Vampire Rain

America is facing an invasion by illegal immigrants. They're called "night walkers," and in exactly 908 days, they'll outnumber decent, breathing Americans. Those pencil-pushers in Washington won't do anything about it, so it's up to the military reconnaissance squads to find 'em, round 'em up, and deport 'em—back to hell.

You wind up in a bleak Los Angeles in the middle of a rainy night. Vampires have dulled down the city until it looks like downtown Omaha, but regular civilians are still hanging around. (They're drawn by an inexplicable "sweet odor"—clearly a reference to Jarritos Mandarina and its sabor natural.) You'll sneak through the city in full ledge-hanging, pipe-climbing, shadow-hugging stealth-ops mode, hiding from the enemy until you finally get the means to take him out.

Maybe it's the sweet odor, but this bare-bones thriller grows addictive. Then again, the game only has about half a dozen tricks up its sleeve. And once you find a gun that can handle the vamps, the tension lifts: The enemy is deadly, but also so dumb that he can't see you strutting 10 feet away. You can pick off one vamp while the guy next to him scratches his head and wonders what just happened. Cut them some slack, though: They probably don't even get minimum wage.

Beyond the game: Hot on the heels of the X-ploitation 360 title Bullet Witch, Vampire Rain is yet another cheapo walking-dead game set in a blown-out city. Next up: Wight Flight.

Worth playing for: While it flops on looks and innovation, Vampire Rain scores on mood; it knows how to pace the scares and dole out the corpses.

Frustration sets in when: Vampire Rain supports multiplayer matches, but good luck finding anyone else online.

Final judgment: To paraphrase the President, there are some games Americans just won't play.

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