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Killer Klowns From Outer Space: The Game Review

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When I was a younger man, when this was all fields, there used to be a store that allowed you to rent VHS videos to take home and watch. It was called Blockbuster Video, and while it shut its doors many moons ago, one memory I have is of going in there on a Friday night looking for a horror movie to watch, just so I could scare myself silly. I watched some classics, such as Re-Animator and Return of the Living Dead, but one I always left on the side was Killer Klowns from Outer Space. It just looked too B-Movie even for me, and this is an oversight I haven’t rectified to this day. 

Well, now there is a video game inspired by that film, and suddenly my lack of homework has been thrown into sharp relief – I have literally no idea what is going on. Coming from Illfonic and Teravision Games, Killer Klowns From Outer Space: The Game is an asymmetric game where you can either be one of seven Humans, or one of three Klowns, and then chaos pretty much ensues… Are you ready to grab your best red nose?

Killer Klowns From Outer Space The Game review 1
The Killer Klowns have come From Outer Space

The story of the game isn’t important, but I assume it follows the course the film. We are either residents of a sleepy town called Crescent Cove, or those who suddenly invade our home – the Killer Klowns, those From Outer Space no less. We are tasked with either escaping from the situation, as the Humans, or killing or kapturing (sorry) those Humans as the Klowns. And that is about it – kill or be killed, escape or be captured…

Killer Klowns From Outer Space: The Game is presented very much like Dead by Daylight, which it resembles in a number of ways – the asymmetric sides, some of the mechanisms are very similar, and the core gameplay is broadly the same. However, this game has Klowns in it, and if you weren’t a coulrophobe before playing, I’m pretty sure you will be afterwards!

Both the Klowns and the Humans can be extensively modified, in their appearance at least, and as you play more games and progress through the levels new cosmetics are unlocked, able to then be equipped. The various maps that we find ourselves in are quite large, and need to be explored thoroughly to find useful items. They are varied in scope too, ranging from a fairground to a town on fire, through a woodland campsite – all classic horror film locations that are captured really well. 

The sound of the game is also worth mentioning, as there is some interesting use of sound cues to help both sides. For instance, if a Human runs anywhere, their footsteps carry and any Klowns in the neighbourhood can “see” the noise they make. On the other foot, the Klowns appear to have brought squeaky shoes with them, creating an audible squeak as they walk, which is a good early warning for the Humans. Proximity chat is also turned on, so Humans can talk to each other when they are close together, but this comes at a cost – if a Klown is nearby, they can also listen in on those conversations. I found this out the hard way as I was captured, I asked the Klown to leave me alone (or words to that effect) and the Klown surprised me by answering me. This feature really adds a lot to the immersion as you play, as you know that if a Klown is nearby, you need to keep quiet and hide. 

Killer Klowns From Outer Space The Game review 2
Looking for fun? Be a clown.

Killer Klowns From Outer Space: The Game is an enjoyable experience to take in, there are no two ways about it. Being a Klown is, I would suggest, more fun than being a Human, but the downside is that there is only a 30% chance of being one of those with every match. It therefore feels more like a treat than a certainty to get to be a Klown. But why are they better? Well, the Klowns have access to some exciting weaponry, such as guns that encase your victims in candy floss, eventually turning them into a cocoon if you shoot them enough. These cocoons can then be picked up and hooked up to generators, which powers the Klownpocalypse at the end of the round, and perhaps more importantly, also allows you to spawn lackeys; small robot Klowns that wander around and spot Humans for you. There are also giant hammers, popcorn bazookas, and even boxing gloves to be unleashed on the unwitting Humans, all in the interest of winning of course. 

The Humans aren’t defenceless in this battle, however, although in a stand up fight with a Klown, the odds are against them. They have access to blunt weapons which can knock a Klown down, but they can only be killed by the use of a sharp implement, like a knife or an axe, applied to their weak spot – the nose. Ganging up on a Klown is a great tactic, and a democratically killed Klown is a good Klown, if you ask me! Of course, combat is best avoided and there are a number of ways for the Humans to escape, from a tunnel to a boat, to waiting until the final thirty seconds of a match, when an ice cream van will smash it’s way through one of the barricades blocking the roads – it all depends on the stuff that you find. 

There are some hi-tech bits of equipment too, with a machine that can resurrect all dead players being available, and another that can create a portal to teleport Humans out of the zone. Each of these escape routes relies on you finding certain things in crates around town, ranging from a key for the gate to the tunnel, to a gas can and a spark plug for the boat, and so on and so forth. Getting everything together and escaping requires teamwork, mainly because some of the routes allow multiple Humans to escape, so helping each other is a good idea. 

When you are cocooned, you can actually escape if you have a sharp object in your inventory, so this is something to bear in mind – bursting out of a cocoon tends to throw a Klown off its stride, allowing you to get away if you are quick enough. However, if you should be captured and killed, this is not the end of your game as there are a series of mini games you can play that will award you with items that can either be stashed in your inventory, should you be revived, or gifted to the surviving players. These range from burgers all the way up to shotguns, and can turn the tide of a round in the Humans favour if delivered at the right time. 

Killer Klowns From Outer Space The Game review 3
Those pesky Humans

The gameplay on offer in Killer Klowns From Outer Space: The Game is fast paced and frantic, especially with a group of friends – it never gets old hanging someone on a generator, and finding a group of people willing to team up, cooperate and play the game the way it should be played means this is a lot of fun. And there are extra bits to get involved in too, like trying to remove the Klown candy floss from the various machinery you need which requires the use of “skill checks” or QTE’s to perform, as does hiding in a cupboard or a bin – you have to pass successive skill checks to remain hidden, I guess to prevent Humans from just sitting still the whole match. 

If you are a fan of the asymmetric horror games that are already out there, Killer Klowns From Outer Space: The Game is an easy sell. It’s extremely enjoyable if you are playing as part of a group, and is a game that is capable of doing that rarest of things in the process – giving you the opportunity to find new friends to play with. 

SUMMARY

Pros:
  • Great fun to hunt down Humans as a Klown
  • Large maps require cooperation to escape
  • Looks good, with a lot of customisation options
Cons:
  • Some slight niggles with the QTEs
  • Slim chance to be a Klown
Info:
  • Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, Illfonic
  • Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), PS5, PC
  • Release date and price - 28 May 2024 | £33.49
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<b>Pros:</b> <ul> <li>Great fun to hunt down Humans as a Klown</li> <li>Large maps require cooperation to escape</li> <li>Looks good, with a lot of customisation options</li> </ul> <b>Cons:</b> <ul> <li>Some slight niggles with the QTEs</li> <li>Slim chance to be a Klown</li> </ul> <b>Info:</b> <ul> <li>Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, Illfonic</li> <li>Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), PS5, PC <li>Release date and price - 28 May 2024 | £33.49</li> </ul>Killer Klowns From Outer Space: The Game Review
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