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Guns, Gore & Cannoli is a 2015 Run-and-Gun game by Rogueside Games, based on the animated short film Hellbent For Whiskey. Welcome to Thugtown, a Prohibition-era city run by the mafia and plagued with zombies. You control Vinnie Cannoli, a mob enforcer sent to find Frankie "The Fly," a small-time wise guy who went missing during the outbreak.

In March 2018 a sequel, Guns, Gore & Cannoli 2 was released. It takes place 15 years later in 1944 and features a temporarily-retired Vinnie getting caught up in a globe-spanning conspiracy involving more mafiosos, more zombies, and Those Wacky Nazis.

In June 2021 it was announced that Rogueside is working on a Warhammer 40,000-themed Spiritual Successor titled Shootas, Blood, & Teef. The reveal trailer can be seen here.


Guns, Gore, and Cannoli includes examples of:

  • Absurdly Spacious Sewer: Thugtown has a pretty extensive sewer system, and is big enough to hide things like poison production facilities and the water level is deep enough to allow some tunnels to act as submarine bays.
  • Action Girl: One of the skins the player can equip in each game lets them play as a Stripperiffic woman. Notably this mutes Vinnie's banter, as the only lines she has are grunts when taking damage (or whenever she kicks some poor enemies in the groin).
    • The sequel has a second playable female skin, who turns out to be a long-haired blonde in a less revealing but certainly anachronistic outfit that would have fit in a later time period (who wears pink pants in the 40's?).
  • Anachronism Stew:
    • Shotgun shells in both games are depicted as having plastic hulls. These would not be invented until the late-'60s, but there are hardly many cardboard shotgun shells around for the developers to use as artistic reference.
    • The US Army uses bazookas and flamethrowers in the first game, both of which weren't issued until World War II despite being in development during the Prohibition Era (one could explain the latter case as an American modification of World War I vintage German flamethrowers, which most certainly could have been captured and reverse-engineered).
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    • The Grenade Launcher is a Milkor MGL with the butt-stock from a Sturmgewehr and a Thompson M1921 grip. The MGL would not be designed until 1980.
    • Apparently, selfies by camera were also a thing in 1940's Nazi Germany, if the Sturmgewehr-wielding soldier's Idle Animations are anything to go by. Then again, people have been attempting to take selfies since the 1920's in real life...
  • Ain't Too Proud to Beg: Frankie, in both games. As befitting his cowardly nature, he begs Vinnie to spare his life after the final battle. Both times, Vinnie doesn't show any mercy and wisely throws him to his doom (which is an actual death the second time around).
    Frankie: "Ah, Vinnie, don't hurt me! It was just a joke, you know, heh-heh..."
    Vinnie: "Yeah, freaking hysterical. You know what else is funny? YOU, screaming like a little girl, on the way DOWN!!" (grabs Frankie in order to throw him to his death)
    Frankie: "No! NO!! AAAAAAAH!!!"
  • Aluminum Christmas Trees: In 2, the Nazis have guided missiles. This was actually in the test phase by the Germans in World War 2, although it was a very bulky missile with a tripod-mounted, crew-served launcher.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Both games have save points in the form of strategically placed traffic lights. Said save points also have plenty of cannoli to heal the player. If the player's having a hard time, he can choose to restart from the previous checkpoint. The game's difficulty level can be changed from the pause menu as well.
    • In the sequel, weapons that run out of ammo are removed from your inventory altogether so you don't have to cycle through empty weapons.
  • Badass Boast: Vinnie might say it whenever his favorite food is consumed...
    Vinnie: "If God made a dessert, it would be cannoli."
  • Batter Up!: The first game has Vinnie insulting enemy gangsters who unsuccessfully bring baseball bats into a gunfight. In the sequel, his reserve melee weapon happens to be a baseball bat he stole from a hostile gangster. Interestingly, two hits from a baseball bat will kill regular enemies.
    Vinnie: "When I play baseball, a home-run means you're out!"
  • Bayonet Ya: Most German gas mask soldiers will try to bayonet charge you. Oddly, they don't fire the attached riflesnote . What makes the gas mask soldiers annoying apart from charging in large groups whenever possible is that they can stab you beyond the reach of a well-aimed kick, meaning that the best way to deal with them while reloading a gun is either running away or closing in for a melee attack (baseball bat, kicking, or chainsaw) before they can do the same.
  • Berserk Button: Betrayals are one for Vinnie. Every time he got betrayed by characters in both games either set him off on a Roaring Rampage of Revenge against them and/or deliver a Cruel and Unusual Death as payback.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Frankie seems like a nice, meek fellow, but is actually a spiteful psychopath who starts a zombie apocalypse to get back at the local mafia families for not giving him enough "respect."
  • BFG: One of the weapons you can get in the first game is a Maxim Gun, more specifically the German MG-08/15. In the second game, you can commandeer unmanned heavy flak guns. This requires grabbing up a flak shell and using the action button to load it into the cannon breech.
  • Bond One-Liner: Vinnie does this a lot. Some of the lines depend on the weapon used to kill his enemies, others will either be complaints or taunts. A few of the lines involve Breaking the Fourth Wall.
