Fashion Police Squad Review – FPS Faux Pas

Fashion Police Squad

While playing the first person shooter,  Fashion Police Squad for review, I kept expecting Austin Powers to pop up and exclaim, “Oh, Behave!” But does the game have anything going for it aside from a sense of humor?

Fashion Friendly FPS

Fashion Police Squad or FPS, get it?, for short – is a 16 bit retro style first person shooter that spins a humorous yarn on the genre. You play as snappily dressed Detective Des of the, yep, you guessed it – the Fashion Police.

This is a silly shooter that is family friendly. There is no gore, often a big appeal for first person shooters, but I didn’t miss it. I credit the retrograde charm and the fun of the game for this.

It is your duty to enforce proper fashion on the streets of Trendopolis. You patrol for crimes of fashion and whip them into shape. Baggy clothes? Socks and sandals? Drab suits? People with no fashion sense at all? Have no fear! You have the appropriate fashion weapon at hand!

Taking a comic cue from other similar comedically themed FPS like Serious Sam, you must mix and match your weapons to suit the enemy type. Your first enemy is Agent Smith-like business men drably dressed in grey suits. No problem. Your first weapon is a shotgun, aka the dye gun. Instead of buckshot, the gun shoots colors. A couple of zaps and the Agent Smiths get some needed color.

Fashion Police Squad Mixing And Matching

This rock, paper, scissors approach to the gameplay carries on with the other types. For example, take the baggy clothes problem. A dye gun would do you no good. What’s needed in those cases is some tailoring, so out comes your sewing machine styled gun. And the socks wearing sandal felons are no match for your sock stealing garden gnomes.

The beginning levels throw a single enemy type at you and the game limits weapon choice at the start. As you progress through further levels, the fashion felons intermingle and more weapons become available. This means you have to manage your weapon choices on the fly or failure will result. A fashion faux pas, one could say.

Further gameplay depth is available with the primary and alternate modes. An example would be the Wet’Ones – a soaker spray gun used primarily to tame enemies whose stylings are too hot. Or the soaker can tighten citizens bearing baggy suits.

Another especially cool dual purpose weapon is your belt. Primarily used on those pesky baggy suits, it also doubles as a mode of locomotion. Using it Indy or Spidey style lets you swing through the city streets by grappling onto flagpoles. Couple it with the Wet’Ones to wet the ground in front of you for speed boosts, and you get some serious air to get across gaps and reach ledges.

Shooting and Moving

The grappling mode of locomotion adds verticality to the game and Finnish developer Mopeful Games uses this to add variety to the level design. Game levels truly harken back to Duke Nukem 3D and are a colorful pastiche of urban landscapes. The level design goes even further to include settings such as a subway train.

The levels do have their flaws, though. They tend to result in a lot of backtracking. Also, there are sections such as alleys or passageways that are too tight, which make battles difficult at times. There’s simply not enough room to maneuver.

Another mixed element is the story narrative of the game. It’s actually good, but its implementation is too intrusive at times. The game delivers narrative via text bubbles between Des and the other characters. It’s not the quality of the writing that’s the problem, but rather how they interfere with the game flow. This lends a frustrating herky-jerky nature to the proceedings.

On the plus side, enemies are well done. Not only their design but their fashion death animations. When their health reaches zero, their fashion felony disappears in a puff of smoke to be replaced with a smoking new look. They also exclaim and have text labels showing up saying such things as, ‘Sexy,’ ‘Glamour,’ or Voguish!’ Silly but satisfying.

Funny Enemies

Enemy attacks vary from flying briefcases, high-speed scooter, fireballs, or jerseys so loud they can blind you. These also make for a refreshing change from the usual enemy artillery. Couple that with a shooting mechanic that makes each of your weapons not only feel unique but gratifying, and it all adds up to a satisfying gameplay mechanic.

Overall, this is a fun affair and an invigorating palate cleanser if you usually dwell in darker and more mature material. Also, this is a game you could play with the small fry that will only take five or six hours to complete.

“Sew”, kick back, relax, and release your inner Austin Powers and have at it, with the Fashion Police Squad!

***PC code provided by the publisher for review***

The Good

Interesting weapons-enemies matching
Funny and fun FPS
Funny enemies and death animations


The Bad

Too much level backtracking
Occasional movement constrictions
Narrative interrupting gameflow