1. Garcian Smith – Known as the
“Cleaner”. Harman’s no. 2. A professional
who is the only one to actually talk to Harman. He is the
middleman. He gets the contracts. He also posses the ability
to bring other members of the killer seven back to life.
2. Dan Smith – Your typical jerk
detective persona. He has a revolver and as far as I can
tell he is the most balanced character. Not too slow, average
power and an ok amount of life. His special attack is a
powerful ‘demon shell’ from his revolver.
3. Kaede Smith – The only female
member of the killer 7. She has a zooming automatic and
has a special power over blood.
4. Con Smith – The blind kid. He
has a set of dual glocks and is very, very fast. He is by
far my favorite character simply because he is so deadly.
5. Coyote Smith – A raging kleptomaniac
with a Dirty Harry complex. He has a revolver similar to
Dan with more power, and has a supernatural jumping ability.
6. Kevin Smith – A quiet guy, and
knife fetishist. He’s quick for a big guy and posses
the ability to make himself invisible by taking off his
7. Mask de Smith – A former professional
wrestler. He has an Oddly sunny disposition for a killer.
He can take a lot of damage and wields a set of dual grenade
launchers. He’s your one stop shopping for breaking
All the characters have differing personalities.
Most of them don’t seem to get along at all and one
never even speaks. In this assignment they are after the
Heavenly Smile terrorist group leader: Kun Lan. Known as
the root of all evil. A touch from his hand can turn a normal
human into an insane nearly invisible walking explosive
among other things.
This very exciting, but equally weird,
game is available for PS2 and GC from Capcom. This game
is litterally dripping with atmosphere. Most of the game
is designed to weird you out and draw you into
the game world. So expect the strange and gruesome.
We’re in a tight spot
My first suggestion for this game is to
study the manual. The game has a steep learning curve and
the in game help is less than perfect.
The in game ‘helper’ is named
Iwazaru. He, as far as I can tell, is what’s left
of the characters conscience. Dressed up in some sort of
red bondage outfit this character gives cryptic information
always starting with some repeated pessimist statement and
finishing with and a salute to Harman. He also doesn’t
speak English, or any other language as far as I can tell.
Just some freaky tones. Though everything he says needs
a bit of translating anyway so who needs to speak English?
The game play itself is a little unlike
anything I’ve ever seen. The game is on rails. You
can go forward and you can go back. In that way it is a
lot like a 2d side scroller, the only difference in this
game being that it is 3D and whenever the ‘road’
forks or there is something interesting to look at a selector
pops up and you push the right stick in the direction and
hit X. This form of navigation is actually quite fluid after
you get used to it and makes common mistakes in 3d games
like getting stuck on a wall and getting killed a non-event.
The enemy AI is well, quite simple. They
have a few enemy types that do different things but for
the most part they all come towards the player and explode/attack.
Some bosses/mini bosses use bullets/powers, but they are
mostly easily avoided or are a little weak and hit you a
You can only attack in first person view.
They help you out a bit by having a short range selector
that puts your crosshair over a close enemy’s center
body mass. You have to scan most enemies before you can
even hit them. But the plus side is that after scanning
them it reveals glowing weak points where if you hit them
you get a critical attack. Aiming for critical points multiply
your uh… experience.
Experience in this game is handled by blood.
The more blood you spill the more ‘experience’
you get. So shooting the head and arms off nets more than
shooting a smile in the chest. Criticals with powerful weapons
netting the most multiplied blood. This gives the game a
few cool little RPG elements. Though I was disappointed
that bosses generally don’t give any blood.
Blood is redeemable at the characters ‘special
place’ referred to as Harman’s room. They are
anything from closets to office rooms but they are a safe
place in the mind of a killer. Sort of like a pocket of
existence where you can save and interact with your other
personalities. You interact with other personalities via
a warped looking television set. This TV also lets you use
‘the doctor’ to change your ‘thick blood’
into usable upgrade ampoules.
Some of the characters have different stats,
but for the most part there is power (damage), speed, waver
(aiming and shot accuracy), and critical (makes it easier
to critical a smile). The character specific upgrades are
range and invisibility for their respective characters.
This game has atmosphere. The ‘cell
shading’ effect used in this game has been around
in CG for a very long time. Classics like Alone in the Dark
and Interstate 76 had similar shading styles. Though in
killer 7 it is real time and combined with gaudy contrasting
colours. Frankly I think the effect is ugly and should never
be used and the constant horribly long load times on the
PS2 which may be related to it are unnecessary. Not as long
as games like RE outbreak, but still unnecessarily long
for the size and detail of the areas.
There are more effects and higher texture resolutions on
the Gamecube version of this game. I imagine they were taken
out or made a lower rez for the PS2 version due to hardware
I will also mention most cut scenes in the game could have
been done real-time. It sort of brings you out of the world
a bit when a character always has the same background in
a cut scene no matter what area you’re in.
Blood drips and sprays. Things explode and crumble. Some
of the characters change outfits from mission to mission.
Every texture is quite attractive where you do see them.
I have no doubt they had some talented artists working on
this game. There are a lot of little details that show the
thought put into the game, its just too bad they took such
a minimalist approach on the overall look.
Sound wise it’s similar to Parasite Eve. A lot of
the music is quite similar. The voice actors did a great
job as well, they make the characters all ooze with personality.
Those characters that don’t have voices work well
too. I also like how they have a bit of ‘pump you
up’ music before a mini boss fight.
As far as puzzles there are a few on every mission. They
range from having the right item to being able to run down
the hall and get a clue. There is also a nice guy that gives
clues, if you want the answer pointed out to you he puts
on a mask and turns into a jerk, but tells you what you
need to know all at the cost of a little blood. Often when
you get stuck you simply missed the item the want you to
have if you cant progress any further. Luckily there is
also a spirit of a dead child usually drops some cryptic
hints on killing bosses.
Replay value is very low, as all they have is a harder
mode to try. There are no multiplayer modes.
In truth the ‘Smiths’ are actually one man.
Or so the plot suggests. Though the game does a very good
job of making you second-guess that. I can’t even
begin to even guess which one is the ‘real’
Smith as far as outside characters are concerned.
The game is simple but fun and a multi-layered story that
leaves you second-guessing. It has great characters that
I formed an emotional attachment to. It has great music
and an unfortunate art style. I’m sure some may like
the look, but I am unimpressed. Some parts of the game look
spectacular in the style such as outdoor rural areas, but
being most of the game is set mostly in an urban setting
it just doesn’t work for me.
I highly recommend the game as a rental. Though with little
replay value you might be better not to purchase this one.
The puzzles can get annoying and some of the enemies, which
I still am not sure how to kill safely with all characters,
are a bit of a bother.
I also suggest getting the Gamecube version, as it is a
little more visually impressive due to the PS2's aging hardware