  • Boom, Headshot!: The quickest way to kill enemies in general is to shoot them in the head. This is however complicated in the first game by enemies who wear helmets (soldier zombies and regular soldiers wear bulletproof helmets and must be shot exactly in the face or in the back of the head to decapitate them, not an easy feat).
    Vinnie: "That'll cost you an arm and a leg... and a head."
  • Bottomless Magazines: In both games, the reserve pistol will have infinite ammunition, but it has a magazine count of 12 shots in the first and 10 shots in the sequel. It is also recommended that one top off the magazine frequently (one may appreciate the kick button if reloading a gun while getting mobbed by zombies).
  • Buffy Speak: The Dark Don, just before the U-boat fight. Before that, the German commander asks Vinnie to surrender and so it goes...
    Vinnie: "Oh yeah? You'd better have a freaking army ready if you want to put me in that thing alive!"
    Dark Don: "Ever heard of the Wehrmacht? We've got about a ZILLION soldiers! NAZIS, TAKE HIM!!"
  • Call-Back: When Vinnie reaches the submarine bay in the sequel. An establishing shot of the U-boat shows a large row of giant vats with one of them still holding the body of the scientist that Vinnie threw inside (although obviously now a skeleton due to how long it's been floating in the vat). Another call back in the same scene is Vinnie killing a baseball bat-wielding with his Tommy gun by shooting him in the throat. Just like he did when he first saved Frankie, most likely foreshadowing as in this cutscene the Dark Don is present.
  • Car Fu: This happens a lot in the sequel!
    • Sometimes, gangsters will try to run you down with a car.
    • The police in Syndicate City love using their vans as battering rams, killing lots of people in the process.
    • Failing to jump over the Tiger Tank while fighting it will result in you taking damage and Joe will mock you.
      Joe: "Road-kill!! Heh-heh-heh!"
  • Chainsaw Good: The second melee weapon in the sequel is a chainsaw that Vinnie stole from the gangsters who tied him up. It causes victims (including giant zombies) to helplessly flinch while the player saws them to death.
    Vinnie: "Oh, I'm sorry, I thought you were a tree!"
  • Cherry Tapping: It's generally a good thing to remember that you can kick enemies away while you reload your gun (in fact, the game's interface bothers telling you in a most insulting manner to start kicking if you get mob attacked by zombies unless you've turned off the tutorial functions). If you kick a mob of enemies (whether humans, zombies, or even huge rats) against a wall, you can get the satisfaction of kicking them to death, as they cannot attack while recovering from the kick attacks. In the sequel, it is also possible to kick homing missiles away in order to destroy them! The only enemies Vinnie can't stun through kicking are the giant mutant zombies, but thankfully they are few in number.
    Vinnie: "Ain't that a kick in the teeth?!"
  • Chronic Backstabbing Disorder: Frankie, definitely suffers from this disorder. His victims have been: Vinnie, the mob bosses, the scientist who created the zombie plague, the Nazis in the sequel... nobody is safe from this guy!
  • Cool Airship: Bellucio has one, and he needs Frankie (who's a pilot) to fly it for him. It serves as the final boss, protected by heavy armor, grenade launchers, and machine guns. Vinnie boards it after shooting its armor and guns to pieces.
  • Cool Boat: In the sequel, you have to fight a U-boat.
  • Cool Guns: Plenty of them are available beyond common sense! Sawed-off shotguns, Tommy Guns, all of the golden oldies from the Gangster era. Military issue weapons can also be stolen from the US Army (and from the Nazis in the sequel).
  • Cool Helmet: The US Army soldiers (and soldier zombies) in the first game wear Brodie Helmets, which are more effective at deflecting bullets than they were in real life. In the sequel however, while the game does show the Wermarcht's stahlhelms and the American M1 Helmet, no helmet can stop Vinnie's bullets.
  • Cool vs. Awesome: Gangsters vs. Zombies. The sequel is Gangsters vs. Zombies vs. Stupid Jetpack Zombie-Making Hitler.
  • Crosshair Aware: The sequel game features manned heavy flak cannons that try to target Vinnie directly. When a German soldier loads a shell into the cannon and aims at Vinnie, a crosshair circle and a red aiming line (the shell's trajectory) appear. When the targeting circle stops shrinking and the loading process is done, the cannon will fire and explode the first thing that intersects its aiming line including any German soldiers who happen to be in front of the cannon. Thankfully, Vinnie can easily dodge the shell and mislead the flak gunners. This shell-dodging is very much emphasized during the fight against the Tiger Tank, as its main gun loads and fires much faster than the flak turrets.
  • Deader Than Dead: As revenge for his betrayal, Vinnie shoots Joe Barista with an 88 mm Flak cannon, leaving little more than a bloody stain on the ground. And to make sure Frankie is really dead this time, Vinnie tosses him into a giant meat grinder.
  • Deadly Gas: Soldiers from the first game throw gas grenades more liberally than gangsters throw the exploding variety, since their gas masks make them immune. The fact that they actually have poison gas grenades used on American soil tells you just how bad somebody in the federal government wants this city locked down.
    • Since nukes haven't been invented yet, this is how the Army wipes out the city. The sequel shows that this wasn't terribly effective, as Thugtown still has a significant zombie presence.
