Every year I say I'm done with zombie fiction. After so many movies, books, video games and TV shows, I have finally had enough with these stinky, rotting, ugly brain-eaters. And yet, almost immediately after making that bold proclamation, I discover that I still love The Walking Dead, watch Pontypool every Halloween and enjoy playing games like All Zombies Must Die. Maybe one day I'll truly be done with zombie entertainment, but that day is not today.
Stop me if you've heard this one before: Zombies have overrun the city and it's up to you to kill them all, find shelter and stop this horrifying nightmare. This will require finding other survivors and becoming a quick study on the how to handle a bunch of familiar firearms. Okay, so the set-up isn't very original, but that's not going to keep anybody from digging into Douiblesix's surprisingly deep action/role-playing game.
This isn't Doublesix's first foray into the world of zombies. Years before demanding that All Zombies Must Die, the UK-based company released Burn Zombie Burn. While there's no continuity between the two games, their spirit is very much in line with one another. Here we have an over-the-top world filled with odd ball characters trying to outlast a bunch of goofy zombies. Much like Burn Zombie Burn, All Zombies Must Die opts for Saturday Morning cartoon-style action over any serious scares. Anybody expecting chills and thrills should take a trip to Raccoon City or Dead Island.
All Zombies Must Die opens with Jake, a nebbish teenager who is convinced that he's the star in a video game filled with brain-eating zombies. Early on his task is to track down Rachel, a bitter ex-girlfriend who isn't ready to believe Jake's cockamamie talk about zombies and games. Before long these two meet up with Brian the scientist and a supernatural character that that goes way beyond the realm of a simple zombie infestation.
Tracking down these characters will require Jake and Rachel to take an exhaustive search of their home town. Players will fight through the town square, TV station, mall, police station and hospital in their quest to fetch items and find safe passage out of the city. The game requires a lot of back and forth through the different areas, so expect to revisit the same parts of the game multiple times on the way to the ending.
Thankfully All Zombies Must Die offers a lot of, well, zombies that must die. You start out with the standard slow-moving zombies, but before long you'll have to dodge crazy zombies in straightjackets, speedy zombies with jogging shoes, armored police zombies and more. It's easy to tell one from the other thanks to their hilariously exaggerated animations.
You'll use a standard set of weapons to fight the zombie horde off. The most effective are the shotgun and chainsaw, it's a lethal combination that does the job better than anything else. The rest of the weapons -- hand gun, assault rifle, cricket bat, etc. -- are barely effective and are should only be used if you've run out of shotgun ammo. It's worth noting that players can throw down their weapons and use their fists to knock out zombies. This is not advised.
All Zombies Must Die may sound like a senseless action game, but it turns out to be a moderately deep role-playing game. Part dual-stick shooter and part dungeon crawler, Doublesix's newest zombie game has a lot going for it. Unfortunately it's marred by repetitive gameplay, too many fetch quests, lame jokes and horrendous collision detection!
This product was submitted by the publisher for review. As a rule, Defunct Games does not review games we spent money on. However, that does not always apply to classic/retro games. This specific product, however, came straight from a PR guy for the purposes of being reviewed!