Couch co-op built for PC? Something strange is afoot.
Stop us if you’ve heard this one before; a co-op experience involving repetitive zombie slaughter, the ability to create your own weapons and imaginatively characterised protagonists. Nope it isn’t Left 4 Dead or Dead Island, instead this niche arcade experience is much more quaint, with a top-down perspective, twin-stick shooter gameplay, and a star who thinks he’s stuck in the middle of a video game.
All Zombies Must Die! isn’t your typical indie release and despite the fact that its primarily been developed for consoles, it still has a few nice ideas to warrant its existence on our platform. You start out as Jack, a self -proclaimed gamer who has been thrust into a tiny zombie-infected world consisting of a handful of different areas, including a police station, shopping mall, power station and a housing estate, which are gated off by quest spouting security cameras. The goal is simply to find out what he’s done to deserve to be sharing such small environments with legions of the undead and soon he meets his ex-girlfriend, a mad scientist and an alien to help in that endeavour.
Combat itself is simple yet satisfying with uzis, shotguns, sniper rifles and the ever popular chainsaw to keep your bloodlust satisfied, but slammed on top of that common formula are three different components; RPG-style levelling, weapon customisation and the ability to transform zombies by interacting with the environment. For instance set off a car alarm and you’ll turn every zombie in the near vicinity into faster headphone wearing enemies, point some uranium their way and they’ll mutate into something resembling the incredible hulk. There are other modifiers associated with electricity and fire – both of which can spread from zombie to zombie – and this mechanic offers different ways to approach certain scenarios, with component-orientated loot dropped when certain enemies are killed. Corralling zombies around to infect them and pick up the loot you require a lot of fun, but the quest design is often of the typical fetch variety, with leads progression to feel like a slog very quickly. The variation is supposed to come from having three extra players join you in the slaughter fun, but there isn’t an online option, instead co-op is local only. In 2012 that’s a massive disappointment and one that neuters the this offering’s appeal.
All Zombies Must Die! can’t hold a candle to other zombie slaughter heavyweights, but frankly it isn’t trying to. Instead doublesix has created a venue for mindless twitch-based fun with the simplest of item collection and recipe mechanics layered on-top. There’s nothing game changing here, but the polished nature of Zombies Must Die warrants its miniscule asking price.
Lots of personality, little substance. Yet worth a punt at such a low price…
Tags: All Zombies Must Die
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