  • Deadly Rotary Fan: The Dark Don's laboratory is full of giant spinning blades that grind anybody caught in them to a pulp. It's justified, as the Don specifically wants to turn Vinnie into Ludicrous Gibs to harvest his blood.
  • Denial of Diagonal Attack: The first game only lets Vinnie shoot directly to his right or left, which could get somewhat annoying when dealing with certain enemies with bullet-proof headgear (or bullet proof shields covering their torsos) or attacking from awkward angles. The standard solution to this problem was the fact that Vinnie could carry up to 9 grenades and 9 Molotov cocktails on his person and toss the stuff on enemies diagonally below or toss the stuff over barricades. The sequel gives you a full 360 degrees of aim (but it takes away hand grenades and Molotov cocktails).
  • Did Not Think This Through: Frankie tries to wipe out the gangsters by spiking their alcohol with a poison that'll turn them into zombies. It turns out that the mob only drinks imported alcohol and not the local brews that he spikes, and he ends up turning everyone except them into zombies.
  • Diesel Punk: The games take place during The Roaring '20s and World War II, with plenty of tesla guns and Wunderwaffen-style super-weapons.
  • Dry Crusader: The Bureau of Prohibition, having realized that Prohibition enforcement through normal police methods was a failure, created a poison so they could spike the ingredients of alcohol. It was rejected because the effects were too..."extravagant."
  • Elite Mooks: Army soldiers in the first game. They have high health, powerful military grade weapons, and smaller headshot hitboxes (bullets bounce off their helmets).
    • The sequel shows that the Army quarantines Thugtown with a concrete barrier, improvising fortified strongholds and machine gun turrets in the ruined buildings.
    • Each game has its own array of specialized zombies that have unique abilities compared to the basic shamblers.
      • In the first game, you have Runners (in the forms of attractive women, butlers and waiters), Armored Zombies (carrying placards that mean only explosives, fire or headshots can kill them), Vomit Zombies (zombie housewives who constantly and literally belch clouds of poisonous gas, whose heads burst off when killed and whose bodies keep running around spewing toxic fumes for several seconds afterwards), Soldier Zombies of the "sporadically firing zombie" version (coming in the pistol-packing police and helmeted, tommy-gun-toting soldier), and a fast-moving Brute (zombie footballer, who charges at Vinnie and sends him flying). It also has "Big Zombies", which combine the Brute and Bruiser roles with projectile attacks (a hatchet-flinging chef and a barrel-hurling stevedore), and Zombie Leprechauns, which are midgets who float around on balloons and lob bottles of toxic absinthe at Vinnie.
      • The sequel has prisoner zombies and huge mutant zombies.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: Despite Vinnie being an unrepentant mob enforcer, he was genuinely horrified by the Scientist's creation of a toxin that would turn any drinkers into zombies (even causing the Prohibition Bureau to shut down the program as a result) and Frankie's instigation of entire Zombie Apocalypse from his financial backing. He also shows disgust towards the Nazis, who try to kidnap him twice and one of his grudges against Frankie include his willing collaboration with them. note 
  • Every Car Is a Pinto: Every car you come across will blow up if shot enough. Played for laughs in the sequel, where enemy attempts to run you over will be invariably cut short by their cars bursting into flame and exploding due to crashing into theaters or due to getting hit by bullets, explosives, flamethrowers, or even police vans.
    • This doesn't apply to the police vans in the sequel, which are insanely tough and can drive in reverse fast enough to smash through brick walls. Very thankfully, Vinnie doesn't have to worry about the vans running him down, as they stop after smashing through walls (he does have to worry about the policemen who storm out of the vans).
  • False Friend: Frankie in the first game, who becomes the antagonist of 1 and 2. Joe Barista takes up the role in 2, since he deliberately keeps sending Vinnie into the Dark Don's hands and is collaborating with the Nazis. Vinnie is less than pleased about Joe's betrayal and takes revenge using an 88mm Flak cannon to disintegrate him after defeating the Tiger Tank.
  • Fan Disservice:
    • Zombie Hookers are discolored, slackjawed, and bug-eyed. They're also dressed in lingerie and, um, jiggle. It doesn't help that they try to whip the player to death.
    • The sequel features plenty of zombie women with large busts (some are scantily clad maids). Vinnie doesn't want to get close to them, no matter how attractive they might be even in death.
      Vinnie: "You're damaged goods, lady!"
  • Fire-Breathing Weapon: A rare inversion of Videogame Flamethrowers Suck, as the flamethrower incinerates your enemies pretty effectively. The first game gives the player Molotov cocktails as well.
    Vinnie: "Lit them up like a Christmas tree!"
    • The sequel has a flamethrower with a much longer range and a bigger fuel tank.
      Vinnie: "Come on over, I'm having a FIRE SALE!!"
  • Foe-Tossing Charge:
    • Football zombies from the first game will tackle victims and send them flying.
    • Mafia brawlers do the same thing in the sequel, and anything short of explosives fails to stop the charge. Do not try the chainsaw or baseball bat on them unless the brawlers have stopped charging and are in close proximity to you.
  • Foreshadowing: There's two in the sequel.
    • When the Dark Don is finally shown, he knows the place to where the zombie poison was made and the same tank-top wearing and baseball bat-wielding thug is killed with a shot to the throat. Pretty much foreshadows that Frankie was the Dark Don all along.
