Killer is Dead

Key events

Suda 51 defends Killer is Dead's controversial "Gigolo Mode"

"I wanted to tone it down a little bit."

Last year, eclectic game developer Suda 51 and his studio Grasshopper Manufacture received quite a lot of criticism for a series of missions in its stylish action game Killer is Dead. "Gigolo Mode" saw you courting female characters - ogling them while their attention is diverted, then offering a gift to suit their tastes - and by creeping on them successfully you would be rewarded with sex. Just like in real life! (If you live in a Russ Meyer film.)

Rayman Legends outsells Origins week one by 20 per cent in UK chart

UPDATE: Rayman Legends sold best on Wii U, with 45 per cent of the game's boxed retail sales in the UK.

Official figures from Chart-Track show the Xbox 360 version of the platformer enjoyed 30 per cent of the sales, the PlayStation 3 version 24 per cent. Boxed PC sales made up one per cent. Chart-Track does not include download figures.

ORIGINAL STORY: Rayman Legends outsold its predecessor Rayman Origins by around 20 per cent in week one UK sales.

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Killer is Dead review

Killer is Dead review

And so is punk.

To what extent is Goichi Suda still making the games that bear the Suda 51 hallmark? It's hard to tell. The affable punk stylist of the Tokyo games scene hasn't taken a director credit since 2008. Usually referred to as creative or executive director, sometimes taking a scenario or scriptwriting credit - and always happy to speak to the press as the cool figurehead of his studio, Grasshopper Manufacture - Suda's style is unmistakable, but his personal creative input is increasingly opaque.

The firebrand of the mid-2000s who made the hypnotically strange Killer7 and the anarchic No More Heroes has turned himself into a sort of anti-establishment brand, like a fashion designer, leaning on borrowed rebel rock riffs. The games, always rough, have started to look rote with it. The amusingly schlocky Shadows of the Damned and Lollipop Chainsaw are now followed by Killer is Dead, a zany action game directed by Hideyuki Shin which rather self-consciously recycles the look and themes of Suda's more fondly remembered cult hits.

Once again, then, we take the role of a devil-may-care assassin inhabiting a wild comic-book reality where anything can happen: nursery-rhyme horror, giant mutants, sentient trains, possessed Yakuza, unicorns, mansions on the moon, the works. Mondo Zappa glides through all this chaos in a sharp suit, slashing at robotic enemies with his katana or shooting at them with his cybernetic arm, looking cool in the colour-saturated, high-contrast, cel-shaded visuals.

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Killer is Dead release date set for late August

Killer is Dead release date set for late August

Two special editions detailed.

Suda 51's cel-shaded action epic Killer is Dead is now set for a 30th August release in Europe on PS3 and Xbox 360.

Additionally, publisher Deep Silver announced the 54.99 Fan Edition that includes the soundtrack by Akira Yamaoka, an art book, poster, exclusive packaging, and the "Smooth Operator Pack" which contains: the extra mission, "The Man Who Stole Blood," special glasses for the pervy "Gigolo Mode," a new character named Betty that you can seduce, and an unannounced item.

There will also be a slightly cheaper Limited Edition at 49.99, which contains the Smooth Operator Pack, but none of the extra swag.

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New Killer is Dead trailer totally slays me

New Killer is Dead trailer totally slays me

The latest videos show off extensively gameplay.

We've seen glimpses of Suda 51's upcoming cel-shaded neon curio Killer is Dead, but it's nigh on impossible to make heads or tails of it. So here to befuddle, bedazzle and delight you even further is a new trailer showing off several of its assortment of weirdos you'll be eviscerating.

Additionally, some lengthier gameplay videos have emerged, giving one a greater feel for how the game plays. The combat looks like the byproduct of Bayonetta, No More Heroes and Revengeance spliced together, on coke, and it appears to switch effortlessly into a third-person shooter. Look closely and you'll see that a prompt pops up to issue counter-attacks after a well-timed dodge, and there's even a riff off No More Heroes' red & white-tinged Dark Side mode where time slows down and you grow more powerful. Only now it looks more stylish than ever.

As enemies are weakened a prompt appears which ostensibly gives you a choice of finishing moves. Note that an icon next to each one corresponds to that in the lower right corner of your HUD, suggesting these are resources and you can choose which ones to harvest from your about-to-be-dead foes.

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Killer is Dead slated for August in Europe

New trailer reveals Gigolo Mode as a pervier Detective Mode.

Suda 51 and Grasshopper Manufacture's latest neon hack-and-slash opus Killer is Dead is shooting for an August release in Europe on Xbox 360 and PS3, according to the latest trailer.

Sex, death and bright colours: Exploring the strange world of Suda 51's Killer is Dead

"Maybe sexuality in games shouldn't be as big a taboo, but at the same time I live in a country where sexuality is pretty crazy."

It's been a year since Grasshopper Manufacture's rock star founder Suda 51 was doing the rounds for Lollipop Chainsaw, a game whose tongue was stuck so firmly in its cheek it was in danger of poking through the other side. There was something absent there, though - a part of me wished that Suda was building a Japanese version of The Warriors (or even something that more closely resembled Koko Dai Panikku, the violent '70s Japanese high school outcast film Lollipop was inspired by) instead - and the end result fell well short of its outlandish potential. Lollipop Chainsaw lacked a certain something - it was missing a little of the style that's made Suda's name.

Suda51 reveals new Killer is Dead details

Suda51 reveals new Killer is Dead details

UPDATE: Trailer released. Looks absolutely gorgeous.

UPDATE 2: Japanese magazine Famitsu has released the first trailer for Killer is Dead. It's below.

UPDATE 1: The first screenshots of Killer is Dead have been revealed on Famitsu's website. Take a gander at them below. They're quite lovely.

Original story: Grasshopper Manufacture's Suda51 has revealed new details on his new game Killer is Dead.

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