Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Shoot it in the head! Again!

Let's talk about Zombie Army Trilogy!

(This is me temporarily not responding to Chance's retort as I will need to put my big boy pants on and actually play Galak-Z one more time before either hating it more or not hating it quite as much)

The best way to describe Zombie Army is Doom but with a marine who can only carry three weapons and is partial to sniper rifles. This makes sense as Zombie Army is little more than a mod of Sniper Elite but does it work? Sniper Elite is an intentionally slow paced game; if you end up in close combat then you have already lost. Zombie Army has hundreds of zombies to deal with in every level and they all want to get up into your face and chew it off.

It does work because the pace of the game is not necessarily changed. These are classic, shambling zombies. They move slowly, can be avoided in small numbers and are vulnerable to a stiff kick in the chest. Moving slowly does not make them easier to kill - head shots are required and the zombies hold their heads at odd angles while rhythmically lumbering towards the player. If you can find the rhythm, head shots galore. If you are off be prepared to waste round after round in frustration and then have to run for your life.

Secondary weapons are a mixed bag. Shotguns are not powerful enough to be worth their short range (with the exception of The Preacher, a shot gun that rivals the original double barreled shot gun from doom in both effective and bad-ass-ness, but good luck finding shells for it). Machine guns are laughable inaccurate and the pistol is shrugged off by all but the most timid zombie. Grenades and land mines, though, are quite effective, especially when teamed up with dynamite.

Land mine + dynamite = a large pile of limbs. Just don't be near when it goes off.

The game can get repetitive. Correction, the game will get repetitive and that goes double for playing alone as I did. The flow of levels has a lot in common with Left 4 Dead: kill lost of zombies, find safe room, reload ammo, kill more zombies. Checkpoints are logically placed so being overrun or sniped from the distance my sniper zombies (yes, sniper zombies) does not equal frustration but on the third wave of bad guys in the same area I was ready to be done.

There is a surprising jump in quality between the second and third chapters, almost as if the first two sold well enough that more time and effort was put into the third. If the whole game was a good as chapter three I would heartily endorse it. Instead I offer a tepid thumbs up but only if really like sniping and are looking for something even more abhorrent than Nazis to kill.


Now where are my big boy pants. Probably near my abandoned copies of Tekken Tag Tournament 2 and Persona 4 Arena.

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