    • When Vinnie visits Joe Barista again after escaping Thugtown from the Dark Don and his subordinates. A Wehrmact officer's cap is seen on the table inside of the bar.
  • Gas Mask Mooks:
    • US Army soldiers in the first game are of the Gas Mask, Longcoat variety. Most of their lines are them complaining about how hard it is to see through them.
      "My eye holes are fogging up!"
    • Bayonet-wielding German soldiers and German soldiers with Molotov cocktails in the sequel wear gas masks. Less justified in this case since there's no poison gas in this one.
      Bayonet-wielding soldier, upon sighting Vinnie: "Fix bayonets!"
  • Gangster Land:
    • Literally - the only people left alive in Thugtown are mobsters (although the US Army's moved in as of late). It's because they drink imported alcohol and not the poisoned local booze, and they have the firepower and numbers to fend off the zombies.
    • Vinnie's hometown is called Syndicate City. The city's name is clearly printed on its police vans.
  • Hand Cannon:
    • The magnum revolver in the first game can decapitate two regular enemies in a row. It has a long reload time and a slow rate of fire, but it has a very long killing range. It's also worth noting that the magnum is the only weapon apart from the starting pistol that Vinnie aims at head level, which thanks to Denial of Diagonal Attack means it's one of the few weapons that can reliably take out enemies with torso shields (conversely, it's nigh useless against helmeted enemies unless Vinnie shoots from a crouching position).
    • The sequel replaces the magnum revolver with a broom-handle Mauser. The Mauser pistol has a six-round detachable magazine (in real life, the original Mauser C96 had a fixed ten-round magazine fed by stripper clips) and a very short reloading cycle. This time it can instakill with a body shot, but can only achieve a One-Hit Polykill on headshots.
      Vinnie upon killing enemy with a head-shot: "Huh, he had more brains than I thought."
  • Historical In-Joke:
    • The concept of adding toxins to barrels of bootleg, which one of the scientists tried to introduce zombification and caused the plan to be scrapped, was based on government's practice in real life Prohibition in order to prevent alcohol consumption (though the real-life measure was used for industrial-purpose alcohol).
    • In The Stinger of the sequel, after defeating and then stealing one of the Dark Don's UFO's, Vinnie crashes it into Roswell. This refers to the Roswell UFO Incident
    • Vinnie's disdain for the Nazis echoes the reality that the Mafia hated the Nazis because the Nazis supported the Italian Fascists (who attempted to wipe out the old Mafia families in Sicily), and in fact they literally made an under-the-table deal with the US government to use their influence to stamp out Nazi spies, collaborators and saboteurs!
  • Hollywood Acid:
    • Doughboys Grenade Spam Mustard Gas canisters.
    • Housewife Zombies belch green gas everywhere.
      Vinnie, having killed a housewife zombie: "You should've stayed in the kitchen."
    • Plague Rats and the Rat King vomit.
    • The River is chockful of toxic waste.
    • Leprechauns throw bottles of absinthe, giving a concentrated dose of poisoned booze to whatever they hit.
      Vinnie getting hit by acid: "Ew, nasty..."
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: As his name suggests, Vinnie's favorite food is cannoli, which also serves as the healing item of the game.
    Vinnie: "Oh, cannoli! My favorite dessert!"
  • I Just Shot Marvin in the Face: Played for Laughs as a kill quip.
    Vinnie: "I'm sorry, I thought da safety was on!"
  • I'm Melting!: Victims of poison gas melt into a puddle of goo. The animation is very detailed.
  • Insistent Terminology: Frankie constantly insists that he's a "war hero" due to serving back in WWI.
  • Insult Backfire: Vinnie accidentally finds that he needs to modify his taunts against zombies.
    Vinnie: "Eat me... No, wait, no, I mean, uh, STOP eating me!"
  • I Surrender, Suckers: Played for Laughs as a kill quip in the sequel.
    Vinnie: "I surrender!! Heh, heh, just kidding."
  • Karma Houdini: Vinnie would have been convicted for multiple counts of gruesome murder had it not been for the fact that all of the victims and all of the evidence are now stuck in a quarantined zone that's permanently guarded by the US Army[[note]]Nobody in the government, least of all the former prohibition bureau, wants evidence of the kill-moonshiners-by-deadly-toxin-injected-alcohol plan revealed to the public. The courts dropped all charges against Vinnie according to the sequel, which makes sense considering that any leak of the poison plan would spell doom for the federal government's relationship with the general public.
    • The government released him because his blood provides immunity to the zombie poison. They deduced this after wondering how Vinnie wasn't turned undead despite getting bitten a lot by zombies. This also means that if a large horde of zombies show up in the near future, the government can plan to grab Vinnie, sample some of his blood, and mass produce the antidote once they figure out how to extract the immunity factor.
  • Karmic Death: Vinnie shoves the Mad Scientist who made the poison into one of his own vats of the stuff. Also, Vinnie tosses Frankie off the blimp to his apparent demise. Unfortunately for Vinnie, Frankie comes back as the Dark Don in the sequel without any explanation as to how he survived a 20 story drop, poison gas, and lots of zombies. Thankfully, Vinnie kills him off for real by tossing him into a giant meat grinder after beating him in the final boss level.
