One of my biggest challenges in this review will be not uttering a single swear word. This is because House of the Dead: Overkill is choc full of the little beggars. In a kind of Grand Theft Auto meets George A Romero, meets Resident Evil, this is a rock em sock em mutant killing bonanza up there with the best of them.

The story is pretty standard stuff. You are Special Agent G, fresh out of the AMS Academy, and your first assignment is to head to Bayou City to chase down Papa Caesar. Only problem is that Bayou City has been overrun by mutants and Mr Caesar is a slippery fella with evil hordes at his fingertips.

Surrey Comet: House of the Dead: OVERKILL

Having spent hundreds of pounds in arcades up and down the country, and having acquired many a soar shoulder killing zombies, terrorists and even dinosaurs, I know my way around a shooter or two. Perhaps the biggest worry with a game like this is can it actually offer anything new, fresh or interesting in one of gaming's oldest genres? Utterly new, no. Interesting and strangely fresh? Yes it does.

House of the Dead is a shameless, schlocky homage to mutant (not zombie) films. And probably its strongest point is that it has embraced this wholeheartedly.

Surrey Comet: House of the Dead: OVERKILL

From the (slightly overlong) cut scenes to the funky, yet simplistic soundtrack, this game is like a B-Movie on rails, with countless mutants to kill. Head shots stop most things in their tracks, arms will come off but the mutants continue and legs will be severed but the soon-to-be-deceased will just keep on coming.

Each level has a great B-Movie title, intro and boss at the end. And where would one expect to find mutants in a B-Movie? Hmm.. a prison? Yep, got one. A swamp? Of course, it's very fetid indeed. On a train? Well it is a shooter, after all.

My favourite level, however, is the Carnival. Like the fairly freaky cult television series, this level is the stuff of nightmares. If you weren't afraid of clowns after watching Stephen King's It, the sight of half a dozen manic paint-faced, knife-wielding blood soaked clowns is surely enough to do it.

Surrey Comet: House of the Dead: OVERKILL

The game has a good amount of atmosphere, the graphics aren't half bad, although there is a small amount of pop up at times.

The weapons are reasonably varied and upgradable with each successfully completed mission and there are slo mo-fo (whatever mo-fo means?!), bonus brains, health and grenade extras to shoot at (if you can spare a second or two while five bloody corpses are coming at you at speed).

Surrey Comet: House of the Dead: OVERKILL

There are a smattering of mini-games to play around with, namely Stayin' Alive (wave after wave of enemy), Victim Support (saving hapless civilians) and Money Shot II (2-4 players target shooting). The games are good fun and pretty rewarding when battling your mates for high scores, head shots and killing absolutely everything in the room.

Overall, this is a very good game. It boosts its longevity, thanks mostly to the tougher, longer director's cut which is available after completion of the initial story mode, and the ability to add more zombies to any given level should the desire more carnage.

It also has the pick up and play factor, for which the Wii is renowned, thanks to the high score challenges and quest for better weapons.

Verdict: Eight severed heads out of 10.