a distraction so you can escape or open fire). However, this ability doesn’t faze the female zombies as they will continue to attack you regardless of your clothing situation. This is both hilarious and very useful, every single time. If you are on a mission with multiple girls – you can even command your colleagues to strip off their clothes. You can only do this once per girl/per mission though as the zombies seem to devour the clothes a few moments after you throw them.
Finally, as you play through the story you unlock a new ability, the underwear trap. Basically, the longer you wear a piece of underwear, the more powerful it becomes. Once you change underwear, the worn set becomes a trap you can use against the zombies. Okay, so some people will find this a bit disturbing or perverted but I just found it hilarious and wondered how they managed to get this past the ratings over here!
The story mode is made up of various missions which range from getting to Point B, collecting keycards and killing a certain number of zombies, among other objectives. Most of the missions I didn’t have a problem with but there are a few things which were annoying. First of all, when you’re on your own the game can be a bit hard sometimes (even on normal) as the zombies run and jump at you and you do sometimes find yourself overwhelmed. I’ve found that in most levels, which don’t have a barrier that drops by killing enemies, the best solution is to run and gun and not stay and kill everyone. This is because most of the time the enemies will respawn infinitely. The second thing is your colleagues, missions are easier with them helping you as they are very accurate but they like to follow you and block your passage. With this, I found if you jump into them then it tends to let you get past them quite easily.
You also have side missions at the end of each chapter which you can choose to play or ignore. These consist of a care package being dropped and you must complete a mission to obtain it, the care package can contain anything from weapons, clothes or even a cute item which triggers a cutscene from the girls. These side missions are different to the main story and consist of various modes such as an obstacle course (make it to the end of sectioned off zombie infested areas) and a sniper challenge (one girl is guarding the care package and you’re quite far away with a sniper rifle and must fend off the horde from reaching and killing your colleague).
The game also comes with ten missions via a multiplayer mode. It allows up to five players to join in (online only, no split-screen) and play a horde mode where you are all placed in a section of the game with tonnes of zombies spawning for you to destroy. I’ve just managed to get into a room with another guy and record the footage – The video above is from my first experience online. The game works fine, I can see how this would be a lot of fun if you were with people you know – however, you can probably see a few issues with the mode such as sliding zombies and a bit of lag. It was still perfectly playable and fun though. If any of you buy the game and want to play it online, let me know below and we can arrange a time to play!
School Girl/Zombie Hunter is a fun zombie slaughtering sim. The game has a story which is quite generic but with a few surprises thrown in and fans of games such as Earth Defence Force, Dynasty Warriors and Onechanbara will most likely be the target audience here. I feel the multiplayer could be a lot of fun with people you know and a great laugh. If you are looking for a challenge then I strongly recommend this title, ‘normal’ is difficult so the ‘hard’ mode will crazy yet also satisfying if you manage to fully complete the game in both modes with a high rank.
School Girl/Zombie Hunter
- Mindless zombie slaying fun in your panties
- Entertaining cutscenes
- Tongue-in-cheek humour which fans of Onechanbara will really enjoy
- Literally tonnes of weapons, clothing and underwear combinations
- Online can be a little hard to find players (if wanting to play against random people)
- Some missions do have difficulty spikes and cheap unfair disadvantages
- The controls can feel a little janky until you work out what is best for you and customise them
- The best outfits are locked behind a DLC paywall