  • Ludicrous Gibs:
    • Large zombies that throw stuff at the player in the first game explode into a bloody mess when they die. Getting too close to them at that moment of death causes the remains to splatter the screen.
      Vinnie: "Aw, now look what you did, there's blood everywhere!"
    • In the sequel, victims of chainsaws, falling air conditioners, speeding cars, sucking ventilation fans, explosions, and MG-42's can get ripped to shreds.
      Vinnie, after shredding enemies with chainsaw: "Two arms! Two arms! And what should I cut off next!?"
      Vinnie, after gibbing enemies at random: "Collect your limbs and get outta my face!"
  • More Dakka: Plenty of it. The first game gives the player the Thompson submachine gun (with the period-correct 50 round drum) and the Maxim MG-08/15 with an 80 round belt-box.
    Vinnie: "Alright, who's next, step right up, fifty bullets, no waiting- aha! My next customer!"
    • The sequel features a Thompson with its magazine capacity reduced to 25 rounds (the player can carry up to 215 spare rounds), the MP-40 (30 round magazine and 130 cartridges in reserve), the Sturmgewehr (25 round magazine and 125 rounds in reserve), and the MG-42 (130 round belt, no reload).
      Vinnie: "Filled them up like a Thanksgiving turkey!"
  • Multiple-Choice Past: The game, the short animated film, and the comic are in different continuities.
  • Nintendo Hard: One of the difficulty levels is "Impossible." You can guess how hard the game becomes, with the player taking massive damage per enemy attack and enemies spawning in huge numbers at random moments.
  • No Cutscene Inventory Inertia: Vinnie is always wearing his default outfit regardless of which skin is equipped. He also uses his tommy gun in them, even if in game the player has no ammo for it.
  • Nominal Hero: Vinnie Cannoli is an unrepentant mob enforcer who just happens to be stuck in the middle of a zombie outbreak. Not to mention he walks away with the Bellucio mob family's fortune at the end, even though it's blood money of the reddest sort thanks to Frankie's plans. In the sequel, Vinnie mentions in a kill quip to the player that it's tough being a hero (as he is fighting on America's unknowing behalf against the Nazis and their plan to create a zombie army).
    Vinnie: "And here's the really odd thing: I'm the good guy!"
  • Not Quite Dead: In the sequel, the Dark Don is revealed to be a very much alive Frankie.
  • Older Than They Look: Despite the fact that 15 years have passed in-between the first and second game, Vinnie doesn't look like he's aged a day. And he certainly doesn't act like he's aged a day either, as the Dark Don's goons find out the hard way.
  • One-Man Army: Vinnie, who takes on two gangs, a city full of zombies, a battalion of the US Army, giant rats in the sewers, and a rogue blimp. In the sequel, Vinnie faces gangsters aligned with the Dark Don, several truck-loads of local police (who seem to have reneged on the government's promise on not prosecuting Vinnie for the Thugtown incident), the Thugtown unit of the US Army, countless zombies, a U-boat, a Tiger tank, and several divisions of the Wehrmacht and the Waffen SS. How the US Army could not keep up with Vinnie and send support for his "operation" after the Normandy landings is nearly beyond common sense, given that he raided the Atlantic Wall and massacred an entire garrison of supposedly elite German soldiers by himself. But since the Army airdropped supply crates to Vinnie during his fight against a Tiger Tank, we can assume that he somehow blackmailed the top brass into giving him weapons and a radio plus permission to go after the Dark Don alone after Vinnie killed the German commander at Normandy.
    Vinnie: "It's tough being a hero."
  • Opportunistic Bastard: Frankie is absurdly good at sniffing out opportunities to advance his goals. In both games he gets a Near-Villain Victory despite little apparent planning.
  • Our Zombies Are Different: By and large, they take after the general Romero conventions, with serving of Plague Zombie on the side. However, they seem to retain certain elements of their former lives - zombies in football gear will attempt to charge-tackle the player, soldier zombies and some police zombies can still fire their guns (albeit without much accuracy), and quite a few more specialized zombies will serve to make gameplay less boring.
    Vinnie: "Is it just me, or am I whacking the same guys over and over again?!"
    • It's even worse in the sequel, because the majority of zombies will run after the player. Soldier zombies in the sequel can actually aim their guns before firing (after saluting their intended victims, of course). And now there are giant mutant zombies, some of which are given rocket launchers by the Nazis.
      Vinnie: "You're a zombie? Sheesh, you've got more life in you than my ex-wife!"
  • Poor Communication Kills: The first mafia family you encounter are well aware that Frankie has something to do with the zombie outbreak, but they aren't very interested in telling this to Vinnie and Vinnie isn't very interested in asking. Not that they don't already want to kill Vinnie anyway, as he was hired by a rival family.
  • Pretender Diss: Vinnie looks down on the mobsters that the Dark Don sends after him.
    Vinnie: "Everyone's a gangster until a gangster walks into the room!"
  • Quick Melee: Both games have assigned a button for Vinnie's default melee attack, which is a good kick to an adjacent enemy's center of mass. The first game also featured levers that Vinnie had to kick in order to proceed to the next part of any given level. It is notable that the kick attack was more or less a last resort used to prevent zombies from getting at Vinnie during a reloading cycle.
