Backlog Quest: Day 10 – Shadows of the Damned – Fear the Boner

Dear Journal,

Today I was a Mexican, not a Mexicant.

There are two types of gamers in the world: those who have played Shadows of the Damned, and the vastly superior in numbers group who have never even heard of it.  Grasshopper’s game/interactive B-movie didn’t exactly make a big splash when it came out, and it is a damn shame as it is a truly fantastic game.


In fairness, Shadows of the Damned is a fairly generic third person shooter in terms of gameplay, but gameplay isn’t what you will remember.  The game stars Garcia Hotspur, a Mexican demon hunter who pisses off the wrong demon who in turn kidnaps Garcia’s blonde bombshell girlfriend (this does sound familiar, only this version is good).  Hotspur has no choice but to go to hell in an effort to win back his girl (who he met when found her in a dumpster), along with his sidekick; a wisecracking floating demon skull named Johnson (who turns into various guns including The Boner).

Yeah, it’s that type of game.

The humor is crude, ridiculous and often quite macabre.  The B-movie style, combined with some fantastic voice acting and the dark imagery make it all work; even when Johnson turns into a giant (phallic) gun after being sexually aroused by phone sex.  It is this juvenile/mature humor, all done in a way that resembles Pan’s Labyrinth meets early Family Guy that makes the otherwise fairly basic game work.

Do demons even have “junk?”

While Shadows of the Damned does some interesting things in using light and dark to incorporate puzzles and used in tandem with the occasional boss battles, most of it is pretty forgettable.  It certainly adds to the game, making it more than just a shooter, but a year from now you probably won’t remember the shadow puzzles.  The game’s combat system plays very well; offering a very refined though basic third person combat.  In a game that is really about a fun story with a few off beat laughs, the combat not only manages to not get in the way but be entertaining and hold its own as well.


Shadows of the Damned has many very odd moments, and equally as many crude moments. Things often get very twisted in this very perverse and dark underworld, but the game is just long enough to not feel short, but just short enough to not make the humor get old.  This is by no means a game meant to be played with the kids in the room, or the other room, or quite possibly even in the house.  That said, in a generation that has been somewhat overrun by games that take themselves a bit too seriously and more often than not offer the same damn thing over and over again; Shadows of the Damned is a breath of fresh air.  The lighthearted but fun and very well designed story and gameplay is the perfect break from the Medal of Battlefield Duty that you likely need.

You’ll make dead things deader, laugh at the corny and perverted jokes, and most importantly have fun doing so.  So to paraphrase Garcia Fucking Hotspur, be a Mexican not a Mexicant and check out this hilariously twisted gem of a game.

Tomorrow I visit the world of a children’s book masterpiece and learn about myself and stuff in Where the Wild Things Are.

Final Rating: 8.5/10

CBR Break Down:
Console Played On
: Xbox 360
Time to completion: Approximately 8 hours.
Gamer Score Earned: 745/1000
Price Bought at: $12
Current Price: $19.75 (Amazon)
Recommend Purchase Price: Under $20 is totally worth it.
Why you should buy it: One of the funniest (and most fun) games you can play this generation.
Why you shouldn’t buy it: You are a Mexicant.

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About Tristan Rendo

I've made movies, written and performed music, and in January of 2011 got bored and started the awesome gaming site you see before you. My gaming roots began with the original NES, and endless hours spent spilling quarters into machines at the local arcade. I have a personal collection of over 200 Nintendo 64 games, and for many years it was the only system I owned. I re-entered the modern generation of gaming consoles when I decided to purchase a 360. I typically prefer the single player experience of games, so I’m usually playing through some single-player campaign, but can occasionally be found doing some damage in Halo Reach.