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Thursday, December 16, 2010

Dead Nation - PS3 Game Review

David Brown

When you think of the zombie apocalypse, do you think of your survival plan? Will you be the one to run from society to some deserted place where you will plan your survival? Will you barricade yourself and hope for the best? What if your supplies run out? What if your barricades fail? What if the dead make it through and you somehow survive? Well this is the scenario of Dead Nation. You pick from either a male or female main character, both of whom have realized that they are immune to the zombie virus. Your barricades have failed and your supplies are used up. You must get to safety and plot twists along the way present many issues for you during your journey.

Story aside, the next question to come up is this: How does the gameplay hold up? Well if you are a fan of the twin stick shooter genre you’ll have a good time. Generally, one stick controls movement while the other controls aiming and shooting. The only difference here is that instead of controlling aiming and shooting, you just control the aiming. You’ll have to press the trigger button to shoot. People who are accustomed to twin stick shooters and first person shooters should have no problems getting started.

Action starts out fast-paced and continues in this style for 10 levels. The game takes you from the rooftops trying to get to safety and eventually ends up at a harbor. Along the way you will encounter a number of different zombies. You will see everything from the mundane horror movie zombie and clown zombies to the familiar tank-like zombies and acid spitting zombies. A world filled with weaponized zombies truly makes for fast and frantic gameplay. Action takes place from a top-down perspective where zombies come at you from all directions

Don’t get too trigger happy as this is a shooter that also requires a great amount of strategy. You can try to run through areas to strategically placed checkpoints but failure to explore and kill zombies will really hinder you in later parts of the game. You start out with basic armor and a basic gun. If you hold down the trigger button with this weapon you will be able to charge your shots and cause more damage. As the game progresses, you are able to unlock machine guns, shotguns, flame throwers, blade guns, and rocket launchers. Each weapon can also be upgraded as well.

As you kill zombies you gain cash and multipliers, and as multipliers build up you gain even more cash to spend on upgrades. This causes one complaint in that it feels like a lot of the weapons become underutilized and, at worst, pointless. As the game continued, I found myself relying very much on the basic gun that had been updated to its full potential as well as the blade gun and launcher. The other guns at this point become pretty much worthless. Aside from guns, you also have the potential to distract zombies away from you with flares and car alarms. You can shoot the cars further to make them explode taking out the zombies around them. If these aren’t enough explosions for you, there are also mines, dynamite, and grenades which all do massive amounts of damage and do well with controlling crowds.

Gun balance issues aside, the game will sometimes ramp up the difficulty on you. My fiancé and I were playing on the easy difficulty and found one or two sections near the end where we became quickly overwhelmed by five or six massive zombies that require planning to take down. During this time there was a great amount of complaints and plans to stop although these plans were squashed and we continued playing. That being said, there is nothing better than the feeling of taking down hundreds of zombies with a buddy; you truly feel like you have survived the zombie apocalypse. Between levels, small voiced-over cut scenes help pan out the story. The acting here fits in perfectly with the grim nature of the game.

Small issues aside, this is definitely a must-own game. The great sense of urgency really makes you feel like you are fighting to survive the zombie apocalypse. You are constantly looking over your shoulders during the six plus hour gameplay. There is a great amount of fun in trying to get the highest score and show off on the online leaderboards while at the same time trying to help your country become the number one zombie killing country in the meta game. If you get the chance and have the extra few bucks lying around then head on over to the Playstation store and pick up this great title from developer Housemarque.

If you have played this game let everyone know what you think of it in the comments below.

1 comment:

  1. awsoom game de guns ar fun and de game play is simpel


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