    • In the sequel, Vinnie's kick has been upgraded, despite the usual lack of usage on the part of most players. Vinnie can now perform a sliding kick tackle if he kicks while moving (and in midair, he can perform a flying kick tackle). Kick tackles are particularly useful against enemies with shields.
  • Red Shirt Army: The US Army in both games (from the public's perspective). It's rather embarrassing to know that in 1944 (during the second game) the soldiers guarding Thugtown (as Mooks relative to the player) can't stop Vinnie. And tragically the soldiers who charge out with Vinnie at Normandy all get killed by German landmines, machine guns, and artillery. The only thing Vinnie can do with the soldiers after they die is loot their corpses for ammunition.
  • Robo Teching: Somehow, the Nazis have created missiles that will chase anything not identified as a Nazi or Dark Don minion. The relatively slow missiles generally chase the player, and can be destroyed by bullets or dodged (or led into exploding near other enemies).
  • Sequel Hook: In the sequel game, Vinnie finishes the self-imposed job he started in Thugtown (killing off Frankie the Fly and making sure he's dead) and crash lands into Roswell via stolen UFO. However, it is not known if he remembered to destroy the secret base and all the zombie poison in it so that nobody could continue making zombies.
  • Set a Mook to Kill a Mook: Humans and zombies will fight each other. Also, gangsters will fight police.
  • Shield Mook:
    • From the first game, gangsters with unusually thick trash can lids can stop everything short of explosives and Molotov cocktails. Zombies with sandwich boards are also bulletproof everywhere except for their faces. In both cases, it is recommended that the player kick the shield-bearing enemies and then shoot them right after kicking if the player has no explosives on hand.
    • The sequel has police officers with riot shields and Wehrmacht officers who charge after the player with a sword and shield. The shields can be temporarily negated by good kicking or bypassed with explosives or flamethrowers.
  • Shock and Awe: The ultimate weapon in the first game is a lightning-spewing Wunderwaffe found near the Mad Scientist's lab. It electrocutes enemies that get within a particular range of the user.
    Vinnie: "Oh baby, we've got sparks flying all over the place!"
  • Shotguns Are Just Better: In both games, shotguns will deal nasty damage.
    • In the first game, the double-barrel shotgun has really short range but will kill zombies in two hits and knock any surviving enemies back. The pump-action shotgun has slightly longer range and an 8-round magazine. It also knocks enemies away, despite being weaker than the double-barrel shotgun. Unfortunately, the two shotguns do not share ammunition, having been made in different gauges.
    • In the sequel, the shotgun will instantly kill any normal enemy who absorbs all the buckshot from one blast at point-blank range. The knock-back ability is taken Up to Eleven, allowing the player to launch surviving enemies into the air. The player can also knock the enemies into the ground if the enemies are jumping up from directly below. Thankfully, the shotgun pellets also cause victims (especially giant zombies) to flinch a lot.
  • Shout-Out:
  • Shut Up, Hannibal!: After landing in France and storming the German fortifications, Vinnie confronts the German commander. The commander reveals to Vinnie that the pilot who flew Vinnie to Europe was actually a spy. The German commander then demands that Vinnie immediately surrender (or the Germans will capture him with the use of deadly force). Vinnie responds with a very well made taunt.
    Vinnie: "We'll see how much force you'll be needing to crap out the amounts of lead I'm gonna pump into your gut!"
  • Stripperiffic: The player can swap Vinnie out for a busty Action Girl wearing mini jean shorts and crop top. Probably not standard fashion in the early 20th century.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: In the first game, the player can carry up to 9 grenades and throw them at enemies.
    Vinnie: "When in doubt, just blow the crap out of it!"
    • In both games there are Exploding Barrels all over the place. The player can also get rocket launchers, which are the bazooka in the first game and the Panzerschreck in the sequel.
      Vinnie: "Hey look, it's Napoleon blown-apart!"
  • Take That!: Plenty of parodies of famous lines abounds in the first game.
    Vinnie: "Join the mafia! Meet interesting people! Then whack them!"
    Vinnie killing something with fire: "I love the smell of burnt zombies in the morning."
    • One of Vinnie's various kill streak quotes definitely pokes fun at recent political events.
      Vinnie: "I'm making America great again!"
    • Sometimes Vinnie kills German soldiers with some condescending banter.
      Vinnie: "I bet you did NAZI that coming! Heh-heh..."
      Vinnie: "Whoa! Easy there, Fritz, you might hurt yourself!"
  • Tank Goodness: Joe Barista, who betrays Vinnie to the Nazis, has a Tiger tank hidden in his mountain villa. Too bad for Joe it gets trashed courtesy of the conveniently located heavy flak cannon and supply drops from the US Army!
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: The Dark Don somehow smuggles zombie poison from Thugtown to Germany via U-boat. The fact that the US Navy and the Coast Guard haven't actually detected the U-boat so close to American shores is quite disturbing, and even worse, the US Army soldiers guarding Thugtown don't seem to notice that lots of gangsters have gone into and out of the city prior to Vinnie shooting up their headquarters in the quarantine zone. The soldiers on the search-light machine gun turrets are a different story, as they cannot be shot.
