If there was ever an anime that had a short run and deserved a comeback of some kind, it was Kill la Kill. Fans like myself have long been lauding the series for things like its enthralling storyline and energetic music, not to mention wishing it would one day make some sort of videogame appearance. And thanks to the talented folks at Arc System Works, that wish has finally become a reality in the form of Kill la Kill the Game: IF.
The scissors need sharpening
Storyline-wise, it’s no different from the anime upon which it’s based. 17-year-old Ryuko Matoi has arrived at Honnouji Academy in search of answers regarding her father’s murder. In order to learn the truth, she has to fight her way through an egotistical student council led by the fearsome Satsuki Kiryuin. Sadly, the story mode makes you watch cutscenes of the Elite Four battles and just thrusts you into a tutorial fight that takes place after the best of the best are defeated. I know that’s nitpicky on my end, but I still feel the story mode starts in a weird way.
Another slight beef I have with this game involves the graphics and sound. While the visuals, music, and voice-acting do not disappoint whatsoever, the English dub’s lip-syncing is pretty poor. The English voice cast reprises their roles quite well, so it’s a shame that the speaking animations don’t really play ball with the script. Not a dealbreaker by any means, but it needs polish.
Don’t lose your way
Although it may seem like this game is a huge disappoint to me, I assure you that’s not the case. What really matters in a fighting game is the combat itself, and that’s where Kill la Kill sharpens the scissors. The control scheme is easy to get the hang of and never ceases to feel tight. You’ll also be treated with few-second cutscenes whenever you pull off one of your special moves. There’s even a QTE mechanic that may remind you of the clash system from the Injustice series.
When you need a break from classes at Honnouji, there’s a two-player mode both locally and online. The roster is a bit thin (Only eight characters plus two DLC fighters), but you do get a nice selection of prominent locations from the show. And no matter where you do battle, you can rack up credits to purchase things from the gallery, such as figures, music, and voice clips.
Before my body is dry
It’s not quite as polished as Arc’s other fighting games, but Kill la Kill the Game: IF is still a very good comeback from the short-but-lauded anime it’s based on. With things like accessible controls and a beautiful 2D-to-3D translation of the show’s animation, this game is a must-have for arena-fighting fans and anime diehards alike. The term “running with scissors” takes on a new meaning.