The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile

The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile Review for Xbox 360

On: Xbox 360

A sequel to a award winning indie beat 'em up game, The Dishwasher: Dead Samurai.

Review Verdict Read Review
8Out of 10
Back to game info
The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile screenshot
The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile screenshot

The campaign is primarily structured around Yuki, a prisoner aboard a penitentiary spaceship orbiting the moon, who just so happens to have completely lost her marbles; the game intersects its carnage with skittish and frenzied dream sequences that often feature messages on the wall written in blood. She's the formerly crazed stepsister of original protagonist The Dishwasher, who returns after an introductory sequence to trigger a second arc, which features most of the same levels but with different storyboard panels.

While they share the same basics - hitting the enemies until they're flashing, then going in for clean or messy executions - the pair wield fairly different arsenals. Yuki tends to be the more brutal of the two, with weapons that bludgeon and batter, whereas The Dishwasher ops for slicing: he sports a rather lovely pair of giant scissors, for instance.

Offering Yuki as a character also affords the game some much-needed versatility for when it comes to the score-driven modes. A survival challenge and a 50-stage arcade mode has been included, which pits you against a prescribed set of enemies and demands you make good use of the game's combo meter to rack up a high score for inclusion in the game's online leaderboards. If the original is any indicator then you probably won't stand a chance of making it anywhere near the top, but there's the now-standard option to see where you factor in amongst your friends.

The game still offers up a delightfully scrappy aesthetic that comes across as an intricately realised world of frustrated teenage doodles. Lighting has been massively improved over the original, and the mix of oily blacks with thick, smudgy lines, a shaky camera and veritable buckets of blood goes down particularly well with the overall tone of the game.

The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile is a more inclusive and competent game than its already accomplished predecessor, and anyone with a taste for intricate combat and a combo meter will find themselves right at home. I don't know where James Silva intends to go after this, but I'm even more interested to find out now than I was before.

New stuff to check out


To add your comment, please login or register

User Comments

xboxlive's Avatar


Yes Yes Yes ive finished the frist one :) Now i can get this,cant wait,i love the games and SKA.
Posted 08:49 on 08 April 2011
Clockpunk's Avatar


First impressions are highly positive. Everything seems to have been improved in the successor. Bigger and badasserer weapons and enemies, a funky companion, a heavy metal violin for Yuki, kill moves that make you wince, and an opening sequence/segments (trying to remain spoiler free here) that are very well done.

A very good game, that I am truly surprised Microsoft isn't capitalising more on the exclusive status of.
Posted 14:57 on 07 April 2011
xboxlive's Avatar


will have to finish the frist one,thats if i can lol.
Posted 07:54 on 07 April 2011
squidman's Avatar


If anyone's interested, we're giving away three codes for the game over on our Twitter account:
Posted 13:42 on 05 April 2011
Clockpunk's Avatar


Every Ska Studios release is a sight-unseen purchase from me. The whole techno-gothic visual, musical and 'old-school hard' gameplay style ticks all the boxes of what I look for in a game.

As exclusive to XNA development as James Silva is, I am honestly surprised that Microsoft haven't snapped the team up and put him in charge of a bigger project. Not that I'm complaining - The Dishwasher and other indie games are true gems for the 360.

Nice review, Martin. I'm glad this seems to build on the success of the original. I have heard that The Dishwasher is planned for a trilogy - here's hoping!
Posted 16:11 on 04 April 2011

Game Stats

Technical Specs
The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile
Out of 10
The Dishwasher: Vampire Smile
  • More forgiving than the original
  • Intensive combat
  • Too difficult for casual players
  • Movement can still be fiddly
Agree? Disagree? Get Involved!
Release Date: 06/04/2011
Platform: Xbox 360
Developer: Ska Studios
Genre: Beat 'em Up
No. Players: 1-4
Rating: PEGI 18+
Site Rank: 1,254 318
View Full Site