    American soldier: "Hey you! YEAH! YOU! STOP! This is a restricted area! If you come any closer, you will be fired upon! I repeat! YOU WILL BE SHOT AT!! GO BACK! RIGHT NOW!"
    • Even sillier on the other side of the war, the Wehrmacht somehow doesn't manage to catch Vinnie after he shoots his way through Normandy, a missile base, and a mobster villa. Vinnie also stole a car and drove his way to the Dark Don's secret base in the Bavarian Mountains without getting stopped at German checkpoints. After the majority of the events, one would think that the Nazis would have lots of wanted posters of Vinnie plastered everywhere after he'd killed off the German commander in Normandy, since he is a gangster, not a soldier.
  • The Immune: Vinnie is immune to the zombie poison; Frankie wants to grind him into paste in the sequel to monopolize the cure.
  • The Many Deaths of You: The least horrific way to die in the games is to get shot (or beaten by human enemies) and ragdoll.
    • Burn to death with a horrid little squeal when set on fire (in the sequel, run around with your head on fire).
    • Melt into a puddle of slop from acid or poison gas.
    • Get electrocuted and be reduced to a pile of bones.
    • Fall off a roof to your doom.
    • Get Eaten Alive by a horde of zombies (or Rodents of Unusual Size).
    Vinnie: "Stop trying to bite me, you freaking lunatics!"
    • Get shredded by sharp fans or blown to bits by explosives.
  • There Is No Kill Like Overkill: Vinnie is quite willing to use a commandeered flak cannon to blow a villa's front door open (or even more cruelly, he can fire the cannon at enemies who man a machine gun position on the balcony above the entrance and reduce them to giblets). Vinnie uses a flak cannon to get back at his old associate Joe for betraying him to the Dark Don by luring him to Europe.
  • The War Sequence: Vinnie (a gangster) storming Omaha Beach on his own and winning in the sequel.
  • Time Bomb: The sequel has some Hold the Line style missions where you have to hold off a horde of enemies while waiting for dynamite (wired with insanely long fuses) to blow open a door for you.
  • Treachery Is a Special Kind of Evil: Never a nice guy to begin with, Vinnie always has something for those who betrayed him.
    • After being betrayed by Frankie, Vinnie tore his way through a whole city full of zombies, gangsters and soldiers to get even, which he got by throwing him out of the airship he intends to escape Thugtown with. When Frankie somehow survived, Vinnie made sure he stayed dead in the sequel by throwing him into his own giant meat grinder.
    • When Vinnie found out his old associate Joe Barista had betrayed him and had sent him to Thugtown and later lured him to Europe for the Dark Don, Vinnie got even with him by storming his villa, mortally wounding him in their battle, and then executing him with an 88mm Flak cannon.
  • Unexplained Recovery: Frankie somehow survives falling from an airship into a city full of poison gas with no explanation. Word Of God says that he grabbed onto the blimp's anchor and was able to jump to safety when it passed a tall building, and survived by scavenging gas masks from dead soldiers.
  • Universal Driver's License: Lampshaded when Frankie insists he's too valuable to kill because of his expertise in piloting airships. Vinnie however didn't care for it.
    Frankie: "Vinnie, please... you can't kill me! I'm the only one who can fly this thing. You NEED me!"
    Vinnie: "I'll read the freaking manual! Now let's see if you can fly without the blimp!"
    Frankie: "No! NO! AAAAH!!"
    • The sequel shows that Vinnie barely knows anything about UFO flight, but once he learns, he can fly halfway around the world.
  • Unusable Enemy Equipment: Vinnie can't salvage any ammunition from the guns wielded by zombies. Snub-nosed revolvers wielded by hostile gangsters are also unusable.
    • In the sequel, Vinnie cannot pick up rifles used by American or German soldiers.
  • Unwitting Pawn: Vinnie's "shoot first, ask questions later" tactics and general hostility is pretty easy to take advantage of, but once he finds out whomever exploited him, not even an army can stop Vinnie from getting even.
  • Weapon of Choice: Vinnie appears to prefer the M1921 Tommy gun as his weapon of choice, although he also has a soft-spot for the shotgun in the sequel as well.
  • Weird Historical War: The Sequel Escalation involves Vinnie taking on the Nazis, who try to create zombie troops as a Wunderwaffe. On their own soil. Do we even have to mention he wrecks a V-2 missile base by himself?
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Rusty, a side character from the first game, was never seen again after giving Vinnie information about the Bonnino Gang. The sequel shows he survived because the US Army killed most of the zombies, allowing Rusty to get to his boat at the docks. Rusty left a note for Vinnie on the wall of his shop, saying he'd wait for him until dawn, and after that just leave.
  • Your Head A-Splode: Enemies killed by headshots will have their heads exploded.
    Vinnie: "People always lose their heads when they meet me!"
  • Zombie Apocalypse: A local variation, with the effects of the outbreak contained to one city.
    • The sequel shows that the Nazis or more accurately, Frankie and his goons plan to inflict this on the entire world.

The "Zombies VS. Wiseguys: Hellbent for Whiskey" cartoon includes examples of:

  • Adapted Out: Paulie, Vinnie's partner in the cartoon, would not show up in the games which would be base on the cartoon's premise. In fact, his voice somehow ended up going on to become that of Frankie's, who did showed up in the game.
  • The Alcoholic: It's the Prohibition Era - everyone from the people in the streets to the mobsters running the operations are looking for some alcohol to drink. Even the Zombies who got turned into such by Constellis' tainted booze appear to be this, as if some lingering remnants of their Humanity drive them to towards Constelli distillery so they can taste the booze still stored there, a distraction which allowed Vinnie and Paulie (who went back to destroy the distillery with dynamite) to escape.
  • Bash Brothers: Vinnie and Paulie fought and work together throughout the entire cartoon.
  • Boom, Headshot!: Paulie does this to Luigi with his double-barrelled sawn-off shotgun when Luigi turned into a zombie after drinking the tainted whiskey the Constellis brewed and the duo stole on orders of their boss in the Bellucios gang.
  • Destroy the Evidence: After the mob enforcer duo barely escaped from the zombies, their boss demand they go back and destroy both the Constelli's distillery and Luigi's bar with dynamite so to leave nothing for the police to find.
  • Everything Explodes Ending: The entire city is destroyed when Boss Bellucio accidentally sets off the highly-flammable Constelli cask whiskey which was spilled by the zombies overrunning the Constelli distillery through the sewer system and overflowing back up the toilets and sinks, with the fireball speeding back the same way and igniting all the alcohol left in the distillery all at once, resulting in a nuclear-grade explosion which levels the metropolis, complete with a mushroom cloud.
  • Explain, Explain... Oh, Crap!: When Paulie suggested the whiskey Luigi drank was responsible for turning him into a zombie, Vinnie initially scoffed at the idea...
    Vinnie: "Well what about the people in the bar? They dranked it too - !" [Vinnie does a Double Take and looked out the office window in horror as a whole bar's worth of zombified patrons bear down upon him and Paulie]
  • Failed a Spot Check:
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: Paulie's last line in the cartoon (minus 'Freaking') after surviving the zombie outbreak and the city-levelling fireball.
  • Let Us Never Speak of This Again: Both Vinnie and Paulie decided to go to a bar and get a drink after surviving the cartoon's events, intending to forget about the whole bizarre episode.
  • MacGuffin: The Constellis' brew, which turns drinkers into Zombies and also happen to be ridiculously combustable.
  • More Dakka: Vinnie uses the classic Thompson submachine gun as his personal arm and used it to great effect icing Frankie the Fly and holding off a horde of zombies at Luigi's bar.
  • Not Using the "Z" Word: Both Vinnie and Paulie never refer the whiskey-zombies as such, with Paulie referring them as 'monsters', and even then only once. Justified in that they probably had no conception of the living dead and probably never even heard of the word, which wouldn't be popularized until decades later.
  • Riddle for the Ages: Unlike in the games, the exact reason why the Constelli's alcohol turned drinkers into zombies is never answered. All we know is that the Constellis added or did something to the brew which causes this unintentionally, and that's as far as anyone else in the cartoon cared to know.
  • Skewed Priorities: Both Vinnie and Paulie didn't really acknowledge the fact that they may have unwittingly set off a chain of events which led to a zombie outbreak and their city getting blown up by the cartoon's end.
    Vinnie: Oh, man, I bet we're all gonna get blamed for this.
    Paulie: Well, at least we got rid of the evidence.
  • Small Role, Big Impact: While Frankie the Fly had a smaller role in the cartoon (he was killed by the Mob enforcer duo within the first few minutes), he still set the entire plot in motion by blowing up the Bellucios' distillery plant on behalf of the Constellis, forcing Boss Bellucio to order Vinnie and Paulie to raid the Constellis' own distillery for new alcohol supplies and make up for their shortfall - and unintentionally set off a Zombie Apocalypse when the latest batch turned out to turn people into Zombies.
  • Sole Survivor: Both Vinnie and Paulie are implied to be the only ones to survive the outbreak and the whole city getting blown up in a metropolis-levelling alcohol-combusting fireball by the end of the cartoon.
  • Stuff Blowing Up: Up to Eleven with the cartoon's ending, when the cask whiskey in the Constelli distillery is ignited all at once, resulting in a colossal explosion which took out the zombies, both Bellucio and Constelli gangs and the entire freaking city all at once.
  • Truth in Television: While clearly Exaggerated in the cartoon, cask whiskey is in fact rather combustable, and the Constelli alcohol is portrayed as undiluted cask whiskey.
  • Too Dumb to Live: Vinnie and Paulie only thought for a moment how unusual it is a distillery owned by the Bellucios' rivals the Constellis is left unguarded, only thinking that it makes their job of raiding their supply easier. Granted, they would never had suspected the alcohol the Constellis brew somehow turned people into zombies and that the Constelli guards are already dead because of that, but they never suspected for a moment something must be very wrong with the whole situation and never bothered to investigate just to be sure, leading to them shipping some of the whiskey they stole to Vinnie's associate Luigi and unwittingly spreading the outbreak.
  • Zombie Apocalypse: Vinnie and Paulie accidentally set off a small one when the booze they stole from the Constellis turned out to be defective, though they can't figure out why it turns people into Zombie.